Which Method Cleans Best?

Dry foam: The carpet cleaner applies shampoo to your carpet, allows it to dry without rinsing, then the next time you vacuum the dried shampoo goes into your vacuum.  Can you imagine applying shampoo to your hair, allowing it to dry and then removing the shampoo from your head with a vacuum?  This method leaves a sticky dirty residue in your carpet, which is one reason dry foam is not very effective.

Absorbent pad (bonnet cleaning): The cleaner sets a large cotton bonnet on your carpet and spins it with a floor scrubbing machine to “buff” the carpet.  The bonnet absorbs dirt from your carpet.  Bonnet cleaning is like trying to use a large cotton towel or mop to rub the dirt out of your carpet and this method doesn’t remove any of the sand and grit it’s not very effective.

Dry, absorbent powder or compound: Using this method the cleaner spreads a moist, absorbent powder on the carpet.  The powder is allowed to dry and then sucked into a vacuum.  The idea of cleaning is to remove the unwanted contaminates not add contaminates, dirt, and because the carpet is not rinsed, this method is not very effective.

Hot water extraction: This is a fancy way of saying that pre-cleaning solution is applied to your carpet. A technician rinses your carpet with high pressure hot water and a powerful vacuum extracts all the soils, yuck, creepy crawlies and cleaning solution from your carpet.  In a recent Technical Bulletin, Shaw Industries, the world’s largest carpet manufacturer, “recommends the hot water extraction system, which research indicates provides the best capability for cleaning.”  You can choose from two different types:  Truck-mount extraction, which is done with a large machine mounted on a truck or van.  Or portable extraction, which is done with a small, hand-held unit.

On which type to choose, Shaw’s Technical Bulletin states:  “[cleaning] can be done from a truck-mounted unit outside the facility with only the hose and wand brought inside, or where a truck-mounted unit cannot reach, by a portable, self-contained system brought into the facility.”

As you can see, Shaw recommends the truck-mounted unit first.  And this isn’t surprising.  You see, the truck-mounted system cleans much better because it heats the water to a high temperature – and applies the rinse solution to the carpet at a high pressure.  This breaks up the dirt, bacteria, chemicals and pollens in the carpet.  Then the powerful vacuum to removes the dirt and chemicals out of your carpet.  This is the method our company uses.

No question, the most effective way to clean carpeting is with a hot-water unit.  It’s the most powerful cleaning system in our industry and the only machine that removes all the dirt, harmful bacteria, fungus, chemicals, pollens, tobacco residue and dust mites.

Some people believe that steam or hot water cleaning damages your carpet, but this simply isn’t true.  By washing and then rinsing your carpet with hot water, we clean your carpet completely – in the same way that our clothes are washed using detergent and water and your clothes are completely rinsed before drying.