A Step Above’s rug care staff is thoroughly trained to care for your quality rugs. We will thoroughly wash your rugs in our custom built cleaning area where they will receive a thorough cleaning process custom designed for your specific rug fiber and needs.
We offer both offsite and on-site cleaning. Taking rugs offsite to our facility allows for thorough rinsing insuring the best clean possible. Sometimes you just want them freshened up. We can do that cost effectively at your home on some fiber types provided the rug has no major staining or pet issues. You can rest assured since we offer complimentary rug care 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 synthetic, wall-to-wall carpet for many reasons:
The fibers in Oriental and similar rugs differ from those found in residential and commercial carpet. They typically consist of more natural fiber such as wool, silk, cotton, and jute.
The backings are very different, as natural foundation yarns are found more in rugs as opposed to separate synthetic backing fabrics for carpet.
Woven constructions are most prevalent in area rugs, and as such are more sensitive to on-going care.
Cleaning technology varies due to the potential for dye migration and fiber distortion.
During our initial inspection we will determine as much as we possibly can about the type of rug and inherent characteristics and conditions that may affect cleaning. A 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 help determine the best method of safely yet effectively cleaning your rug. You will be contacted by our rug cleaning expert prior to and/or during cleaning to discuss your rug’s condition if any stains become problematic. Once we get your authorization to proceed, we guarantee to give you expertise and workmanship consistent with industry standards of care.
Woven rugs tend to hide substantially more dry soil than wall-to-wall carpet. Studies performed by the Eureka Company found that a 9 x 12 rug could hold as much as 87 pounds of particulate soil. We use a variety of techniques to “dust” the rug. Gently beating (like Grandma used to do), the rug from the backside with a specialized machine allows soils to sift downward and out of the pile. This is the most important step in cleaning any rug, as dry particle soil can cut the rug’s delicate fibers and cause premature wear. Following dusting, the rug’s face is vacuumed to remove fine particles left on the surface.
Color fastness test and Dye locking
One of the worst situations that can occur during rug cleaning is dye migration or bleeding. Since most fine rugs are made of wool or silk which is dyed with acid dyes, dye migration is always a concern. We will perform a prolonged colorfastness test to determine which cleaning method to employ to avoid potential color migration problems while achieving the most effective cleaning results. Problem rugs will be treated with a dye locking agent to help inhibit any bleeding problems.
Any potentially troublesome spots will be pre-treated with special products to help increase chances of removal.
Fringe Cleaning and Grooming
Often times, 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 to choose the best cleaning procedure possible for maximum soil removal based on fiber content, delicacy and colorfastness. These methods may range from very low moisture to complete submersion cleaning with heavy scrubbing to remove soiling. Depending on the type of rug, soils will be thoroughly rinsed from your rug 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 dried flat on our rug drying platform 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 with a soft bristle brush made especially for rugs. A final vacuuming will remove loose fibers and dry soil that may have surfaced during the drying process.
Application of Fabric Protection
Fluorochemical protectors resist particle soiling as well as water and oil-based stains. Application of fabric protectors can enhance the performance of your rug and help keep it cleaner longer. Since these coatings may be worn off over time by traffic and maintenance (e.g., vacuuming), they should be reapplied after a period of use and following professional cleaning.
Our rug cleaning specialist will give the rug a final inspection and release 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 with 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.
Not only will rug pads bring comfort and cushion to your rugs, but 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.
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) – when bleach is spilled or certain cleaning products get on the carpet it can turn the color or even remove the dye completely. Our trained technicians can neutralize the bleach spot and put color back in your carpet fibers getting them back to or as close as possible to the original color of your carpet.
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 – vacuuming is an important first step in cleaning your carpet. Water mixed with dirt is mud and it is important to remove as much dry particulates as possible before the clean begins. This does not replace your normal vacuuming between appointments but ensures that the carpet is free of as much dry soil as possible before we begin cleaning.
Pretreatment – We put down a pre-treating solution and allow it to dwell to help loosen soils and stains (think soaking your dishes before you wash them). 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 area 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 over wetting and heat is adjusted for natural fiber carpet such as wool. This step helps improve your air quality by removing the pollens, pollutants, dust mites, etc. from the carpet.
Waterless Passes– the technician will glide his wand over the cleaned areas using 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 a fiber and helps to keep dyes from spills from penetrating the carpet fiber. It also resists dry soil and allows less soil to bond to the carpet, therefore, making it easier to vacuum up. 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 insure your complete satisfaction.