People are always looking for the latest (and hopefully best) cleaning technique for their carpet, hardwood, tile, or area rug. What options are organic? How can I ensure the cleaner is safe for my kids? Safe for my pets? What should I do to make sure it doesn’t ruin my flooring?
Read the Manufacturers Recommendations
Despite all the fancy new cleaners and techniques, it’s still important to start with the flooring manufacturer’s recommendations. This can be hard since most of us aren’t the original owners of our flooring. If you can, ask the person you bought your home from if they know the original builder or flooring manufacturer. If not, you should talk to a professional flooring cleaner to come evaluate your floors to see the best cleaning techniques.
Don’t be the Guinea Pig
It is easy to see a demo at the store or watch an infomercial and want the latest trend in cleaning. You really don’t want to jump on the bandwagon to become one of the first users, though. It’s important to talk to professional, speak to the manufacturer, or at least test it on an extra piece of flooring. The last thing you want to do is use a new cleaner on your floors and discover that it caused discoloration or didn’t take care of the original problem.
Read the Ingredients
While most of us are not scientists, almost all of us can read the list of ingredients. We can research any ingredients we don’t know and find out their effects on humans and pets along with their effectiveness in floor cleaning.
Even after all that, make sure there has been professional testing done on any new chemical or technique. Read through reviews and information. If in doubt, speak to a professional floor cleaner and do not use it until you are certain you won’t cause permanent harm to the interior of your home or business.
Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration has been keeping home flooring professionally cleaned and in great condition for over twenty years. Please contact us today if you have any questions about carpets or need to have yours professionally cleaned.
The popularity of thick, luxurious, ultra soft carpet has soared in recent years. Maybe you recently bought a home with extra soft carpet and want to prepare yourself for its care and maintenance. Maybe you just installed or already have ultra-soft carpet and want to know more about it.
Here are 3 essential things you need to know about ultra soft carpet.
1) It Can Hold Onto Dust And Allergens
Everyone’s home has dust and debris that gather on the floor. This can include food crumbs, pet dander, hairs, skin flakes, dust and dirt tracked in from outside. Most carpets have some amount of dust mites in them, although vacuuming can reduce their numbers. Left too long, some of that debris can attract ants and other small insects, like carpet beetles.
Any carpet can hide and hold onto dust and other allergens. However, ultra soft carpet has an even greater tendency for this. The thick and plentiful carpet fibers may feel lovely, but they come with the drawback of being more textured and harder to clean. If you are prone to allergies, extra soft carpet would need frequent, thorough cleaning in your home.
2) It Can Be Harder To Clean at Home
Most of us know what to do when our carpet needs cleaning – simply get to work vacuuming the floor. Unfortunately, many vacuums are not well-equipped to deal with the thickness of plush ultra soft carpet.
Due to the nature of extra plush carpeting, a vacuum may only get the surface clean without reaching deep into the carpet fibers, or even just past the surface, because the fibers of the carpet don’t separate easily. Ultra soft carpet has deep, textured and dense fibers that can cause it to hold onto dirt and debris. Also, plush carpets aren’t built on mesh like traditional carpets, they’re sealed underneath, so the vacuum can’t suck air through the carpet from it’s foundation. No dry vacuum will be able to deep clean your carpet. Your vacuuming attempts can feel somewhat futile, leaving much of the dust, debris and dirt behind.
If you buy a new, specialized ultra-soft carpet vacuum, you’ll have an easier time vacuuming at home, but you’ll still need a regular professional cleaning to remove the dust and dirt that ultra soft carpets retain even after vacuuming. Professional carpet cleaning services have proper equipment to clean ultra dense carpets.
3) It May Need To Be Replaced More Often
Given the fact that ultra soft carpet is harder to clean, it stains more frequently, because spills can’t be lifter quickly and easily. It is also harder to remove stains once they’ve set in ultra soft carpet. You may need the help of a professional carpet cleaning company to remove both surface stains as well as the dirt and dust that is trapped under the surface. Even then, your carpet may become unsightly and worn, so that you need to replace it more quickly than other carpet options.
When selecting carpet options or discerning your carpet maintenance regimen, be sure to consult with carpeting and flooring professionals. These specialists can advise you on the best flooring to meet your needs, and how to take care of it. Ultra soft carpet can be an outstanding flooring choice, but it’s important to take proper care of it to keep your home low-allergen, clean looking, and fresh smelling. Contact your local professional carpet cleaning company for help with ultra-soft carpets.
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.
