From time to time we are asked questions that aren’t just about cleaning. Whether that be from being in a settled in-home, packing up to move, or even moving into a new home. Each life circumstance brings its own fun set of new experiences and questions, in the end, is to hopefully have lessons learned.
Carpet is an amazing textile for home flooring. It’s soft, insulating, durable, and acts as a natural air filter for your home. It holds down dust, pollen, dander, and other allergens. But it also needs to be cleaned regularly and vacuumed often to be maintained properly; otherwise, it is susceptible to permanent color damage from stains or even direct sunlight. Another notable problem with carpet is called crushing. Crushing appears when something heavy sits in the same spot for a long period of time (like a table or couch). Once the heavy object is moved there will be a visible indentation left in the carpet. That indentation is a result of crushing, due to the physical force of the heavy object placed on that area causing it to compress and greatly reduce from its original press/depth. Cleaning it professionally may help, but the best remedy is an ice cube. When you put the ice cube down, the colder more dense air sinks forcing the warmer air below up and out, lifting and expanding the fibers as it goes. As the cube melts and the cold water sinks, the water will absorb into the fiber causing it to swell while the coldness helps to restore the fibers’ resiliency. Resiliency is the fibers’ ability to spring back to their original thickness after the compression of the heavy object. Once dry from the ice cube treatment there should be a visible difference from before when it was crushed. The process may need to be repeated but always let it dry completely between treatments.
Sometimes you clean a stain it will look beautiful when it is freshly cleaned but reappears in a few short days. This is due to soil wicking. This process happens as the carpet dries and the water slowly evaporates into the air. The water and chemical chosen at the time of cleaning will carry any dirt or stain below the surface back to the surface. If after several treatments the stain refuses to stay gone then you may have to play a game we call “are you smarter than a stain…” By this point, we already know whatever soil/stain present is brought up by water or chemical. We also know it is moveable while suspended and likes to travel. First, do whatever wet treatment is necessary to suspend the soil. Then place a folded dry towel on top of the wet stain and place a heavy flat object on top of the towel and walk away until it is dry. The suspended soil can’t tell the difference between the fiber of the carpet and the fiber of the towel. The stain can only go where it is carried by the water. Between that and the added pressure from a heavy flat object, the water should carry the stain from the carpet into the towels.
Another question we hear often is “is there anything that can be done about the dark lines by the baseboards or by doors that are often left closed?” The answer is absolutely we can do something about it. As always we have an industry term for it as well. These lines are known as filtration lines. Filtration lines form as dust carrying air passes over or through the carpet and the carpet acts as a natural air filter and trapping the extra dust, pollen, particle matter, etc. First there is a carpet wand that is designed specifically for filtration lines and small corners. If that isn’t available a towel and rubbing alcohol or a very mild mix of dish detergent and water should do the trick as well.