How to clean Commercial Carpets (Video)

rob allen

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How to clean CGD (commercial glue down) commercial carpet is and is not as easy as many think. Knowing the right steps in any process is critical. Chemistry also plays a large role. Todays commercial CGD (Commercial Glue Down) carpets can be quite a challenge for carpet cleaners. Why?

Because standard carpet cleaning methods and chemistry will not clean CGD properly. Your whole way of looking at carpet cleaning must focus on critical steps or you will be unsuccessful. Then someone else will take the ball from you. Hopefully this video will be a game changer for you and your company leading to great profits in your carpet cleaning business.

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Here are the steps to cleaning CGD

  1. Inspection
  2. Identification
  3. Pre-vacuum with CRB
  4. Pre-vacuum with vacuum
  5. Pre-spot
  6. Pre-spray
  7. Pre-agitate
  8. Clean strokes
  9. Dry strokes
  10. Air movers


Like any cleaning,the method is not as important as the technicians attention to details. Whether it is HWE,Encapsulation or VLM with the proper knowledge of construction,chemistry, and application of methodology anyone can do a great job with CGD. Removing dry particulate soil,getting CGD dry as quick as possible is so critical to reduce common problems associated with CGD cleaning,namely,wicking. Wicking is the biggest nemesis of commercial cleaners. How many HWE cleaners have ever cleaned a commercial carpet only to go back the following days to find it looks just as bad if not worse than before?

This is a carpet cleaners nightmare. So many HWE (how water extraction) cleaners through their hands up in frustration. This is where encapsulation stepped in and filled the gap. Now you could clean quickly even without extraction and get better results. Why? Several reasons. The chemistry breaks down soil fast,drys quickly and encapsulates wicking soil that was not removed initially. It is a win/win. However HWE guys complained that soil is not being removed,rather it is just being taken on a joy ride. We won't go into that endless debate. Rather we will say there are HWE rotaries and new units like the CX 15 that have closed that gap.

When it come to chemistry there is so many new and great products on the market to help you regardless of your method. Now you can cross methods with chemistry. How so? Well HWE cleaners can use encap rinses. Encap machines can use HWE chemistry in their cleaning process. This cross over technology has led to many cleaners picking up and keeping commercial accounts.

After all,clients are not as interested in method as we cleaners are. They only care about appearance. That is why I have said on many occasions "we are in the appearance business,not the cleaning business". I don't care how clean you get a carpet if it doesn't look clean the client is not happy and will not use or refer you. But if the carpet is not as clean but looks fantastic,the client will choose you and refers you over another. Now with improved equipment and chemistry you can deliver both!


Lets look at a list of equipment that can used to clean CGD carpet;


  1. Truckmounts
  2. Portables
  3. Rotaries
  4. OP's
  5. 175's
  6. Walk behinds
  7. Planetary
  8. CRB Counter rotating brush

HWE Truckmounts are the pinnacle of the cleaning industry. They can serve so many functions. Problem is on CGD they need a little help,esp with olefins and polyesters. This is where rotaries,walk behinds and chemistry come in to achieve the desired results. The newer synthetics have an affinity for oily soils and are not removed easily. You need strong chemistry,rotary,pressure and good extraction. By following the proper cleaning procedures you will be successful using your truck mount.

HWE portables can be used in the same way as the truckmounts. The disadvantage is they do not produce the same power to clean. So you have to make it up by taking more time. It is just an efficiency issue if one has a decent power portable and proper chemistry. Taking your time will produce great results!

Rotaries like Rotovac,RX-20, and the Mytee T-Rex are excellent tools to help your CGD cleaning process. A wand cannot match the cleaning ability,speed or extraction ability of a rotary. On top of it reduced fatigue enables one to clean larger areas. This is especially important for owner operators. But multi truck companies do well reducing fatigue for their technicians to keep them happy and around for years.

