Robot Vacuums for Carpet, Hardwood, and Area Rug Cleaning

Robotic vacuum cleaners, automatic robovacuum, robot vacuum

 

As technology takes over our lives, robot vacuums are appearing in more and more homes.  They go around your home and handle things without you having to bend, crawl, or move items.  How can this impact your floor cleaning?

Regular Cleaning

These vacuums allow you to have your floors cleaned on a regular, consistent schedule.  While you may have previously vacuumed your home on a weekly or more infrequent basis, you can now have your floors cleaned daily, perhaps while you sleep. To make this system work, you will now have to empty and maintenance the robot vacuum cleaner every day or few days.

Hard to Reach Spots

Beyond the more consistent schedule, these vacuums are generally smaller and able to go into hard to reach spots.  Think about the last time you vacuumed, did you actually lift your couch to clean underneath it?

Spot Cleaning

Some of these robot vacuums have a mode for handling a spill or mess in one area.  This allows the vacuum to focus on that section of the home and clean it up, although not all the robot cleaners come with this setting.

Mop Replacement

While not all robot vacuums have it, a few of them have an option for it to mop or “wet clean” certain types of floors too.  This is a nice feature but the technology is still evolving, and they have extremely limited scrubbing power. This is not at a level that should be used as a regular replacement to mopping just yet.

Technology Limitations

Some of these vacuums are now wifi-connected, so you can trigger it through an app on your phone or computer. Things are still a little behind though, as with the mop feature, much this technology is still evolving.  The battery can be limited, the bin size maybe too small to handle more than one cleaning worth of dirt, or the device may fall down stairs, get stuck on area rugs, or have trouble finding its way back to the charging station.

Vacuum-Proof the Home

Having these devices doesn’t mean you can leave it and forget it.  You need to clean up the surrounding areas as small toys, socks, or other small items could get stuck in it and break it.

In fact, this can be a big issue with pets, especially if they are not toilet trained.  Recently, one of our clients had severe damage to the device and their flooring when the robot vacuum spread a puppy’s accident all over their home.  We were able to completely clean and sanitize their flooring but the vacuum had tremendous damage.

Doesn’t Fully Replace Vacuuming

While this helps keep the house somewhat cleaner, these devices are not as powerful or effective as traditional vacuums. It is recommended that you still vacuum regularly and use a robotic vacuum for home maintenance in between more familiar methods of floor cleaning.

While robot vacuums promise to be one of the next wave of useful technologies, we still have a long ways to go.  Regular vacuuming and even professional carpet, hardwood, or area rug cleaning are still essential.  Please contact us with any questions or if you’d like to schedule your professional cleaning today.

5 Signs You Need Upholstery Cleaning

clean upholstered furniture

 

When it comes to cleaning interiors, one area that goes forgotten is the upholstered furniture, or soft furnishings. They’re difficult to thoroughly clean yourself at home, so we get in the habit of skipping over them.

Good news: professional upholstery cleaning provides the ideal solution to deeply cleanse and safely rinse all upholstery. Here are 5 clear signs that it’s time for professional upholstery cleaning for the health and beauty of your home.

  1. You Can See Stains

Visible stains are a sure sign you should have your upholstery cleaned. It’s probably been a long time since the last thorough cleaning, if there ever has been one. Spills that stain are particularly difficult to remove from upholstery because they settle into the fabric and padding quickly, becoming set before you can properly clean the spill. Professional upholstery cleaners have the tools and machinery to safely deep clean and spot treat upholstery to fully lift and remove even stubborn stains, as well as the filth you can’t as readily see.

  1. You’ve Noticed More Sneezing and Allergies

An increase in sneezing, allergies and asthma in your home is a reliable sign you would benefit from thorough upholstery cleaning. Just like carpets, upholstery fibers can harbor dust, dust mites and pet dander – all allergens that can set off your symptoms. While regular vacuuming of soft furnishings helps, it takes professional upholstery cleaning equipment to remove these allergens on the deepest level to keep you healthy.

  1. Your Upholstery Has an Odor

Upholstery, carpets and other soft surfaces in your home can be magnets for odors. Whether it’s cooking odors, pet odors, smoke, or just a musty odor, dirty upholstery often has a distinctive ‘smell’ to it. The solution to preventing upholstery odors is to remove the source of the odor – ventilate while cooking, only smoke outside, and don’t allow pets on the couch. But if the odors are already there, professional upholstery cleaning is the only way to really get them out.

  1. Upholstered Furniture Fabric Looks Dull and Oily

Over time, upholstery fabric absorbs grease, oil and dirt from our bodies as we use our couches and sofas. You’ll find this most prominent in the areas we repeatedly touch the furnishings with our skin, like where our hands, heads, or necks rest. This is a very unflattering effect on upholstery, making it look much older, grubbier and dirtier than it has to look. Professional upholstery cleaning lifts away grease, oil, grime and skin flakes that may have collected in your couch over the years through prolonged use.

  1. Hair, Fur, Dust and Dirt Are Stuck To Your Upholstery

The soft fabric surface of upholstery easily collects pet hair, dust and dirt as humans and pets pass by. Unlike smaller bits of dirt and dust, these larger hairs are more visible to your family and visitors. Dust and dirt can turn into dark marks and wear over time with repeated use. Upholstery cleaning removes visible hairs, fur and grime for cleaner looking upholstery.

With professional cleaning you can make the upholstered furniture in your home cleaner, better smelling, and newer looking. Talk to a professional carpet cleaner about the options they have for upholstery cleaning to renew your upholstered pillows, chairs, sofas, benches, and couches for a fresher, cleaner, more hygienic home.

