Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Carpet Cleaning & Maintenance for Retail Environments

Clean Carpet is Good Business

Clean Carpet is Good Business

An article in PRSM's Professional Retail Store Maintenance Magazine lays the groundwork for selecting and maintaining carpet for best performance in retail stores, from small businesses to big box warehouses. Without doubt, "Clean Carpet is Good Business" as the article's title states.

The article, written by Carpet and Rug Institute President Werner Braun begins by describing the benefits to specifiers of using CRI’s Texture Appearance Retention, or TARR Rating before choosing the carpet for any retail installation. It goes to describe how to design and implement an effective maintenance plan. Here are a few excerpts:

“To help make the process of specifying carpet easier for designers and facility managers, the Carpet and Rug Institute, the association that represents carpet manufacturers, developed a texture appearance retention rating, or TARR system, that outlines a simple 6-step process for matching products to their intended end uses. To find each product’s TARR rating, a carpet is exposed to simulated wear testing and then assigned a number rating to represent its ability to handle heavy foot traffic. That number can then be matched against a reference list of various environments and their expected use. A retail facility, for example, needs carpet with a 3.5 or greater TARR rating on the sales floor, but only a 3.0 or greater carpet for the administrative offices. The Carpet and Rug Institute has posted an easy to use guide for using the TARR system on its website, http://www.carpet-rug.org/.”

“A correctly designed and implemented maintenance program performed by qualified personnel who are properly equipped and trained is absolutely essential to ensure the best long-term performance for carpet. It’s important to clarify terms: there are important differences between keeping carpet clean and maintaining it. Cleaning involves the removal of apparent soil, but soiling is a cumulative process which, if allowed to go too far, cannot easily be reversed, and can easily cause permanent damage to the carpet. Maintenance, in contrast to cleaning, is a scheduled and ongoing process of soil removal designed to maintain carpet’s daily appearance at a consistent level of cleanliness.”

The article talks about the four steps of good carpet maintenance:

Step One: Make a Map

“A good carpet maintenance plan requires a system-wide approach, meaning it should consider space and usage issues like building layout, traffic flow, and daily and special activities as well as cleaning and maintenance techniques. Areas like entryways, main corridors, elevators and break rooms experience the heaviest foot traffic, while private offices and cubicles will normally be light traffic areas. Of course, traffic patterns will be extremely heavy in the very public spaces found in most retail locations. Once you identify the different traffic areas, it’s a good idea to map them out in a color-coded chart to help organize the cleaning schedule. As a general rule, you can expect to focus 80% of your efforts maintaining the roughly 20% of your carpeted area that sees the heaviest use.”

Step Two: Preventative Maintenance

“A system of walk off mats, either removable or built into a building’s entrance, are very effective at removing dry soil, water, and other debris before they hit the interior space. Adequate length is important – mat systems designed to be six to 15 feet long will normally trap a full 80 percent or more of all soil and moisture – think of the cost savings of this simple preventative step. A mat system should include rugged outside mats to scrape off mud and dirt first, then inside mats with their relatively smoother texture to absorb water and other liquids and trap small particles of dirt. Vacuum mats often to keep them from getting too saturated with dirt to work effectively.”

Step Three: Daily Maintenance

“The “V for Victory” in any maintenance plan stands for “vacuum.” Vacuuming removes 80-85% of all the loose soil on a carpet’s surface and is the most important step in any cleaning and maintenance plan. To get the most out of this vital cleaning element, it is important to use the most efficient vacuums available. Vacuums that have passed CRI’s Seal of Approval testing earn Gold, Silver, or Bronze-level ratings depending on their rates of soil removal and containment. Luckily, price is not always a predictor of performance - Seal of Approval testing reveals that moderately priced models often perform as well as their more expensive counterparts.”

