Tuesday, Dec. 8th 2015

Steam Cleaning v. Dry Carpet Cleaning

Which is the best choice for me?

Your mother in law is coming to visit, and you’ve cleaned the house from top to bottom, but those pesky carpet stains are still there. Most of the time you turn a blind eye (after all, spot treated and vacuumed, so it’s not like it isn’t clean enough, right?), but when you think about having house guests, you start to feel a little more critical. All those high traffic areas look a little worn, plus there are spots where, well, who knows what even happened there? There may be nail polish, red wine, or even various bodily fluids that, at some point, were spilled on your carpets, causing unsightly stains and making you wonder what is lurking underneath your carpet, too.

Having your carpets cleaned regularly extends both the life and improves the appearance of your carpets. But how do you make sure you get them “mother-in-law clean?” Do you buy some products and do it yourself? Of course, there’s a risk that you’ll do more harm than good, especially in terms of damage to the carpet and furniture that may be nearby. If you hire a professional, whom do you hire? There are tons of carpet cleaning companies; you can barely turn the TV on without hearing an ad about “steam cleaning” your floors and 4 room “specials.” But what does that mean? Is steam cleaning the best option? Which is the best choice for me?

Steam Cleaning: The Process

Steam cleaning is a pretty popular carpet cleaning method, and people are always shocked when I tell them that it isn’t actually steam that cleans their carpets! The machines that you can use yourself or that carpet cleaning companies bring to your home do use steam, but it’s not the steam that cleans your carpets.

Steam cleaning machines use cleaning detergent to clean your carpets. The detergent is hot water activated, and then a wet vacuum sucks up the water after the detergent has done its job.

After you’ve steam cleaned your carpets, you have to stay off of them for 12-24 hours! If you’ve cleaned a high traffic area, like a living room or hallway, it’s difficult to stay off the floors for that long—after all, you still live there!

Steam cleaning can also leave an oily or sticky feeling residue on your carpets which attracts more dirt and grime, making them tricky to keep clean after steam cleaning. Is there a better way?

Dry Carpet Cleaning: The Process

Just like you can dry clean your clothes, you can dry clean your carpets! Instead of using detergent that is activated by hot water, when your carpets are dry cleaned, dry cleaning chemicals are placed on your carpets and combined with a small amount of moisture to deeply clean your carpets.

Dry cleaning has several major advantages over steam cleaning. Specifically, dry cleaning uses less moisture, which means two things: (1) that you can walk on your carpets again almost instantly, rather than waiting 12-24 hours for your carpets to dry, and (2) there’s much less risk of mold and mildew growing under your carpets from water that wasn’t entirely wet vacuumed back up again. (Gross!) Not only that, but some of the harder to treat stains will reappear just a few days after steam cleaning, or require several treatments to be removed—which is not the case with dry cleaning.

What kind of chemicals are used in the dry cleaning process?

The major criticism of dry cleaning is that harsh chemicals have to be used. In some cases, they can have strong odors, or be unsafe for use around pets and children.

That’s why we use Host carpet cleaning products. They are soft, natural, and environmentally responsible—completely safe for your children and pets to be around, and dry in minutes. In fact, Host Dry is Woolsafe Approved, A USDA Certified Biobased Product, and Green Seal Certified.

In fact, Host is the ONLY brand of dry carpet cleaners that are BioPreferred!

What does it mean that the products you use are Woolsafe Approved, USDA Certified Biobased, and Green Seal Certified?

To make a long story short, all these certifications mean that the products we use will not only help you get and keep your carpets clean, they’ll also keep your family safe. Host uses biological products and renewable agricultural materials that help us improve the environment and keep people safe.

Unlike with steam cleaning, dry cleaning with Host products is a greener, cleaner way to get (and keep) your carpets clean. If your mother in law is coming to visit, or you just want to make sure that you remove some of those pesky stains in your current carpeting, give us a call. We’re happy to come out to your house or chat with you over the phone for a free estimate. For more information, to talk to one of our trained representatives, or to schedule an appointment for a free estimate, give us a call at (816) 454-1010.

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