Clean It — Don’t Cover It. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
Odors. They are everywhere. When pleasant, we might call them “scents.” When not-so-pleasant, we might call them malodors.
Odors are caused by a variety of sources. Some odors are pleasant, welcoming, such as from a fresh-cut batch of flowers or a nice, home-cooked meal. Others are not pleasant, “malodorous,” such as from an unattended cat litter box or rotting garbage left too long in a trash bin.
And when something is malodorous, you must do something about it. Sometimes, the urge is to just cover it up. That can be a very bad idea as odors just keep getting worse and worse and you eventually have a difficult situation to deal with.
You want your home to be neat, clean, and odor-free, except for odors (scents) that you introduce because they are pleasant and welcoming, such as air fresheners, perfumes, scented candles, etc. A rule of thumb is this: When it is clean and dry, there should be no odors.
Your carpet, furniture and other absorbent materials in your home, over time, become soiled and often collect odors. Normal “dusty” odors are part of life between cleaning, and routine chores keep them manageable. Yet odors from urine, feces, body perspiration, and other sources are offensive and must be removed.
There are three principles to follow when it comes to keeping your home clean and odor-free.
Remove the source
When something is deposited, spilled, or has come into contact with a surface, the first step is to remove contamination. This means scraping, rinsing or otherwise removing any odor-causing sources. The sooner you do this, the easier the job will be. An example would be blotting and removing a fresh pet “accident”, as odors will quickly become worse over time.
Clean affected areas
Once the source is removed, there is still some contamination on the surface. A thorough cleaning is important to remove any residual matter that can cause odors. Using hot water is best, if the surface can handle higher temperatures. Some furniture fabrics are heat sensitive, for example.
Deodorize and disinfect
Now it’s time to use odor-removing products, such as an approved deodorizer and/or disinfectant. This should be the final step in odor removal. Follow manufacturer directions exactly, as using too little or too much product can be counter-productive.
And never forget, your favorite cleaning professionals know how to clean and tackle tough odors. Let them do the dirty work. It pays to call a pro!
Floor Cleaning Basics. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
Floors. You can’t avoid walking on them. You can’t avoid looking at them, either.
The condition of your floors really affects the appearance of your entire home. When you have visitors, they notice…whether your floors are clean and tidy and in good condition, and if they are soiled and dirty and in need of repair.
There are all types of flooring in homes today, from carpet and rugs to ceramic tile, luxury vinyl tile, natural stone, wood and more.
It’s generally accepted by most that carpet and rugs are easy to care for, regarding routine maintenance. Regular vacuuming does the trick. As a basic rule, vacuum your heavy-use areas once per week per occupant. Yes, your pets count as occupants. That means if you have a family of five with a dog and a cat, you would vacuum every day. Not the entire house, so don’t panic, but perhaps the living room and any other common-use areas that are trafficked each day. The other rooms can be vacuumed perhaps twice per week.
Ceramic tile is also easy to maintain. It needs swept and mopped frequently to avoid soil build-up. Use neutral cleaners and follow directions. If you notice any streaking after you clean, follow your normal cleaning with a clear water mopping and get it as dry as you can.
Luxury vinyl tile, or LVT, can be cleaned like ceramic tile, but consider a two-bucket system. One with neutral detergent and another with clear water.
Wood flooring is another matter. Be safe and obtain an approved wood cleaning product from the manufacturer, or you can inquire of your favorite cleaning service as to what you should use. After cleaning, you may need to do a light buffing with a soft cloth, especially high traffic areas. Wood is a bit more sensitive than other flooring types, but small surface scratches can often be buffed out. Larger scratches and damage might need to be professional repaired.
There are other flooring types, of course, and each one will respond well to proper cleaning. Floor cleaning can be challenging, as well as hard work. Why not leave it to the pros and spend your valuable time doing something else you enjoy?
Call your professional cleaning service today. After all, it pays to call a pro!
Urine Odor Removal 101. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
Phew! What is that smell?
You might have uttered those words a few times, and when it happens, it is often from pet urine in carpet or perhaps some clothing attacked by a baby or toddler.
When left untreated, many problems can arise, the most noticeable being by the nose.
With carpet and other surfaces in the home, one of the toughest chores in urine odor removal is the first one — finding the location of the odor. Following your sense of smell often helps, and keeping an eye on the offending pet(s) and tracking them to the source can also work. Professionals, like your favorite carpet cleaner, have special detection devices that locate exactly where urine contamination is located.
Then you must clean and treat the area. A small spotting machine with water and a small amount of detergent can remove what’s in the carpet pile, but there’s really no way to get deep down in the backing or pad where some of the urine might have penetrated. That’s something only the pros can do. But getting to a urine spot while still damp and using lots of blotting with disposable towels is a great urine removal 101 tip. Once it dries, it becomes much more challenging.