Step Four: Restorative Cleaning

“Hot water extraction, sometimes called “steam cleaning”, mixes hot water with cleaning pre-spray to help suspend dirt particles in solution, where they can be extracted. CRI Seal of Approval, which lists extractors and deep-cleaning systems according to the amount of soil they remove, recently added a new Platinum performance level to accommodate those machines and systems that remove 90% or more of soil from carpet.

Ensuring that carpet dries quickly after extracting is important so that business continues safely and without interruption, and any possibility of mold or mildew growth is eliminated. The Carpet and Rug Institute suggests running HVAC systems set at 68 -70 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 24 hours after hot water extraction. Air Movers – special fans designed for drying carpet also boost drying times.

There’s a lot more to this article than what is excerpted here. Click on this link to read the entire version of "Clean Carpet is Good Business".

~Bethany

40 comments:

Cleaning Bromley said...

It is really useful information, thanks.

Bethany said...

My pleasure! Thanks fdor reading. Anything you would add?
Bethany

Cleaning Bromley said...

I think that you gave a full info how to maintenance the carpets and I agree with you that vacuum cleaning have to be done daily, because when the dust is inducted in the carpet fibres it is harder to clean it after that...also steam carpet cleaning is a very important part of maintening it. :)

Bethany said...

I appreciate your feedback! I looked through your website, and you do a lot of cleaning services. It's good to hear from folks who are in the field every day - let's us know we are on the right track -
Thanks again,
Bethany

Royal Blue Cleaning said...

Just came across your webpage. I totally agree with you that daily and weekly preventative maintenance are keys to keeping one's carpets and home clean. We always do a deep vacuum before we clean any carpets.

Sean said...

I totally agree with you that daily and weekly maintenance are keys to keeping carpets and home clean. We always vacuuming before we clean any carpets.

sean
http://www.allstateserv.com/

John the Carpet Cleaner said...

You're so right. The thing about retailers is they rarely see the importance in clean, good looking carpet. But the people in the retail location always judge their cleanliness by the carpet.

Ivo Rusev said...

Surely it's a good business. Cleaning services are something that is being demanded more and more over time. And most people just do not want to do cleaning themselves (if they can afford not to).

regards
Ivo
Cleaning Services London

Bethany said...

Great comment! Thank you. Cleanliness is so important to a consumer's perception of a retail environment - it's almost as important as the interior design, if not more so. What do you think?
Bethany

Wayne NC carpet cleaning said...

Wonderful article! Very useful to me since I'm starting a new business. Home cleaning is one thing but maintaining a retail environment is another so once again thx for the info.

Bethany said...

Hi Wayne,
My pleasure. Any other articles you would like to see? I'd love your feedback on what you would find useful.
Bethany

Ed the Carpet Cleaner said...

This post has given me more insight in the carpet cleaning services. carpet cleaning is no easy task and must be done professionally.

highlands ranch carpet cleaner  said...

I really like the posted information. It proved to be very beneficial. Thanks a ton.

Carpet Cleaning London said...

Steam cleaning is one of the most important steps to maintain your carpet clean. Regular vacuuming will reduce the amount of dust gathered in the fibres, but wet cleaning kills bacteria and dust mites and leaves your carpet healthier.

Bethany said...

Hello London,
Good points - thanks for your comment. Love all the Brits on this blog.

carpet cleaning nc said...

It's amazing how so many people neglect to see carpet protector as a vital service. I've had 3 customers call me back within 3 months complaining their carpets got dirty faster. I asked them to remember me offering scotch guard and they said NO and i warned them of the result. They purchased the protector this time around.

Bethany said...

Hey NC - Good point. Thanks for posting. My question is: How does a customer know when to replace the stain protector? Some manufacturers say their protection lasts through multiple cleanings.
Bethany

David Hebert said...

Excellent information, as a CRI certified provider it is great to see this kind of information on your site.

Great Job

David

Bethany Richmond said...

Hi David,
I'm glad you found the article useful. Anything else you would like to see on the blog? Let me know...

raj said...

