Help! Pet urine on a pure wool rug…

Accidents happen from time to time, particularly if you have pets (or children!). When pet urine spills onto your carpets or precious rugs, prompt action is key. Despite what you read online, often all that is needed is to blot the liquid up with a dry towel and perhaps some water.

If the accident involves urine, speed is crucial. If the fibre type is wool (or cotton, linen, viscose, sisal etc.), the need for prompt action is even more pressing. This is because urine is acidic. It also contains a broad range of organic matter that can cause staining & malodours.

Last week, we were asked to treat a large, valuable pure wool rug that had suffered significant contamination from cat urine. The current owners of the rug had inherited it from relatives, only later realising it came with quite of lot of Labrador hair embedded in. The new owner’s cat did not take well to this & expressed his option quite liberally over the expensive rug.

In this instance, the cat urine did not cause any noticeable staining. The homeowners only became aware of the issue when their front room began to smell unbearable. As IICRC Odour Neutralisation trained technicians, we carry a range of kit & solutions to deal with incidents such as these.

The first tool we used was our Sebo BS36 vacuum…

Initial vacuuming of a wool rug
Initial vacuuming of a wool rug

Following a thorough vacuuming to recover as much dry soil & historic pet hair as possible, our next tool was an Ultra Violet torch. The video below shows how effective this can be in causing the contaminated areas to effloresce-

After we had identified the areas of cat urine, we applied a urine neutralising solution to this patches to break down the problem, The element of urine that causes long term odours are uric salts. These attract moisture, which explains why sometimes on warm, humid days, people notice the smell reappearing – the uric salts have simply absorbed moisture from the air & become reactivated,

The next step was to apply a wool safe cleaning solution to the whole rug, brush this in & allow a 15 minute dwell time. This allows the hi-tech solution to break down soils & greasy deposits ready for extraction.

Finally, we set up our Airflex extraction machine & rinse-extracted the rug with a slightly acidic solution. This recovers all the soils that the cleaning solution has made soluble and ensures the wool is left at its preferred, slightly acidic state.

Rug steam cleaning in Bristol
Rug steam cleaning in Bristol

Thank you for reading!

If you have any questions regarding this article, please do get in touch using our Contact page.

Specialist velvet upholstery cleaning

Pure cotton velvet requires careful attention & is easy to damage through rinse extraction cleaning. Because it is a “cut pile”, the individual cotton threads will tend to compact when wet.

It is for this reason that many upholstery cleaning companies will either refuse to clean velvet, or insist on using large quantities of volatile solvents to do the job. Dry cleaning solvent has its place in the arsenal of a professional fabric cleaner, but will not yield particularly good results for a general clean.

The owner of this particular velvet sofa had informed us that their cat had urinated on the fabric multiple times & that the visible damage & odour needed professional attention.

Avoiding damage

Stain removal from velvet

This image & the (very dull!) video below demonstrate how wetting affects a velvet pile and- importantly- how using a velvet “boffin” brush can reset the pile & reduce the risk of damage.

Removing pet urine from velvet

Urine will always leave uric salts within fabric, which need neutralising & removing. This creates an interesting problem when the fabric is velvet, as we will usually be looking to use as little moisture as possible to avoid potential damage.

In this case, our technician applied a specific urine neutralising solution to the velvet in minimal quantities using a sponge, rather than spraying it directly onto the fabric. This reduced the chance of the pile collapsing & ensured that we were able to remove the cat pee odour.

Our team are IICRC approved in Odour Control & have a range of solutions & equipment to tackle most issues.

Conclusion: The final result (which, alas, we forgot to photograph) was an odourless, sanitised & visually clean velvet sofa which our client was delighted with. This type of work tends to take a little longer than standard upholstery cleaning, but we find it very satisfying when we can bring this luxury fabric back to its true potential condition.

If you have any questions about our professional velvet cleaning process, please get in touch.

Thank you for reading!

Stone floor clean & re-seal near Frome.

Last week, three of our technicians attended a large converted barn near Frome to carry out a variety of professional cleaning services. The brief was to remove all furniture & deep-clean the travertine tiles & grout on the ground floor, then apply new seal. As well as this, we were required to clean a pure wool lounge carpet & several rugs, including a dhouri.

The initial job here was clearly moving a significant amount of furniture… 

The removal of furniture prior to professional stone tile cleaning.

