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.

Why Are Household Odors So Hard To Remove?

household odors in carpet

Removing stubborn household odors is one of the greatest challenges facing the cleaning industry. Odors from cooking, smoke, pet odor, urine, spills, mold and dust can linger in your home long after the source of the odor has been removed. Scented candles, air fresheners, and deodorizers may do little to counteract or cover the smell. Here we look at what makes removing home and pet odor so difficult and how professional cleaning can help.

Why Removing Stubborn Odors Is So Difficult

Lingering odors and unpleasant smells are a common problem in many homes. The reason that removing odors is so difficult is that airborne odors are often quickly absorbed into the furnishings and structure of the home. Once this happens it is difficult to target the source of the odor and remove it completely. Odors such as from cooking, smoke, or mold are rapidly absorbed into carpet, soft furnishings, upholstery and even the walls of your home.

On the other hand, urine, vomit, and pet odor originating from other spills can soak deep into carpet layers where the odor remains long after the stain is removed. Addressing the source of rapidly and professionally is clearly essential to avoid odors settling into your home.

How To Make Odors Easier To Remove –

Identify The Source

The most essential aspect of lasting odor removal is identifying and mitigating the source of odors. If you are aware of the source of your home’s odors, take action to reduce their impact. For example, you could request that any smokers in your home only smoke outside. When cooking, make sure your kitchen and home are well ventilated to remove cooking smells.

If the source of odor in your home is an old spill or stain, have a professional carpet cleaning company inspect the stain and provide professional stain removal. If you notice a bad odor in your home but can’t identify the source, it could be helpful to have a professional cleaning company inspect your home. Odors like mold and must are sometimes difficult to pinpoint to a particular source, but may actually be within the walls or under the flooring. An inspection can help you appropriately identify the source of the odor and counteract it directly.

Target Spills Rapidly

Any spills in your home particularly those of strong smelling liquids like urine, need to be rapidly cleaned up to prevent those pet odors pervading your home. If the strong-smelling liquids are allowed to penetrate the carpet or upholstery, they could reach the deep padding where they are very difficult to remove. As soon as a spill occurs on your carpet or soft furnishings, blot off the excess immediately and call your carpet cleaner to provide expert stain removal.

Conduct Professional Deep Cleaning

Airborne odors can absorb into soft furnishings and carpet over time, causing smells to linger in your home long after the source is gone. Professional carpet cleaning and professional upholstery cleaning deep clean the absorbent fibers of these furnishings to remove odor particles and freshen your home. Professional odor removal can help you target any particularly stained or smelly areas in your soft furnishings.

Wash Or Refinish Hard Surfaces

Tiles, hard surfaces, walls, and windows can also host odors if not cleaned regularly. Absorbent grout in tiles can particularly be a source of odor accumulation. Professional tile and grout cleaning can deep clean grout, while deep hardwood cleaning can also assist odor removal from wooden floors.

Shifting stubborn orders can be frustrating as they seem to linger no matter what you do. But with a professional approach to deep household cleaning you can target odors at their source for lasting odor removal and a fresher scent in your home.

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

clean any floor, floor cleaning guide, how-to diy floor cleaning

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.

Why Expertly Cleaned Flooring Is Essential for Professional Offices

If you have a professional office or commercial business, you might not invest much time or thought into the cleanliness of your flooring. However, the commercial flooring in your office, shop or warehouse will be noticed by your clients, customers and employees, and should reflect the high quality and cleanliness you desire for your business. Here we look at some of the reasons why commercial carpet cleaning and floor maintenance is so essential for professional offices and businesses, and the many advantages it can offer your business.

A Professional Appearance

When you are running a business or a professional office, a polished and clean appearance is essential for maintaining the professionalism and appeal of your business. Dirty, stained carpets, scuffed and scratched floors, and old, smelly area rugs can heavily detract from the impression of a commercial or corporate space, and make your business less appealing to customers and workers.  Contracting a commercial floor cleaning company to professionally clean your carpets or flooring on a regular basis helps to maintain a professional appearance without you having to worry about cleaning.

