green cleaning environmentally friendly carpets

Green Carpet Cleaning

green carpet cleaningGreen Carpet Cleaning seems like the new thing for carpet cleaners to promote to customers, office and commercial carpet cleaners no exception.

I’d like to clarify what green carpet cleaning is really all about or not about.  When you hear ‘Green’ what pops into your mind?  Green, trees, forest, good for our environment, safe, organic, etc.  Most people have a vague general idea about what green carpet cleaning might mean to them.

For most commercial clients I talk to, when I mention green carpet cleaning as an option, they look at me with that dazed look.  In fact most clients immediately think, more expensive – don’t want it, or it can’t clean as good as ‘non-green’ methods – don’t want it, or they just ask – what’s green carpet cleaning??

I have a good deal of background in the whole ‘green’ movement and I can tell you it’s a growing big undustry, but it’s also full of myths, misconceptions and different views depending on what product or service you might be talking about.  Simply said – green, and green carpet cleaning  is full of confusion for the average person, and probably for many carpet cleaners too.

Hopefully you can grasp that many companies want to be seen as being part of the solution to environmental issues that are part of the daily news anymore.  To be seen as a contributor to the problem with smoke stacks and dumping waste and toxins etc. is the classic idea of what companies do not want to be seen as by consumers.  Yes it’s about money, marketing and sales.  Tha’t what really drives a company to go green most of the time, which can include LEED Certifications, prestige, good Public Relations, cutting energy and operational costs, and so much more that hits a companies bottom line.  Though relegated mostly to large corporations, smaller businesses could take the same road for the same benefits.

Then look and see the rush for so many associations to become the ‘stamp of approval’ for everything green, again it’s really about the money, and perhaps they do offer some level of sanity to the madness of do many products and services who simply claim to be green.  But there you see… who decides what is green, or not green, good or bad, worthy or not worthy of your money or of a green label, etc.

Green, or environmentally friendly, or even people friendly is here to stay, but certainly most people and businesses are not willing to spend more for it, even if it cleans better than traditional goods or services.  I know because I ask most every business I offer carpet cleaning services for.   I have found few are even interested enough to want to know more about it, or the benefits it offers.

Green carpet cleaning services can be summarized in the following manner:

 

  1. Green carpet cleaning chemicals.  The cleaning chemicals a carpet cleaning service may use could be ‘labeled’ green.  Again there are many different organizations to profess to be qualified to ‘stamp these labels’ on bottles of cleaners, so just know that as part of the industry.   You may want to know more about the chemical by asking for the MSDS sheet on the green cleaning product, which will list the basic chemicals and ‘ratings’ for each ingredient.  But you may need to brush up on your chemistry class to really make any sense of it.  The focus here is to be people friendly, and to use chemicals that do not harm the environment.  In a green carpet cleaners world it might mean the ‘waste water’ is ‘safe or safer’ than traditional chemicals that get into the water system.

 

  1. Green carpet cleaning process.  The process of cleaning carpet has a different and perhaps more important part in the concept of green carpet cleaning.   If you can agree that green is at the very least a  ‘do no harm’ concept, then let’s look at how professional carpet cleaning services may be green, or not green, and don’t even know it.
    • Use of water.  Clean UN-polluted water is a fundamental resource that is becoming more scarce for oceans and local uses.  That’s where using green chemicals may be helpful.  But using less water, and properly re-claiming water is even better.   Some carpet cleaning methods use no water at all, while other carpet cleaning processes use many many gallons of water to clean carpets.   I know most how water cleaning methods have a fresh water tank that is roughly twice the size of their reclamation tank.Use of lots of water on carpets means carpets are left damp or wet.  We’ve all been subjected to claims that ‘your carpet will dry fast’  as if it’s a mere inconvenience.   But at least for commercial carpet cleaning the more moisture that a building has to remove through it’s HVAC systems, the more energy and costs is associated with the carpet cleaning, which is hidden costs, and not green.  The less water that must be polluted or even used at all the more green the carpet cleaning service could claim.

     

    • Any other use of resources or polluting effects.  Think about green carpet cleaning as a bunch of possibilities.  Does the carpet cleaning service use gas guzzling trucks or something better, or use an energy inefficient building, or recycle water themselves, or recycle supply containers and other items they use, get their carpets really dry without you having to run your AC to do the job, keep you doors and windows closed while they work, etc.Really I don’t think using a ‘claimed’ green carpet cleaning agent alone is worth getting excited about, and is otherwise just marketing and sales hype.  Green Carpet Cleaning is good, but we should all look at it as more than a label – it’s a way of living and operating our daily lives or business with many small and large contributions to the green concept.  It’s not just a jug of ‘green labeled’ cleaner.

     

 Healthy Clean USA – are we green?   I’m sure we could do better, but you decide.

– We do offer a ‘green labeled’ cleaner.  There are no harmful chemicals and has a health hazard rating of one. (I would not drink it but it probably would not kill you either.)   In fact most all our chemicals are people and environmentally friendly whether labeled as so or not.

– Our carpet cleaning process uses 82% less water than most traditional or hot water extraction methods use.  Depending on the carpet, it can be dry in as little as 20 minutes.

– We use mid-sized pickup trucks that get fair gas mileage, sometimes pulling a trailer depending on the job.  We don’t own any big box trucks (don’t need ’em) nor do we need or claim to use super heated water in order to get carpets clean.

– We do recycle our chemical boxes and plastic bottles 100% through our local recycle collections.

– We clean carpets with all doors and windows closed – we don’t require clients to run AC to get carpets dry.

 

Next time you think about green carpet cleaning, think beyond a job of green labeled cleaner.  Ask the carpet cleaning service about other things that are probably much more important to claiming the ‘Green’ label.

ONE LAST RANT PLEASE:  ORGANIC DOES NOT MEAN SAFE OR GREEN!  Many “organic” things in nature are poisonous, toxic and just plain unhealthy for people and the planet – organic does not translate necessarily to ‘green’.

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