Who Spilled the Grape Juice?

Odor Control in the Home

How to Remove Blood Spots from Carpet and Furniture

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Blood spots on your carpet or on your furniture… what a terrible thing! These spots can come from a family member or pet. Hopefully when it happens, it’s not from a very serious accident.

But when it does happen, you must remove it quickly. Blood spots can be removed fairly easily if you get to it quick enough.

Of course, if there is a fair amount of blood, more than just a few spots, it’s best not to do anything except call a professional carpet cleaner.

For a small amount of blood, though, you should be able to handle the task of removing the spot if you follow some simple, safe procedures.

Removing Fresh Blood from Your Carpet

1. Blot.

When you have a fresh blood spot, get a white absorbent and disposable towel (like a paper towel without print on it) and blot up as much as you can. Never rub or scrub. That can damage the color and/or texture of the fabric, especially furniture fabric.

2. Wet blot.

There is probably still a spot remaining, even with a lot of blotting. So take about a quart of luke-warm water in a bowl, and add a drop of dish soap to it. Just a drop, you don’t want to leave any sticky residue behind. Dip a fresh, white absorbent and disposable towel into the solution and carefully blot the blood again. What you are trying to do is use the detergent solution to release the blood from the fibers into the towel.

3. Peroxide.

After that, if there is still some light blood staining remaining, use a fresh, white, absorbent and disposable towel to apply a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide, the same strength you purchase at a drug store. But remember, hydrogen peroxide is a “bleach” and you must be careful with colors, especially on furniture fabrics. It’s best to test an area like on the back, bottom skirting to make sure the colors aren’t affected.

Phew! That’s a lot of work. And it might do the trick, but it might not. You could set the blood and it could become a difficult stain if you aren’t careful.

So if you don’t like to live dangerously and would rather play it safe… your favorite carpet and furniture cleaning company, Diablo Carpet & Floor Restoration can help you. They know exactly what to do for your East Bay home. They have the tools and cleaning solutions to do it right!

If you have questions or need our assistance, contact our stain removal specialists at Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration at 925-833-0408 to help keep your flooring beautiful.

Waterproof Flooring (Next Generation)

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For years Bay Area homeowners have struggled through the challenges of keeping their flooring new and beautiful. They’ve been told to vacuum or mop it regularly. In addition, some floorings have been required to be sealed every year or two. Finally, professional carpet cleaning and hardwood cleaning is also recommended on an annual or more frequent basis. However, despite all of this, the unknown spill or pet stain has always loomed as a potential added expense or unknown factor that could ruin the flooring.

Things are changing. In the past six months, many major manufacturers have come out with new waterproof flooring. While this doesn’t take the odor away and is not full proof for everything, it does add a layer of protection which can keep the unexpected away. The flooring has taken on several forms.

Waterproof Carpeting

A few months ago, Shaw Floors, a leading manufacturer, came out with “Life Guard”. This carpeting has waterproof backing and can withstand up to 25,000 pounds of water. A kid’s accident will not penetrate this very easily. Additionally, pet accidents are better protected, although the bacterial infections have to be considered. Thus, the carpet is protecting you from many of life’s spills and accidents. This can help alleviate some of the worry and leave you with just your usual professional carpet cleaning needs.

Waterproof Hardwood Flooring

Carpet is not the only type of flooring getting a fresh approach. Shaw and other manufacturers are also coming out with waterproof hardwood flooring. These types of flooring usually involve a waterproof core. This keeps the liquid from seeping beyond the first layer of flooring. As a result and similar to the carpet, kids and pet stains become less prominent and the unexpected no longer needs to worry a Bay Area homeowner.

Styling Included

A big concern homeowners may have is how stylish is this flooring. The answer is that it’s very nice. However, this is a relatively new product so it doesn’t have the vast diversity of product lines. As a result, it will take some time for the amount of options grows to a reasonable level.

Whether you have this latest style or maintain the traditional flooring, contact your hardwood and carpet cleaning specialists today at Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration at 925-833-0408 to help keep your flooring beautiful.

Bringing Color Back to Your Carpet

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Over the course of time, many pollutants, chemical, or just nature can damage carpet.  The biggest harm is getting carpet discoloration.  Some of this occurs through observing darker, soiled areas in high traffic locations.  Others become visible where a spill occurred of a food, drink, chemical, or pollutant.  For instance, bleach spots can remove the color off carpet or fertilizer sometimes has bleach in it which has the same effect.  These spills may not always be visible right away.  They may become noticeable over time or if you clean the remaining carpet then this affected area stands out.  However, once any of these carpet discolorations become noticeable, it is clear that the carpet is damaged.  So what are the solutions?

1: Remnant Patching

If you have remnants of your original carpet, some people will use it to replace the impacted area.  This is a very drastic option but one of the most commonly used ones.  People find it easy and many individuals keep extras of their original carpet.  The cost of this method can be high and depending on the size and location, the replaced area may be noticeable.

2: Hiding It

Hiding the area is another option.  Some people will try to conceal the problem spot by purchasing an area rug or other furniture.  The cost of this can be high but the bigger issue is that these bleach spots or other discoloration are usually not in an area that can be easily hidden.

3: Dye it Yourself

There are several DIY (Do it Yourself) options to bring back the color or restore your carpet color.  These solutions are things like dye pens, carpet dyes, or our favorite, using a close in color crayon and coloring in the carpet fibers.  These solutions are very inexpensive and the look of it can show that.  While some are successful in making the carpet look presentable, most can cause further harm to their carpets like in the image here.

