However, defining and executing the most effective cleaning method is not the only aspect of a proper maintenance programme. Prevention should also be a key part in this. One preventive measure to take is to install dirt barrier zones (such as DESSO Protect; at all entrances, with sufficient length and starting outside the building). Doing this is essential to keeping dirt outside. Another important preventive measure is selecting the right products, in colour, pattern and structure for all parts of your building.
Desso recommends a three-step maintenance programme with routine, periodic and specialist maintenance as described below. For more information and further details on each of these steps please contact your local Desso representative.
1. Routine maintenance
Routine maintenance is a combination of vacuum cleaning and spot removal, carried out as often as needed for the different zones within your building. Effective vacuum cleaning is an essential part of a proper maintenance program to keep soiling to a minimum. Dirt barrier zones and heavy traffic areas should be intensively vacuumed on a daily basis. Other areas, such as offices and board rooms, can be vacuumed daily based on visual inspection with a thorough overall vacuuming at least once a week. For the best result Desso recommends heavy duty upright vacuum cleaners with a brushing action and efficient, clean filters.
Additional to vacuuming, regular spot removal should take place to maintain a good appearance. Ideally spills are removed immediately to prevent them from becoming permanent stains. Excessive moisture should be absorbed first (from the outside in) and rubbing and excessive use of water should be avoided. Dried or aged stains can first be treated with a blunt object (e.g. a spoon) to remove dried residu by vacuuming. The majority of (water based) stains can be removed with a clean white cloth and lukewarm water, possibly treated afterwards with an appropriate carpet cleaning agent. Oil based stains and chewing gum should be treated with a specialist cleaning agent.
2. Periodic maintenance
Periodic maintenance helps to maintain the performance of your carpet at a satisfactory level and reduces the need for expensive and disruptive specialist maintenance. Generally this periodic maintenance is carried out 1 to 2 times per year, depending on the speciﬁc needs of your building. From the many cleaning methods available Desso recommends two options: crystal dry cleaning and dry compound cleaning. The crystal dry cleaning method is a low moisture procedure that involves spraying crystals on the carpet, gently brushing these into the carpet piles and, after a drying period of approximately one hour, vacuuming thoroughly. The main benefits of this method include ongoing access to the room or area that is being treated, a reduced treatment time and colourless residue (if any).
The method of dry compound cleaning uses 'dry' powder (it can feel moist) which is spread onto the carpet by hand and mechanically brushed in. Extra attention needs to be paid to the full removal of any residue (powder and soil) as it is not colorless and might accelerate re-soiling.The dry compound cleaning is not suitable for needle felt products (Forto/Lita), Compact tuft products (Trace/Verso/Visions of) and high cut pile products. Always vacuum before carrying out either of these methods and make sure to first test them on a concealed part of the floor for the colourfastness of the carpet.
3. Specialist maintenance
You may need to use specialist restorative maintenance when over time your carpet has accumulated deeply ingrained soil in the pile. This generally needs to be done every three to four years. Desso recommends the hot water extraction method to deep clean your carpet. This must always be preceded by intensive vacuum cleaning and possibly also spot removal or pre-spraying to loosen stain residues.
As aCradle to Cradle®company, Desso aims to design and produce its goods in such a way that they have a positive impact on people's health and wellbeing and can be disassembled and recycled. C2C principles need to be integrated into the maintenance program. Here are some suggested considerations to ensure the carpet complies with high environmental standards:
- Carefully consider the use of energy and water in spot removal and vacuuming. In spot removal, we suggest you use the safest cleaning agents in terms of its chemical composition and effect on maintenance staff and users, as well as the amount of residue in the carpet.
- The advantage of periodic cleaning compared to specialist cleaning, is that cleaning agents and residues will not end up in the public water streams.
- Other tools, such as machines for specialist cleaning, need to be assessed against their use of energy and any water and cleaning agents that may end up in the public water streams.
- At Desso, we aim to prepare carpets so they can be taken back and safely recycled at the end of the product's life. It is worth noting that a good maintenance program and the use of the safest cleaning agents will maximize the quality of material fed into the recycling streams.