Carpet Cleaning The Steam Cleaning Method
This is the only carpet cleaning method classified as “deep cleaning”. All the others are considered “light surface cleaning” because they are incapable of removing soil deep in the pile. Also, all other methods leave large amounts of cleaning agent in the carpet after cleaning.
This carpet cleaning method is frequently called “steam” cleaning due to the fine spray of water used to force dirt out of the carpet which is sucked up by the vacuum slot immediately in front of the spray. Seldom is real live steam used, however. This process consists of spraying a solution of water and detergent into the carpet pile and recovering the water and soil with a powerful vacuum into a holding tank. This can be done from a truck-mounted carpet cleaner unit outside the home with only the hose and floor tool brought inside, or by a portable, system brought into the home or office.
With some truck-mounted carpet cleaning systems (called PTO’s), the vehicle itself must run in neutral during the cleaning and in many others a separate engine (sometimes with a propane or oil-fired heater) is used to power the unit and heat the water. In both cases, the van MUST be parked well away from the house and positioned so that exhaust fumes do not enter the house. All-electric systems, such as the Bane-Clene systems, do not have this problem.
Depending upon the carpet cleaning equipment, temperatures may range from cold tap water to boiling hot water and even super heated water over 200 degrees F. Of course, with extremely high temperatures, there are dangers of scalding should a solution line break.