You’re enjoying dinner at home with friends or a quiet night in with the family when all of a sudden there’s a spill. Perhaps you spilt a glass of wine on the carpet, your child dropped their plate of food or your pet decided to go to the toilet in the middle of the area rug. The steps you take next will determine whether you remove the stain from your carpet or whether it’s stained for good. Here we look at the steps you should take when you get a stain or spill on your carpet.
1) Blot, Never Scrub – if the spill is still fresh, blot up the excess using a clean, white cloth. If there is solid matter, pick or scoop it up without spreading it around. When used with a blotting motion, the white cloth or towel will pick up the liquid component of the stain from the carpet and transfer it to the cloth. Once you’ve blotted one area of the stain, choose a fresh area of the cloth and blot the next area. Scrubbing stains on carpet damages the carpet fibers and potentially pushes the stain further into the carpet padding.
2) Choose The Right Cleaning Solution – Whether your stain is old or new, using a cleaning solution to remove all trace of the stain is the best next step. However, it’s important to choose the right cleaning solution at this step to ensure that you don’t end up simply doing more damage to your carpet. This is why it’s often best to choose a professional carpet cleaner to provide expert stain removal for your carpets. Check with your carpet manufacturer or leading carpet authorities as to which stain removal solutions are safe for your carpet.
3) Homemade Cleaning Solutions – Gentle stain removal solutions you can make at home include a dilution of clear Dawn liquid soap (not dishwasher detergent, laundry detergent or bleach as these can affect carpet color and dyes) or a 1:1 solution of white vinegar and water. Always avoid bleach, as this can leave your carpet with a bleach stain that’s even harder to remove.
4) Gently Remove Stains – If you plan trying to remove your own stains, test any carpet cleaning solution you plan to use on an inconspicuous area out of plain sight first. Use a clean cloth in a blotting motion once again to work from the edge of the stain to the center, to avoid the stain spreading. You may need to allow the spotting solution to sit for up to 10 minutes to work on the stain before blotting it up.
5) Repeat Stain Removal – It’s important to be patient at this stage to ensure you can completely remove all traces of the stain. The above steps may need to be repeated to achieve complete stain removal.
6) Allow to Dry – Carpet needs to dry fully before you can observe the effects of your stain removal efforts. Carpet that’s too wet can fail to dry properly, and this can lead to mold growth. Avoid using too much water in the stain removal process, and use fans to assist carpet drying if necessary.
7) Call A Professional Carpet Cleaner – If you’re dealing with a particularly large stain, a difficult stain, an older stain or a bleach stain you will most likely need to call your local professional carpet cleaner. With controlled and advanced techniques for expert stain removal, your professional carpet cleaner can help lift even the toughest stains from your carpet. It may be worthwhile to get professional assistance when you’re dealing with multiple stains as well. If you have more than 2-3 stains in a room, calling a carpet professional can produce a more complete stain removal result with greater effectiveness and in less time than doing it yourself. Professional carpet stain removal can produce results that are so good they even surprise you, returning your carpet to a newer and more flawless look than you believed possible.
When a stain next appears on your carpet, don’t delay! Act fast to remove the stain as best as you can, or call your local carpet cleaner for quick professional service.
Your carpet is an investment in your home’s value and comfort, and so it’s important to protect your carpet with regular cleaning, maintenance and care. But how do you know the right type of care for your carpet? And what should you do about issues such as stains, worn patches and carpet replacement? This is where carpet inspection by a professional who knows all the details of carpet care and cleaning can be a critical part of preserving your carpet.
A carpet inspection can help you identify and diagnose issues with your carpet and determine the right treatment to optimize your carpet’s condition and give you the best results. Here are 4 reasons why you might need a carpet inspection, and how a professional carpet inspection can benefit you.
Carpet Cleaning or Stain Removal
If you are considering a professional carpet cleaning or you have a number of stains or bleach spots on your carpet that need removal, a carpet inspection should be an integral part of preparing for your carpet cleaning. A carpet inspection allows the cleaning professional to check the current condition of the carpet in order to recommend the correct mode of cleaning. The carpet inspection evaluates how old the carpet is, the pattern of wear, how well it has been maintained, and the type of fiber the carpet is composed of. This information allows the professional carpet cleaner to determine the most appropriate and safe mode of cleaning.
When it comes to carpet stain removal, you want stains to completely disappear, without leaving any residue or trace of the stain removal process. Bleach spots are even more difficult to correct because the carpet color needs to be correctly matched and added back in, or otherwise the carpet must be patched. Before these intricate and difficult processes to correct your carpet are undertaken, your carpet professional should provide a detailed carpet inspection.
Area Rug Cleaning
Area rugs are popular in houses with hardwood or tiled floors, in order to add warmth and comfort to the home. But cleaning area rugs can be tricky, as there are so many variations in the types of area rugs, the composition, the dye and the fringing, that expert attention needs to be paid to correctly inspecting and recommending a treatment for these rugs.