4 Items You’re Probably Not Cleaning, But Should

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We like to think of ourselves as generally clean people, but there are areas for all of us that slip our minds when it comes to cleaning. Keeping a clean home or office is essential to good hygiene and health, but what are the areas you should be deep cleaning that you might be forgetting about?

Office Carpet

You might vacuum your office carpet on a regular basis, even daily. But that’s not enough  deep cleaning for the absorbent carpet surface because it accrues so much dust and dirt from traffic throughout the day. Unlike residential carpet, office carpet can be walked on (and spilled on) by hundreds of different users in a single day. This exposes the carpet to an astonishing volume of dirt, dust, grease, bacteria, and pathogens. Even vacuuming with a commercial strength vacuum is not enough to really cleanse office carpet.

It’s essential that you get deeper cleaning for your commercial carpet about twice a year. A professional commercial carpet cleaner can also inspect your office carpets and evaluate whether more frequent deep cleaning, stain removal, or odor removal is necessary. It’s helpful to enlist a carpet cleaning company for regularly scheduled deep office carpet cleaning. This means you don’t have to remember to arrange for office carpet cleaning, and it still happens on a regular schedule to keep your office carpets hygienic and germ-free.

Area Rugs

Homes and commercial spaces with hard floors have the benefit of being easy to clean and maintain. And hard floors like tile, hardwood, vinyl, and laminate can be tough on the feet and make the atmosphere colder. To add comfort, homeowners often place an area rug over hard floors. Of course, just like wall-to-wall carpeting, these area rugs become a magnet for dust, dirt, and germs.

Area rugs require special care to maintain their freshness and beauty without damaging them. Because area rugs are often made of delicate fibers and have other trims and special construction, many homeowners put off cleaning area rugs out of fear that they’ll damage them. Your professional carpet cleaner can provide expert deep cleaning for your area rugs to ensure they remain intact and beautiful. Otherwise, you can send your area rugs to the manufacturer for cleaning.

Grout And Tiles

Over time, dirt, germs, and mold accumulate in porous grout and can even form a film over or stain tiles. Because this process happens gradually, many business and homeowners don’t notice their tiles and grout becoming full of dirt and mold. While mopping tiles and grout can help to remove surface dirt and residue that’s accumulated over the course of the day, deeper cleaning is needed to really lift stains and ground-in dirt and mold from the grout. Professional tile and grout cleaning provides a deep lift to this long-standing dirt and mold, making your tiles and grout whiter and brighter than ever before.

Couches And Sofas

The couches and sofas in our home and office settings take a lot of wear. But how long has it been since you’ve given your couches, chairs, and sofas a thorough deep clean? Just like carpets and area rugs, soft furnishings like upholstered couches and sofas accumulate dust, dirt, grease, oil, hair, and skin flakes through the course of day-to-day use. And yet we often overlook these upholstered surfaces when it come to deep cleaning.

A good rule of thumb is to have professional upholstery cleaning as frequently as you get your carpets or area rugs professionally cleaned. This helps to remove all the built-up residues and potential pathogens from within the upholstery fibers.

To maintain real hygiene and cleanliness in your home and office, you don’t want to overlook these four items. Get help from your local professional cleaning company to keep your home spotless and healthy from top to bottom.

 

How Pets Are Changing the Cleaning Industry

Pets changing the cleaning industry

Pet-safe cleaning has become a higher concern, with pets increasingly playing a more important role in our lives and our homes. A recent survey conducted by Harris Poll found that 33% of young home buyers aged 18-35 were motivated to buy their first home in order to have a better space or a yard for their dog. In comparison, marriage was the motivation for 25% of home buyers that age, while having a child was motivation for only 19%. A 2016 report also found that 44% of Americans own dogs (78 million dogs in homes total) and 35% own cats (that’s 85.8 million cats).

Cleaning Your Home With A Pet

Pet owners are always looking for new and better ways for their homes to support their pets. Pets are spending more time indoors and have a greater impact on our homes. And our homes have a significant impact on them, too. A part of this is finding home cleaning solutions that create a safe and healthy environment for both humans and their pets. The cleaning industry is adapting and changing to provide solutions that are pet-safe, while also dealing with the sometimes difficult cleaning problems pets can cause. Here we look at the different ways we can adapt our cleaning to protect our pets and address the unique cleaning challenges pets create.

How Pets Can Affect Your Home

It’s no secret that pets can affect the cleanliness and hygiene of our homes. Even well-trained pets have accidents, and their indoor/outdoor life means that they’re another source of dust and pathogens being dragged into the home.

Our furry friends affect the cleanliness of our homes in a range of ways including –

  • Tracking dirt, mud, and pathogens into the home, which can accumulate in carpets, area rugs, hardwood floor cracks and tile grout. This creates a dirty and less hygienic environment.
  • Pets, particularly cats, can bring dead  rodents and birds into the home, which can be a health concern.
  • Carpets, upholstery and other soft furnishings can adopt pet odors when pets use them often.
  • Pets may urinate, defecate, leave hairballs, or vomit on carpet, hardwood and soft furnishings, leaving stains or damage. Odors from liquid spills can remain in carpets, rugs, and furnishings for a long time as they seep deep into carpet padding and upholstery stuffing.
  • Dogs and cats can drop fur and skin cells on floors and furniture, which is known as pet dander. This can be an allergen, causing allergic reactions and triggering asthma. It can also create odors and just look bad.
  • Pet dander is also a site for dust mites, another allergen that can trigger allergies and asthma.

