Carpet and Cleaning Myths
1. Carpets get dirty faster after you get them cleaned, so it’s important to put off cleaning new carpet for as long as possible.
Let’s look at the first part of this myth: carpets get dirty faster after they are cleaned. Unfortunately, this belief comes from people’s direct experience as a result of hiring questionably trained carpet cleaners. The standard practice in carpet cleaning today is to begin by applying a pre-spray and then using a carpet cleaning wand to lightly rinse that off. This is equivalent to cleaning an article of clothing by spraying it completely with a laundry spot cleaner, spraying it with warm water and then vacuuming it. As you can imagine, there is a significant residue left in the garment/carpet. Because this method of carpet cleaning is so prevalent, many people have had the unfortunate experience of getting their carpets “cleaned” and then watching as the carpets quickly became dull in appearance and then darken as household dust, etc., sticks to this residue.
Mancuso’s Benchmark Standard to clean a carpet is to rely upon a volume of hot water that exceeds the weight of the yarn, combined with a physically fit and properly trained and equipped technician who can flush and agitate the carpet face correctly to remove soiling and then extract 90-95% of the water. This correct method only utilizes a pre-spray if there is compounded soiling, and incorporates a thorough rinsing out of pre-spray or any chemical applied. Cleaning a carpet this way ensures that there is essentially no cleaning residue in the carpet for soiling to be attracted to.
The second part of this myth deals with the cleaning of new carpet. It’s true that new carpet fibres are resistant to soiling by their very newness: the fibres of new textiles of any type are fit more closely together, and tend to relax and separate from each other as they age. New carpet fibres have fewer spaces in between for dirt to penetrate, so soiling tends to sit on top and get vacuumed out more easily. However, soiling will eventually penetrate as the fibres relax, especially in the areas where we regularly walk, opening the fibres and grinding the soiling into them. So, in order to protect the carpet fibres from the wearing effect of soiling being ground into them, it’s important to vacuum regularly, and periodically have the carpets extraction cleaned.
2. Cleaning the carpet makes it wear out faster.
Some people wonder whether applying hot water to carpet with a wand and agitating its face yarn is hard on the carpet and prematurely wears it out. A good analogy would be to consider the cleaning of your clothing. New clothing has a crispness of form and a freshness of colour that we, of course, want to maintain as long as possible. However, eventually the newness of the garment is outweighed by its soiling, and we realize it has to be cleaned in order to freshen its appearance and odour, and to protect its fibres from being broken down from the soiling itself. The same can be said for carpeting. Soil (especially where it’s being walked on) is breaking down the fibres as it lingers in the carpet, so we want to remove it periodically. In actuality, then, you do more harm to your carpet by not cleaning it, or not cleaning it properly, than by cleaning it.
OF NOTE: There is growing evidence that rotary extraction tools/spin bonnet cleaning when used by undertrained cleaners can cause damage to any kind of carpet.
3. Carpets are bad for allergies.
It has often been said that carpets are a repository for dirt, and thus leave us at risk for illness, including allergies. While it is true that dirt and allergy-causing substances do fall into carpets, it is important to note two things:
By holding onto the dirt/allergy-causing substances, carpet keeps them from becoming airborne, which lowers the amount of allergens floating in the air, and
Regular vacuuming, combined with proper carpet cleaning, removes dirt and allergy-causing substances from the carpet.
So, carpet is not worse than any other flooring with respect to allergies: in fact, carpet can be somewhat better that resilient flooring because it acts as a temporary filter, keeping the allergy-causing substances from floating in the air, prior to your vacuuming and professional cleaning.
Contact Mancuso Cleaning Services for more information.