Strange lines in carpet 4 mo's later | TruckMount Forums #1 Carpet Cleaning Forums

Strange lines in carpet 4 mo's later


Well-Known Member
Jul 12, 2008
Real Name
Steve Andrews
Business Location
United States
One thing that can often help with trying to diagnose something like this, is to take multiple photos from different angles to show what it looks like from these different sides of the 'markings'.

It can also help a lot to do a simple soil test and literally 'see' if there is a heavy accumulation of some type of soil / oils there. Testing from the dry side and the wet side will tell one a lot of what may or may not be there.

Another item everyone should have in their 'inspection' kit, is a high intensity light. This will take away all of the shadows and again, tell one a lot of what may or may not be there.
Someone already mentioned it, but having a quality UVL is also a great tool to tell one what may or may not be there.

Having quality information can take a lot of 'guess work' out of something like this, which is all any of us are really doing when we say it is or may be this or that. Every professional cleaner should understand the very basics of 'testing and 'inspecting' for their own protection but also to qualify to the consumer that their choice in a cleaning professional was the correct choice.

One test that would help a lot and that is very easy to do with this is a pile lay test. Those lines are going across a very soiled pivotal area and they show much darker than even the obvious soiled traffic area. There may have been something heavy that was dragged across the carpet and distorted the pile lay. A simply pile lay test would confirm this or eliminate this possibility and it takes all of 5 seconds to do it. Here is a video that will show and explain how this is done. If it is a distorted area and the lay is reversed, there is no amount of cleaning that will correct this.

I hope this helps to at least understand a little of what our procedures should be when we are first going to a job and if we have a concern that may need to be addressed after we have cleaned for the consumer. If we perform and document things like this, it will just make us more professional in the consumers' eyes and we will really know what has or has not occurred, which is just as important.

If anyone has any questions on any of this, please feel free to ask. That is the beauty of TMF, others helping others to grow and learn.

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New Member
May 11, 2015
Real Name
Ronald Stonis
So, the carpets weren't in the best shape when we first cleaned them and I think the initial cleaning was not up to par as we were renting a machine that day while our other one was in the shop. The second time was mainly for the the traffic lanes. The pic makes them look a little worse than they are because I enhanced it so you could see the lines better.

Thought about just doing an encapsulation touch up for him but will that solve the problem of the line? Not sure. If it is a wicking issue of some sort then it may help to use some encapsulation...thoughts anyone?

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using TMF Forums mobile app
you could use an orbital pad machine with cotton towels to get those lines out. I spray my cotton towels with a bit of gumolene and go over the area until the marks are all gone. The orbital pad machine works wonders sometimes iin getting resoiling out permently. You may not have this machine, but you can find out from some others where to get one. I have the "challenger" and it always get's me out of trouble.

Stonemark Carpet Cleaners
loudon, NH

Jimmy L

Well-Known Member
Apr 16, 2012
Real Name
Jimmy Ladigwag
Business Location
United States
Get better customers
May 21, 2016
Real Name
Tony Brown
It looks too pronounced be wicking. Besides, it shouldn't take 4 months for it to occur if that was the case. Sounds like they are just trying to get a free cleaning. Depending on the amount of traffic in the home, some clients need a cleaning every 4 months, so they are probably due. Good luck with that one!