When the day began, it was a beautiful Spring day – Later on, we were glad we brought our extra large tarpaulin! 

Limestone floor dee cleaning


Once the main area had been cleared, we applied an environmentally friendly stone cleaning solution to the travertine & used a rotary machine to agitate the floor. We used a wet vac to pick up the resulting slurry, then repeated the process. We cleaned the grout lines manually with a grout brush.

Professional stone cleaning in Cheltenham
Cleaning a limestone floor

After this process was complete, we left the floor to dry. As you can see, at this stage the stone has been taken back to its initial matt finish-

Travertine floor after initial clean

While the stone dried, it was time to address the living room wool carpet & the rugs.

After the initial vacuum, a different eco-solution was applied to the wool.

This works at a nano level and sanitised the wool, as well as conditioning it.

Apart from a small area of permanent staining, the area responded beautifully well.

Professional rug cleaning in Frome scaled 1
Frome eco friendly carpet cleaning scaled 1

The dhouri rug had absorbed a considerable amount of soiling, so required significant agitation prior to the rinse extraction stage.

The image here shows our senior technician using a rotary machine to agitate the eco-solution throughout the pile in order to loosen & emulsify soils & absorbed oils.

Professional wool carpet cleaning

After stone tiles & grout have been deep-cleaned, Green Man will always specify at least a top-up coat of seal.  Most of the time, stone flooring will benefit from a full re-seal involving 2 – 5 coats of a protective seal to protect the stone from spillages & build-ups. Depending on the type of seal chosen, this will often significantly improve the appearance of the stone, intensifying colour and increasing the depth of the grain.

In the images below, you can see the impact a satin seal has on the area.

If you have any questions regarding stone floor cleaning & sealing, please feel free to use our Contact page to get in touch.

Further information about our hard floor cleaning services can be found here.

Thank you for reading.

Wool carpet clean on The Circus, Bath

As those of you who live in Bath will know, the logistics of parking and working in our city can be interesting.

Operating a carpet cleaning company in Bath presents its own particular challenges so, over the years we have been in business, we have developed various strategies to ensure we can deliver a high quality eco-friendly deep-cleaning service without compromises.

This particular job was the result of a pigeon being trapped in a top floor flat. While it was contained in the property, it caused quite a mess & the owner was keen to have the carpets cleaned & decontaminated quickly. We organised a survey the same day as the initial call and were able to book the work within two working days.

Carpet cleaning equipment outside The Circus, Bath

On the day of the clean, our team collected keys from the nominated estate agents. If pre-arranged, this is a service we can easily provide for our customers in Bath.

After we had picked up the keys, we parked temporarily outside & unloaded.

You can see here that we have specified one of our powerful compact commercial machines, owing to the number (and narrowness) of the stairs here.

The balance between powerful kit & portability is key when working in most of our locations.

For this reason, we carry a wide range of machines & equipment to enable us to deliver the flexibility our customers require.

Carpet cleaning in Bath 1

The views from behind The Circus are pretty stunning. It’s certainly not the worst place to spend a morning!

Rinse extraction carpet cleaning

The quality of the wool carpet here was excellent. This type of carpet responds extremely well to our preferred eco-friendly carpet cleaning solution. It has a plant-based formula & will sanitise & condition the carpet, as well as deep-clean. 

Flat carpet cleaning in Bath

If you have any questions regarding this job, or how we clean using eco-friendly solutions, please feel free to get in touch using our contact form.

Thank you for reading.

Stain removal in Bath

TV series upholstery cleaning under Covid!

Yesterday, our senior technician Rodney Gray attended a TV location to conduct a commercial upholstery clean.

 

The situation

Professional sofa cleaning

The modern looking suite had sat on a shelf in one of the large London prop-houses and had become dusty and probably a little damp. The shoot was imminent & the upholstery needed a professional deep clean to a high standard.

The need for a quick response was clear & we despatched our most experienced technician within 24 hours.

A professional deep-clean of props that have been hired presents an interesting situation. The items do not belong to the tv production team, so if these sofas & armchairs were damaged, the production company (and then us!) become liable. Every upholstery clean we conduct begins with a careful pre-test. There are endless combinations of fabric types that are used by furniture manufactures. Some of these (such as Haitian cotton, viscose, velvet etc.) can be challenging to clean without damage. 

