A Step Above’s rug care staff is well-trained to ensure the ultimate care of your quality rugs. We will meticulously wash your rugs in our bespoke cleaning area where they will undergo a customized cleaning process tailored to the specific fiber needs of your rugs.
We offer on-site as well as off-site cleaning services. The advantage of cleaning your rugs in our facility is the possibility of a thorough rinsing. A thorough rinse ensures the best clean possible. For occasional freshen-up off your rugs, we can do that cost-effectively at your home on some fiber types provided the rug has no major staining or pet issues. For either service, we offer complimentary evaluations and will quote you a firm price either way.
Off-site rug cleaning is highly recommended for the maintenance of oriental and other fine-quality rugs. They should not be cleaned on location like a synthetic, wall-to-wall carpet for many reasons:
The fibers in Oriental and similar rugs differ from those found in residential and commercial carpets. They typically consist of more natural fiber such as wool, silk, cotton, and jute.
Rugs and carpets have very different backings. Natural foundation yarns are found more in rugs in contrary to separate synthetic fabrics backing for carpet.
Woven constructions are common in area rugs, and as such are more sensitive to ongoing care.
Cleaning technology varies due to the potential for dye migration and fiber distortion.
Initial Inspection During our preliminary inspection, we will assess the inherent characteristics and conditions of your rug that may impact the cleaning process. Our company representative will come to your home to transport your rugs and we can deliver them back to you. You can also drop off and pick up your rugs at our facility. We carefully tag the rug at this time to avoid any mix-up while the rug is in our possession. Every rug is thoroughly pre-inspected and photo documented to determine and identify if there are pre-existing conditions, which could potentially affect the cleaning process. We will document these conditions to determine the safest and most effective cleaning method for your rug. In the event that we encounter any difficulties pertaining to the treatment of the stains, our cleaning expert will contact you for a discussion before we proceed. Once we get consent, we guarantee to give you expertise and workmanship consistent with industry standards of care.
Dusting Woven rugs have a tendency to conceal significantly more dry soil compared to wall-to-wall carpets. According to studies conducted by the Eureka Company, a 9 x 12 rug could hold as much as 87 pounds of particulate soil. We use various techniques for dusting the rug. Our specialized machine mimics how our grandma used to “dust” the rug; performing gentle beating motions on the backside of the rug. This step is very important as it facilitates the expulsion of dry soil particles that can damage the delicate fibers and result in premature wear. Next, the upside of the rug is vacuumed to remove any remaining fine particles on the surface.
Color fastness test and Dye locking Dye migration or bleeding are the worst scenarios that can occur during rug cleaning. Since majority of the fine rugs are fabricated with wool or silk which is dyed with acid dyes, dye migration is always a concern.
We will determine the best cleaning method with a prolonged colorfastness test to avoid potential color migration problems without sacrificing the cleaning results. Problem rugs will be treated with a dye locking agent to help inhibit any bleeding problems.
Pre-spotting Any potentially troublesome spots will be pre-treated with special products to help increase the chances of removal.
Fringe Cleaning and Grooming Oftentimes, the fringe requires special treatment aside from the rug. It is treated with a special fringe cleaner to maximize soil removal, and hand brushed.
The Most Important Part — Cleaning! Our rug specialists will evaluate your rug’s fiber content, delicacy, and colorfastness to choose the best cleaning procedure possible for maximum soil removal. These methods may range from very low moisture to complete submersion cleaning with heavy scrubbing to remove soiling. Depending on the genre of the rug, soils will be rinsed from your rug thoroughly with extraction equipment or flushed with a specialized wand in a rug bath designed especially for rugs.
Drying After soil removal, the rug may be laid flat on our rug drying platform to dry or hung to dry on our special rug tower. Inadequate or incomplete drying or wet cleaning on-location could cause prolonged drying, texture change, browning, dye migration, mold growth, dimensional change, and/or dry rot.
Grooming and Final Vacuuming When the rug is completely dry, it is groomed using a soft bristle brush exclusive for rugs. A final vacuuming removes dry soil and loose fibers that may have emerged during the drying process.
Application of Fabric Protection Fluorochemical protectors resist water and oil-based stains, as well as particle soiling. The application of fabric protectors enhances our rug’s performance and helps keep it cleaner longer. Since these coatings may be worn off gradually by passage and maintenance such as vacuuming, reapplication is recommended periodically following professional cleaning.
Post Inspection Our rug cleaning specialist will conduct a final inspection on the rug before releasing it for pick-up or delivery. We will notify you at this time that your rug is completed and schedule a delivery time that is convenient for you. We will wrap the rug for ease in handling and to protect it from dirt, rain, etc. during the delivery process. It is not meant to be stored in these temporary bags.
Rug Pad Rug pads bring comfort and cushioning to your rugs and they’ll also add durability to make them last longer. Rug pads create a safer environment by reducing trip hazards of your area rug, which also makes it easier to vacuum. Whether you need a rug pad for a hard surface or carpet, we have the selection for you. Most rugs are not the exact size stated, for example, an 8×10 may be 7’9″x9’9″. We offer a premium, non-slip rug pad that we will custom fit to your rug while it’s in our facility to ensure the rug will fit perfectly on top of the pad.