How Pets Have Impacted the Cleaning Industry

We know pets have influenced our homes and contributed to cleaning issues. That’s why clear trends toward pet-safe cleaning dealing with these hygiene dilemmas have emerged. These trends include –

  • Installation of Hard Surface Floors – Many homes have resorted to installing hard surface flooring such as tile, hardwood floors, and vinyl, laminate or engineered wood to avoid absorbent surfaces. Hard surfaces are easier to clean and don’t absorb or ‘catch’ pet accidents or hair. Odors and stains from pets are much less likely to impact hard floors.
  • Area Rugs and Their Unique Cleaning Needs – Of course, as homeowners install hard floors, use of area rugs also increases to improve comfort underfoot and improve the warmth and atmosphere of a space. But guess what? Pets prefer these soft, warm and comfortable rugs as well. Area rugs may then become the ‘preferred site’ for pet accidents, as well as the place pets prefer to sit and relax. Unlike the hard floors they sit on top of, area rugs can accrue stains, dirt, and odors quickly, which are often difficult to remove. Area rugs made of fine fibers and delicate designs may need to be sent out for professional cleaning so that they are gently cleaned, while preserving their structure.
  • Carpet Odor and Stain Removal – When pets use carpeted floors, these floors need deep professional carpet cleaning and professional stain removal more regularly. Carpets get stains and odors much more quickly and hold them for longer than other floor types. Liquid spills and accidents can soak deep into carpet padding, which makes odors difficult to reach and fully remove. Specialized, professional carpet odor removal services are increasingly popular, aimed at achieving the difficult goal of fully extracting deep-seated odors from carpet.
  • Professional Upholstery Cleaning and Odor Removal – Carpets aren’t the only surface in the home that is affected by pet stains and odors. If pets utilize upholstery and furnishing in the home, it’s likely that these furnishings will also be subject to pet hair, urine, saliva, feces, and dander as well. Professional upholstery cleaning and deep odor removal is a service that’s becoming increasingly popular and important for pet owners as they strive to keep their home clean and hygienic.

The Impacts of Home Cleaning on Pets

For homeowners with pets, keeping the home clean at all costs isn’t the only consideration. Where pets are living in an environment, they are also going to be affected, so it’s important to consider the impact of cleaning on pets.

  • Some cleaning products can be extremely dangerous and poisonous to pets. Just like children, they don’t know or understand the difference between what is ‘safe’ and ‘dangerous’ so cleaning products should be kept away from where pets can access them.
  • Because animals are naturally closer to the ground, they will be more heavily impacted by the cleaning products and processes that happen to your floor. Even just casual exposure to these chemicals through the environment in your home can negatively impact their health.
  • Pets ingest chemicals from cleaning products when the chemicals rub off onto the pet’s fur or feet. When the pet licks and cleans themselves, they ingest these chemicals.
  • The worst culprits for pet poisoning are bleach, laundry detergent, and phenol-based disinfectants. Some carpet cleaning agents are known to be irritating or unsafe for pets.
  • There is an upside: Pet-safe cleaning products that are known to be safe for both pets and children are available and help to keep homes beautifully clean, while furry friends are kept healthy.

How The Cleaning Industry Is Innovating

The cleaning industry is responding to the need to make home cleaning pet-friendly and pet-safe. Professional carpet cleaning and upholstery cleaning companies are now more aware of the impact of cleaning solutions on pets, as well as cleaning techniques that help to produce a better result for your home, while also keeping your pets healthy. You will now find a wide variety of innovations available that make professional and home cleaning safer for our animals.

Pet-Friendly Cleaning Products

One of the most significant developments of the cleaning industry in relation to pets is the development of non-toxic, pet-safe cleaning products. This gives homeowners peace of mind when undergoing professional cleaning or cleaning their own homes. Not to mention that many homeowners, especially those with children, prefer to use non-toxic cleaning products in their homes.

  • Pet-safe cleaning products – For home cleaning, you can look for products that specify they are pet-friendly on the label or bottle. Keep in mind that just because a cleaning product says it is ‘natural’ or ‘organic’, does not necessarily mean that it is pet-safe or non-toxic for pets. Many natural substances can still be toxic to pets so always check for pet-specific information on the label.
  • Correct product use – It’s important to also know how to use a cleaning product correctly to ensure that your pets stay safe. For example, if a product specifies that you should keep children and pets away from the area until dry, you need to follow these directions for pet safety.
  • Pet-safe professional cleaning – When booking professional cleaning, you should ask if your cleaning company uses pet-safe cleaning solutions and techniques or practices that help protect pets.
  • Adjusting expectations – Keep in mind that some cleaning products and techniques that are safer for pets may not be as effective as stronger chemicals. This may leave you with a different result than you were hoping for. To balance your expectations and your pets health and safety, ask about all the options available.

Safer Cleaning Techniques

It’s not just the cleaning solutions that have been innovated in relation to pet-safe cleaning. Professional cleaning companies have also developed specific techniques to address pet related home hygiene issues while keeping pet’s safe.

  • Pet-safe cleaning techniques – If you need more thorough carpet cleaning with traditional cleaning solutions, don’t despair. Carpet cleaning companies have developed techniques that allow for more deep and thorough carpet cleaning and carpet stain removal, while also minimizing chemical residue. That’s one big reason why it’s best to choose a professional carpet cleaning company for home cleaning rather than trying to do it yourself. With the proper truck mounted, hot rinse carpet cleaning machine, and expert can cleanse and lift traces of cleaning solution from your carpet, and your flooring is left with low chemical residue and no impact on your pets.
  • Knowing how to handle pets – professional carpet cleaners are now trained and knowledgeable with dealing with pets and understanding how they need to be treated in the home. Just as you and your family need to vacate the house during professional carpet cleaning, tile cleaning or upholstery cleaning, your pet also needs to be kept safe from the cleaning process, and surfaces should be allowed to fully dry before pets use them again.

