ATLAS WINDOW & CARPET CLEANING
(415) 256-8321

 

Pacific Sun's 'Best of Marin' 14 Time Winner! Serving most of Marin County

Serving the following Towns & Cities: Sausalito, Mill Valley, Tiburon, Corte Madera, Larkspur, Greenbrae, Kentfield, Ross, San Anselmo, Fairfax, San Rafael, Novato

Why Carpet Cleaners Are Not Equal

It amazes me that some people think all carpet cleaners are equal. These same people recognize differences in qualities of other products and services. Why not carpet cleaning too? All carpet cleaners are not equal.

Who believes McDonald’s and the Lark Creek Inn are equal in quality and service. Who would deny the difference in a fast food meal and a gourmet meal? Who would argue that there is no difference between a Yugo and a Mercedes, or Walmart and Neiman Marcus? Obviously all products and services are not equal and that goes for carpet cleaning too.

There are many levels of quality—from poor to excellent. This holds true for the carpet cleaning industry.

There are many factors that can affect the quality of a carpet cleaning. These factors include the Cleaner and His Experience, the Cleaning System, the Tools, the Techniques, the Stain Removal System, and the Work Philosophy.


The Cleaner and His Experience:

Selecting a qualified cleaner can make a difference in the experience you have and the results you would get. Besides a cleaner's experience, his motivation can play a major role in his performance.

The following is an obvious and extreme example of where you can see that carpet cleaners are not equal.

You may hire a small company who has the owner of that company cleaning your carpets. The owner-operator may have five, ten, or twenty years of experience. The owner is invested in doing a great job because he wants you as a regular client. On the other hand, you may hire a large company. The person cleaning your carpets may have been trained for only two weeks (this does go on). This could be his first day out on his own and you’re the lucky person to have him. Don't get me wrong, he may be quite nice, but does he have the cleaning experience?

Which cleaner would you like to have cleaning your carpets? Do you think that they are equal?

We are owner-operated.


The Tools:
(for portable wet cleaning and truck-mount systems)

For the most part, the majority of carpet cleaners, use similar tools. A wand, a stair tool, and an upholstery tool (if they clean upholstery) are standard equipment. One part of the tool releases pressured solution  and the other part vacuums up the solution. Some companies use a rotary machine using this technology (my opinion is that these machines are great on commercial property—not on residential property where detail is important AND over wetting is undesirable).

We use a different tool. The releasing of pressured solution and the vacuuming work simultaneously. As the solution comes out and hits and agitates the carpet fibers, at the same time the solution and the soil are being vacuumed up.  That gives us the luxury of spending more time on areas that need attention without over wetting the carpet. We’ve used the tools that other carpet cleaning companies use. There’s no comparison. In the past, we used our tools in conjunction with a portable wet cleaning system and out performed companies that used truck-mounted systems, on a regular basis. We now use these tools with a truck-mounted system and it’s an unbeatable combination.

For more information on these tools, go to Special Report #3:  You could have a 100 carpet cleaners....  and the page “Upholstery Cleaning”.

What tools would you like used on cleaning your carpet? Do you think they are equal?


The Cleaning System:
The most Qualified Cleaner in the world can use different carpet cleaning systems. He knows they are not equal. A less experienced carpet cleaner can clean your carpets with the ultimate cleaning system and do a lousy job. The best system needs experience handling.

At one point, many years ago, I was cleaning using a dry (low moisture) style cleaning system. I liked the idea of not over wetting a carpet. Generally I always improved the look of every carpet that I worked on and I sincerely thought that I did a great job. One day I was working on a very soiled white carpet and just happened to have a portable wet cleaning system in my van, which was not that powerful at all---similar to the type you can rent. Always looking to improve and test my work, I decided to compare their cleaning abilities. To my surprise, the wet method gave me better looking results. The carpet was much brighter! Soon after that, I started cleaning with a portable wet cleaning system with special tools which gave me great results. Since May 2001, I have been using a powerful truck-mounted system using those same special tools giving me even better results.There are mainly three cleaning methods on the market now. They are the Dry Cleaning (low moisture) Method, the Portable Wet Cleaning System, and the Truck mounted Wet Cleaning System.

