7 Mistakes to avoid when choosing a carpet cleaner

Mistake #1: Choosing a carpet cleaner based on equipment alone. No questoin, your carpet cleaner needs first-rate equipment but he also needs something else. He needs employees who are skilled at operating that equipment. Many companies own hot-water extractors, but very few teach their employees how to use them properly. The best way to know that the carpet cleaner’s employees have been properly trained is to make sure the cleaner is certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration.

Mistake #2: Choosing a carpet cleaner based on a low price. Low price could be a problem in three ways: (1) Low price could be the bait that attracts your phone call. Once the cleaner gets into your home, he pressures you into a much more expensive job. (2) Low price can be for a single-process cleaning. Rarely does the consumer know what this means and, when told, asks for dual- process cleaning instead, which cost more. (3) Low price means the carpet cleaner has cheap equipment, which will not effectively clean your carpet.

Mistake #3: Choosing a carpet cleaner based on a single telephone call. Instead, invite the person to your home and ask for a specific written quotation. Then you will know exactly what the carpet cleaner recommends-and you won’t be the victim of high pressure tactics when the technician steps into your living room.

Mistake #4: Choosing a carpet cleaner who doesn’t offer a money- back guarantee. In my view, every carpet cleaning company should be fully accountable for its work. If you aren’t total1y thril1ed with the job in every way, you shouldn’t have to pay for it. Period.

Not all carpet cleaners offer a guarantee. Or, if they do, the guarantee may be “limited.” Ask the carpet cleaner if he offers a money-back guarantee and then make sure the carpet cleaner includes his gaurantee on his written quotation.

Mistake #5: Choosing a carpet cleaner without getting comments from his other clients.

Any carpet cleaner can say anything about his past job. And, sadly, some of what he says may not be true. Make sure you ask for references or read comments from current customers so you can depend on the carpet cleaner and his work.

Mistake #6: Choosing a carpet cleaner who isn’t certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC).

If your carpet cleaner isn’t a close friend, you may not know whether he has the knowledge or experience to clean your carpet well. If you want to be sure your hiring a competent professional, make sure he is IICRC certified. The carpet cleaner must earn that certification through study, experience and successful completion of formal, written examinations.

Mistake #7: Choosing a carpet cleaner who doesn’t use a truck-mounted, hot water extraction system.

You might expect this from me, since my employees and I use this type of system. However, there are several good reasons. Portable hot water systems are good, but they aren’t as good as truck-mount systems. Truck-mount systems are the Rolls Royces of carpet cleaners. Compared with portable hot water systems, truck mount systems use hotter water, higher pressure and stronger suction. So al the way around, you get a much better job. No two ways about it.

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