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

What is clean?

Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 22 December 2003
Following on from a post in another section of this Forum.....

I have been cleaning carpets and soft furnishings for thirty years...

In all that time no other cleaner (with one exception) has seen me at work... I (again with one exception) have never seen another cleaner at work.

Therefore I cannot compare my standard of cleaning with any other cleaner... I can only go on my gut instinct that an item is as clean as it can safely be cleaned.

I know many of the alleged top cleaners in the UK personally and I assume that they do a good job....but I have never seen their work.

Although we have Standard Procedures (IICRC) there is no actual standard of cleanliness other that the satisfaction of the client.

I am sure that you will all agree that the standards therefore can vary greatly.

I cannot see any way of changing this situation...can you?

Posted by mike_halliday (mike_halliday), 22 December 2003
'what is clean?' I think of the word clean as I do the word pain Roll Eyes If I have a pain in my tooth I can take aspirin and the pain will still be there but because of the aspirin  I won't feel it,  BUT THE PAIN IS STILL THERE.  

The same goes for 'clean' I can use chemicals to make the dirt appear to go away, but it is still there.

CLEAN Free from dirt or contaminating matter ( The Oxford compact English Dictionary)

When I clean a carpet I use a softened freshwater rinse So I believe I leave the carpet in the most clean, free from foreign matter state possible.

I think a lot of carpet cleaners actully just swop the contaminants or cleverly hide them Wink

Posted by strakercleaning (strakercleaning), 22 December 2003
I know the carpet is CLEANER because of the colour of the waste water.................... Roll Eyes  
I always believe that I have removed as much soil as is physically possible without risk to the item. My client is happy that I am leaving because I have done as much as is possible .................not because I have to rush to another appointment. We are both satisfied that the carpet is CLEAN Grin
Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 23 December 2003

There are several important points tucked away within your post....forgive me if I highlight them.

1. Clean as best you can bearing in mind the safety aspect i.e. causing damage,etc.

2. Give yourself sufficient time to do the job.

3. Most importantly, your customer should be happy with the result.

As Mike has said we can only do so much... we try desparately hard not to get backings wet for all the obvious reasons BUT a great deal of the soil will be in the backing fabric therefore will remain.

The only way around this is to lift the carpet take it away and put it through a vibro-beater (plant cleaning)

One of my customers came out with, what I considered, to be an extremely profound remark.
He said, "the only way to remove dirt from an item is to wash it"

What went through my mind was how would he have felt if I had used a dryer system of cleaning?

Would he have felt cheated?

Posted by strakercleaning (strakercleaning), 23 December 2003
Derek, You say that there will be soil in the backing of the carpet...........I agree Wink But when I clean a rug or a carpet runner, unless it is reversible, I do not clean the underside, apart from vacuuming to ensure no dust transfer when rolling. Carpets are referred to as Pure wool or 50/50 or 82/20 etc. This refers to the tufts woven in to form the pile Huh Therefore could we not argue that we are removing the soil from the 'carpet' regardless of the backing Grin..........your views
Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 23 December 2003
Hi Guys

If you go to the bics website you can download guidelines about cleaning.


at the end of the day one persons clean will not be anothers. As long as you are happy you have done your best and are happy with the time spent, within the budget of the customer and most importantly the customer is satisfied.


Martin Cool

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