Don’t neglect your showers either! We have a smaller tool to clean tighter spaces and showers. We can remove years of soap buildup and mildew with specially designed products and high pressure steam cleaning. Our specialty tools are specifically designed for this type of work, so please don’t hesitate to call us to take care of all of your hard surface cleanings.
We always do a complementary test spot to ensure your satisfaction before beginning the job.
Carpet Stretching (Both kick stretching and power stretching are available) – over time your carpet can become warn, or if it wasn’t installed properly, it can get small humps. This will wear your carpet unevenly in those areas, decreasing the life and appearance of your carpet. We will stretch your carpets out in the best way possible and do what is needed to keep your carpets looking the best they can.
Seam Repairs (If carpet starts to split at doorways) – seams are mostly found in doorways where two pieces of carpet are joined together with special glue. In high-traffic areas, those seams can sometimes start to come apart. We can help repair those and keep the carpet from unraveling and coming apart at the seams.
Patching (For set stains or missing carpet) – there are many reasons a carpet may need a patch. Animals can claw carpet up, furniture can get wet and cause a permanent stain, or an iron can tip over and melt the carpet. Whatever the case may be, our trained technicians can cut out the damaged carpet and replace it with an undamaged piece from spare carpet, or from an inconspicuous place ( i.e. behind a closet door )
Burn Plugs (To prevent replacing small areas) – small burns don’t always need a full-sized patch. We can remove the melted fibers and pull fibers from an inconspicuous place and transfer them and glue them in with specialty glue to hold them in place.
Spot Dyeing (for stains such as bleach) – some cleaning products and bleach can result in a color change or complete removal of the dye when they accidentally get on the carpet. Our experienced technicians can salvage the situation by neutralizing the affected spot and applying color to your carpet fibers. Our aim is to reinstate your carpet as close as to its former glory.
Our multi-step process provides a carpet cleaning that is A Step Above the rest:
Pre-inspection – Our technicians will walk your home with you before they begin cleaning to inspect your areas of concern, discuss pricing and procedures, and answer any questions you may have.
Vacuuming – The first important step of the cleaning process is vacuuming. Mud forms when the dirt is mixed into water and it is indispensable to remove as many dry particulates as possible before the clean begins. This does not substitute your regular vacuuming but ensures that the carpet is liberated of dry soil before we begin cleaning.
Pretreatment – Just like soaking dishes with stubborn stains, we apply a pre-treating solution and allow soils and stains to loosen. Some specialty stains such as wine, ink, certain foods, etc. will need additional treatment during this process.
Encapsulation Cleaning – An encapsulation solution will be sprayed on all carpeted areas to be cleaned. This will scrub your carpet leaving behind a minimal amount of soiling and encap cleaning solution. As the solution dries it will bond to the soiling which will be removed after the solution dries and the carpet is vacuumed.
Steam Cleaning/Hot water extraction – Depending on fiber type, we generally clean around 200°, our powerful equipment weakens the physical stain’s bond leaving your carpet clean and sanitary. Pressure and heat are regulated to prevent overwetting and heat is adjusted for natural fiber carpet such as wool. This process improves your air quality by eliminating the pollutants, dust mites, pollens, etc. from the carpet.
Waterless Passes– The technician will glide his wand over the cleaned areas using a vacuum only to help remove any excess water. Almost all of the water is removed after the dry strokes, leaving your carpets slightly damp. Small fans are used in certain areas where airflow may not be as good to ensure drying.
Post clean spot treatment – Some stains that didn’t come out during the clean may require an additional treatment after the clean. We have different spotting agents for different types of stains. Although we do use an anti-wicking agent to keep spots from coming back if they are in the pad, some spots may return and need a second treatment.
Protectant applied – An optional additional charge but highly recommended– Most carpet has protectant added in when being made at the manufacturer, however, it is removed with normal wear and needs to be put back in regularly. The time frame of protectant lasting depends on your lifestyle; i.e. do you have pets, kids, or little traffic? Protectant helps lengthen the time between your cleaning and makes cleaning up spills easier. Protectant fills the extra dye sites in fiber and helps to keep dyes from spills from penetrating the carpet fiber. It also resists dry soil and prevents bonding to the carpet, therefore facilitating the vacuuming. It also extends the life of your carpet, saving you thousands in replacement costs. Our protectant comes with a 6-month limited warranty. If anything is spilled on your carpet within 6 months, we take care of it at no charge. Some restrictions apply (such as normal wear, pet, flood, fire, etc. ) Ask your technician for more details.
Final walk-through – We don’t leave until you are happy! Your technician will walk with you to ensure your satisfaction with our work. After completion, you are given a satisfaction survey, a carpet care tips guide, and a goody bag that includes a complimentary bottle of stain remover. You will also receive a call from the office within 1-3 days to ensure your complete satisfaction.