Remember this: If left untreated, especially if the pet continues its accident-prone activities, and urine builds up in carpet, it doesn’t really dry out. Urine crystalizes and a salt-like substance forms, which attracts moisture from the air. That’s why you notice urine odors in the summer more so than in the winter, because winter air is drier.
What about clothing?
If fresh, a normal laundering should suffice. You might want to wash separately from other garments. Wash with cold water if colorfastness is a concern, although hot water does clean better.
But occasionally, urine odors can persist in clothing because of the age of the contamination or other factors. When this happens, a pre-soak is necessary. Fill a sink or tub (or use a bucket if the item will fit) and fill it up with hot water. Add ¼ cup of white vinegar per gallon of water that you are using. Soak the clothes for two hours. The vinegar, being acidic, will counteract the aging urine salts that have built up.
Bottom line? Fresh urine contamination in carpet or clothing is easy to remove. Get to it quick. Blot the carpet, rinse with a spotting machine, but never apply products to the area because that can just make it worse. Don’t be tempted by those products on the shelf at your grocery store. For clothing, put it in the laundry right away.
But if odors persist and urine contamination and related odors are ruining your day, it’s time to get some help. Don’t delay — call your cleaning experts today. After all, it pays to call a pro!
Removing Rust from Driveways. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
While the flooring in a home is what many look at and judge cleanliness on, the same could be said for areas outside the home. Especially the driveway.
A nice, clean and neat driveway, swept free of dust and debris, is noticed by everyone. So is one that has ugly rust stains. Especially when moisture has spread rust stains down the drive.
If you have rust stains on your driveway, you might wonder… What causes them? Driveways are typically concrete or asphalt, neither of which should rust, right? Wrong!
Rust can develop from residues, such as those deposited on your driveway from your vehicle, from lawn care products and more. Also, the construction of your driveway, especially if concrete, contributes to rust stains. The rebar in the concrete can be close to the surface and rust can develop. There could be particles in asphalt that will rust as well.
No matter the cause, what you should be concerned with is prevention and, of course, removal of rust stains. Preventing them is difficult. Keeping everything clean is the first step, so rust doesn’t develop at all.
Steps to removal
For smaller rust stains, a little lemon juice or vinegar often does the trick. Apply when the affected areas are in the shade, or do it in the evening, because the sun will dry everything out too quickly. Work in the juice or vinegar with a brush. Rinse away any residues and reapply if you see some improvement.
If that doesn’t work, it’s time to get more aggressive. Visit your local hardware store and purchase a rust stain removal product and follow the directions. Be sure to note any precautions such as respiratory and contact issues.
And if that doesn’t work, it’s time to get really serious. At that same hardware store, you can purchase a stronger product, such as muriatic acid, and apply to the rust stains. But you must be very careful with strong acids as they can burn your skin and much worse. Also remember that stronger acids can damage the actual driveway material so be careful how you apply it and how long it dwells on the surface. Some have found that stronger acids negatively affect asphalt driveways. Be careful!
What’s best? Calling your cleaning pros, who know all about rust stains and how to remove them. Do the right thing. Give them a ring.
How to Remove Deodorant Stains. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
It can be very embarrassing, especially if it happens at a business meeting or social event. When it does happen, you may wish you could crawl into a hole.
What are we talking about? When you raise your arm for something and show off an unsightly deodorant stain on your shirt, blouse or other item of clothing. You know people notice because their eyes are drawn right to your armpit, and there is never a hole close enough to crawl in to.
This type of stain builds up over time. When you perspire, some of the deodorant transfers to your clothing and each time you do the laundry, some of it sticks. However, removing deodorant stains can be accomplished with a few simple steps.
Before putting your clothes in the laundry basket, spray or rub areas of concern liberally with a product designed for treating laundry spots and stains. Your regular laundering will be much more effective.
Before laundering the offending garments, fill a sink or, if you have a lot of clothes, a bathtub with hot water and add a small scoop of laundry detergent and mix it up until completely dissolved. Put the clothes in and let them soak for 30 minutes, and then launder them right away.
As you would do with pre-treating in a sink or tub, instead of using laundry detergent, add a scoop or two of a color-safe bleach, best known as OxyClean at your grocery store. Follow directions on the package and allow plenty of dwell time for this oxidizing bleach to work.
This is a last-resort attempt to remove deodorant stains. Chlorine bleach, such as found under the name “Clorox” at your grocery store, is an oxidizer but very aggressive. Use with care. Follow directions on the bottle when you use this type of product either as a pre-treatment or in the washing machine.
And when you need something cleaned you can’t do yourself, such as your carpet, tile and grout, furniture or other surfaces, don’t forget to call your cleaning pros. They know how to do it right!