Home Cleaning Plans

Not only are the tools and techniques for cleaning houses being innovated to better accommodate companion animals, cleaning companies are also adapting to provide better service to homes with pets.

  • Professional cleaning plans – Cleaning plans and packages are available to help households with pets stay on top of keeping the home hygienic and safe. These plans can be annual or semi annually, and provide specially tailored cleaning services to keep homes with pets clean, including carpet cleaning, stain removal, tile and grout cleaning and odor removal. The best aspect of these plans is that they save organizing and remembering on the part of the homeowners. With cleaning already arranged and scheduled, you can keep your home safely clean and pet-safe at all times.

Your Guide To A Safe and Clean Pet Loving Home

So how can you formulate your own plan to not only keep your pet-friendly home clean but to keep your clean home pet-safe?

  • Do Your Research – Find out about pet-safe cleaning solutions and pet-friendly cleaning companies. Conduct research about which chemicals in cleaning agents affect your pets, and avoid using these products. Ask your vet for recommendations if in doubt.
  • Ask Your Professional Cleaner – It’s a great idea to talk to your professional carpet cleaner or upholstery cleaner about the type of products and techniques they use and the outcome you expect. This can help you understand the process they’ll use, as well as helping them understand your needs and the needs of your pet.
  • Start A Cleaning Plan – A cleaning plan from a professional cleaning company helps you save money on keeping your flooring beautiful longer, while also ensuring your home stays clean and healthy for the family. A cleaning plan can be specially developed to target some of the issues affecting households with pets, such as pet hair removal, stain and odor removal, and regular carpet cleaning.
  • Pet Accident Cleaning Kit – For homes with pets, preparation is key. It’s more than likely that at some point, your pet will have an accident or create a mess that needs cleaning. Homeowners should be prepared in advance to provide a rapid response that minimizes damage and prevents the accident happening again. Put together a kit with plenty of clean blotting cloth and a pet-friendly carpet and surface cleaner so you can quickly clean up accidents to prevent odors and stains. Promptly and thoroughly cleaning the area of a pet accident is essential to prevent the pet from ‘marking’ the same spot again.

Creating an inviting, healthy home that is pet-safe is a focused recent innovation of the cleaning industry, achieved thanks to pet-safe cleaning products and techniques. Develop your plan for a clean, pet-friendly home with the help of your local professional carpet and floor cleaning company.  

How Water and Flooding Can Damage Your Home and Your Health: How To Protect Your Flooring

Flooding and Water Damage, flooring mold, hardwood and carpet cleaning

 

Flooding can occur in your home due to adverse weather events, plumbing failure or more. While flooding can be detrimental to your whole house structure, one place that flooding always affects is the flooring. Flooding and moisture can weaken or damage your flooring, affect the foundation underneath your floors or create the conditions for mold growth or other damage to occur in the future. Not to mention that the effects of flooding such as mold, bacteria and mildew in your floors can pose a risk to your health. Here we look at ways to protect your flooring and the health of your home and family against the risk of flooding.

Act Fast

When it comes to protecting your flooring from a flood the most important thing is to act fast. Mold and mildew can start growing in your flooring, furniture and walls within 48-72 hours after it first gets wet. This means it’s important to stop the flow of water into your home and begin cleanup as soon as possible.

Send Area Rugs and Removable Items Out

Cleaning up flood damage is very different from handling a small spill or stain. It’s best to send any area rugs or removable carpets out of the home for professional cleaning. This ensures they receive the care that they need based on their unique properties and are dried quickly to prevent damage. It also helps to reduce the cleaning burden for you.

Cleaning and Drying Carpet

Heavily soiled or damaged carpets may need to be removed and disposed of quickly. Calling in a professional carpet cleaner to evaluate the damage is a good idea to allow you to get an expert opinion. Carpet contaminated by raw sewage, oil, or other toxic waste will need to be immediately disposed of.

You can begin drying out your carpets by using a wet dry vacuum to remove as much water as possible and opening windows or using a dehumidifier to begin drying them. After you have removed as much water as possible, call in a professional carpet cleaner to clean and rinse the carpet using an extraction method to ensure all traces of contaminated water have been removed. If carpet is deeply flooded it may be necessary to pull up the carpet to dry the padding and floor underneath. Your professional carpet cleaner can also help advise on a safe and effective way to dry your floors effectively.

Drying Wood Floors

Wood floors can be vulnerable to flooding as the wood absorbs water, expands, and becomes permanently damaged. Wood can also harbor bacteria or mold. Lift as much moisture as possible from the wood floors as soon as you can. You will then need to ascertain how to salvage the flooring pieces and determine whether water has collected under the wooden flooring. If you’re unsure of how to thoroughly dry the wood floor yourself, seek professional advice from the manufacturer or call a professional hardwood floor cleaner.

Preserve Furniture As Well

 

Flooring is not the only item at risk in your flooded home. If water has reached upholstered furniture and been absorbed, your furniture will also need professional cleaning. Professional upholstery cleaning can force your furniture dry faster and prevent it becoming moldy.

If your home floods, it’s essential to act fast to preserve your flooring. Seek professional carpet cleaning and professional hardwood floor cleaning assistance as soon as possible to protect and preserve your floors.