Dry cleaning Method:
There are a few types of dry cleaning methods. The most common type is to spray a cleaning solution on the carpet and then use a rotary machine, with a cloth covering, to agitate the carpet and absorb the solution and soil. Using this method is appropriate in many situations, because of quick drying time and the simplicity of the equipment. In my opinion, this is a surface cleaning. It works well on carpets that are in decent condition. It is not the best method for a very soiled carpet. I believe this method can make about 75% of the people happy. Although one of the most common complaints I hear is that the carpet doesn't look great after a couple of weeks.

Portable Wet Cleaning Method:
Before truck-mounted cleaning and dry cleaning, portable wet cleaning was a popular method used by many carpet cleaners. There aren't many companies who use this method any more. Generally a company will use equipment that is superior to the portable equipment that you can rent. Using this method is appropriate in may situations. Its' portability gives you the ability to access some places that a truck-mounted system would not be able to get to. It is a good choice in some circumstances. I refer some callers to a good local company, who uses this method, when I can't access their home.

Truck-Mounted Wet Cleaning Method:
If you ever look through the yellow pages in the carpet cleaning category, you'll notice that this is the dominant method and for a good reason. The carpet manufacturers suggest this method. Generally, a truck-mounted system includes higher pressured cleaning solutions, a strong vacuum, and high heat. All of these factors aid in a superior and thorough cleaning.  All truck-mounted systems are not equal. Some use your water. Some are self contained (with a fresh water tank). Some are powered by  separate engine inside the van---which means the vehicle doors have to be open and the noise level is high. Others are powered by the van engine---which means the doors can be shut and the noise level is lower. For the most part, many of the good companies and large companies out there have a truck-mount system that is sufficient in high solution pressure, vacuum strength and high heat. We use a truck-mounted system that is self contained (has a fresh water tank and a recovery tank) and is powered by the van engine in which we can close all the doors and windows which will lower the noise level.

Which method would you like used on cleaning your carpets? Which method do
you think is going to give you a superior job? Do you think they are equal?


The Techniques:
(for portable wet cleaning and truck-mount systems)

Have you ever seen a carpet cleaner move the wand really fast? Do you think the cleaning solution is getting a chance to penetrate the fibers? Do you think it’s getting vacuumed thoroughly? This speedy technique is what some companies use. Generally a quality company will move their wand at a medium to slow pace depending on the need. That’s what we do.

Regarding the Pre-spraying or preconditioning techniques for cleaning a carpet. Some companies Pre-spray only the soiled areas, some  Pre-spray everything, and some do not pre-spray at all. We pre-spray everything, giving more attention to soiled areas and spots.

One common complaint about carpet cleaners is that they missed some spots. We use a technique that can prevent this from happening. It doesn’t make sense at first. Yet, when people experience it, they will understand why this makes a difference.

What techniques would you like used when cleaning your carpet? Do you think these techniques are equal?
The Stain Removal System:
A Spot is easy to remove. A Stain is not. Most companies will remove spots with their general cleaning and normal spotters.

Regarding the removal or reduction of stains, there are companies that do not take the time to try to do that. There are companies that do a passable job, and there are companies that really take the time to do a professional  job. Of course, there are stains that are just impossible.  

We pride ourselves in removing and reducing most stains. On top of that, we give our clients the Ultimate Home Spotting System to keep their carpets stain-free between cleanings. You can read more about that on our website by selecting the page “Carpet Confidence Stain Removal System”.

What carpet cleaning company would you like to hire to work on your stains? Do you think all carpet cleaning companies are equal in these skills?
The Work Philosophy:
A company can choose to charge a low price so that they can attract more jobs and do more jobs on a daily basis. They’ll want to get in and out of your house as fast as they can. You are just part of their list.

Another company can choose to charge a reasonable rate for quality work. They’ll want to please you and do a great job. You are a special client to them.

Which carpet cleaning company would you like to hire?

Do you think these Carpet Cleaners are equal?

Other Reports:
SPECIAL REPORT #2: Why a Great Price may not be a Great Value--especially in the carpet cleaning industry

SPECIAL REPORT #3: You could have a 100 carpet cleaners...

SPECIAL REPORT #4: What you need to know before you purchase new windows

SPECIAL REPORT #5: We Love Our Pets and we could use some help with those pet odor problems