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Improper spot removal can rub customers the wrong way

Carpet Cleaning Specialist Auckland – While the basic duties of contract cleaners involve daily upkeep cleaning such as vacuuming traffic areas and emptying trash, there always is an occasional call about a spot or stain that needs attention.

For contractors who may not have day porters available to address the problem when it first happens, cleaning an unknown spot or stain can be a headache. Especially when one can make matters worse if using the wrong cleaning technique.

To start, the first basic distinction carpet cleaners make is between spills, spots and stains. In general, a spill is anything that has been dropped on the carpet that didn’t belong there. A spot is a spill that can be removed from the carpet through cleaning. A stain is generally permanent because the spill has actually changed the color of the carpet fiber.

The most common carpet-spotting culprits include soda, coffee, candy, and greasy food. Others are ink or printer toner, and dirt tracked into high-traffic areas. As carpet cleaning specialist Auckland, we can choose from an arsenal of cleaning products that are specifically designed for use with the kind of spot and the kind of carpet in question.

Cleaning techniques 

A basic spot-removal strategy involves scraping away any solid matter, such as coffee grounds, powdered toner or candle wax, that might be present. Next, carefully blot the area with cleaning solution. Never pour cleaner directly onto the spot, because this causes the dirt to sink to the bottom of the carpet fiber. Work the spot from the outer edge towards the center. Never brush carpet, which causes wear; instead, it is blotted with a damp cloth.

If the area is flooded with carpet cleaner or water, the carpet becomes saturated right down to the backing. The moisture mixes with the spot and tends to climb up the carpet fibers back to the surface of the carpet during the drying process. This causes the stain to reappear.

Stain reappearance also may appear when the cleaning agent is not rinsed from the carpet well enough, leaving behind a ring of residue. Sticky residue attracts soil that is tracked in from outside, and makes the area quickly appear dirty again.

Stain, stain, go away

A different set of strategies is required for stains that have discolored the carpet. A stain indicates that the carpet fibers have actually taken on a different dye. Unfortunately, dye-strippers (products that have been formulated to remove the dye) don’t know the difference between the carpet dye and the stain.

However, a heat-transfer process can be used to remove the stain. The assumption is that the spill isn’t set as strongly as the carpet colour is. Using a steam iron to apply heat over a towel, the dye-stripper draws the less-fixed discoloration into the towel. This process requires careful timing and should stop before all the discoloring stain has been removed. That is because the stripper continues to work for a while after it has been applied and will remove the carpet dye if left on too long.

Cleaning innovations 

Innovations in carpet manufacturing and cleaning solution specificity, along with new safety regulations, have changed the carpet cleaning industry enormously.

Carpeting manufacturers have introduced new types of stain-resistant carpet fibers, which repel soil rather than attracting it. Stain-resistant carpets also release stains more readily, making the cleaning process easier.

Ironically enough, however, as carpeting is becoming more stain resistant, cleaning solutions are becoming weaker and weaker. Environmental and safety regulations have mandated the removal of petroleum-based solvents from cleaning solutions. Unfortunately, solutions with the solvents removed may not clean oil-based stains as effectively.

Despite this, cleaning solutions are becoming more specialized. For more information on how we can help call us on 0800 800 382.

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