The Ultimate Floor Cleaning Guide for Tiles, Carpet, Hardwood, Vinyl, Laminate and More!

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Keeping floors clean, safe and hygienic is an essential part of home maintenance. But what’s the best way to clean the floors you have at home or in the office? Here we look at the ultimate guide to cleaning different flooring types to get the best results and outcome for your residential and commercial floors.

Carpet

Clean carpets are one of the defining features that add to a home or business’s appearance, safety and health. On the other hand, dirty carpets are not only unattractive, but can also be unsafe, worsening conditions such as allergies and asthma. Keeping your carpets cleaned should involve a three-pronged approach that includes regular vacuuming, professional carpet cleaning, and professional stain and odor removal.

  • Regular Vacuuming – Regular vacuuming is the first step in keeping your carpets clean and healthy from week to week. Regular vacuuming with a powerful vacuum cleaner helps to pick up dirt, dust and other debris from the floor, and diminishes the buildup of dust mites which can cause allergies. Vacuum once a week, going over the same patch of carpet 3-5 times to lift as much dirt as possible.
  • Professional Carpet Stain Removal – Understanding how to minimize the impact of stains when they first occur at home is a key skill to prevent carpet damage. Blot up as much of the stain excess as possible, you can attempt to remove stains yourself, but the safest bet is to call a professional carpet cleaner to do this for you. They can accurately analyze and diagnose your carpet fiber type, and provide the right stain removal treatment to restore your carpet’s appearance while protecting the carpet from damage.
  • Professional Carpet Cleaning – Professional carpet cleaning is recommended twice a year, to deep clean carpets and remove ingrained dirt, dust, stains, and allergens. If your business has carpet that receives high traffic, you may need to have your carpets professionally cleaned more often. Professional carpet cleaning removes dirt, bacteria, and pathogens, while also freshening carpet, removing odors, and leaving your carpets with a spotless appearance.
  • Professional Odor Removal – Even if your carpets look clean, they may not smell Unfortunately, pet accidents, smoke and cooking smells can seep deep into the carpet layers, lingering no matter how much vacuuming, air freshening and candle burning you do. That’s where professional carpet odor removal comes in. Professional carpet inspection can help to identify the odor problem and diagnose the best solution for fresh results.

Area Rugs

It’s not just wall-to-wall carpet that needs cleaning and maintenance – your area rugs need cleaning and care as well. The most important thing to remember about area rugs is that they are often delicate and composed of materials that need extra care. Each area rug is also unique, and cleaning needs to be tailored to the specific composition of the rug. Just like wall-to-wall carpet, area rugs can harbor dust mites, allergens and germs if not thoroughly cleaned. Area rugs can be kept clean through a combination of regular vacuuming and occasional professional cleaning.

  • Vacuuming – Vacuum your area rug on a regular basis in the same way you would vacuum your carpet. Take care with delicate trims and tassels to ensure they are not damaged by the vacuum cleaner.
  • Professional Area Rug Cleaning – Just like wall-to-wall carpet, area rugs can be professionally cleaned. This process is carefully and meticulously done in order to remove allergens, dust, and pathogens, while also protecting delicate fibers and dyes. In some cases, an area rug can only be cleaned ‘in plant’ to ensure they are specially handled and the dyes don’t run. Area rugs usually need to be inspected before cleaning, to ensure a correct and safe approach.

Hardwood

Hardwood floors are a stunning, classic option, and they are generally easy to keep clean. Hardwood floors are highly valued by homeowners, as with proper care, they can last for decades. Prolonging the life of your hardwood floors and keeping them in pristine condition involves checking your hardwood floor type with a flooring expert, regular cleaning, and occasional professional hardwood cleaning and refinishing.

  • Daily Sweeping – A quick sweep every day keeps your hardwood floors spotless and prevents excess dust and dirt collecting in cracks.
  • Weekly Mop/Vacuum – A weekly mop or vacuum helps to pick up all the extra dust and dirt you may have missed during the week. Check with your hardwood manufacturer or flooring expert about which technique is right for your floor, as some hardwood finishes benefit from a damp (not wet!) mop, while others are best to be vacuumed only. Ensure you have a hardwood fitting for your vacuum before you use it on hardwood floors, as a beater bar can damage your hardwood.
  • Professional Hardwood Floor Cleaning – Occasional professional hardwood floor cleaning protects your hardwoods floors and keeps them looking their best. Deep hardwood floor cleaning should always be done by a professional to prevent damage to floors. The best professional hardwood floor cleaning should involve no harsh chemicals, contain low VOCs and fumes, and be GREENGUARD Children & Schools SM Certified.
  • Sanding/Refinishing – Sanding and refinishing removes deep stains and restores the luster of your hardwood floors. As sanding takes some layers off your hardwood floors, you only need to do it every 3-5 years.

Tiles

Tile floors are attractive, durable and easy to clean, and there is a huge range of materials and designs to choose from to make your tile floors. While keeping grout clean is a priority for all types of tile floors, certain tile types might need other specific care as well.

