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Carpet Cleaning Issues - Carpet construction, upholstery cleaning, stain removal, equipment, events, etc.

Problems with rugs cleaned by Chemdry

Posted by Alan_Harrison (Alan_Harrison), 29 September 2003
I don't want to tread on anyones toes here and I hope not to cause offense.

I've been cleaning oriental rugs for about 15 years now. The cleaning is an aditional service offered to the customers of my Oriental Rug retail business. I have been trading for over 20 years and have built up sound reputation over quite a wide area. Probably because I am regarded as the " oriental rug expert " I am sometimes asked by customers who have not used our services, to arbitrate in disputes when cleaning jobs have not come up to thier expectations. I'm wise enough not to enter into any arguments and usually offer to try and correct the problem free of charge (povided they're not to bolshie). Now comes the embarassing bit...... 9 time out of 10 the complaint comes from the same cleaning system, namely Chemdry! Now I don't know anything about Chemdry. I don't know the state of the rugs before the Chemdry process and I don't believe that any one Chemdry agent is the source. The rugs invariably clean up easily and the client goes away happy.

Does anyone know about the Chemdry system? Why do they keep croping up?

It raises an important issue about customer satisfaction and feedback. Does anyone follow up jobs with a satisfaction survey? It might be a good opportunity to tout for more business.

Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 30 September 2003

Chem-dry are unique! They have their own way of doing things and are very protective of their chemicals, machines, methods etc.

Their marketing is excellent and they single handedly helped the industry raise its prices some years ago when they emerged as a soft furnishing cleaning force.

I managed to get hold of their training video's (don't ask) a few years ago and they are very interesting... I will have to have another look at them to refresh my memory on their rug cleaning techniques

Posted by leerob695 (leerob695), 8 January 2004
somehow i cant see many chem-dry technicians  cleaning an oriental rug with a rotary machine can you
they use a hotwater extraction machine called "velda"
with 2 separate solution tanks a and b
one is alkaline and one is acidic when the 2 products meet at the wand they meet and fizz together also supposed to be a ph of around 7
Posted by Ivar_Haglund (Ivar_Haglund), 9 January 2004
Comes down to this

not the method but the cleaner himself

I have seen chem drys do very good work

like everything

who is doing it

not the method

unless your a FOAMER.  Tongue Tongue Tongue Tongue Tongue Tongue

Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 9 January 2004

According the the Chemdry training videos I have seen the Velda machine, which in essence is a modified extraction machine is NOT used as such.

The process demonstrated in the film is that they pre vacuum, using the Velda machine pump only, spray the carpet with solution, then they follow this by using the rotary machine followed by the Velda on just dry vacuum only.

Therefore I can only assume that there is NO rinse process...this may be the reason you are experiencing these problems.

Posted by leerob695 (leerob695), 9 January 2004
hi  again the video us have must be an old one as 95% of chem-dry cleaning uses hwe
very few operators use the old spray method any more
Posted by woodman (woodman), 9 January 2004
Amazing this is on here today,

Just got back from inspection of 3 Rugs cleaned by Chem-Dry two have a secondary backing one original chinese no backing.

Customer complaining of 'bubbling' and end not being in a straight line.She immediately thought they had shrunk.

Chem-dry response was to basically do nothing but tell her that was the job.

I was asked to inspect independently and found that quite simply the rugs had not been laid properly in the clients home (both very elderly, the customers that is Smiley).

the backing had bunched under the rug causing it to rise and slip (bubble) and big Chinese just needed pulling into shape, all lines fell into place to customers satisfaction.

This job could have cost the Chem Dry franchisee 2500 as they had washed there hands of it and it was going to insurance.

What it has cost them is a lot of bad mouthing by the client to any one who cares to listen.

Incidently the cleaning was fine.
Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 9 January 2004

I believe that some Chem Dry people do use the conventional HWE machines but I am not sure that it is with the approval of the franchisee...
I also believe that they still have to purchase the Velda machine

Posted by leerob695 (leerob695), 9 January 2004
well the lesson to learn from that is to inspect identify and test lol
it isnt that hard to do is itHuh? Tongue
Posted by Jim_Lynch (Jim_Lynch), 10 January 2004
To clarify a few things....

The Velda was CD's first foray into HWE, but unfortunately it was not sufficiently field-tested before it's introduction, and consequently it proved to be a bit of a lemon.
It was released to US franchisees about 8-9 years ago, and made compulsory there (one Velda for three franchises held). I understand it was also compulsory in the UK, but it was and still isn't compulsory down here in OZ. Many franchisees, including me, were never going to buy the original Velda until the bugs were finally ironed out. Incidentally, the name comes from the founder's mother's name.
The Velda was replaced a few years ago by a better version, the Powerbase (A helluva better name too Wink)
It is made by Kleenrite, as was the Velda.
A couple of years ago, a modified RX20 was introduced. It is made by Hydramaster, as is the standard RX.
So, franchisees can utilise either HWE or bonnets, or a combo of both. Down here, the majority still prefer the bonnets, but that will change over time when they can see the better results with the RX. It is still optional here to purchase the Powerbase/RX package.
A truck mount, also made by Hydramaster is also in use in the US, and no doubt will be available in other markets soon.
So, to get back to the topic, unless you know how the rugs were cleaned, it's a bit simplistic to disparage the CD system.It comes back to the skills, motivation and training of the technician doing the work.
I hope that helps.

Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 10 January 2004
Hi Jim

Thanks for the update....In my neck of the woods the local CD operators stick to the original concept of bonnets and Velda (I am reliably told that they still have to buy this and replace every couple of years or so)

I know of other CD operators who do use HWE equipment ... When I first saw the concept of the Velda machine I could see a serious competitor to the HWE system until I saw the way that it was being used. Perhaps you could explain,  Jim, why it wasn't used as a conventional extraction machine....there has to be a reason

Kind regards
Posted by Jim_Lynch (Jim_Lynch), 10 January 2004
Check your mail, Derek.


Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 10 January 2004
Thanks again Jim

The information is much appreciated

Kind regards
Posted by stevegunn (Steve Gunn), 12 January 2004

It looks good Cheesy

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