Avoiding Wood Deck Woes. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
Wood decks can be beautiful things, add value and enjoyment to your home. Unless they are ignored or neglected, of course.
Like any surface in your home, a wood deck needs some special care. While a lower-cost alternative to pavers, concrete and other hard surface materials, wood decks are very attractive, especially if you chose a color tone that matches your home and is one you enjoy.
But after a year or two, aging happens and dirt and grime accumulates. Stains as well. You start to wonder what you can do to bring back to life the deck you admired so much.
You can do quite a bit, actually. Just take a few minutes out of your busy schedule and put to practice these short, easy steps to revitalize your deck.
Wood deck maintenance tips
The first smart action to take is to keep the deck as clean as possible at all times. Sweep or wash it off with a garden hose on a regular schedule. Debris left on the deck can cause uneven weathering and staining.
When you do wash the deck, let it dry and inspect it. If there are stains, use an oxidizing cleaning product that comes in powder form that you mix with warm water. Do not use chlorine bleach. Apply the solution to the deck and work it over the surface with a brush, allow approximately 15 minutes of contact time, and rinse it all off. The oxidizing cleaning product is similar to what you find in laundry detergents, so it is fairly safe to use. Do NOT use chlorine bleach!
If that doesn’t do the trick, visit your favorite hardware store and ask about stronger wood cleaning products, but be sure to mention the type of wood your deck is made from. That may affect the type of product you should use. Follow the directions carefully.
Of course, your cleaning pros have the best advice on how to clean virtually any surface. Do the smart thing and give them a call!
Closet Cleaning & Organizing. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
Although traditionally a spring cleaning chore, cleaning and organizing a closet can be done any time of year.
And no, keeping the door shut isn’t the best solution to a messy, disorganized closet, although it may give you moments of sanity that quickly disappear when you venture inside for that favorite pair of pants you haven’t seen in months.
Here are a few quick tips on cleaning and organizing your closet.
1.Empty the closet. Take everything out. Put it in organized piles according to type, such as a pile of shoes, shirts, pants, sweaters, etc.
2.Clean all surfaces in the closet. This means a bucket of soapy water and a sponge, some paper towels or cotton cloths. This is a good time to clean the walls, shelves, every surface you can reach.
3.Inspect what needs to go back in. Take a close look at those piles of shoes, shirts, pants, sweaters, etc. Do you need all of them? Are there some items you might discard or donate to charity? Now’s the time!
4.If you are a seasonal organizer, this could be an opportunity to store away, perhaps in a basement, items you won’t need for the near future.
5.Restock the closet. Give this some thought. Hanging as many items as you can on thinner hangers saves space. Have areas in the closet where you keep items you wear more frequently and other areas for items that you wear occasionally.
6.Consider garment organizers, which are helpful in keeping items separate for seasonal use, or for specific types of events, such as formal occasions. And remember the floor space, which can be used for shoe organizers.
Closets are very important real estate. Take advantage of them and keep them all neat, clean and organized. Imagine… going into a closet that doesn’t scare you as you select your favorite sweater to ward off a cold evening chill. Nice thought, right?
Clogged Drain Dramas. Pure Carpet Care of North Brunswick, NJ.
It sits in the center of every sink, at the end of every bathtub, and could be anywhere at the bottom of a shower stall… that’s right. You see them all the time. Drains that faithfully work to take away soapy water, food waste and more.
So when they slow down or even quit working entirely, it is very frustrating and annoying.
Your first inclination is to grab a plunger, which might work but more than often… it doesn’t work at all. But you have to try! Sometimes, a connecting drain to the plugged one allows air to escape and the plunging action is worthless. You can plug the second drain with a towel or cloth, and that might help with the plunging action.
If typical plunging doesn’t work, consider these steps to enable a drain to do what it’s supposed to do.
The drain could be plugged with something that could be melted, dissolved or moved by super-hot water. Boil an entire pot of water and (very carefully so you don’t get burned) pour it into the drain. It might be enough to clear the drain.
Often, protein matter, such as hair, plugs up drains, especially in sinks, tubs and showers in bathrooms. Carefully pouring chlorine bleach into the drain, enough to fill the drain, and then allow the solution to work on the hair will work. Chlorine bleach is very inexpensive but very powerful. It will eat its way through a drain blocked with hair and clear it out so it drains effectively.
It’s time to get physical. Unclogging a drain with an auger, also known as a “snake” will move what’s stuck. You can purchase a tool like this at your local hardware store. Carefully insert the end of the snake into the drain and push and pull until you move the blockage or can pull it out. You can do this from the drain itself or from the pipe below if accessible.
Sometimes a clogged drain creates a big mess. When that happens, and for all your cleaning needs, call your cleaning pros for help.