The carpet cleaning industry has long been about competing on price with the assumption that pretty much everyone is doing the same thing. My goal has been and is to do whatever it takes to provide the absolute best possible experience and results. In order to do that I have looked into the operations of many different companies to gain knowledge and perspective on industry standards and practices, and I also studied and became certified as an IICRC Carpet Cleaning Technician.
Let’s take a look at some things to consider what will define your experience with a company as well as the results they get for you, starting with the different elements involved in the process. If the assumption is that all companies pretty much do the same thing I hope you will begin to see there is much more involved than meets the eye.
There are certain methods and steps in the carpet cleaning process that contribute to getting the best possible results. Although the first step that should be done seems very basic there are actually companies that do not include it in their process. That step is properly vacuuming, which can remove up to 80% or so of the dry soil and unwanted stuff in your carpet. Therefore it is important to have a good, well-maintained vacuum and to vacuum even when the customer says they have vacuumed. A thorough vacuuming by Above All includes detailed vacuuming around the baseboards and any furniture that is not being moved, as well as getting under beds and furniture whenever possible.
At some point before rinsing the carpet any special spots and stains that the carpet cleaning solution may have trouble removing should be addressed. A stain is something that has changed the dye of the carpet fiber and will therefore require a special spot treatment process. These may include things containing dyes such as coffee, tea, and colored drinks. Other types of spots that may require special treatment include paint, ink, rust, grease, and many other things.
Knowing how to choose a carpet cleaning agent that specifically addresses the special needs of each individual job goes a long way to getting great results, so it should not be a one size fits all scenario. There are a zillion and one products on the market and investing in those with high-quality ingredients and a trusted manufacturing process is important. At Above All we use many high-quality products labeled as environmentally friendly with a health rating of 0-1 (SDS sheets identify the health rating ranging from 0 to 4 with 0 being the least hazardous).
Somewhere in the carpet cleaning process, the basic fundamentals should be addressed: chemical action, heat, agitation and time. A crucial step necessary for optimal results that is left out in the typical process is agitation. At Above All we use a counter rotating brush (crb) machine to work the cleaner through the fibers, stripping them of foreign matter and also helping to lift the carpet’s pile. A thorough deep cleaning and carpet restoration cannot be achieved without this step.
Following agitation with the crb it is time to extract the foreign matter and rinse the carpet to leave it squeaky clean and pH neutral. For this step there are many different options for carpet cleaning wands with a wide range of performance variables. At Above All we choose between a high performance wand with 4 jets, a super duper extraction tool with 5 jets (Zipperwand), and a specially designed stair tool and/or an edging tool depending on the job requirements. The appropriate amount of time must be devoted to this process in order to achieve the most thorough rinse possible as well as the least amount of drying time.
Putting the finishing touches on each job includes applying carpet protector and odor neutralizer followed by a hand grooming to lift the pile, work the protector and odor neutralizer in and make everything look nice and pretty. Carpet protector helps by making it easier to clean up spills, helping it stay cleaner longer, and making it easier to get great results on subsequent cleanings. Odor neutralizer is used by Above All instead of a deodorizer to address the source of any potential lingering odors (not just mask the odor like a deodorizer).
Investing the necessary amount of time into each and every job that has unique needs is a big part in providing customers with “the most thorough carpet cleaning on the planet”. Each step in the process is important to achieving the best possible results and each step requires time. Business models that value quantity and compete on low price cannot be committed to putting in the necessary time to deliver the most thorough cleaning possible.
Above All’s carpet cleaning processes have been designed to give customers the most thorough carpet cleaning possible and are backed by two separate warranties. The same time, energy and effort that go into each job go into every part of our business from planning, executing, and improving our services. No stone is left unturned as we seek to deliver a 5-star customer experience to every single customer, every single day.
Devoting the necessary time to achieve the best possible results has never been an option for Above All. In addition to taking the time to provide the most thorough cleaning we also take the time to protect things in your home or business by using floor mats and corner guards and installing a temporary door when necessary. Regular equipment and vehicle cleaning and maintenance is done to insure that everything is clean and in proper working order when we get to your job.
Service options are not limited to one method of cleaning as we not only employ hot water extraction (typically known as “steam cleaning”) but also use another process called very low moisture cleaning that requires different tools, equipment and cleaning agents. Our residential and commercial vans are each uniquely equipped, and by utilizing two different methods of cleaning we are able to more effectively service customers that have differing needs.
Attention to detail is not only a trademark of our carpet cleaning process but also of our selection of high-performance vehicles and equipment. My van pictured above comes from the Butler Corporation, a family-owned business that fully equips GMC vans with their carpet cleaning system that includes a 100 gallon fresh water tank (which means I won’t be using your water), heat exchanger that generates cleaning temperatures of up to 220 degrees (remember that heat is one of the basic fundamentals of carpet cleaning), a 3-speed vacuum/blower system that has the capacity to displace 375 cubic feet of air per minute (CFM: provides maximum performance to thoroughly extract and rinse your carpet fibers and reduce drying time) and a 210 gallon recovery tank to collect wastewater for proper disposal. To further enhance performance I have modified my vacuum hose and filter setup by adding a 35-foot section of 2-1/2 inch hose to increase vacuum power and a secondary filter so that the filter bag can be changed after every job.
In addition to my GMC which is used for both residential and commercial jobs, my other van pictured above is equipped to handle different types of jobs and has 3 different portable extraction units onboard as well as a 24” wide vacuum sweeper, Whittaker Trio crb, and 2 customized Trinity Operating Systems oscillating pad machines (see below).
At my warehouse is room for both of my vans as well as equipment storage, equipment cleaning, maintenance and repair areas including laundry, and bathroom and kitchen facilities. Founded in 2013, Above All continues to grow and work diligently to earn the trust of homeowners, renters, real estate agents, commercial facilities and property management companies.
So then exactly where does price fit into our business model? Well, we look to develop long-term relationships with customers that appreciate what we do for them as much as we appreciate their business. We work hard and appreciate the value of a dollar. Pricing is important and we believe ours is fair and honest with the objective of giving you the most value for every dollar you spend. Our 6-month Spot & Stain Warranty is one example of that; which gives you 6 months of cost-free spot and stain treatment when you are unable to remove something with the process and complimentary product we leave you.
When we do work for you we not only look at the immediate results but also look down the road at delivering lasting results and cost-effective solutions. We believe that doing things the way we do will help you maintain clean and healthy homes and businesses and provide long-term cost savings. We will not take your business for granted and will continue to strive to earn your trust.
At Above All our mission defines who we are and how we operate. A solid foundation in Jesus Christ is the cornerstone of our business. Trust and reliance on Him for everything coupled with an eternal perspective and motivation is woven into the fabric of every, job, business transaction, and decision. Our conversation in Christ leads us to demonstrate diligent work and integrity and provide a service of great value. I hope this article has provided you with some valuable information and insight and I look forward to having the opportunity to service your carpet, ceramic tile, and upholstery cleaning needs. Please feel free to contact me with questions at (810) 625-0305, and I hope you have yourself a blessed and glorious day!
Chris / Owner-Operator