Cleaning an area rug incorrectly can lead to the dye bleeding, colors fading and even irreversible physical damage, which can lead to the loss of your valued rug. Many expert carpet cleaners offer complimentary carpet inspection before they conduct area rug cleaning in order to determine the most appropriate and safe methods of cleaning and handling.
Buying A New Home
If you are buying a new home with carpet, you want to ensure that the carpet is worth investing in. Repairing or replacing damaged carpet can cost thousands of dollars, and you don’t want to find out that you need this kind of expensive work on your prospective home’s carpet when it’s too late. If you are thinking of purchasing a new home that has carpet, call your local carpet care company to join you on a carpet inspection of your new home before you decide to buy.
Replacing Your Flooring
Carpet inspection can also be useful when you are thinking of replacing the flooring in your existing home. You may think your carpet is too stained or worn out and has to go, but an expert carpet inspection can help you understand whether it’s time to replace or whether you can simply repair.
A flooring inspection can also help you decide whether carpet, tiled or hardwood flooring would be best for your home if you do decide to replace, by inspecting the current condition of your flooring, evaluating your flooring use and taking into account your family’s lifestyle.
Carpet inspection is often neglected, but can be an extremely important aspect of caring for your flooring and help you to save money on floor replacement and repair in the long run.
The scenario is all too familiar. You’re sitting in the living room, entertaining friends, and someone has a spill on your carpet. You spring to the rescue to try to blot up the excess …but now what? Do you dab, blot, put vinegar on it, bleach it? The moments just after a spill and your actions could be what determines whether your carpet is left with a permanent stain. Remember, staining is influenced by many factors and no carpet is completely stain proof.
What you need to know:
What type of fiber is the carpet made from? Knowing the type of carpet fiber greatly helps you when selecting the type of spot and stain removing solutions you want to use. Most carpet (60%) sold in the USA is Nylon or Synthetic Fiber. This type of fiber is fairly stain resistant and many of the cleaning/spotting solutions sold through your local retail stores are made for these carpets. Wool/Natural fibers are more sensitive to stains and over the counter cleaning products. Yes, there are variations and brand names that will confuse this issues, but what you really care to know is if the carpet fiber is a synthetic (man-made fiber) or natural.
What was spilled?
Knowing what was spilled on the carpet will help you determine what approach and the types of spotting or stain removing solutions you might select to remove or reduce the likely hood of residual staining or permanent damage.
Spot Removal Steps:
Blot: Never scrub carpet fibers, as this can cause permanent damage to the carpet fibers. If you have solid or semi-solids in, scrape/remove them up with a spatula or spoon. Blot up the liquid with a dry, white, absorbent cloth or white (no print) paper towels. We suggest fold the cloth/ towel(s) to increase the absorbency. (Hint: Applying downward pressure to the cloth/towel will improve absorption. Step or the cloth/towel will help with downward pressure. Change to dry cloth/towel frequently).
Pretest any spot removal solution in an inconspicuous area to make certain it will not damage the dyes or carpet fibers. (Hint… Closet or hidden corner)
Apply a small amount of the cleaning solution to a clean white cloth/towel, and work the solution in to the affected area….gently. Work from the edge of the spill to the center to prevent the spill from spreading. If the spill is large, work with a small portion of the stain and test the result. Let the spotting solution sit for about 10 minutes and blot-transfer the spill to a dry clean white cloth/towel. Be patient, as the removal or the spill may require repeating the same step several times.
Rinse: After the spill has been removed, rinse the affected area thoroughly with cold water and blot with a dry cloth/towel.
Spot/Stain Removal Guide: Go to www.carpet-rug.org. There is a published guide that can assist you in selecting the appropriate solution for removing various spots and stains.
Call a Professional Carpet Cleaner if you have any doubt or require professional assistance.
Spotting Solutions to have on hand: Make your own and save $$$$$$$$$$:
Detergent Solution: Mix ¼ teaspoon of clear Dawn liquid dish soap with 1 cup of warm water. Caution: Do not use dishwasher detergent, laundry detergent, bleach, as these cleaning products are not made for carpets and will affect the color and dyes.
White Vinegar Solution: Mix 1 cup of white vinegar (NOT WINE) with 1 cup of water.
Although it’s easy to overreact when a spill occurs and run for the bottle of bleach, avoiding cleaning a stain yourself could be the best thing you do for your carpet. If your carpet is an investment you want to preserve and protect, call in the professional carpet cleaners to get the best stain removal results and to extend the life of your carpet