Cleanliness and Hygiene

Nobody wants to attend a doctor’s or dentist’s office where the carpet is not regularly cleaned and could be hosting thousands of different germs. Likewise, unclean floors in any office setting detract from the hygiene and cleanliness of the entire space and can lead to increased illness and allergies.

Professional commercial carpet cleaning deeps cleans carpets to remove germs, dirt and contaminants, for safer, healthier and more hygienic floors for your customers and clients.

Workplace Health and Safety

Unkempt and dirty flooring could become a health and safety hazard in the workplace without regular professional cleaning. Oily residues, mold and slime can build up on smooth flooring like laminate and tiles, increasing the risk of slips, trips and falls. Commercial tile and grout cleaning can clean deeper than any DIY method, removing deeply ingrained dirt and mold and improving the appearance and safety of your floors.

Improved Interior Air Quality

The carpet in professional offices and shops is subject to a huge amount of traffic every day. Shoes can bring in dirt, dust, allergens, pollutants and chemicals that get dislodged in carpet fibers. During vacuuming or foot traffic these particles can be stirred up again, diminishing air quality and increasing the risk of allergies being triggered. Regular commercial carpet cleaning reduces particle build up in your office carpet and maintains a higher indoor air quality.

Greater Employee and Customer Satisfaction

Healthy customers and employees are happier customers and employees. By professionally cleaning the carpets in your offices or shop on a regular basis, you improve the health and safety of your professional space and make it a more appealing location to visit and work in. This helps to boost business and make your professional space one that clients are happy to visit again and again.

Commercial carpet cleaning and floor cleaning in Walnut Creek and the entire East Bay allows professional offices and stores to create a more beautiful, safe and healthy environment that can be enjoyed by clients, customers and employees alike.

5 Most Frequently Asked Questions About Hardwood Floor Cleaning

The hardwood floors in your home are a valuable and beautiful asset to your home, and a popular and common flooring choice in Walnut Creek. Hardwood floors require care and protection to maintain their appearance and integrity over time, but knowing the correct cleaning methods and techniques to best protect and conserve your hardwood floors can often be confusing. Here we look at 5 of the most frequently asked questions to clarify the best methods for cleaning wooden floors.

What’s the Best Way to Maintain Hardwood Floors Day to Day?

Regular maintenance and routine cleaning of your hardwood floors is essential to keeping them looking their best. Dust, dirt and grit can damage your hardwood floors by creating marks and cuts that dull and diminish the floor surfaces. Remove dust and dirt on the surface of your floorboards at least twice a week with a vacuum, dry dust mop or broom. Try to use a special hardwood floor attachment for your vacuum or a hard surface setting to protect your floors, and avoid upright vacuums with bristled beater bars as these can damage and dent the floor.

Should I Use a Steam Mop on my Wooden Floors?

Many cleaning guides recommend using steam mops to clean and sanitize hardwood floors, and many steam mop manufacturers state that they can be used on sealed hardwood floors. However, the manufacturers of hardwood floors often warn against the use of steam mops, as tests of steam mops have revealed that many leave moisture residue that can seep into cracks and remain, causing damage. The heat from the steam can also dull finishes and damage connections, so be sure to double check with your wooden floor manufacturer before you use a steam mop to clean hardwood floors.

Can I use Vinegar and Water to Clean My Hardwood Floors?

In an attempt to achieve a cleaner and more hygienic finish, many homeowners use a solution of vinegar and water, or water alone to clean hardwood floors. However, moisture provided by this solution can seek into cracks in the sealing or floorboards and cause damage. Additionally, vinegar is acidic, and acids can etch and wear away the finish of a hardwood floor so vinegar solutions are generally not recommended for wooden floors.

How Can I Deep Clean My Hardwood Floors?