  • Basic Tile Cleaning – Keep your tiles clean week to week by sweeping or vacuuming daily (without beater bar on the vacuum cleaner) and mopping weekly. Use a gentle detergent and chamois style mop to collect dust and dirt, rather than a sponge type mop that can push it into the grout.
  • Grout Cleaning – One of the most important aspects of clean tile floors is clean grout. Unlike most tiles, grout is porous, which means it readily absorbs dirt and dust and can stain more easily. Keeping grout clean can be a challenge as grout accumulates dirt and mold over time, and many household cleaning products only erode grout when ‘cleaning’ it. The best way to keep grout white and gleaming is to have grout professionally cleaned every 12-18 months. This professional grout cleaning treatment can lift ingrained dirt and deep stains out of grout while protecting grout and tiles, leaving outstanding results without the back breaking
  • Grout Sealing – After installation of tiles, or professional tile and grout cleaning, you should have your grout sealed. This offers the best protection to your grout, limiting the buildup of dirt and dust, and preventing stains affecting your grout.
  • Glazed/Polished Tiles – Glazed and polished tiles include glazed porcelain and ceramic tiles, as well as dense, polished stone or marble tiles. These tiles are usually highly water and stain resistant, and easy to clean as they don’t stain or absorb spills. Glazed and polished tiles can be cleaned with sweeping/mopping/ vacuuming weekly, and professional tile cleaning once a year.
  • Unglazed Tiles – Unglazed tiles tend to be ‘softer’, more absorbent and more porous, including unglazed ceramic tiles and some stone tiles. Because unglazed tiles absorb more spills, they are more likely to stain. Deep professional tile cleaning can lift stains, marks, and dirt out of unglazed tiles.
  • Slate/Stone Tiles – Certain types of stone tiles, such as slate, need to be sealed after installation for protection and water resistance. Sealing helps to prevent slate tiles being scratched or stained. Acid based cleaners can wear away at the slate, so use only gentle cleansers for your slate tiles.

Engineered Wood

Engineered wood provides the look, feel and performance of real wood, integrated with composite materials and a protective polyurethane coating. Engineered wood is easy to care for, durable and practical, and maintaining it is easy too.

  • Regular Sweeping/Damp Mop – Engineered wood floors are more moisture resistant than hardwood, thanks to their finish and high-quality plywood base. Use a cool, damp mop with gentle cleaning agents to wipe away dirt and dust, or a gentle sweep to clear away day to day debris. Never use harsh chemicals (including ammonia or vinegar) or steam on engineered wood floors.
  • Sanding/Refinishing – Some engineered wood floors can be sanded and finished, and some cannot. It’s important to check with your flooring manufacturer or a flooring expert before you attempt to do this. Because the wood layer on engineered wood floors is thinner, even if your floors can be refinished, it can only be a limited amount of times. In some cases, engineered wood flooring can benefit from professional wood floor cleaning, so speak to your local professional cleaning company for more details and an inspection.

Vinyl

Vinyl sheet has long been a popular form of resilient flooring that’s ideal for a range of settings in the home and the office. Luxury vinyl tile is a new innovation that accurately emulates the appearance, texture, and feel of other flooring types, including hardwood, stone, and tile for a fraction of the cost. High-quality vinyl is both water and stain resistant and easy to install, making it an increasingly popular choice for homeowners.

  • Regular Sweeping/Mopping – Regular sweeping removes dirt and grit from your vinyl floors before it gets ingrained. If you have no-wax vinyl, ensure you use a cleaner made specifically for no-wax floors. Older vinyl flooring may require waxing. Only use a damp mop, not a wet mop or a steam mop, and rinse floors well to remove soap residue.

Laminate

Laminate is a synthetic flooring composed of multiple layers of pressed wood or other synthetic products fused with a lamination process. The flooring emulates wood or sometimes stone with a photographic layer under the top protective wear layer. Laminate flooring is easy to clean, and with proper maintenance can last for years to come.

  • Regular Dusting/Sweeping/Vacuuming – Laminate can be kept clean on a regular basis with dust mopping, sweeping, or vacuuming without the beater bar. While you should avoid cleaning laminate with excess water or steam, you can use a specific laminate cleaner to remove tougher dirt and dust. Don’t spray cleaners directly onto laminate as this can stain, lightly spray on a damp cleaning cloth or mop instead.

Commercial Flooring

It’s not just at home that floors need to be kept clean and beautiful, it’s equally important for businesses to keep their floors clean and to the standard expected by their customers and their industry. It’s a good idea to outsource your commercial floor cleaning, whether that’s regular maintenance or professional deep cleaning. Most business owners don’t have the time or know how to clean their business space, and professional cleaning ensures a high-quality and safe result.

  • Floor type and Business Type – The best way to clean your commercial flooring really depends on the business type and your flooring type. Most businesses conduct light cleaning such as sweeping, vacuuming or mopping at least once daily.
  • Professional Commercial Carpet Cleaning – Carpets add comfort and warmth to business spaces, but they also need regular professional cleaning as they can quickly absorb stains and odors. Professional carpet cleaning may be recommended every 4-6 months, depending on the traffic received and the nature of your business.
  • Professional Commercial Hard Floor Cleaning – Hard floors such as tile, laminate, vinyl, and rubber are popular in commercial settings as they are stain resistant and easy to clean. In commercial settings, it is essential that these floors are anti-slip and treated correctly. Professional tile cleaning helps to remove germs, dirt, and mold from tiles and grout, while deep professional commercial floor cleaning treatments can be applied to other types of commercial hard flooring.

While incorrect cleaning can damage your floors, using the proper cleaning technique helps to create clean floors that look and smell better, and keep the users of the flooring safe and healthy. If you’re unsure about the right cleaning for your floors, talk to a floor cleaning professional to learn more or to book a thorough, professional floor cleaning.

Do Homemade Carpet Cleaning Solutions Really Work?

homemade carpet cleanser

Creating homemade cleaning solutions can seem like a great way to save money and create a more natural way to clean. But are homemade carpet cleaning solutions really as effective and safe as professional carpet cleaning? While the idea of making your own carpet cleaning solution seems tempting, it’s important to investigate if homemade cleaning solutions are really worthwhile. Here we look at some of the most popular homemade carpet cleaning solutions and how they compare to professional options.

