carpet cleaning phoenixWelcome back to the second part of this blog subject!
In the previous blog, I described the proper way carpets should be cleaned, using industry standard protocol (and a bit of common sense). Most cleaners circumvent or ignore the standards (or don’t even know what they are!) to be able to undercut pricing. The problem is, as a homeowner, you really have no idea how good or poor a job they did. All you know is that they left you with a wet carpet. So you can better judge the quality of cleaning you receive, here’s how most cleaners are able to cut prices and quality (but NOT Doctor Steamer!):
Chemicals: It’s common practice for cleaners to use inferior chemicals (some just use water in a chemical jug!). These inferior chemicals can leave an alkaline residue on the carpet that encourages re-soiling, so the carpet gets dirtier, faster. It also can leave the carpet “crunchy”. They can even decide to rinse only with water instead of the addition of a proper rinsing agent (these agents help return the fibers to the proper pH).
Heat: To save time, some clean so fast that their equipment doesn’t produce high heat until after most of the carpet has been cleaned, so the carpet is being cleaned with cold or lukewarm water.
Agitation: Few companies take the time to rake the chemicals they spray into the carpet in a way to save time. The chemicals won’t work properly just sitting on top of the fibers.
Time: A big time saver is to just rinse the carpets right after the chemicals are sprayed. Again, they need time to do their work, or the results will be inferior.
Pre-vacuuming: I’m going to add another category for this as it is part of the standard, but not included in the C-H-A-T acronym described in detail in the first blog. This is a huge one in my mind. Unless there is a solid reason not to, one of the first things your cleaner should do is to vacuum the carpets. This takes a significant amount of time, and is one of the first items to be cut from the process. I’ve heard cleaners tell homeowners that they use the suction on their cleaning wand to vacuum the carpets prior to applying steam. Sounds reasonable, right? WRONG! The wand does not have an agitating brush, nor is it designed to be used as a vacuum. It is designed to remove water and wet debris!
So, in a nutshell, here’s what you should see from start to finish:
1. Carpets are pre-vacuumed
2. A high-quality GreenSeal Certified Pre-spray is applied to the carpet
3. The Pre-spray is agitated with a carpet rake (with the exception of Berber-style carpet)
4. After the pre-spray and any spotters are applied, cleaning should not be started for 10-15 minutes
5. The technician should make a cleaning pass followed by a vacuum-only pass to remove moisture
6. Deodorizer and carpet protector should be applied
7. Carpets should be raked to imbed the deodorizer and protector
8. The technician should be wearing protective booties after step 4
I hope this has helped explain how to know if your carpets have really been properly cleaned. It is true, you generally DO get what you pay for (or don’t pay for!). Because carpet cleaning is something that you don’t do very often, make sure you spend the money to get it done RIGHT the first time! So remember, Doctor Steamer is the clear choice for the best carpet cleaning in north Phoenix, Anthem, Scottsdale, Glendale, and Peoria!

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