Green Carpet Cleaning

How do we achieve “Chemical Free” carpet cleaning?

Unusually, we had a customer cancel a job that had been booked in Bath for the end of the week. Not only did they cancel, but they cancelled with the following comment:

”I’ve decided to go with someone else, as they use proper chemicals rather than water-based products.”

I wasn’t given much chance to discuss the matter, as the customer seemed keen to terminate the call, but I was left rather flummoxed.

Green Man source all our carpet cleaning solutions from the country’s leading innovator and supplier, a company who have brought in industry-expert carpet cleaning consultants from the N.C.C.A. (http://www.ncca.co.uk) (National Carpet Cleaners’ Association), as well as industrial chemists to help formulate the very best in carpet cleaning and restoration solutions.

The science of carpet cleaning
In order to remove stains, spots, soils and greases from a carpet, we have a wide range of factors to consider:

  • What is the carpet constructed of?
  • What are the stains and what is their ph?
  • How long have the stains dwelt in the carpet?
  • What has the customer already put into the carpet to attempt to remove the stains? (for home tips on stain treatment, read our Advice page)

On a basic level, most soils have an acidic ph. Traditionally, in order to remove them, carpet cleaners would mix up a detergent heavy alkaline solution, spray it down and rinse extract it out. The extraction solution would need to be acidic, to help rebalance/neutralise the ph of the carpet.

The problems involved with detergent-based cleaning products are as follows:

  • They can trigger asthma
  • They are not pet-safe, let alone human safe
  • The additives and synthetic aromas included are designed to mask problems, rather than solve them
  • They are not free-rinsing. This means that there are residues left in fibres after cleaning, meaning that they will resoil quickly

“Even in 2017, most carpet cleaners are still using detergent – based products.>/p>

What do Green Man use to clean your carpet?

When we arrive on a job, the first thing we do is to survey the carpet/upholstery to be cleaned. This is to assess pretty much each of the key points in the first paragraph.

Once the survey is complete, we can then proceed), safe in the knowledge that we will be able to deliver an unbeatable clean without any danger to the customer’s property.

Here are some of the products that we will use on your carpets…

1. Microsplitters
Microsplitters work by shattering the bond between the soil molecule and surface you are cleaning, once applied the splitting action takes place on contact without the use of toxic enzymes or detergents. Microsplitters have a broad range of grimebusting potential and are entirely safe to use.

2. Colloidal solutions
The colloidal solution we use has to be about our favourite product. It is what allows us to deliver an entirely greenclean to our customers in Bath & Bristol.
As one of the most Eco-friendly cleaning solutions available with today’s technology, it has been tested to ensure thatall compounds that are considered toxic or otherwise hazardous to the environment are not present.

This amazing solution uses powerful natural-molecular technology combined with advanced biotechnology techniques:

  • Derived from renewable/sustainable sources
  • Fully Biodegradable
  • Exhibits anti-bacterial & anti-viral properties thanks to its unique natural-molecular cleaning action.
  • Non-toxic to humans and pets
  • Non-toxic to aquatic life
  • Non-reactive with chemicals, such as chlorine bleach
  • Non-caustic – Non-combustible – Non-corrosive – Non-flammable – Non-fuming – Non-hazardous – Non-polluting… …

We also often use a colloidal cleaner on pure wool carpets, as it leaves them with a beautifully soft hand feel.

We managed to find this vintage 1970s video that discusses some of the benefits of colloidal cleaning, even back then!

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How do we achieve “Chemical Free” carpet cleaning?

Unusually, we had a customer cancel a job that had been booked in Bath for the end of the week. Not only did they cancel, but they cancelled with the following comment:

”I’ve decided to go with someone else, as they use proper chemicals rather than water-based products.”

I wasn’t given much chance to discuss the matter, as the customer seemed keen to terminate the call, but I was left rather flummoxed.

Green Man source all our carpet cleaning solutions from the country’s leading innovator and supplier, a company who have brought in industry-expert carpet cleaning consultants from the N.C.C.A. (http://www.ncca.co.uk) (National Carpet Cleaners’ Association), as well as industrial chemists to help formulate the very best in carpet cleaning and restoration solutions.

The science of carpet cleaning
In order to remove stains, spots, soils and greases from a carpet, we have a wide range of factors to consider:

  • What is the carpet constructed of?
  • What are the stains and what is their ph?
  • How long have the stains dwelt in the carpet?
  • What has the customer already put into the carpet to attempt to remove the stains? (for home tips on stain treatment, read our Advice page)

On a basic level, most soils have an acidic ph. Traditionally, in order to remove them, carpet cleaners would mix up a detergent heavy alkaline solution, spray it down and rinse extract it out. The extraction solution would need to be acidic, to help rebalance/neutralise the ph of the carpet.

The problems involved with detergent-based cleaning products are as follows:

  • They can trigger asthma
  • They are not pet-safe, let alone human safe
  • The additives and synthetic aromas included are designed to mask problems, rather than solve them
  • They are not free-rinsing. This means that there are residues left in fibres after cleaning, meaning that they will resoil quickly

“Even in 2017, most carpet cleaners are still using detergent – based products.>/p>

What do Green Man use to clean your carpet?

