Carpet Fiber Cleaning Challenges – Polyester
From day to day and job to job, cleaning challenges change all the time. When cleaning fibers, professional cleaning technicians must know the type and specifications of the fibers they are working with—and which methods and products will yield the best fiber cleaning results.
Over the next few weeks, we will look at the different carpet fibers, what you need to know about them, and the unique challenges each fiber exhibits starting with Polyester.
The most significant issue cleaning technicians will face with polyester is maintaining its original appearance, which often suffers from texture issues. Polyester lacks resiliency and readily shows abrasions from usage and maintenance. These abrasions impede its ability to reflect light, making it look darker than intended even if it is clean.
Improper cleaning agents may also leave behind a sticky residue that leads to resoiling issues, further affecting polyester’s appearance, but this is more of a problem for triexta and olefin fibers.
Some general cleaning guidelines include the following:
- Use a vacuum cleaner that has received a Seal of Approval (SOA) designation from the Carpet and Rug Institute.
- Apply strong alkaline or bleaches when needed, as they are unlikely to adversely affect the dye in the polyester as long as the products are made for the carpet cleaning industry.
- Prepare for a potentially tougher cleaning job; the resiliency of polyester is more challenging than that of nylon and wool fibers, but a high density and a shorter pile height can offset this.
- Although polyester is suited to all cleaning methods, be aware that absorbent pad extraction, or bonnet cleaning, will likely violate the manufacturer’s specifications and void the warranty; in addition, the bonnet may act like sandpaper if soil is not thoroughly removed before employing this method and may damage the fibers.
Reference: Fiber Cleaning Challenges
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