Do Not Rent A Carpet Cleaning Machine
Most people think of their carpet as just some floor covering and there are people that believe they can do it themselves.
Department stores sell machines which claim to clean deeply with hot water. Rental machines are available which advertise
easy cleaning at a fraction of the cost. Your total financial outlay might be about $60-$80. If you are satisfied with the type of
job these "do it yourself" why doing it yourself may not be the best choice. As a professional in this industry I feel obligated
to present the pros and cons so that you can may a wise choice.
The best thing about having someone else clean your carpets and upholstery is simply that
Someone Else Is Doing the Cleaning!
How much is your time worth? When renting, you will have to pick up the machine, figure out how it works, practice a little,
actually do the cleaning moving the furniture etc, clean the machine and take it back. Don't skip to quickly past that part
where "you actually so the cleaning". These DOY machines are not designed with ease of use in mind. The handles are low
making it hard on the back, it needs to be moved slowly taking up to an hour to do one room properly, mixing the soaps and
dumping the dirty water isn't exactly the most fun thing to do after a long week at work!
Whereas my clients have often sat and enjoyed a cup of coffee or relaxed on their deck with a cold drink on a hot day. What
would you rather do?
Can these machines really do the job? Again it depends on what your needs are. In my experience a DOY machine usually
makes things worse. Two examples distinctly comes to mind and I wish I had taken pictures!
1. A rental house for sale, light blue carpets, last cleaned who knows when. Someone brought in a Rug Doctor. They got as far
as the Dining Room - it turned mud brown!Ll the soil still in the carpet turned to mud and wicked up. I was called in to restore
it. I would like to tell you I made it look as good as new But I can't. My dry-vacuum hardly removed any soil from that room,
and a slight tinge of brown was left on the fibers. Now if I had been called in first...DOY. A newly purchased house, light green
carpets. I was to clean the carpets for the new owner before he moved in because of pet smells and hair etc. The previous
owner thought he would be "nice" and clean the carpets before he left, with a DOY machine. He was just finishing when we
arrived. He said the carpets were clean and would be dry in two hours. What I saw and smelt was not clean, at least not in my
experience; brown streaks in the carpet, musty dog smell throughout. We used an carpet air mover (those big fans used in
flood jobs) to dry the carpets! It was a mess.
DOY Machines Just Aren't Designed for Wall to Wall Cleaning
Their best use is for emergency spotting. A child or pet gets sick on the carpet, drop some food, spill some wine, these events
happen with no notice and you need to get them cleaned up as fast as possible. With a DOY machine spots and accidents can
be cleaned up in virtually no time at virtually no expense. But for wall to wall cleaning, even a cheap cleaner can do a better
job, saving you a lot of work.
What about your warranties? If you have an old carpet that you are planning on throwing out soon, a rental might be
adequate. If you have brand new carpet, cleaning with a DOY machine will void your warranty. All warranties have conditions
and most carpet warranties require a professional cleaning every 12 to 18 months and that you provide proof of proper
maintenance. A professional carpet cleaning company keeps accurate records and can provide these upon request.
The end result is not the same! There are people that are quite happy with the result of a DOY machine. However, like people
that live with a headache for years, they never knew they had a headache till it was gone. Once my clients saw the difference
between professional and DOY they don't try to clean it themselves again.
One of my last clients had been cleaning their carpets with a DOY machine for the past 10 yrs. They had one of these "Splash
and Dash" cleaners, he tried to up-sell them, did a lousy job and left the carpets wet for 3 days! After that they didn't trust
"professionals". I was called in Winter of 2005. He just couldn't physically do it anymore. After I finished they said it hasn't
looked that good since the day it was first laid. Areas of the carpet were dry by the time I left. I wouldn't be surprised if the
DOY machine they own was gone by the time I clean it again.