When selecting a carpet cleaning service, one should look beyond the lowest price. While price is certainly a factor, there are a number of others that go into providing a quality service which results in not only clean carpets at a fair price, but an overall positive service experience.
When searching for a carpet cleaning service, don’t be afraid to “pre-qualify” a service provider. A reputable business will gladly answer any questions you have. Listed below are elements of a professional cleaning that can be used to help select a carpet cleaning service.
What you should expect with professional carpet cleaning services:
- A thorough walk-through and pre-inspection of all areas to be cleaned.
- The price should be provided prior to any work commencing and should be reasonably close to the estimate if one was provided.
- Vacuuming before cleaning the carpet – this is a critical step and can make a tremendous difference in the result. Vacuuming is also an element of the IICRC Carpet Cleaning Standard. Be wary of companies that discount the importance of vacuuming or charge extra for vacuuming.
- Application of a pre-conditioning agent. The pre-conditioning agent is what allows the soil to be loosened from the carpet fibers. Some cleaners skip this step and will tell you the cleaning solution is sprayed on the carpet by the cleaning wand. Beware of the term “single process” cleaning. This is a red flag! The solution being applied from the cleaning wand is rinse used to neutralize any remaining residue and is not the same as the pre-conditioner.
- Spot and stain treatment – this will vary from cleaner to cleaner; ASK if this treatment is included in the price provided. When included in the price, spot and stain treatment is considered a basic treatment. Certain issues – for example red wine, pet urine, mascara, candle wax – will require more advanced treatment and one should expect to pay extra for this service.
- Moving and repositioning furniture – this will also vary; ask if this is included in the price and what will/will not be moved.
- Ask what is done to protect your home – are corner guards used, drop cloths, etc.
- Owner/operators and technicians from reputable companies have completed some type of training and certification. Ask the person providing the service what type of training they have received and if they can verify this training.
Additional factors to consider when looking for a carpet cleaning service:
- Type of equipment used – a truck mounted system versus a small portable machine.
- Proof of insurance
- Be wary of per area/per room pricing with limits of 200 square feet or less.
- Be wary of bait and switch scams – if an exceptionally low price sounds too good to be true, it probably is.