‘Dry’ Home Carpet Cleaning Powders

One of the easiest and simplest ways to use a homemade carpet cleaner is to dry carpet clean with a powder that’s then vacuumed up. This eliminates the need for getting the carpet wet to shampoo, which is always risky when not done by a professional. Many homemade powder carpet cleaners are made of some combination of baking soda and cornstarch, scented with herbs, potpourri or essential oils. For a stronger cleaner, occasionally borax and baking soda are combined.

Once sprinkled and left on the carpet for some time, these powdered cleaners are vacuumed up. Powders can be useful for adding scent to a room, but they don’t really ‘clean’ the carpet. Thorough carpet shampooing and rinsing is required to really provide any effectiveness in removing stains, odors, dust and dirt. Furthermore, borax and baking soda and extremely alkaline, and can be irritating when small amounts are left in the carpet after vacuuming. For the most effective deodorizing, cleaning, stain removal and rinsing for safety, professional steam carpet cleaning is necessary.

Home Carpet Cleaning Solution For Machines

Some homeowners have developed homemade solutions to be used in carpet cleaning machines that may be hired for home use. These solutions can include vinegar, dish soap, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide, salt, essential oils and other household ingredients. However, although they are used with a carpet cleaning machine, these homemade solutions could create issues.

Firstly, using anything other than a professionally developed cleaner on your carpets always carries the risk of damaging your carpet. Solutions containing any kind of bleach should be particularly avoided, as this can lead to bleach stains. You need to choose the right cleaner for your carpet fiber type as well as the right technique with the machine. Secondly, using your own cleaning solution in a hired carpet cleaning machine could make you liable for any breakages or problems with the machine. Finally, if you are inexperienced with how to use a carpet cleaning machine, you can cause your carpets to become sodden or matted, which is difficult to reverse. Overly wet carpet can become the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew.

Homemade Spot Carpet Cleaning Solutions

For quick spill clean ups, homemade spot cleaning solutions can help when you need to counteract a spill fast. While professional solutions that are proven safe for your carpets are always preferable, gentle spot cleaners can help to manage the spill until professional carpet cleaning or professional stain removal is undertaken.

After thoroughly blotting, a sprinkling of baking soda on a water-based spill or pet accident can help to lift additional moisture, and can then be vacuumed away. Blotting a gentle dilution of clear Dawn liquid soap on the affected area can help to further remove residue.

If in doubt it’s always best to ask your carpet cleaning professional about what’s right for your carpets. A professional carpet cleaner can accurately diagnose and provide the best treatment for your specific carpet type.

Why Odor Removal is so Important: Studies Show How Scent Influences Us

cat smelling flowers, odor removal

Smell is one of the senses that is most closely connected to our emotional state. Have you ever smelled a scent or an odor that reminded you of something and contacting it again takes you right back to where you first noticed it? Scent can have a powerful effect on our feelings and behaviors. Recent research has found that 75% of the emotions that we have on a daily basis are affected by smell. Scent is powerfully connected to our memory and emotions. So, what are the scents and odors in your home saying to you? Here we look at how powerful scent can be and why it’s important to effectively remove odors from your home.

The Benefits Of Positive Scent

Positive smells have been shown to improve people’s emotions, encourage people to stay in an area longer and even to boost revenues in commercial spaces.

  • Positive mood – Studies have shown that pleasant smells improve the mood of those exposed to them more effectively than placebos (unscented sprays). Positive smells can give a higher attractiveness rating to people and environments, while bad odors can detract from our perception of the environment. Creating a pleasant odor in your home can make your home seem more attractive, stylish, and appealing.
  • Attraction and retention – Pleasant smells cannot only draw people into your space, they can help people stay longer as well. In a study by SMI and C. Russell Brumfield, researchers found that floral and citrus scents can influence people to linger as much is 25 to 40% longer in stores[1]. Creating positive odors in your home could help people feel more welcome and make your home a more inviting environment.
  • Increase value and revenue – Creating positive smells is not just important for homes, it’s crucial for businesses as well. In a 1995 study conducted by Dr. Alan Hirsch, it was found that pleasant ambient scent in one area of a casino was related to 45% more revenue when compared to a non-scented area. Because positive smells draw people in and encourage them to stay, creating an inviting odor can improve business appeal and revenue.

How Bad Odors Detract From Your Space

Bad odors can quickly accumulate in your home and settle in carpet and soft furnishings to linger in your home. Some of the most common sources of bad odors include –

  • Dirty or wet pets
  • Pet hair
  • Pet urine or droppings
  • Cooking smells
  • Cleaning or maintenance chemicals
  • Mold, mildew or must
  • Smoke

Removing these odors can be tricky, especially once they’ve settled fully into carpets, area rugs and soft furnishings. Deep professional carpet cleaning, area rug cleaning, and upholstery cleaning can reach deep into soft furnishing fibers and completely remove odor particles. When it comes to preventing and removing odors due to pet accidents and stains, it’s important to act fast to prevent the spill reaching the deep layers of padding and settling there. When spills reach this deep level, odors can be harder to remove so it’s important to catch these spills early to remove odors more effectively. Emergency carpet cleaning and stain removal can help to address spills and stains quickly to prevent lasting issues.

Creating an inviting and appealing home or work environment starts with removing unpleasant odors and cultivating more pleasant scents. Talk to us today about expert odor removal to help make your space more pleasant and welcoming.

