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

Benzoyl Peroxide

Posted by Robert_O (Robert Olifent), 9 February 2004
Just scanning the web, and I found this which I thought might be of use to carpet & upholstery cleaners.

What is Benzoyl Peroxide?

One of the most common problems in recent years has been the occurrence of permanent color loss in household textiles resulting from the use of acne medications, that contain benzoyl peroxide, a very powerful bleaching and oxidizing agent.

It is also used in hair bleaches, pet shampoos, dog mange remedies, etc. This is really not very soluble in water,  and so even if one washes one's hands after application, it may not be removed, and if it is transferred onto the upholstery or carpet, it will stay there. It's a very slow acting agent and it requires heat and humidity for activation and therefore it may stay dormant for months. When you, the cleaner, apply the heat and humidity that is essential for activating it, bleach spots appear as a result, and you get blamed.

How do we pretest for that one?

Posted by Dynafoam (Dynafoam), 9 February 2004
Hi Robert,

I don't know of any way to pre-test for the stuff, or even reliably see that there is somethig that requires special attention.

Last summer I was cleaning a moderately grubby pale blue bedroom carpet, Mrs housewife standing in doorway being amazed at the before & after, when I noticed a clear hand-print had appeared adjacent to the bed.

To cut the story short, it transpired that teenaged son had been doing press-ups after applying ointment.

This mark took only minutes to 'develop' after cleaning.

Under different circumstances I could have faced a claim. Since client had watched this part of carpet being cleaned there was no question of blame but I know of no way of preventing a repeat, and it is not practical to tell every customer before starting that  "if  carpet has been contaminated with.........."

Being aware of the substance can only help with explaining after the event.

Seems that this is another situation where we are in the lap of the gods.

Posted by squeaky (squeaky), 10 February 2004
This exact same thing happened to me yesterday , I had 6 Holiday cottages which I had to clean all of the carpets,On one particular cottage the owner told me that it was in a bit of a state because the previous tenants had had a dog .
As I was cleaning the dining room carpet I notices lots of bleached spots appearing that did not seem as though they were there before but I had started cleaning,I immediately called in the owner and asked her whether or not she new if the people with the dog had used a dog shampoo ,she replied that dog shampoo was sold in their shop and that the lady had purchased some,I then explained that I had had this problem before that the bleach in the shampoo when shaken by the dog onto the carpet lays dormant untill it is cleaned
I suggested that she changed brands of shampo and alsol ooked closer at other items she sells that may contain shampoo.
I have also had this with Milton (baby steriliser) which can stay dormant in a carpet untill it is cleaned.

Posted by Robert_O (Robert Olifent), 10 February 2004
One line of defence would be to print off other peoples experiences of this phenomenon (as put forward on this forum) and to give as a hand out to customers when it occurs.

At least they can see that this is not just waffle that you are trying to give them, and reasonable people may appreciate that this is not the cleaners fault!

When problems of a  technical nature like this occur it is far better to refer to a professional technical manual to explain and give more authority to backup what the cleaner is explaining.

Just a thought



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