There certainly are a lot of carpet cleaning myths floating around out there. This page is dedicated to correcting some of the false information that has been floating around for years. The PROFESSIONAL carpet cleaners throughout the U.S.A. and Canada hope that our efforts here will lay these myths to rest forever!
Wait as long as you can to have your carpet cleaned the first time, because once you have it cleaned it never looks the same again.
First of all, if you wait too long to have your carpet cleaned, there has already been permanent damage done to the fibers. The main reason for this belief can be attributed to carpet cleaners who leave the carpet either too wet, full of residue, or both. Too wet leaves suspend soils in the excessive moisture. When it dries, this soil will wick up to the top surface of the carpet fiber. Remaining residues leave fibers unclean which will attract new soils quickly, whether the carpet has been wet or dry cleaned.
Proper analysis of carpet prior to cleaning is needed to determine the correct method of cleaning. This needs to be done by a professional whose main concern is doing the job properly, no matter how much time it takes.
If your carpet is cleaned properly, there will be maximum removal of residues, quick drying, and a fresh clean carpet under your feet for months to come.
The store where we purchased our carpet said it had to be dry cleaned only.
We hear this one a lot. This could not be further from the truth.
This consensus of opinion among carpet retailers (salespeople) is derived from carpet cleaners who consistently leave the carpet too wet. This causes a great amount of soiling to be left behind, which wicks back to the surface after drying finally occurs. This opinion has no factual or proven claims to back it up, it is just that their opinion, and it is WRONG!
Shaw Industries, the largest manufacturer of carpet in this country, states that hot water extraction is their recommended method of carpet cleaning. They also recommend PROFESSIONAL carpet cleaning using this method. This would include someone who has proof of complete training, an established track record of professional ethics and necessary training, and a price that is NOT too good to be true!
If your retailer says dry cleaning only, challenge them and ask for written proof of such claims on their part. More than likely you will leave them going into their double-talk speech routine to give you an (incorrect) answer.
If I have my carpet steam (wet or hot water extraction) cleaned, it can shrink, mold or mildew, split the seams, or otherwise ruin my carpet.
Again, this can only happen if the cleaner leaves the carpet extremely wet. In the case of a professional, removing all excess moisture is one of the most important steps in the hot-water extraction (steam) cleaning process.
Modern hot water extraction equipment is designed to do just that remove all excess moisture and leave only what the carpet fiber itself will absorb.
A professional carpet cleaning company will properly use this cleaning process which only penetrates to the base of the carpet fiber, and does not penetrate the carpet backing (either primary or secondary), pad, or your floor underneath.
Even some of the dry cleaning companies actually use water, so it is not dry at all.
I have to have my upholstery dry cleaned because it is white (or off-white) in color. The other carpet cleaners have told me this. They call it Haitian cotton, or something like that.
A vast majority of cleaners think that anything white has to be dry cleaned. Of course this isn't true, and to top it off they will charge you more to dry clean when in fact it is quicker and costs less to do.
Dry cleaning is safe as far as cleaning goes, but it doesn't clean very well. Someone who isn't trained properly would rather just dry clean, charge you more, because of their limited knowledge and fear of liability.
A professional will test the fabric and know what he or she is doing, following through with the proper method of cleaning to remove maximum soiling and residues without causing any harm to the upholstery fabric.
Dry Cleaning is better than Steam (wet) Cleaning because it is dry.
This myth comes from the overbundance of *bad* steam cleaners. By using the term *BAD*, I am referring to steam (wet) cleaners who leave the carpet way too wet (and there are plenty that do this). Someone came along and figured the opposite of very wet would be better (dry). Best is removing the *excess* moisture and only leaving the *absorbed* moisture the fiber picks up.
To improve upon this further, steam clean with a solution that will remove existing residues and leave your carpet or upholstery extremely clean and fresh. Now that's the BEST way to clean period.
Dry cleaning, on the other hand, has a BIG tendancy to leave a lot of residue in the carpet. There is either no extraction, or very little extraction involved with dry cleaning. Guess where the soiling and cleaning residues remain? IN THE CARPET!!!