The clean

Because of Covid-19 restrictions and, quite probably, the franticness of work on-set, an area outside had been prepared for us. This was ideal as it was a lovely day for drying – some late Autumn sun & a light breeze.

Professional commercial upholstery cleaning in Bristol

After the initial tests were done, we confirmed the fabric was suitable for a deep clean.

Our eco-friendly process follows the full professional specification to ensure all dry soil is recovered prior to stain treatments, rinse extraction (“steam cleaning”) and post-clean checks.

Professional commercial upholstery cleaning on a film set

The image above demonstrates the poor condition of the fabric. Our technician has applied our eco-sanitising pre-spray and is about to brush this in to work the solution evenly throughout. Once wet, fabrics often reveal their true condition. This also means that it can be difficult to determine the success of a clean until the item is fully dry.

The image also displays the Sapphire upholstery tool. This remarkable piece of kit enables us to rinse extract upholstery without actually “firing” the rinse solution into the fabric. The video below demonstrates the principle (see 1:10) :

The work went well and a large amount of soiling was recovered. Our cleaning methodology sanitises as part of the process. On an extremely Covid sensitive site, this was an additional bonus for the production team.

Thank you for reading!

How does “eco” benefit my furniture & carpets?

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Have a close look at the image above- what do you see?

 

What we see is the result of putting washable colours through using a standard (probably Bio) laundry detergent. So, what is in our laundry detergent?

A quick Google brings up the following:

Laundry detergents may contain builders (50% by weight, approximately), surfactants (15%), bleach (7%), enzymes (2%), soil antideposition agents, foam regulators, corrosion inhibitors, optical brighteners, dye transfer inhibitors, fragrances, dyes, fillers and formulation aids.

In other words, a chemical assault force brought together to attack the huge range of potential soil types a typical household wash might present. Of course, if you use an eco-friendly detergent, there will be considerably less of the harsher agents at work. Even so, if you wash your removable cushion covers with any frequency, over time the colours will fade. There is not a way for you to clean the frame at the same time, so the difference in colour worsens.

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Why go Eco?

 

Obviously, eco-friendly solutions contain none of the harsh ingredients listed above.

But it goes further than that. The formulations we use work from a completely different chemical approach. They actively breakdown soils, greases & contaminants and sanitise the fabric/carpet they are applied to. After they have depleted & done their work, they are readily free-rinsing, meaning your soft furnishings stay cleaner for longer.

When we dispose of the waste water from the clean, we know that we are not placing anything into the watercourse that will disrupt the eco-systems it eventually finds its way into.

From a personal perspective, I know that when we use these products there is no risk of damage to my skin or lungs from prolonged exposure .

 

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Why have a professional clean?

Coming back to the original image, this client could have used a much gentler laundry detergent. This would definitely have limited the amount of bleaching we see. So, what are the benefits of having a professional trained upholstery technician?

I’ll make a list:

  1. We will pre-test your fabric. This will ensure that the correct type of clean takes place with no danger of damage.
  2. We will clean the entire body & cushions of your upholstery at the same time.
  3. We will use a wide range of techniques that we have spent time & money acquiring in order to specify the right type of clean to get an optimal result for you.
  4. We have professional grade machines to ensure we can recover as much water as possible. This isn’t to say that fabric will be dry after we’ve finished, but we will do everything we can to accelerate the process.
  5. We are insured! 

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about having your sofa or upholstery cleaned, feel free to get in touch.

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Eco-friendly whole house clean in a Cotswold country home

Professional wood floor refinishing

Green Man provide a mid-point between maintenance & sanding for home owners with wooden flooring. This property had a large amount of wood flooring with a heavy varnish & significant marking throughout.  

We discussed with the client the pros & cons of refinishing compared to sanding in this instance. As the floors needed to be ready in a short amount of time within a pre-determined budget, refinishing was chosen.