OP,Oscillating Pad,machines have a great place in our industry too. They like the CRB are great for pre-scubbing before HWE. They loosen and spread pre spray in a very unique and effective way. It is great for post padding to remove lines after HWE. Many consider it much more effective than a standard rotary for encapsulation because of oscillating dispersion. Also good for banks or any closed door security jobs where the building must stay locked up. Great for high rises. It also stops wickbacks in it's tracks. Offers clients a low moisture method. Good back up for truckmounts. Overall a very good CGD cleaning option.

175 rotary is a very good pre agitation tool. This is the old rugged beast that can be picked up very inexpensively. Pick up a few pads and bonnets and you have the lowest price entry machine for doing encapsulation or in conjunction with a suitable HWE machine. You can encap with it. This machine is not the most effective however it will still do a decent job. Efficiency is poor with a 175. Overall still a good tool to have in your cleaning arsenal.

Walk behinds are pricey,expensive to repair and nowhere as effective in cleaning. They do make some of it up in efficiency but most cleaners agree this is the poorest method for cleaning commercial carpets. However it is the easiest as some of them are even ridable. Just don't expect to ride it to success for your commercial clients.

Planetary machines are hard to beat for efficiency. They can be used on just about any surface including CGD. It really shines for encapsulation because of it's unique planetary moving heads. Cimex has a 3 head version that eliminates the torque you feel with a standard rotary. This makes it very easy to push,very easy to use and is effective at cleaning cgd commercial carpets. It cleans all sides of the fiber when encapping but there is no extraction. It is also extremely heavy and bulky. It is durable and pretty simple to work on and has a built in shower feed. Many rug shops use it for rugs and that is how we mostly use it. But it's greatest selling point is definitely it's ability to clean up to 2000 feet an hour.


CRB's,Counter Rotating Brush machines are also very versatile. They can be used for encapsulation,pre scrubbing,rug cleaning,pre vacuuming and pile lifting. They are relatively easy to use,are durable and not too heavy. They come in different sizes. This gives you the flexibility to use it effectively in a residential and commercial setting. You can also use it for lock in,hi rises and has many brush options. The counter rotating brush is very difficult to beat for digging deep into a carpet to get the particulate matter out and for dispersing pre spray before HWE. Overall it's another great weapon to have in your cleaning business.

Well I hope with the video,the explanation of methods and chemistry that anyone can clean CGD carpet. It is very profitable and often over looked by cleaners. It is an excellent staple income that takes you through slow periods. The key is doing great work once you have gotten the job. Establishing a commercial route is not that hard. There are many suggestions on TMF of how to contact the right person,demonstrate demo and securing commercial carpet cleaning. Many cleaners like myself love the benefits and financial rewards that come with CGD cleaning. Shouldn't you?


Rob Allen
Truckmountforums

























*This is my voice over info in the video incase you had a difficult time hearing it.



Alright notice I am using the counter rotating brush. This not only digs up deep soil but it also raises the nap and enables a more through cleaning. The majority of soil,up to 70%-80% is dry particulate matter,so it is important to loosen and get as much out as possible before cleaning. Remmeber its easier to remove dry soil than remove mud! Make sure you have a good vacuum cleaner on hand to follow up after the crb. Notice I like to pre spot before I pre spray. This allows the product to penetrate and dwell for the maximum amount of time. This eliminates the need for post spotting saving you a lot of time!

Now I can begin to pre spray. Normally I would use a 5 gallon electric sprayer with wheels to speed up the process. I like to apply a nice even coat. Then I start cleaning with the crb. I like to over lap my strokes. Some choose to leave the dust collectors off. I prefer to leave them on. After all the cleaning steps are complete I set my air movers.

