Remove difficult spots on level loop glue down carpet
Q. We just started cleaning a doctor's office and everything is going great except for the carpets. The entire office is carpeted with a grey, commercial grade, low nap carpet. There's no padding with a concrete slab underneath.
The problem is twofold.
1) On a daily basis, patients are spilling soda, tracking in oils & tar from the parking lot, spilling food, and the like.
2) The previous cleaning company had a closet full of Dollar Store foam carpet cleaner, so in general the carpets are saturated with soap. My question is what would be the most effective method to keep up on cleaning all the new stains? It's not feasible for us to use to or leave behind a full size portable carpet extractor for daily use. Purchasing a small one would be an option.
The other problem is, even when we extract using 3 wet/1 dry pass, resoiling is an issue, with stains reappearing the next day or a week later. Of course, with the problem area being a 100 sq. ft. waiting room, and the amount of spills, it could just be new stains and not resoiling.
A. Your challenge is common with light-colored glue down carpet. After all, there is no pad to absorb those big gulps. To determine if there is substantial chemical build-up in the carpet, pour about 1/3 cup of water in a 2" circle and agitate the carpet. If foam immediately appears, then there is excess surfactant in the carpet. If the carpet does not foam, but by firmly dabbing a white towel all the soil transfers to the towel, and the carpet looks clean in that confined spot, there is a cleaning chemical residue.
The correction is to extract the carpet 2-3 times (using plain hot water) or until there is no longer dark water or foam returning to the sight dome. I have actually encountered carpet that required 6 passes to flush and remove the foam. And, of course, you must add defoamer to the recovery tank.
Wicking of spots, 1-3 days later is an inherent problem with some carpet. The primary correction is to pre-spray with a conditioner, extract using an acidic rinse, and then dry bonnet immediately after (assuming the carpet manufacturer approves of using a bonnet system). You may then want to consider applying a stain guard protectant. Or, wait 3-4 days and bonnet the carpet with an encapsulation cleaner. The encapsulation process will extend the time between resoiling and remove all the spots that have wicked back.
Here are three suggestions for the manager. Ask them to install at least 6 feet of entry door mats. Ask the employees to confine food and drinks to a break room. Propose a regular maintenance program such as encapsulation monthly, and extraction semi-annually. After all, they are creating the problem and should chip in by paying for the solution.
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