Tag Archives: hot water extraction

Professional carpet cleaning vs. household carpet cleaning machines

There’s a great variety of machines available to consumers specifically for carpet and upholstery cleaning. Many house hold machines can be purchased anywhere you can find a regular vacuum. Along with the many machine options come detergent and cleaner options to use in them. If you own one of these handy cleaners, why would you have your carpets professionally cleaned?

Although machines vary in function and design, they are all mostly designed to dispense and extract liquid from the carpeting. Features range from the types of brushes they have and the speed at which they move, to the flow gauge of water and upholstery attachment options. So what’s the big difference? Efficiency and time. The household machine may spray and extract, but a truck mounted system allows for a stronger and more efficient extraction. It is always important to thoroughly remove the most amount of moisture from the carpet after getting it wet to avoid microbial growth. If a carpet is saturated, there’s concern that the water will seep into the pad below and maybe even get through to the sub-flooring. Carpets that are saturated and/or not properly extracted can be the perfect breeding ground for mold spores.

The lines that are run off a truck mounted system are specifically designed to withstand not only the suction strength, but the temperature of the water. Not all household carpet cleaning machines have a water heater to provide the hot water extraction results. Cold water cleaning may leave you to rely on the strength of the detergent or shampoo you are using.  These solutions, especially if not completely rinsed and extracted, can actually attract soil and dirt. This would cause your carpets or upholstery to be noticeably dirty even quicker. Many evolved professional systems don’t even use soaps or detergents, but rely on carbonation for best results. With that in mind, be sure to ask your professional cleaners what type of solutions they use.

Aside from the mechanical advantages of a professional carpet or upholstery cleaning, there is also the advantage of experience. Having your home serviced doesn’t just come with the cleaning, but also proper inspection and evaluation. Professionally trained technicians are educated and experienced to care for many different scenarios of textile type and soil type. They will be able to give you more insight on potential areas of concern and the best proper maintenance for what you have. They may even suggest other options for your needs such as allergen relievers or the application of a protector. (Read more about textile protection in my previous blog post)

If you do wish to purchase a household carpet cleaning machine, you should really research which options are most important to you and which you could do without. Be wary of using store bought cleaners on spills as they may sometimes set a stain rather than remove it. Be careful when using the machine itself not to saturate the carpeting and allow for extra extraction time. You might even want to run the heat, air conditioning, or dehumidifier to assist in properly drying. These machines are great to immediately extract heavy soiling or a sudden spill, but no matter how many bells and whistles it comes with, it will not provide the same results as a truck mounted professional system. You should still have an experienced professional properly examine, treat, and care for your carpets and upholstery.