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Carpets

Post your carpet questions here.

Do you have an old area rug you want to get rid of? I know getting rid of an old rug is hard and most trash pick up companies won't take them.  If it's not beyond it's natural life, I'm willing to pick it up, clean and sanitize it at no cost to you, and donate it to someone less fortunate and will also deliver it. This also keeps rugs out of our landfills. If you know someone that would love to have one of the rugs posted below, you can either call me at 339-613-7565 or email kevin@alistcarpetcleaning.com.

Here's what is up for adoption...

8 x 10 wool shag rug. Worn out around where a bed used to be.
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5 1/2 x 8 wool Karastan. Beautiful rug and still in amazing shape!

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5 1/2 x 7 1/2 nylon rug.

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5'3" X 7"10" Olifin. In perfect shape!

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6' 6" x 10' Olifin. In great shape!

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As winter is here, the temperatures outside are frigged. Companies with truck mounts either have to bring their hoses in through your door or window. From letting all your heat out or your cat or dog possibly sneaking out, who wants to keep a door or window open? With a portable, once we're in, we're in!

b2ap3_thumbnail_CRI_Seal_of_Approval_Program.pngOkay, isn't a truck mount more powerful? Not with today's portable machines. My machine I run has earned an award from The Carpet and Rug Institute. It has dual vacuums to improve suction and reduce drying times and I also use the best wand available which has also received that same award. Typical drying times are 4-6 hours and with larger jobs I'm able to run a fan and usually get most of what I cleaned dry before I even leave.

Don't the truck mounts produce super heat? They do, bet so does my machine and it's actually hotter than a truck mounts. Heat plays a big role in cleaning. Every 18 degrees of water temperature doubles the efficiency of the detergent up to about 180 degrees. It also helps relax the fibers and melt and greasy soiling that may be on the fiber.

With a truck mount the water is heated by the engine of the tuck, then pumped through hundreds of feet of hose. By the time it actually hits the carpet it has lost lots of it's heat. Especially in the winter when they are running there hose through the snow. With my portable, it's heated at the machine and only run through either 25 or 50 feet of hose. So I am actually hitting the fibers with a higher degree of temperature. I also have an ajustment on my machine to adjust the temperature I'm running. As not all fibers should be cleaned with maximum heat, like wool for instance.

The huge benefit of running a portable is control! I can constantly make adjustments to my temperature and detergents. I can easily clean one room (say it's a synthetic carpet) using one type of detergent, and within a flash, change my temperature and detergent to clean a wool carpet that is in the next room.

So no need to be afraid to get your carpets cleaned in the winter months, whether it be afraid of leaving the doors open, or settling for a lesser quality job by thinking portables aren't as good!

Kevin Houle
A-List Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, LLC
(339) 613-7565

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Today, we are no doubt living in a world where we want the best for us and the planet; I'm all about taking steps to better ourselves. I've been a professional in the cleaning industry since the 1970's, and Oh, how so much has changed!

Back in the 1970's you used to have your carpets shampooed. This was performed by a rotary machine filled with water and a soap. In chemistry, a soap is a salt composed of a fatty acid. I remember the main surfactant of the cleaner we used was coconut oil. Soaps have a tendency to leave a residue (i.e., soap scum as in your bath tub). Hence the old rumors: your carpets get dirtier after you have them cleaned!

We realized this and followed the proper steps with the laundry industry -as they were using detergents with the carpet cleaning industry following in their footsteps. A detergent is a surfactant, or a mixture of surfactants with "cleaning properties in dilute solutions." These substances are usually alkylbenzenesulfonates- a family of compounds that are similar to soap but are more soluble in hard water; because the polar sulfonate (of detergents) is less likely than the polar carboxyl (of soap) to bind to calcium and other ions found in hard water. I know, holy mother of GOD, right?! This, no doubt, is where the knowledge of the carpet cleaner kicks in!

Today's detergents range from the most mild ingredients to some pretty heavy duty agents. With twentyfive years of hands-on industry experience, I can't express enough, the more often you clean your carpets, the less aggressive and more mild cleaner we can use, along with less water-meaning quicker drying times! Also, less labor, meaning the cheaper the cost for you...hence the saying "don't over clean your carpet"... that saying is a complete oxymoron all together. What it mean is simply: don't over clean the carpet in one cleaning, more frequent cleanings; less aggressive extends the life of the carpet.

So all of a sudden the "going green" craze and frenzy starts. If you've purchased these products, you've probably realized/noted that the cost is twice as much and the cleaning results are not as good. Well guess what? The green carpet cleaners are back to using the soaps we used in the 1970's! SURPRISE! The resolving properties and not doing as well of a cleaning job are back! Not to the same extreme as we had back in the 1970's, but still having some of those issues. My experience has been this, in a nutshell: I'm going through 2x the amount of water trying to achieve the same results as I can with a detergent. I'm using 2X the electricity. The cost of product is more expensive. The ending result is a more saturated carpet that will take longer to dry. Your final bill, when everything is said and done no doubt will be even more costly. On that note, I'm not finding anything Green about this.

Unless you're extremely sensitive to detergents and chemicals, (meaning you have to use a special laundry detergent or can't wear makeup due to breaking out), Then you have nothing to worry about assuming you have a carpet cleaner that indefinatly understands the chemistry of the detergents and soaps he's using.

I always recommend more frequent and less aggressive cleanings. I hope this article helps you understand things from a "behind the scenes" stand point with the knowledge from a carpet cleaner's point of view. I think things are far too driven by the marketers' of green products vs. the knowledge of how green they really are and the impact they really have here. I'm all about saving the planet and using the latest technology -just as long as it makes sense!

Kevin Houle
A-List Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, LLC
(339) 613-7565

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A traditional cape style area rug is a blue and white striped cotton area rug. Being cotton they are super adsorbent and tend to soil fast and get dirty looking quickly. These rugs have a few challenges in cleaning them...but you can always count on A-List for having a few trade secrets up it's sleeve to get these looking brand new.

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...and here's that same rug after I've done my magic to. I'll also be applying my protective finish which will help in resisting soiling, spots and stains and make the need of cleaning less frequent.

Kevin Houle
A-List Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, LLC
(339) 613-7565

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As summer weather starts to begin, our weekend trips to the cape welcome us. A-List is ready to freshen up your summer home as it's been closed up all winter. A-List covers the entire cape including the Islands. You can count on A-List...give us a call today to set up an appointment.

Kevin R. Houle
A-List Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning LLC
(339) 613-7565

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