When we arrive on a job, the first thing we do is to survey the carpet/upholstery to be cleaned. This is to assess pretty much each of the key points in the first paragraph.

Once the survey is complete, we can then proceed), safe in the knowledge that we will be able to deliver an unbeatable clean without any danger to the customer’s property.

Here are some of the products that we will use on your carpets…

1. Microsplitters
Microsplitters work by shattering the bond between the soil molecule and surface you are cleaning, once applied the splitting action takes place on contact without the use of toxic enzymes or detergents. Microsplitters have a broad range of grimebusting potential and are entirely safe to use.

2. Colloidal solutions
The colloidal solution we use has to be about our favourite product. It is what allows us to deliver an entirely greenclean to our customers in Bath & Bristol.
As one of the most Eco-friendly cleaning solutions available with today’s technology, it has been tested to ensure thatall compounds that are considered toxic or otherwise hazardous to the environment are not present.

This amazing solution uses powerful natural-molecular technology combined with advanced biotechnology techniques:

  • Derived from renewable/sustainable sources
  • Fully Biodegradable
  • Exhibits anti-bacterial & anti-viral properties thanks to its unique natural-molecular cleaning action.
  • Non-toxic to humans and pets
  • Non-toxic to aquatic life
  • Non-reactive with chemicals, such as chlorine bleach
  • Non-caustic – Non-combustible – Non-corrosive – Non-flammable – Non-fuming – Non-hazardous – Non-polluting… …

We also often use a colloidal cleaner on pure wool carpets, as it leaves them with a beautifully soft hand feel.

We managed to find this vintage 1970s video that discusses some of the benefits of colloidal cleaning, even back then!

3. Soil encapsulators
After the solution has been applied to the carpet and dwelt for at least 10 minutes, crystallizing polymers surround or encapsulate the soils which are then suspended within the solution. As the solution dries, the encapsulation polymers dry to a crystal. This crystal does not adhere to the carpet fibres; instead, it’s easily removed with vacuuming.

This amazing product is detergent free containing natural plant extracts and uses astonishing new technology with built in anti-stain & anti-soil properties. The soil encapsulators we use will keep your carpets cleaner and healthier for even longer and at the same time naturally deodorise the cleaned areas leaving a fresh clean aroma.

There are a few other types of product that we can opt to use, particularly where we come upon a carpet that might normally be destined for the tip, but the ones above are our go-tos.

If you have any further questions regarding the chemistry of carpet cleaning, or any other aspect of our work, please feel free to get in touch.

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3. Soil encapsulators
After the solution has been applied to the carpet and dwelt for at least 10 minutes, crystallizing polymers surround or encapsulate the soils which are then suspended within the solution. As the solution dries, the encapsulation polymers dry to a crystal. This crystal does not adhere to the carpet fibres; instead, it’s easily removed with vacuuming.

This amazing product is detergent free containing natural plant extracts and uses astonishing new technology with built in anti-stain & anti-soil properties. The soil encapsulators we use will keep your carpets cleaner and healthier for even longer and at the same time naturally deodorise the cleaned areas leaving a fresh clean aroma.

There are a few other types of product that we can opt to use, particularly where we come upon a carpet that might normally be destined for the tip, but the ones above are our go-tos.

If you have any further questions regarding the chemistry of carpet cleaning, or any other aspect of our work, please feel free to get in touch.

Buying second-hand furniture from eBay or Gumtree?

We all love a bargain.

In recent times, eBay and Gumtree have become as likely places to source new furniture for our home as DFS or Sofa Workshop. Good quality second-hand is almost always what our household buys because you simply get more for your money. Of course, there are risks involved…

It was a sofa clean in Bristol yesterday that prompted this article – the family had bought a sofa (pictured) from Gumtree for £30, despite a fairly heavy level of soiling and a very unsightly egg-based stain on the cushions. After the initial survey, it was clear that the fabric was synthetic and likely to yield up most of the issues.

Let the buyer beware

For the buyer of second-hand furniture (and curtains etc.), a basic rule of thumb ought to be that synthetic materials will wear more quickly, but yield (most) stains up more easily. Organic and cellulosic (wool, cotton, linen etc.) fibres are more durable, but much more likely to be permanently dyed through staining (or bleached by poor care).

Professional furniture cleaning

Because of the heavy soil load and ingrained egg, it was clear that this particular sofa would need the full works. This included:

  • 1. Vacuuming (using an industrial vacuum with turbo-brush hand tool attached)
  • 2. Spot/stain treatments
  • 3. Eco-friendly/ sanitising pre-spray
  • 4.Rotary agitation (using a motorised brush machine)
  • 5. Rinse extraction (see video below)

We are delighted to say that- following a recent trial (see Revolution)- all our upholstery cleans now utilise a brilliant innovation that leaves fabric more resistant to staining.

Sofa after cleaning in Bath

Following the clean, the customer’s sofa looked like new (or it would have, if the previous owner’s cat hadn’t used the side and back as a clawing post). The image below shows the last cushion to be cleaned, with the left hand side about to be rinse extracted.

