Archive for March 2015

Spring Safety Tips for Your Pets

Spring Safety Tips for Your Pets Part 3 of 4

Make sure your garden is safe.
When you are outdoors starting your garden, keep in mind that your pets will also take an interest in your garden. Keep toxic bulbs like tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths out of your garden. Only use as much fertilizer as is necessary and observe the waiting period after applying before letting your pets outdoors.

What Prompts People To Clean Their Carpet?

What Prompts People To Clean Their Carpet?

Your professional cleaners need to understand and be experienced in the reason you are cleaning. There are actually six reasons people clean, and many times the cleaning is for more than one reason:

What prompted you to have cleaning done at this time?

Reason 1: Events
Experience proves that events drive more carpet cleaning than any other reason. Whether it is getting ready for Thanksgiving or mother-in-law is coming, events create a sense of urgency that doesn’t exist otherwise. Although entertaining guests or family on clean carpet is a fantastic idea, don’t let this be the only reason you clean.

Reason 2: Visible Soil
The second most common reason for cleaning is some type of visible soiling. Whether it is a spot or a traffic area, it just becomes unsightly. Many times, waiting until your carpet is visibly soiled is waiting too long. Traffic area damage may have occurred, and spots may have become permanent.

Reason 3: Maintenance
This is one of the best reasons to order cleaning. By properly caring for your carpet, you will dramatically increase the useful life of your carpet and it will look better all the time—even when mother-in-law springs a surprise visit!

Reason 4: Health
This is also a great reason to clean. As your carpet does its job as a “sink” or a “filter” it eventually becomes “full.” It is catching pollens, bacteria, insecticides, asphalt, and many other contaminants that need to be cleaned out.

Reason 5: Problem Solving
Occasionally something happens to a textile that appears to be a defect but can actually be corrected through professional cleaning. Usually, before they send out a representative, carpet manufacturers will require your carpet to be serviced by a certified professional cleaning firm.

Reason 6: Odor Problems
Pet odors, cooking odors, and others make their way into carpets, rugs, fabrics, and floors. There are a variety of new techniques and products available today to treat odor problems. Get a complete evaluation from one of our consultants.

Regardless of what your reason is for cleaning, our company is at your service. We are available for the most routine or complex questions you have.

Spring Safety Tips for Your Pets

Spring Safety Tips for Your Pets

Part 2 of 4

Keep up to date on vaccinations and medications.  Spring can bring new hazards with the onslaught of pesky bugs. Your pets will also wish to spend more time outdoors. Make sure that your pets have year-round heartworm preventive medication and protection from fleas and ticks.

“What Kind of Experience Do You Have?”

Although everyone has to start somewhere, you probably don’t want to be your carpet cleaning company’s first client. You’ll want to know what they know about carpet cleaning. Be sure to ask your prospective hire this: “What Kind of Experience Do You Have?”

A number of situations that arise in professional cleaning require experience to get the best cleaning and avoid problems.

First, the cleaner must understand what type of carpet they are working on. The type of soiling and how the carpet is used are important factors. Are pets and/or children present? What kind of traffic does it get? What about cooking oils and other environmental soils?

Second, experience is a factor in knowing how to handle other situations that aren’t even related to cleaning, but have to do with customer service. Do the carpet cleaners know how to treat me and others they may come in contact with during the service experience? More about this later.

Training is a good start towards understanding these factors, but nothing replaces the right kind of experience. And I do stress the right kind of experience. Practicing something the wrong way for years just means that doing it wrong becomes a habit.

One thing you want to ask is, “How long have you been in business?” If they have been in business for a while and the references check out, then you are most likely on your way towards a good fit.

Books are Here!!

Here’s one last carpet cleaning nightmare. Just know that Hansen Steam Way is nothing like these nightmare companies!

The third company was better than the first two but was found to be very lacking for a company considered a “top” company. Booking the job was about as average as the other two. Incorrect information and ignorance ran throughout this experience. This company gave a two-hour window for arrival. They called the day before to confirm—which was good. The morning of the appointment, they called to confirm the arrival time. Good.

When the technician arrived, he was very nice. But due to his inexperience, that was not enough to get them more than a “C average.” He didn’t know anything about the carpet, although he claimed to have been around carpet for a long time. He was baffled, and it was a basic nylon carpet! This technician pre-vacuumed the carpet, pre-sprayed the traffic area, and rinsed. Upon completion, he requested a signature beside several cleaning steps that were not provided. When pressed, we got the tired, old “well, I didn’t have it on the truck.” Duh!

Both companies that actually made it to the job site had cleaning steps on their work order that they were unwilling to do. One step was grooming the carpet. In both cases, that step was on the ticket (put there by their operational system to make sure they do it). Both blew it off as unimportant.

Obviously, any company has their bad days or days when employees just don’t want to perform. The scary part about these three companies is that they are very visible companies in the market they serve. The inadequacies and poor attitudes were obviously routine.

At our company, we are extremely passionate about raising the standard of our industry. We commit to be courteous, to do our very best to show up on time, to educate you, to inform you, and to give your carpet the absolutely most thorough cleaning we possibly can. If we ever fail you on that, we will not only express deep regret and concern but will insist on refunding your money if we can’t satisfy you.