[1] http://www.exhibitoronline.com/topics/article.asp?ID=688

How Professional Floor Cleaning Can Boost Home Value

Whether you’re thinking of selling your home or just want to improve your living environment and quality of life, boosting home value is a priority. While flooring is often not the first thing that comes to mind when considering home value, it’s actually one of the initial aspects that visitors to your home notice. A clean and fresh floor can make an outstanding difference to your home. This effect is not purely visual or aesthetic, it also impacts many other aspects of your home such as odor, safety and the health of the environment. Professional floor cleaning adds to home value by rejuvenating and refreshing your whole home.

A “Like New” Appearance

Because professional carpet cleaning, tile and grout cleaning and hardwood floor cleaning reaches deep into flooring to extract old and ingrained dirt, your floors appear like new again. Potential home buyers and visitors expect floors to be flawless, contemporary and sleek, to reflect the overall cleanliness of the home. With flooring that is undamaged, intact and still performing well, professional cleaning can really rejuvenate it’s appearance and make it look like new again.

Makes Your Home Appear Cleaner

Because professional floor cleaning removes marks, stains and discoloration from your floors, it actually makes your home appear cleaner. While we all know that stains don’t actually make your home ‘dirty’, multiple stains on carpet, or mold and discoloration in tile grout can make a home appear more unclean and untidy than it is. A clean home has greater value: homeowners know that professional cleaning is an investment. A freshly cleaned floor, with stain removal and deep cleaning makes a home look, feel and smell cleaner which adds value in a financial sense and in terms of quality of life.

Remove Foul Odors

Professional floor cleaning can help to remove odors that may be deeply entrenched in the flooring. Bad odors detract from the home environment and can lower the value of a home. It’s well known that removing odors from a home can be very difficult, so a home with odors will not be appealing to homebuyers. Deep professional carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, and tile and grout cleaning can remove odors from deep under the surface of the flooring and soft furnishings to improve home value.

Avoid Flooring Replacement

Flooring repair and professional cleaning can take years off your flooring and help your existing flooring last longer. By seeking a carpet inspection from your professional carpet cleaner, you can establish a plan to completely regenerate your flooring. Deep tile and grout cleaning whitens your floors and sealing helps to protect your grout. This can allow you to add value while avoiding expensive flooring replacement. Overall, professional floor cleaning and restoration provides a greater and more resourceful increase to home value than replacement.

Create A Healthier Environment

Professional floor cleaning removes dust, dirt, germs and pathogens from flooring to create a healthier environment. This is highly valued by home buyers who have health concerns or allergies and want a healthier home. By professionally removing dust and dirt from your carpets and hardwood floors, and completely removing mold and germs from your tiles and grout, you can create a healthier home that’s even more appealing.

If you need to boost the quality of your home’s environment or make your home more appealing to buyers, professional floor cleaning can boost home value in one of the most economical and efficient ways.

4 Tips to Keep Your Carpet Looking Fresh and Clean for Longer

carpet cleaning, tile cleaning, grout cleaning, stone cleaning, hardwood cleaning, pet odor, pet stain, testimonial, review, walnut creek, san ramon, pleasanton, dublin, danville, concord, lafayette, orinda, alamo, hayward, pleasanton, san leandro, san lorenzo, castro valleyCarpet that stays clean and fresh for longer not only helps your home to look more attractive, it keeps your floors hygienic and safe as well. But keeping your carpet clean and hygienic can be more than a minor challenge, especially if you have pets and children around. Here we look at 4 tips that will help you maintain cleaner and fresher carpet from day to day.

Vacuum Regularly

Regular home maintenance of your carpet, including weekly vacuuming is an essential way to keep your carpets healthy and clean. Vacuuming removes weekly dirt and dust build up in the upper layer of the carpet, and can help to reduce dust mite levels. Vacuum all areas of the carpet, including under furniture and area rugs. This helps to keep the buildup of dust and dirt low and maintains your carpet’s cleanliness and hygiene.

Treat Stains Quickly

Promptly treating spills and marks can mean the difference between getting your carpets back to normal and being left with a permanent stain. By understanding the qualities of the substance that was spilled on your carpet, you can treat the stain most effectively. For example, a different stain removal method will be required to lift a fresh red wine stain compared to an oil stain. Calling a professional carpet cleaner for emergency stain removal service can be beneficial for more tricky stains, or if you can’t completely remove the stain on your first try at home.

Prevention is Better Than Cure

Of course, keeping your carpets as clean as possible also means preventing them becoming dirty in the first place. Placing doormats at each entrance of your home, or asking family and visitors to remove their shoes before entering can help to keep your carpets clean. It may also be beneficial to keep some areas of your home off limits to children and pets in order to minimize staining and ‘accidents’. However, your home is meant to be lived in and enjoyed, and so you can’t always prevent dirt and stains. That’s where professional carpet cleaning can help make your carpets look and feel like new again.

Schedule Professional Cleaning

Scheduling professional carpet cleaning once a year is the ideal way to keep your carpets fresh, clean and hygienic. Professional cleaning can pick up the dust, dirt and stains you’ve missed, and reach deeper into the carpet layers to help extract odors and ingrained dirt. Professional carpet cleaning also helps to minimize dust and dust mite levels as much as possible, helping those with allergies breathe easier. Scheduling carpet cleaning means that you never forget to book a clean and your carpet stays fresh and beautiful year after year.

Clean carpets not only help to clean your home looking beautiful, they are also safer and more hygienic for your guests and family. Don’t put up with dirty and stained carpet. Keeping your carpets always looking fresh and clean is easy with regular attention and a structured cleaning schedule to lift out stains and renew your carpets.