4: Professional Dye Matching

The best option is to contact a professional carpet restoration specialist as soon as you discover the issue.  Professionals in this area like Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration know how to color match and get that carpet back to its original look.  Most of the times these problem areas are in high traffic locations where a cheap solution would be noticeable and distracting.  Carpet bleach spot dying can make the carpet of your Danville, Pleasanton, or Walnut Creek home like new.

Thus, contact your carpet restoration specialist today at Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration at 925-833-0408.

 

What Should You Ask Before Hiring a Professional Carpet Cleaner?

Questions to Ask Your Carpet Cleaner

 

Most of us know that you should get your carpet professionally cleaned periodically. What questions should you ask before hiring a company near you to clean your carpet?

  1. How long have you been doing professional carpet cleaning?

This question is important because being able to clean carpets is not enough. With experience comes the ability to recognize solutions and dangers. Certain flooring may require special treatment or a less common method of cleaning. There are multiple ways to clean carpets and get rid of stains. While some of this can be “book learned”, quite a bit of it comes through the experience of using and trying several methods through the course of business.

  1. What do your services include?

Many shoppers look at the quoted price and compare them as if they are equal. This usually isn’t the case. Some carpet cleaning companies will charge incidentals like travel, stain removal, extra room charges, etc. The best professional carpet cleaning companies will actually come do a free estimate and give you a final price that won’t be changed once you’ve hired them.

  1. Will you be able to remove the stain?

Families will most often call to have the carpets professional cleaned in two scenarios:

  • it’s time for their regular cleaning
  • they need a stain removed

Stain removal can be very tricky and is most effective if the call is made right away. Find out what techniques the cleaner uses to clean stains (pre-spray is usually recommended) and also ask them about the likelihood of the stain coming completely off. Do not be misled into paying hundreds of dollars for service that doesn’t solve the stain issue.

  1. What is your response time?

It’s important to know a company’s response time, because how quickly they can address a recent stain us very important. Plus you’ll want to know how long you’ll have to wait for your appointment. If they give you a four hour window, this can impact your daily schedule. Make sure you know how attentive the carpet cleaning company is to your needs.

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 it professionally cleaned.

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

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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

The Steps You Should Take When You Get A Stain On Your Carpet

Carpet Stain, Pleasanton Carpet Cleaner, Pleasanton Carpet Cleaning, Livermore Carpet Cleaner, Livermore Carpet Cleaning, Walnut Creek Carpet Cleaner, Alamo Carpet CleanerYou’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.

4 Ways To Ruin Your Hardwood Floors With Cleaning

Hardwood floors are an outstanding asset to home’s both old and new. Keeping your hardwood floors in top condition means ensuring they receive proper care and maintenance on a regular basis. However, applying incorrect or inappropriate cleaning techniques to your hardwood floor can end up doing more damage than good.

Often, floor restoration companies are brought in to repair and correct flooring that has been damaged due to inappropriate cleaning. The unfortunate aspect in most of these cases is that the damage to the flooring could’ve been avoided had the proper cleaning techniques been used in the first place. Here we look at which cleaning techniques you should avoid to preserve and protect your hardwood floors while properly maintaining your wood floor’s enduring quality and beauty.

Using Too Much Water

Using a mop that is too wet to clean your wood floors is a quick way to ruin them. Excess water can seep between the cracks and the fibers of the wood in the floorboards. This water can cause the wood to swell, buckle, and become malformed over time. Water damage can also happen when wood floors are steam cleaned, or when excess cleaning solution is not removed from the floor after cleaning. When cleaning your wood floor only use a small amount of moisture and make sure to dry the floor off after cleaning. This helps to avoid water damage to your wood floors.

Cleaning with the Wrong Products

Using the wrong type of floor cleaner can cause immediate damage to your hard wood floor. Harsh cleaners can damage the finish on your hardwood floor or even the wood underneath. Different hardwood floors or engineered wood floors have different finishes, which need to be treated differently. Harsh cleaning solutions may strip the finish or damage the surface of your hardwood floors, leaving you requiring expensive refinishing to get your floors looking smooth and sleek again. Some DIY cleaners also contain wax which might give a shiny finish on first use, but which builds up in a clumpy grime over time. It’s best to always check with a professional hardwood floor cleaner or your flooring installer before using a cleaning product.

Cleaning with Vinegar

Many people think that going natural is always best, so using vinegar on hardwood floors shouldn’t be a problem. Some cleaners even recommend using vinegar. However, because vinegar contains natural acetic acid, this can actually eat away at your wood floor finishes over time. It’s best to avoid using vinegar and choose a recommended wood floor cleaner instead.

Using Harsh Tools or Vacuum Attachments

Harsh tools like wiry brushes, bulky floor polishers, or even the beater bar on your vacuum cleaner can cause heavy damage to wood floors. Wood floors rarely require harsh treatment with cleaning tools, and if you do have problem areas on your floors, it’s best to recruit the assistance of a professional floor cleaner. Rather than trying to clean your hardwood floors with heavy tools, use a soft cloth cleaning pad to sweep and clean your floors. If you want to use the vacuum, disengage the beater bar, or use the ‘hard floor’ setting to prevent damage.

Preserving and maintaining your valuable hardwood floors means this precious asset can add beauty to your home for years to come. Always clean your hardwood floors carefully with the right tools and cleaning solutions, and contact your local hardwood floor cleaners for professional advice on deeper cleaning.