If you want to provide your floors with a safe and more thorough clean, the best way is to invite a professional hardwood floor cleaner to gently yet effectively deep clean your floors. This service is often provided by reputable professional carpet cleaning companies, and is an incredibly time and cost efficient way to deep clean hardwood floors without harsh chemicals, or any risk of damage to your floors. This allows you to not only protect your investment in your hardwood floors, but helps to keep them safe, clean and hygienic for your family too.

Will Cleaning Remove Scratches, Scuffs and Stains?

While lighter everyday cleaning may not remove stains like water drop stains or scuff marks from your wooden floors, deeper cleaning such as professional hardwood floor cleaning may help to remove or diminish the appearance of minor scratches, scuffs and stains on the upper layer of your wooden flooring. For deeper and more serious damage, resanding, refinishing and replacement may be necessary to return your floorboards to their former glory.

Your hardwood floors are an investment in your home, your comfort and your lifestyle. For expert advice on proper cleaning and maintenance for hardwood floors, as well as professional hardwood floor cleaning in Walnut Creek and the Bay Area, contact Diablo Carpet for the perfect finish and results.

The Number One Method To Make Carpet Bleach Spots Disappear

Carpet bleach spots are one of the most intimidating and difficult imperfections to remove from your carpet. While regular carpet stain removal involves extracting and removing staining pigments and discoloration from your carpet, in the case of a bleach stain, all the pigment from your carpet has been removed and needs to be added back in. You may think it’s impossible to add the color back to your carpet bleach stains, but in fact professional carpet cleaners can use the number one method to make bleach spots disappear at a fraction of the cost of new carpet installation.

Carpet Bleach Spot Dyeing

Carpet bleach spot dyeing or color correction is the ideal way to re-pigment your bleach stained carpets and remove all traces of carpet bleach spots, so your carpets look like new again. Unlike unsightly carpet patching or expensive carpet replacement, carpet color correction offers the most accurate and cost effective method for matching the bleach stained areas of your carpet to the original areas, so that all traces of the bleach spot disappear. If you need to remove a carpet bleach spot, expert color correction offers the most effective and impressive result short of replacing the entire carpet.

How Does Carpet Color Correction Work?

In the process of carpet dyeing, a carpet cleaning technician begins by carefully analysing and examining the carpet fiber in order to apply the right technique and achieve the best results. The carpet fiber is tested to see if it can be dyed, and to establish what kind of result can be expected. Natural carpet fibers and nylon carpets respond well to color correction, however some synthetic fibers such as olefin and polypropylene carpets cannot be successfully dyed.

The rug or carpet to be dyed should undergo professional carpet cleaning to remove any dirt or discoloration beforehand to ascertain an accurate color match. The technician will then neutralize the bleach spot to prevent further damage, and apply layers of transparent, permanent dye to the carpet fibers, matching the original carpet color as closely as possible. Multiple dye colors are blended and layered in order to achieve the most accurate color result. In most cases, the results of carpet dyeing color correction are truly amazing, achieving an over 85% color match, which means that an unsuspecting person will not notice the previously bleach stained area.

Benefits of Carpet Dyeing for Bleach Spots

While carpet patching is often the ‘go to’ method for repairing a bleach spill on carpet, patching is often obvious and unsightly, due to the need to create a seam where the carpet patch is sewn in. A carpet patch can often be noticed even by the casual observer, and it creates a ‘weak spot’ in your carpet where it may be prone to unravel or fray. Although the costs for carpet patching and color correction carpet dyeing are similar, carpet dyeing produces a much more effective and unnoticeable result that is preferred by most customers.

If you require perfect carpet bleach spot repair, you may need to replace your carpet entirely. However, this can be a much more expensive and involved job, and most clients would prefer an accurate and cost effective color correction for bleach spots before carpet replacement.

With the assistance of an expert color correction technician with your specialist carpet cleaner Walnut Creek, you can understand how effective carpet dyeing can be to remove the bleach spots from your carpet, helping to return your carpet to an almost perfect condition at a fraction of the price of carpet replacement.