The process involves:

  • Dry extraction/vacuuming
  • Application of linseed oil based bio-cleaning solution
  • Agitation using oscillating pad machine
  • Rinse extraction
  • Accelerated drying using air-movers
  • Application of two coats of industry standard wood refinisher (which refreshes the varnish, as well as in-filling micro-abrasions on the varnish)

Professional sisal carpet cleaning

Sisal flooring is beautiful & resilient to heavy use, but very difficult to clean once dirty or stained. Because it is a dry, cellulosic fibre any excess of water will cause it to deteriorate. For this reason, we use a dry compound to clean sisal. It’s a fairly laborious, time-consuming process but, as you can see, these carpets responded very well-

Last month, the whole Green Man team worked together to deep-clean & decontaminate a large country home in the Cotswolds within just three days. This brought together our teams from Bath, Bristol, Cheltenham, Frome & Gloucester in close co-ordination amidst strict social distancing and involved the following professional cleaning services:

  • Wool carpet cleaning
  • Sisal carpet cleaning
  • Wood flooring cleaning & refinishing
  • Limestone floor cleaning
  • Linen upholstery cleaning
  • Full decontamination of the large 6 bedroom property

We were delighted to also be contracting with local providers Clean as a Jem for:

  • Start of tenancy deep-cleaning
  • Window Cleaning

The Brief

Our client contacted us on behalf of the buyer to initially conduct a full survey of the property. The brief was demanding, but simple,

“Deep-clean, restore & decontaminate every aspect of the property in order to bring it as close to ‘as new’ as possible.” 

The work was also specified to be carried out within three days, alongside multiple other contractors engaged in decorating, installing electrical systems & landscaping.

Eco friendly hard floor cleaning in the Cotswolds 1

Professional wool carpet cleaning

The property had been purchased part-furnished and was fitted with a large amount of white, pure wool carpeting. In order to bring the carpets to their best potential condition, we specified a deep-clean with our most powerful, eco-solution that not only sanitises the wool, but conditions it. 

Our process for cleaning carpets includes:

  • Pre-testing
  • Industrial vacuuming with Sebo BS36/46
  • Spot/stain treatments
  • Application of eco-sanitising solution
  • Agitation (mechanical or manual with a pile brush)
  • Traditional rinse extraction
  • Pile grooming
  • Accelerated drying using air-movers

Professional limestone floor cleaning

The entrance hall, downstairs corridors, kitchen & multiple en suite bathrooms had limestone flooring. The flooring was quite heavily soiled and would need a full deep-clean using our hard-floor cleaning machinery & solutions. The survey indicated that although the limestone would benefit from a top-up coat of impregnating seal, the logistics of multiple trades moving throughout the property meant that there would not be any opportunity to do this.

Limestone flooring is porous & textured, meaning plenty of imperfections in which soil can accumulate. Our method is to use a combination of rotary brush & oscillating pad, followed by rinse extraction to remove the soil and bring the limestone back to its original brightness.

Professional linen upholstery cleaning

One of the first things noted in the initial survey was a huge amount of linen furniture. As well as the largest corner sofa I’d ever seen (in the cinema room), there were also 2x three piece suites, an array of dining chairs & multiple chaise longues in the bedrooms & bathrooms.

Linen is a natural fibre from the flax plant. For this reason, it needs to be treated with care as it can suffer cellulosic browning if overwet, or rinsed with a solution at the incorrect ph. Obviously, when faced with such a large quantity of fabric, it is critical to maintain attention to detail…

The Verdict

The team knew from the outset that our client had specified the work to be of the highest standard. At the end of Day 3, I conducted a full walk-through with our client & housekeeping. It was with a real sense of satisfaction & relief that we were told that our work had fulfilled the new owner’s specifications.

If you have an enquiry regarding deep-cleaning, start of tenancy, end of tenancy or decontamination services in the Cotswolds area, feel free to get in touch to arrange a no obligation survey.

Thank you for reading.

End of tenancy carpet cleaning – double clean!

End of tenancy carpet cleaning Bristol

This week, we attended a deep end of tenancy/start of tenancy clean at a beautiful apartment in Bristol. It should have been a very straightforward job:

  • Empty bedroom
  • Large space to work in

However, the condition of the carpet was very poor.

The texture of the carpet had meant that a large amount of dry soiling was bound into the carpet fibres.

The first step was intensive vacuuming using our industrial Sebo BS36. We vacuumed slowly both horizontally & vertically. By the times this stage was complete, there was already a noticeable difference.

After a high performance eco-friendly pre-spray had been applied & agitated evenly throughout the carpet using a rotary machine, it was time for the final rinse extraction.