You can also add the fact that there are increasing more NEW carpet brands that require professional carpet cleaning as part of the warranty validation...

that is to say that in order for the homeowner to keep the warranty on their new carpet, they have to maintain it using professional carpet cleaning...

this is good news for us in the business and I would remind and recommend this detail to customers out there...

office cleaning services said...

To find each product’s TARR rating, a carpet is exposed to simulated wear testing.

West Palm Beach Carpet Cleaning said...

I do agree with you the carpet cleaning and maintenance once a week prevents your carpet from getting stain or damages. I really learned a lot form this post, thanks for some great tips here on to clean the rug or carpets.

Bethany said...

Thanks for your comment. In ratail environments, cleanliness is vitally important to me, and I think to most shoppers. Really makes an impression, for either good or bad.

Bethany said...

Thanks for the comment about TARR ratings - yes, CRI developed a test for how much foot traffic a carpet will withstand and still perform at its best. TARR ratings are based on simulated wear testing.

Carpet Cleaning San Diego said...

This is the exact info that i'm trying to show my customers as well.

It's very important for people to maintain their carpets, especially in business environments.

Bethany said...

Hello CCSD, I'm glad you found the article useful. Let me know if there's anything else you'd like to see covered. Bethany

All Star Professional Cleaning said...

As a cleaning company that is a IICRC CERTIFIED FIRM which stands for, Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration I can attest that your post is exactly how carpets should be maintained.

Bethany said...

Hello All Stars! I couldn't agree with you more! Thanks for the comment.

Greg said...

I totally agree about the use of mats in heavy traffic areas. I have sourced a couple of suppliers of mats and pass on their contact details to my clients. I makes my life easier and protects the customer's investment in their carpet

Bethany said...

Hello Greg, Thanks for your comment. I hope you get a commission on those mat sales!! Are your customers surprised by the difference the mats make in their homes and offices? Bethany

Ryan Weber said...

Great Info. Really goof info on how to maintain carpets.

Kevin said...

You wrote a great article detailing why maintaining the carpet should be done. The reality is that the first time there is a budget crunch maintaining the carpet is one of the first items to get cut. Or people never plan to maintain the carpet properly in the first place and then wonder why it looks so bad. We are doing some work for a large pizza/game business and they run 500 - 2000 people through there a day with drink and pizza spills constantly. They only want to clean it every 6 months but they are unhappy with the way the carpet looks. In reality it should be cleaned at minimum once a quarter.

http://www.pearsoncarpetcare.com
http://www.prodrying.com

Ed Borg said...

Nice tips for carpet cleaning and maintenance. Regular carpet cleaning is the key to preserving your carpet.

Bethany Richmond said...

Thanks,Ed!

Palm Beach Carpet Cleaning said...

Theaters typically include large carpeted parts. That is why, the carpeting extractor have to be sturdy, remarkably productive, reliable, as well as incur nominal upkeep issues. Rug cleaning equipment must also allow you to deep cleaning carpets and rugs as well as generating these intended for make use of as quickly as possible, ideally in just time.

The Carpet And Rug Institute said...

Thanks for your comment!

William - Carpet Cleaning Eureka CA said...

You have some good reminders. I had forgotten to suggest to my clients walk off mats. This is not only good for carpets, but also for floor maintenance. Thanks for the tips.

William - Carpet Cleaning Eureka CA said...

I was impressed with your suggestions on using walk off mats. I usually only suggest these to my floor maintenance clients, however after reading this article, I will be suggesting this to may carpet cleaning clients. Thanks for the insight.

Jacqueline Grady said...

I am glad to learn about the 4 step plan and CRI Seal of Approval from your article. Even though we don't have a retail office environment, I definitely learned a few things. I now have these points in my arsenal the next time it comes to renewing the janitorial contracts and engaging a professional cleaner. Will check out the main article too.

Paul Tucker said...

Thanks for reading and for your comment, Jacqueline.

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