Spring Safety Tips for Your Pets

Spring Safety Tips for Your Pets

Part 1 of 4

With the change in season and warmer weather here, remember to take some time to include ensuring your pet’s safety in your spring cleaning chores. Here are some
things to do to make spring as safe as possible.
Check your screens.
Examine your screen doors and window screens for tears or loose spots. This is especially important for screens on upper floors of your home. If you are ready to leave
windows open to let in the fresh spring air, make sure that your screens will not let your pets out.

Chemicals, Cleaning and YOU

Chemicals, Cleaning and YOU
Chemicals. The very word makes some people nervous. For some it conjuresimages of toxic compounds that pollute and damage the environment. For othersit may bring to mind unhealthy additives in our food and drink. Chemical can bea scary word. It makes sense to define what a chemical really is.
One useful definition for the word is found in the World English Dictionary: “chemical- any substance used in or resulting from a reaction involving changes to atoms or molecules, especially one derived artificially for practical use”.  This definition sums it up quite well, because it covers all the bases for what we typically refer to as chemicals.
Chemicals as they relate to cleaning, deodorization and sanitizing of surfaces are just that; compounds that are used to react with and change other compounds, such as oils, dirt and contamination.
You likely use chemicals on a daily basis as a safe and effective means to keep your home clean and healthy. This includes dish soap, laundry detergent, air fresheners, and even shampoo, soap and toothpaste.
But what about the cleaning agents that professionals use when they come into your home to provide services such as carpet cleaning? Should you be concerned? Well, yes and no.
We are in the midst of a green revolution; a general shift toward using products that are safer for the environment. As a result, professional cleaners now have more  products that are effective, safe and environmentally friendly. Organic cleaners, natural deodorizers and plant- based disinfectants are becoming more popular.  As consumers become more environmentally aware, manufacturers of cleaning agents are also making significant headway into formulations that do not contribute to poor indoor air quality.
Still, some of the products used in professional cleaning products can be a cause for concern. Professionals and consumers alike should be conscious of how cleaning products are stored, used, and disposed of.
In addition, the products used by professionals are usually in concentrated form. Label directions as to dilution and application must be followed.
Hot water can remove a great deal of soil. In fact, water does the bulk of the work in carpet cleaning. But water alone is usually not enough to get your carpet to its cleanest
possible state. There are too many soils and pollutants that bond to the carpet via chemical and molecular bonds must be broken.
That’s why we use cleaning agents. Detergents, surfactants and buffering agents break the bonds that soils have on carpet.  Some cleaning companies buy the cheapest chemicals they can get.  Sure, the carpet looks cleaner, but the stain-resistance is compromised and the carpet will re-soil rapidly because of detergent residues. We
choose cleaners that are effective, safe for people and pets, and easy on the environment, even though they cost a little more. We feel it’s worth it.
At times, because of the type of spot or stain we are dealing with, we must use products containing solvents, acids or alkalis. If so, our technicians are trained to mix, apply, neutralize and rinse so that no unwanted residues are left behind. The rinse water is captured and properly disposed of to assure that there is no negative impact on the environment.
The bottom line is that whenever you have Hansen Steam Way clean for you, you can be assured of a healthier home, carpet that stays cleaner longer along with environmental responsibility.

Books Are Here!!!

Ready for another Carpet Cleaning Nightmare story?

The second company sounded more promising at first. Their telephone courtesies were somewhat better but not anywhere near what they should be. This company gave us a 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. arrival window. At one o’clock the consultant called to check on the arrival time. “Toward the latter,” he was told.

At 4:10 p.m. he called again. “The crew is still at their previous job. They should be about an hour.”

At 5:10, still no crew. Another call revealed that they were still at the previous job. When pressed, the operator said “Well, their previous job went from two rooms to two houses.”

“Oh, so you took on more work on your previous job and bumped me, huh?” the consultant replied.

“Let me get the Operations Manager.”

The so-called Operations Manager said, “It’s only 5:10,” insinuating they weren’t actually late. They couldn’t give a specific arrival time, so our consultant cancelled the job. If a company doesn’t care enough to communicate with the client, turn down extra work, and offer alternate arrangements for their clients, they don’t deserve the work, no matter how good they are. If you’re not there, you can’t very well do a good job, now, can you?

Book Shipping in 4 Days!!

Book shipping in four days;

Mystery shoppers often reveal a carpet cleaning company’s true colors, bad behavior, and dirty secrets. We’ve got a few stories to share with you about these questionable carpet cleaning service providers. Here’s the first company you’ll definitely want to avoid!

The first company that was called not only had horrible telephone manners but sent out the rudest, most unprofessional and uninformed crew you could imagine. They acted like they were being bothered the entire time they were there—which was a total of 37 minutes! This crew did not pre-vacuum the carpet, didn’t pre spot it, and didn’t groom it.

Even though the spots were not satisfactorily removed, the crew was unconcerned and unwilling to try harder. Their one-step method doesn’t even come close to meeting minimum standards of The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Because the crew just brushed over the carpet with the cleaning tool, the soils returned before the day was even over!

At the end of the job, our consultant was required to sign a lengthy document even though the company couldn’t clearly state any reasonable guarantee. And the company had stressed their guarantee to secure the job over the telephone.

To top it off, these idiots never said thank you. Not even a smile the entire time proved that a customer was just another bother in their day. How sad.