This is the stage that is sometimes called “steam cleaning”. Ordinarily, this is a linear process beginning from one end of the room and ending at the other side. This time, owing to the state of the carpet, we found we needed to conduct this stage both horizontally & vertically (like the vacuuming earlier).

The machine we were using can produce 800 psi, so it wasn’t a lack of power. It was simply that the carpet had significant amounts of compacted soiling that needed specific treatment.

As professional carpet cleaners, we are committed to ensureing every job is our best work. Sometimes, this means taking significantly longer to ensure the work is to a standard we can be proud of.

Professional eco-friendly cleaning in Cheltenham

Eco-friendly Professional Cleaning in Cheltenham

During this challenging time, Green Man have been self-isolating like the rest of the country. It has given the team some time away from the tools to reflect on how we operate & how we might improve things.

A new beginning

 We are delighted to announce that we have begun a new partnership with Dew Cleaning in Cheltenham.

Adrian & Ellie are a formidable cleaning duo & an outstanding addition to our growing team. Combined, they have a wealth of professional cleaning experience & are undertaking our training programme in order to be able to provide our cutting edge system across the Cotswolds area.

 “Green Man provide modern, eco-friendly carpet cleaning whilst maintaining traditional service values.”

 

 Our proven method deep-cleans soft furnishings, sanitises & leaves them cleaner for longer because modern eco-friendly means powerful & lasting.

Here is the schedule of services we offer Cheltenham  

  • Eco-friendly cleaning in Cheltenham
  • Eco-friendly carpet cleaning in Cheltenham
  • Eco-friendly hard floor cleaning in Cheltenham
  • Eco-friendly upholstery cleaning in Cheltenham
  • Eco-friendly rug cleaning in Cheltenham
  • Eco-friendly decontamination fogging/fumigation treatment in Cheltenham

 Thank you for reading.

Airbnb Emergency

We received a call last Sunday evening that a large Airbnb rental property in Bath had, essentially, been trashed. The owner was genuinely distressed as this was a property he & his partner had invested significant time & money making into a boutique stay location. The place had been used as the venue for a large party in which fixtures had been smashed, furniture urinated on, ceilings & walls smeared with food etc. etc.

The whole house was already booked from 3pm the next day (Monday) – could we help?

We were already fully booked for most of the week but, after consultation with the team, we found we could bring in some trusted back-up support to cover some communal area cleans (thank you, Ryan!).

The scenario:

  • Deep-clean 7 bedroom carpets
  • Remove vomit from beds & sanitise
  • Treat & remove urine from corner sofa & deep-clean
  • Stain treat & deep-clean modern rug

The team decided to deal with the contamination first. After donning ppe, we first dealt with the vomit on the upholstered sides of some of the beds. We removed the contaminant, disinfected the area, then rinse extracted the entire panel to avoid issues with watermarking.

Airbnb in Bath upholstery cleaning

Next, we attended to the sofa. This was a good piece of upholstery that was in danger of permanent damage. After vacuuming the fabric, we applied a solution to the urine stain to neutralise it.

This was followed by a general pre-spray, gentle agitation with a soft brush & then traditional rinse extraction. We added an eco-friendly, sanitising odour neutraliser to the rinse to allow full penetration and anticipate potential issues with any recurrent smell.

Green Man can deep-clean, deodorise & sanitise all soft furnishings using entirely eco-friendly products.

After the areas of contamination had been neutralised, we focussed our attention of deep-cleaning all bedrooms. The way we clean will sanitise as part of the process.

The stairs had suffered a lot of heavy traffic in muddy shoes.

As with everything else, it was

Vacuumed

Stain treated

Pre-sprayed

Agitated

Rinse extracted

And, after all that, it looked a lot better!

Airbnb in Bath stair carpet cleaning

Last of all was the large modern rug. This was badly stained with something that looked like tar or similar. It required some pain-staking close treatment using a variety of stain removal solutions & techniques.

Thankfully, after the preparation work had been done, the whole rug responded very well to the final extraction & looked like new once we had finished-

Airbnb in Bath rug clean 2

After the work had been completed, I had a phonecall from the owner who was delighted with the outcome. Not only had we completed the work within the 4 hour window we’d been given, but (with the exception of the rug) all elements were dry enough for the property to be available immediately.

If you manage an Airbnb or portfolio of rental properties, get in touch to find out how we may be able to support your work in making your properties clean & greener.