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|Frequently Asked Questions
|Q: Which cleaning method does On the Spot utilize and why?
A: On the Spot utilizes the hot water extraction method. An entire website could be devoted to debating the merits of the
different methods available for cleaning carpets. However, most carpet manufacturers, including Mohawk and Shaw
Industries recommend the hot water extraction method for cleaning their carpets. Please visit www.mohawkcarpet.com or
www.shawfloors.com for more information.
Q: How long does it take for the carpets to dry?
A: Your carpets should be dry in about 1-3 hours after cleaning, depending on humidity levels. Areas that are heavily soiled
and/or treated with Scotchgard may require additional drying time. A large national franchise (asserting that they have some
sort of monopoly on fast-drying carpet cleaning) makes some very misleading claims in their advertising regarding carpet
cleaning. Due to the high recovery rate of my truck-mounted cleaning system, my cleaning process leaves very little moisture
in the carpet. On the Spot's cleaning process will not wet the carpet padding, penetrate the carpet backing, or leave your
carpet "wet for days".
Q: Your website mentions that On the Spot is IICRC-Certified. What does this mean and why is it important?
A: The IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification) is a non-profit organization that sets guidelines
for members of the carpet cleaning industry to follow. It is not associated with any government agency, carpet manufacturer,
or carpet cleaning firm.
Members are required to attend various training classes and pass a test to become certified. Once certified, a carpet
cleaning technician has been trained in the use of cleaning methods, chemicals, and equipment needed to properly clean the
specific type of carpet in your home.
This does not mean that a carpet cleaner who is not IICRC-Certified cannot effectively clean your carpet. Nor is this meant to
imply that by selecting a certified cleaner you cannot go wrong. However, technicians who are IICRC-Certified have invested
time and money to educate themselves on how to properly perform their work.
Q: How long should I wait before having my carpets cleaned?
A: This depends mainly upon how much traffic your carpet is subjected to. Most carpet manufacturers recommend having
your carpets cleaned every 6-24 months. If you have three children and a dog and want your carpets to look good, you'll
probably want to have them cleaned at least every six months. If you live alone and have no pets you can go longer between
cleanings. Regular vacuuming will extend the time needed between cleanings. Most of my customers have their carpets
It is important not to wait until your carpets are heavily soiled to have them cleaned. The reason for this is dirt in carpet acts
as an abrasive that scratches the carpet fibers when walked upon. These tiny scratches reduce the fiber's ability to reflect
light, making the fibers and the carpet appear dull and worn out...even after cleaning, even if the carpet is not really worn out!
Q: What needs to be done prior to having my carpets cleaned?
A: If you have made an appointment to have your carpets cleaned, the cleaning will go much more smoothly if the following
items are completed prior to my arrival:
First, compile a list of any stains/problem areas and any treatment (Resolve, Shout, etc.) they have previously received. Also
inform me of any areas of the carpet that are damaged or have weak seams.
Please remove small items from the floor such as stuffed animals, decorations, flowerpots, etc. Items such as pictures,
lamps, clocks, and telephones should be removed from any furniture to be moved. Also let me know of any furniture that has
any weak joints or requires special attention.
I recommend pets (particularly cats) be secured. The machinery used to clean carpet generates noise that may scare your
pets and cause them to hide or run away.
Finally, warn young children to stay away from the van, hoses, and air movers. Keeping your children and pets a safe
distance from the equipment is the best way to ensure their safety.
Q: Some of your competitors have lower prices. Why is On the Spot worth the extra money?
A: Low-priced service providers are not always a good value...in fact, they often are not. This can be illustrated by the
following true story:
Several years ago, my church changed mowing companies to save money. The new company charged far less than the old
one and claimed to offer the same service with the only variable being price. The board of trustees decided that the low
priced company was an obvious choice. After all, they reasoned, how different could two lawn mowing companies possibly
After the new mowing company took over, we noticed that the quality of their work was quite poor. The cut was uneven, there
were spots where the grass looked like it was being torn rather than cut, the corners weren't trimmed and the dandelions
never went away because they were being knocked over rather than being cut. As I drove by my church one afternoon, I saw
the grass being cut and it was obvious why the quality of mowing was so poor: their worker was mowing the grass at 100 mph.
Of course I'm exaggerating a bit (maybe it was only 80 mph), but the mower was clearly going far too fast to properly cut the
My church's experience with Low-Ball Mowing Service parallels what consumers typically experience with low-priced carpet
cleaning...and carpet cleaning has far more variables than lawn mowing. In order to be profitable the low-priced cleaners
must rush through each job quickly, cutting corners and moving far too quickly to thoroughly clean the carpet. The result is a
poor quality of clean with lengthy drying times because the water was not sufficiently extracted from the carpet.
The difference between On the Spot and the low-priced cleaners found in coupon books is that I will take whatever time is
necessary to do the most thorough, professional job of cleaning your carpets. When done properly, carpet cleaning is a
time-consuming process. Quality work simply takes more time to complete and must therefore be priced higher.
It may sound hard to believe, but carpet cleaning is not a commodity and a cleaner should not be chosen based on price
alone. Carpet cleaning has a surprising number of variables, and like virtually anything else, it can be easily downgraded in
various ways to lower the price.
Also, you will find that the carpet cleaners with the lowest prices are also the carpet cleaners who advertise the most. If they
had great quality with low prices they wouldn't need to advertise at all because they would be getting all the business they
could handle from referrals. While most cleaners are competing on price, On the Spot is owner-operated so earning your
referrals and repeat business is the top priority.