Choosing a Local Carpet Cleaner

When it comes to spending money, I like to get a good deal. So, when I decided to get my carpets cleaned professionally, I tried to figure out which methods work best. I checked out three particular methods – hot carbonated extraction, dry cleaning, and steam cleaning – and compared them side by side. Here’s what I found:

Steam cleaning – When most people think of carpet cleaning, this is the method they imagine. Steam cleaning entails spraying in a mixture of hot water and detergent. The heat, detergent, and rotating brushes work together to loosen any dirt and stains. Then dirt and stains and moisture are pulled up and out of the carpet by a portable or truck-mounted extraction tool.

There are two potential drawbacks to steam cleaning: chemical detergents and too much moisture left behind. I’ve never had a problem with detergent on my carpet, but the chemicals used can be an irritant to some; to improve your odds of a good steam cleaning experience, try to choose companies that use child-safe solutions. Also ask about the extraction equipment; truck-mounted is the most powerful, and will leave the least moisture in the carpet.

Hot carbonation – Instead of hot water and detergents, a carbonated solution can be used to loosen dirt and stains. Think club soda – only this version is applied hot. Relative to steam cleaning, this method requires less liquid in order to work; the less liquid used, the less there is to leave behind.

Chem-Dry is the cleaning service that uses hot carbonation. The child-safe nature of the solution is a plus, as well as the relatively short drying times. While I’ve seen impressive results from the Chem-Dry nearest my home just south of Omaha – I still have trouble believing that carbonation is more effective than the detergent I grew up with. But after another good cleaning or two, I just might be converted.

Dry cleaning – Not all carpet cleaning needs moisture to work. Dry cleaning uses a cleaning compound that is sprayed into the carpet, and then vacuumed away after latching onto dirt and stains. I’ll admit: I was skeptical –to the point where I’ve never asked for this type of carpet cleaning. I just have trouble imagining that vacuuming up a spray-on compound will clean deep down into the fibers. If you’ve tried this method, let me know what you think about it!

So now, I’m sticking with Chem-Dry to clean my carpets. But if they ever let me down, I just might try a dry cleaning – just so I can see if it works.