A Carpet Extractor Could Remove Toughest Stains
There's any number of ways to attack carpet stains. Specialty sprays or steam cleaning are common tactics, though even they may fail to remove even the most stubborn spots.
According to Darren Murphy of Southeastern Equipment & Supply, Inc. in South Carolina, stains embedded deep in the carpet fiber may reappear as the surface dries.
“Steam can leave most of the stain hidden from view and therefore likely to return shortly thereafter,” Murphy said. “Professionals call this the wicking effect.”
The most stubborn stains might require you to call out the big guns, devices known as “extractors”, equipment that’s purpose-built for removing the most difficult, deeply embedded carpet stains.
Extractors use liquid and suction simultaneously to dilute then remove stains.
Previously only found in detail shops, extractors are more portable and affordable than ever. These days it’s not uncommon to see an extractor among the vehicle care products and devices in a car care enthusiasts’ garage.
Murphy said an extractor is superior for spot treatment because of how deeply it penetrates carpeting.
“A portable extractor removes debris from the backing of the carpet, all the way up to the top of the fibers,” he said.
For the longest time, portable extractors only used cold and room temperature water, but some of the newer models can utilize hot water, which further improves their effectiveness.
“Hot water assists in the breakdown of dirt, grease, oil, and grime, and will recover stain material quickly to prevent them soaking further into the material,” Murphy said.
Murphy provided the following suggestions for getting the best performance out of your carpet extractor.
1. Vacuum carpets thoroughly.
2. Take a stiff brush and briskly agitate carpet fibers to loosen up surface dirt and remove any matting that may be present.
3. Mist over the surface with a pre-spray to aid in the extraction process.
4. Extract surfaces making sure to remove as much moisture as possible. A second application in strategic areas may be necessary.