I work hard and I know you do to. So when we invest money into a product or a service we want to make sure we get the most out of our investment. A simple understanding of soil and how it affects carpet can help. I hope you find the following useful in your quest to make your carpet investment last longer.
Most soil is acidic in nature so an alkaline cleaner should clean it right? Well not always. Yes alkaline cleaners will clean soil, but is the carpet dirty or is it just simply worn. As a professional carpet cleaner it is my responsibility to communicate and set the expectation with the customer before service is performed. Anything said after the cleaning is done if for any reason an area still appears dirty is simply an excuse. Please let me explain.
The majority of soil is brought into your home or business from the outside. Sand and grit quickly works their way to the bottom of the carpet pile where it becomes trapped by compacted yarns. The majority of this tracked in soil accumulates at the entry points or high traffic areas of the home or business. These fine particles (0.1 microns) have a significant effect on visible soiling. These particles, although by weight are minimal, are actually responsible for the soiled look of carpet. Large particles fall to the bottom while fine particles may be trapped in the abrasions and imperfections of the fibers.
There are 3 types of soil:
REAL SOIL – the actual amount of soil in the carpet that can be weighed
VISUSAL SOIL – soil that changes the color and luster of the top third of the carpet
APPARENT SOIL – soil that cannot be removed due to shading and abrasion. This is referred to as “graying of the traffic lane”.
Real soil and visual soil can be removed by frequent vacuuming and carpet cleaning. An apparent soil state occurs when the particles build up in the carpet and are not removed on a frequent basis. These particles as mentioned build up and fill in the imperfections of the fibers and act as a razor blade thus wearing down the carpet fibers. Vacuuming is the single most important task that can be performed to increase the longevity of your carpet. Stain protectors can also help increase longevity.
Sand, clay quartz, skin, animal fibers, grass, paper, cellulose are all insoluble soils. Nearly 80% of the soil in your carpet is insoluble which means it does not dissolve in water or solvents. The best and most thorough way to remove insoluble soil is through vacuuming.
Carpet filters soils, pollutants, gases and pet dander. Like any filter it needs to be cleaned.
To see a list of vacuum cleaners that passed the Carpet and Rug Institute’s list of vacuums that passed the Green Label Program visit www.carpet-rug.org. Green Bay Floor Restore vacuums every room or area prior to carpet cleaning. If you had your carpets cleaned and the technician didn’t vacuum, you were cheated and didn’t get the best service possible.
Jamie Strohmeyer / Green Bay Floor Restore
IICRC Certified Carpet Cleaner / Clean Trust Firm