There are a few low moisture (VLM) carpet cleaning methods that can be used between hot water extraction treatments to keep carpets clean and free of stains. Stephen Lewis, the technical director for Millicare, says that these options use 99 percent less water than extraction, so people can walk on the carpet soon after it has been cleaned.
Three types of VLM carpet cleaning are common in the commercial market, Lewis states. Facility managers and building service contractors (BSCs) can choose between encapsulation, spin bonnet cleaning, and dry extraction.
Lewis says that this process, which is sometimes called “crystallization,” is done with products that are easy to buy and use and are often cheap. Cleaners use a detergent formula to break down, surround, or encapsulate the soil in the carpet fiber, then remove the nonsticky powder or crystals from the carpet by vacuuming.
Spin the hat
Lewis says that this way of cleaning a VLM carpet is one of the oldest ones. Cleaners put a light spray of detergent on the carpet and then use a slow-speed floor machine with a cotton pad that spins over the carpet. To keep the carpet from getting dirty again, the pad must be changed often when it is being cleaned.
Don’t use water.
Since only a few dry extraction products are available to janitorial companies and services, facility managers usually call in companies that specialize in commercial carpet maintenance, says Lewis. These professionals put a dry, sponge-like substance on the carpet, scrubbed it in with a machine, and then vacuumed it up. Lewis says that dry extraction is the least wet option and that it doesn’t leave behind any dirt or sticky residues.
Cleaning in Between
Scott Warrington, who has been a cleaner and restorer for more than 40 years and is the director of technical support for Bridgepoint and the Interlink Supply network, suggests encapsulation as a way to clean carpets in the short term.
For applying encapsulation chemistry to a carpet, the following options are available:
Rotating in opposite directions
Single-disc floor machines
Rotating machines with three heads.
Warrington says that interim encapsulation cleaning has a number of benefits, no matter what tools are used.
Quick production times: Encapsulation can clean up to 10,000-square-feet of carpet per hour, depending on the equipment.
Better appearance: After cleaning, there will be little to no wicking, and carpets often look better than they would after hot water extraction.
Low-cost equipment: A business may already have the right tools or can buy them for less than $5,000.
Minimal training is needed, and distributors can often give the training that is needed.
Short downtimes: Most of the time, there is less than an hour of downtime.
For professional carpet cleaning (VLM), contact Rapid Dry Carpet Cleaning.