Things You Need To Know
Vacuuming alone, although essential, cannot maintain the appearance of a carpet at an acceptable level for long. Depending on various factors, the appearance of any carpet will ultimately reach an unacceptable level. At that stage, cleaning is necessary by one of the methods mentioned above. The frequency of such cleaning will depend on a carpet’s use conditions, soil conditions, fiber type, constructional specifications, color, etc. In general, residential carpet requires cleaning within one to one and one-half years; certainly before two years of use (and possible abuse).
Selecting the Right Carpet Cleaner
Having established that professional carpet cleaning is essential for extending a carpet or rug’s attractive life, the next question is how does one go about choosing the right person or firm to do the job?
There is no magical, single method for carpet cleaning. All methods have advantages as well as disadvantages. Moreover, different people can achieve different results while cleaning the same carpet with identical equipment. No method can compensate for an inept operator. Therefore, it is more important to select the right cleaner than the right cleaning method.
Not all cleaners are alike. In fact, the difference in the quality of service from one cleaner to another can be astounding. However, with so many claims, counterclaims and a diversion of equipment and technology available, how do you go about choosing the right person or firm? It can be difficult because there are so many choices available. There are a few guidelines to follow that can help you make the correct choice.
- Affiliation with Professional Organizations
Ask the cleaner for names of previous customers. Gauge how reluctant or eager they are in granting your request. Call the references and find out about their cleaning experience. Ask about the cleaner’s appearance, their manner of presentation, the condition of their equipment, their ability to answer questions, etc. Find out if the overall cleaning experience was pleasant and if they would go back to the same firm.
- Better Business Bureau (BBB)
Check with the local BBB to find out if any complaints are registered against the firm you are considering. If yes, how good and efficient was the firm’s response to the complaint? Did they remedy the problem to the consumer’s satisfaction?
- Watch Out for the Low End
Misleading advertising and glib sales tactics leave cleaners who offer quality service at a disadvantage. Advertisements promising carpet cleaning at unbelievably low prices (like $5.95 a room; or two rooms for $10.95) are prevalent these days.If you think they are too good to be true, you are probably correct. Have you been left with an over wet and still dirty carpet? Have you ended up paying several times more than what you thought you would be paying? If yes, then you have had firsthand experience with such cleaners. Quality service requires investments and takes time. It is not possible to offer good service at ridiculously low prices. Do not fall victim to low pricing or Bait and Switch tactics.
- You can Contribute to the Success of a Cleaning Job
Cleaning chemicals and procedures can be dangerous, smell and leave residue. Steam cleaning can actually get rid of some, if not all, of these undesirable remnants. Describe the use and conditions of the carpet and all previous home and professional cleanings to your professional cleaner.For example, if the carpet has been shampooed several times before, it is reasonable to expect the presence of some detergent residue.If your carpet has stains, point them out to the cleaning crew. Tell them how long the stains have been there and what may have caused them.Some spots and stains, such as those from bleaches, urine, mildew, etc., may be impossible to remove even by the most proficient cleaner. Knowing about them will prevent disappointments resulting from unrealistic expectations. Do not remove furniture protectors placed under furniture legs until the carpet is completely dry. Mahogany, redwood and other kinds of wooden furniture can bleed color onto carpet. Metal legs may rust if placed on the floor coverings that are still wet.
Carpet cleaning is an ever-changing field. Each year new cleaning systems, cleaning chemicals and extra services are introduced. Good professional cleaners keep abreast of such changes and constantly improve the services they offer.It’s much like medicine. Would you like to be treated by a doctor who is not aware of the new medications and advancements in their field. Affiliation with professional trade associations goes a long way.
**Protect Your Investment**
Carpet, rugs, upholstery, and draperies are probably among your most important possessions. Chances are you have spent a good deal of money acquiring them. Protect your investments. Take the time to find the right cleaner. You will be surprised at the number of problems that can develop from a poorly performed cleaning job. Even though choosing the right cleaner won’t guarantee the complete absence of problems, it will greatly reduce the chances. Selecting a good cleaning firm will insure the highest level of satisfaction.