Moving on to the planetary machine notice I am adding my Encapsulant after I filled the tank with water. This avoids unnecessary foaming and over filling. Again I start with the crb to break loose dry soil and follow up w=vaccuming it. Prevacuuming is so important yet so often over looked and under utilized. I cannot stress enough how important this step is. Then again,I pre spot before cleaning. You can use a brush or do the Nike shuffle. I prefer a brush but I see so many cleaners do this I want to point out if you choose the nike shuffle make sure you don’t track soil in off your feet if you walk outside. Shoe covers are recommended when doing a full cleaning. One note Id like to make is that just like I recommend for HWE,I like to do 2 dry strokes to every wet stroke. The planetary machine I have has many many years of use but still runs great. Ideally you should follow up with vacuuming when carpets are dry. Apply your air mover and lets move onto HWE.

First off I want to say that the video did not capture how dirty this carpet really was. Also the prior steps,pre agitating with the CRB and vacuuming, allowed the chemical to improve the look almost immediately. For spotting I prefer paint ink and grease remover for hwe. I like to pre spray evenly and thoroughly. Pre agitate with the crb and move on to cleaning or rinsing. Ok. A few things about the CX15. I was amazed at how easy it is to use and how efficient it is. It is recommended to use at 400-8— psi but I used 500. It cleaned great and you can imagine how well it cleans at 800 psi. Virtually no spotting or soil was left behind. I loved how it kept the heat in. This thing really surprised me and is a must for all my hwe extraction applications now. Lastly for a rinse I recommend using TMF Power rinse. It has some encapsulate and adds an extra punch of power to the cleaning process. Notice the clear sight tube. I love this feature as you can see when the carpet is thoroughly rinsed and cleaned. I now set my air movers. As a side note stay tuned to the end of this video for some cool before and afters.
 

rob allen

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Thanks Rob, that was a very action packed and educational 12 minutes :)

How does the CX-15 compare to wands as far as how wet it leaves the carpets?
Definitely a lot dryer. How much I guess I would need a moisture meter. But it is so much easier on the body Mike. ;)
 

rob allen

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Just want to state for the record the feedback on the CX15 has been split 50/50. Seems cleaners love it or don't. Just saying.
 

rstrick

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I got some numbers on the zipper v\s the scrub wand. But. I can tell ya from experience, and experience being hours and weeks behind these new walk behind wands. It is stressful on the back.

This CX-15. I really doubt it to be as awesome as advertised. But, given the chance, I would gladly put it to the test. As I did the zipper.

My post have no negative publicity intended.
 

CantuVC

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I have seen crazy videos of the CX-15 leaving rings at the start and end of strokes. I understand that as one gets used to the tool you can minimize this, however seems like a big learning curve. Also, as with a tile spinner, the are several inches of border that is left undone and must be detailed. I would wonder how those cleanup strokes would look in comparison to the cleaning stokes in relation to color and cleanliness. Great idea in thought, probably needs a second and third generation as with all tools.
 

Pioneer Floorcare LLC

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I got some numbers on the zipper v\s the scrub wand. But. I can tell ya from experience, and experience being hours and weeks behind these new walk behind wands. It is stressful on the back.

This CX-15. I really doubt it to be as awesome as advertised. But, given the chance, I would gladly put it to the test. As I did the zipper.

My post have no negative publicity intended.
Zipper hard on the back? Are you running it like a wand, or putting the handle against your hips and walking it back and forth?
 

rob allen

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I liked what it did on CGD, but haven't quite bonded with it on residential.
I agree Neil though I have received feedback from a few cleaners who won't use anything but it on residential.
 

rob allen

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Zipper hard on the back? Are you running it like a wand, or putting the handle against your hips and walking it back and forth?
It'd be nice if the handle was spring loaded to remove tension off the end user.
 

rob allen

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rob allen

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I have demoed the zipper and I really like it. I have not demoed the CX 15. The videos I've seen on it seemed to be easy operation however looks to be mighty slow as it is a drag tool only.
About same speed as a rotary. Def slower than a wand Rob.
 
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NTC

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I agree Neil though I have received feedback from a few cleaners who won't use anything but it on residential.
Tried again yesterday and couldn't get around the maneuvering issues. Busted out the TRex and was glad I did. For me, the CX needs wide open spaces; otherwise, weight advantage is lost due to body contortions. My two cents. ..
 
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