Cleaning the BBC Points West sofa

A few week’s back, we took an unusual enquiry…

I’m looking for somebody that could remove a stain from a sofa in our studio – a baby wallaby had an “accident” on it and I’m trying to clean the sofa without leaving stains.

This isn’t a regular occurrence, so we were fairly intrigued and called the customer back and arranged a survey.

Our senior technician, Gareth, conducted the survey and devised a deep-clean that would sanitise the fabric, restore the sofa to its best potential condition, yet still be dry in around an hour. The studio in question was at the BBC Whiteladies Rd. studios, Bristol. During the survey, Gaz discovered that the particular studio we were to work in was where the original Johnny Morris Animal Magic series was filmed. It turns out that, over the years, all manner of monkeys, snakes and various beasts have disappeared and wreaked havoc in the building!

Once we had discussed the logistics of the job, we made arrangements to attend on a Sunday to allow a margin of error, should the sofa take an unpredictable amount of time to dry before the next edition of Points West was due to be filmed.

We were given security clearance and entered the studio.

Professional vacuuming

Sofa cleaning in Bristol

A tv studio is crammed full of electronic equipment and therefore attracts a huge quantity of dust.

Any professional upholstery (or carpet) cleaning requires careful vacuuming as the first stage and, in this instance, it was absolutely essential.

Professional sofa cleaning is about the removal of soils, grease & contaminants from the fabric. A significant percentage of the soils present in upholstery are able to be removed using a decent vacuum and a detailing tool.

Without this primary stage, some of these soils actually become harder to extract because they may forced deeper by the rinse extraction process.

Following the vacuuming, because this sofa is constructed of polyester, it was also shedding a lot of fibres. Close-up, this gave the impression the studio was inhabited by a long haired, white dog!

These fibres needed careful removal by hand, so that the finished product would not only look clean, but also uniformly groomed.

Professional stain removal

The next stage in the clean was to attend to any specific stains before wetting the fabric, as this can sometimes mask any problems by making them harder to spot.

Because this particular sofa is constructed entirely of a synthetic crepe-type material, it was clear that there would not be any concerns regarding colour bleed or likely sensitivity to any of our solutions.

I used one of our highly effective eco-solvents to break down several areas of sticky residue prior to the next stage of the sofa clean.

Stain removal on sofa in Bristol

Selecting & applying the pre-spray

Wallaby wee is clearly a hygiene issue, so the selection of a pre-spray needed to ensure that the fabric would be sanitised. Fortunately, Green Man carry a number of entirely environmentally friendly solutions that will sanitise as part of the way they work. The need for a rapid drying time narrowed down the choice and I mixed up a solution that works on contact and does not need to be applied heavily.

We use a variety of large & small sprayers, many of which have a variable jet. This job only required a misting, so the nozzle was adjusted to allow for a controlled application of product.

Upholstery cleaning treatment in Bristol

Agitating the fabric

One of the key differentiators in how a professional will clean upholstery is in how they achieve a deep, even penetration of the cleaning solution.

Without this, only a superficial clean is achieved.

With fine fabrics, Green Man technicians will opt for a microfibre hand mitt to conduct this stage of the clean.

However, on hard-wearing synthetics and large areas of upholstery, a motorised drill brush provides outstanding evenness, breaking up stubborn soils and greases.

Traditional rinse extraction using a modern, low-moisture hand tool

Rinse extraction using a specialist, moisture-limiting hand tool
Once the sofa was fully prepared, it was time for a deep-cleaning rinse extraction treatment. This is more or less the main final stage of most professional carpet, rug or upholstery cleaning. Prior to this, all the initial stages have focussed on encouraging soils to detach from the fibres and breaking down greasy soils into a soluble state.

Depending on the fabric type, upholstery cleaning can result in lengthy drying times. This is sometimes an uncertain variable, depending on fibre type, level of soiling, type of solution used and drying conditions. Because this particular clean was time-critical, it was important to use a modern upholstery cleaning tool that would rinse the fabric fully, without over-wetting.

The Sapphire upholstery tool works in an unusual way, creating a seething mesh of water, rather than firing jets of water directly into fabric…

Pretty fascinating stuff, I’m sure you’ll agree.

The finished product

The brief had been simple, if unusual:

I’m looking for somebody that could remove a stain from a sofa in our studio – a baby wallaby had an “accident” on it and I’m trying to clean the sofa without leaving stains.

The finished product looked outstanding

We had vacuumed, stain-treated, sanitised & deep-cleaned this bespoke piece of furniture within the time constraints of a busy tv studio and delivering a drying time that meant the sofa could be filmed on within an hour.

“It is the diversity of work and the people we meet that makes professional carpet, rug & upholstery cleaning in Bristol a consistently engaging job. This famous couch certainly provided challenge & interest, but was also another opportunity to demonstrate that however unusual the job may be, Green Man can deliver a responsive and professional service.”

Jon Gardner, Green Man

Upholstery Cleaning in Bristol