Everyone wants to know about the products used by professional carpet cleaning companies. The simple reasons are two in number, and fairly easy to figure out if you have looked into it before. First, their specialised cleaning solutions are not available for private domestic customers. And second, the stain removal chemicals are partially why professional carpet cleaners achieve amazing results in most cases.
However, you can't do a good job with cleaning products alone, otherwise no one would call professional cleaners. Everyone would just rent a Rug Doctor or buy a Vax Platinum and consider it resolved. The equipment and the experience of trained cleaners is what truly makes the cleaning magic happen.
Every professional carpet cleaning company sends their cleaners to special training courses. This is done to ensure they will be fully aware of how to remove stains and odours from your carpets. Another key element is knowing how to tell apart the different types of carpet fibres. All of this is considered the basics of carpet cleaning services.
The essential courses in carpet cleaning are made by Prochem, the UK manufacturer with nearly 50 years of experience. Their training consists of 4 days of courses, followed by an exam on what was learned. Trainees get to learn about the various carpet cleaning machines and chemicals by Prochem. They also get to use them on all types of carpet materials, as well as on fresh stains of any kind.
WoolSafe is the other big one in the carpet cleaning industry, as a majority of carpets are woollen or otherwise natural. Therefore, the focus of their training is to learn how to clean natural carpet safely. Woollen carpets do not handle heat well, and should be treated with water below 60°. If treated with steam, they have a tendency of shrinking and yellowing, which we want to avoid.
Now that you know about the training experts need to pass, let's look at:
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What solutions do professional carpet cleaners use?
There are several core types of cleaning products used in professional carpet cleaning services. They are strongly dependent on which carpet cleaning method you aim to apply. For obvious reasons, most steam cleaning liquids are not going to be suitable for dry cleaning services.
For clarity's sake, let's lay down the types of carpet cleaning products:
- pre-treatments (or pre-sprays)
Powders are used in dry carpet cleaning services, as well as hot water extraction carpet cleaning. Respectively, they are sprinkled directly over a stained area or dissolved into the water tanks. Powders are safe for use on carpets and upholstery, and can be hoovered out with any vacuum cleaner. When used without a water-based cleaning method, there is no drying time after the cleaning.
Pre-sprays (not to be confused with sprays) are products used to set the stage for carpet deep cleaning. In short, they make stain removal easier by chemically interacting with stains. They separate them from the fibres, and generally act as the wind-up for the stronger punch of a cleaning solution.
Liquids are, by far, the most common type of product used to clean carpets. They are frequently used in deep cleaning services, and come in many specialised formulas. There are many liquids that can also assist in removing particular stains, such as red wine. Pre-sprays and additives are most commonly liquids, but we'll get into those later.
Sprays are primarily built for spot cleaning, but can be used to clean a whole carpeted room if needed. By far the easiest in terms of application, simply blast the stain and wait a while. You will achieve better results by agitating the solution, but only do that if the stain is dry. Otherwise, you risk pushing the fresh damp stain deeper inside, making it harder to remove.
Foam comes in much the same canisters as sprays do, and behaves all the same. The core difference is that you'll have a harder time using foam to clean the whole room. For spot cleaning however, foam actually is more efficient than spray, since you'll need to use less.
Shampoos are used in carpet shampooing, hence the name of the cleaning method. They simplify the cleaning process by a lot through their intelligent self-agitating design. To elaborate, you do not need to rub a shampoo solution with a brush, as it will push the dirt on its own. Shampoos are best for mopping up stains which were left to set in, but may not be the best response to a damp stain.
Read also: What is Carpet Steam Cleaning?
Which products are used in steam carpet cleaning?
As you are certainly aware, we are a hot water extraction cleaning company using Prochem products. Therefore, we will lay out some of our most commonly used cleaning solutions. Here they are in no particular order:
This product is one of the best for dealing with food stains, as all oil and grease is absorbed by the non-ionic formula. Gathering it all in one place makes it all that much easier to extract with a machine. However, despite this being a powder, it is meant to be used with an extraction machine. For best results, a pre-spray product (see below) should be applied before Crystal Green is used.
Trafficlean is a heavy-duty pre-treatment product, used on synthetic carpets that are heavily stained. If you have messy kids or pets, this treatment is going to be crucial in removing stains from both. For woollen or natural carpet, we use it in combination with Fibre & Fabric Rinse, or we use Prespray Gold instead.
Speaking of Fibre & Fabric Rinse, it is one of the core elements of our services. It not only helps extract residues, but it also prevents browning and yellowing. Additionally, when mixed with another product, it will neutralise it and prevent colour bleeding.
For woollen or natural carpets and upholstery, we also apply Liquid Woolsafe. It is most commonly used after Prespray Gold, and is very potent even on its own. As mentioned above, we never treat woollen material with water above 60°, so as to avoid shrinkages.
What other products do you commonly use in carpet cleaning?
Another type of solution we use a lot of is the defoamer products. These are not cleaning solutions per se, rather, they are poured in the recovery tank of the machines. To clarify, each steam extraction machine we operate with has a dual tank system. One tank is where the clean water is poured, and the other is where the dirty water and stains are recovered.
Contract Carpet Defoamer helps the recovery tanks of our machines to control the level of foam and avoid leaks or damage. The product is especially helpful when the customer has attempted stain removal with a non-professional chemical. Most types of store-brand cleaning solutions produce a lot of foam when interacting with professional ones during cleaning services.
A customer once asked us "What if pre-treating plus another product doesn't get the job done?". Our response was the handy solution known as Citra-Boost. For dealing with all kinds of grime and grease that has set in, Citra-Boost is very helpful indeed.
And last but not least, we have a special one for a rather common type of issue: flooded carpet. You should bear in mind that due to the typical UK weather, one in five homes is at risk of being flooded. Browning Prescription will prevent browning and yellowing even better than Fibre & Fabric Rinse. For the best results, we use them one after the other, but never mix them together.
Do you offer after-care services?
Yes, we do offer anti-static treatments and stain protection services, which make your carpet easier to look after. The former will leave an invisible layer on the surface, which will make static electricity not build up through traffic. The latter is also invisible, and makes the carpet highly resistant to water and oil stains.