Reduce Your Footprint By Using Organic Carpet Cleaning Services

by Nicola Temple on February 6, 2012

Many entrepreneurs have recognized the consumer demand for eco friendly cleaning services and taken the opportunity to start organic carpet cleaning services. It’s a green business idea with a growing market.

Green cleaning services focus on using biodegradable, plant-based products rather than chemical cocktails. They also make efforts to reduce the resources used in the process, such as water.

I have to admit, when we had our carpets cleaned in our rental house before we left Australia, I was shocked.

First, I couldn’t believe the dirt they lifted out of our carpets. Second, I couldn’t believe the amount of water they used in the process…particularly in a country that is in drought most of the time!

It was nasty, and there simply isn’t any other word for it. I’ve since learned that it doesn’t have to be quite so nasty.

Well, OK, you might still be appalled by what comes out of the carpet, but the way it comes out doesn’t have to be disturbing to you or the environment.

organic carpet cleaning

An organic carpet cleaning service can even take care of dog-shaped stains such as this one! CC image courtesy of Julie Vazquez.

Four ways organic carpet cleaning is better for you and the planet

  • Organic carpet cleaning uses less water. An environmentally conscious carpet cleaning service can use as little as 2 to 5 gallons of water for every 1000 square feet of carpet. This is compared with traditional steam cleaning, which can use between 50 to 80 gallons of water!
  • There are no harmful smells. Since all the cleaning products (mainly stain removers) are plant-based and biodegradable, they don’t have the harmful smells associated with some other carpet cleaning products.
  • You can get back on the carpet faster. Since less water is used in the process, there is less water that is absorbed into the carpet fibres as well as the base of your carpet, meaning the drying time is a lot less.
  • Biodegradable products are safer for the environment. Plant-based chemicals that biodegrade are always a safer choice not only for human health but also for the environment.

News 8 Austin covers some more advantages of organic cleaning, including organic carpet cleaning in this video:

So, how do these green companies do it with so much less water?

Well, not all companies are willing to give up their secret methods on the internet; however, there does seem to be a general consistency in the process:

  1. A large amount of the dirt is first removed by doing an initial sweep through with a very powerful vacuum.
  2. Plant-based, biodegradable products are sprayed onto the carpet, which bind to remaining dirt and stains.
  3. The carpet is agitated to help lift the stains and loosen dirt.
  4. The carpet is given a deep cleaning using a low-water usage method. This is where it varies between companies and there are a number of different cleaning tools out there for the job.

Essentially, these companies reduce the amount of water used by lifting out as much as they can before the deep cleaning. Also, agitating the carpet attacks the fibres from all angles rather than just the top, lifting the dirt up rather than sending it down deeper into the carpet. Lastly, they use water-saving machines for the deep cleaning process.

Obviously, there is variation between each company of course, but the general idea is that these organic carpet cleaning companies are trying to get the job done using less resources. So, when you’re investigating companies, ask them specifically what their methods are, how much water is used, what products they use and what the drying time is afterwards.

Some companies may be green seal certified, which means they have met some standards not only with respect to the products they use, but also in how they do business. Looking for certifications such as this when shopping around is always a good idea.

The baking soda solution…keeping on top of stains!

In the meantime, you can avoid having to clean your carpets frequently by maintaining them well. There are a number of natural carpet cleaning products, such as Bac-Out and Simple Green, to help get out spots and stains. These products use plant-based enzymes and oxidizers to help digest stains.

In our house, baking soda is the solution to everything.

My husband is sort of like the father in My Big Fat Greek Wedding with his obsession with Windex…except he’s obsessed with baking soda. Luckily, he hasn’t tried to use it on open wounds yet.

However, I have to admit it works a charm on carpet stains and I have a four year old, so I know!

Sprinkle it over a stain right after it happens and let it absorb it up – then just vacuum. You can also eliminate carpet odours by sprinkling baking soda liberally over the carpet. Then use a broom to brush it into the fibres. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes and then vacuum it up. It works!

We are renting another house that once again has mainly carpets and so as per the rental agreement, we will once again have to clean our carpets before we leave. This time, however, I’ll be on the lookout for organic carpet cleaning services!

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