Upholstery Cleaning - Cleaning Process

Take a moment to see how upholstery is cleaned. Again as with carpet cleaning the following steps along with their definitions, are the steps that the Professional cleaning industry teach as being the only methods for achieving the best possible results. However, all types of cleaning mentioned in this section are subject to extremely thorough pretesting. This ensures your upholstery, and delicate soft furnishings will be handled with great care in proceeding with cleaning.

In the industry, upholstery cleaning is regarded as having its own warning label. This means that there are risks involved with cleaning upholstery. Hence the aforementioned pretesting before proceeding with a job. There are also a few differing industry approved methods for cleaning upholstery, as some types of cleaning are too risky on certain fabrics and constructions.

Primary Method 1

  1. Pretesting
  2. Dry Vacuuming
  3. Pre-Spray & Brush, Spotting
  4. Water Rinse Extraction
  5. Neutraliser & Deodoriser Finish
  6. Dressing & Drying

In Greater Depth..

1Pretesting
Before any upholstery is cleaned, it may be necessary to perform a number of tests on the fabric. The tests will help determine the fabric type and construction and will also show if the upholstery is wet cleanable - the most thorough method. If it is not one of method 2 or 3 may be suggested for proceeding. The pretesting is performed free of charge once an upholstery quote has been accepted.

2Dry Vacuuming
The next stage of the upholstery cleaning is a thorough Dry Pre-Vacuum. Pre-Vacuuming gets rid of the loose dust and grit held in the sofa and armchairs' fabric. It removes dust that is hard to eliminate once damp. Failure to begin with this first basic step can mean that this dirt is never properly removed.

3Pre-Spray & Brush, Spotting
The third step involves the surface area of the upholstery section being Pre-sprayed and scrubbed. The Pre-Spray is a gentle misting of a soil breaker and degreaser onto the fabric, it is then gently brushed in. This part of the process helps break down and loosen up the general soiling. It is a preparatory technique for stage 4. It is similar to the pre-wash cycle on a washing machine, before the main rinse. At this stage any obvious spots and stains will be treated. This ensures that each spot or stain is treated properly, maximizing the possibility of removal.

4Water Rinse Extraction
The Water Extraction is the main stage of the cleaning process. Our world class fast dry extraction system is setting new standards for upholstery cleaning in domestic and commercial settings. Variable pressure water solution is delivered to the upholstery. The water temperature is completely custom controlled, highly important with most upholstery fabrics. This stage of the cleaning rinses the upholstery of the pre-spray and all the broken down dirt. It is instantly pulled away by powerful vacuum units. This system ensures that your soft furnishings are cleaned as deeply as is physically possible, whilst recovering almost all the water used. Incidentally all that's doing the rinsing is a tuned combination of pump pressure, water, powerful vacuums and the right technique. Very little detergent is used in the machine, just under 0.1875% in fact, the rest is tap water. This is all part of good cleaning practice; allowing the pre-spray to loosen the dirt, then just rinsing with water.

5Neutraliser & Deodoriser Finish
Part of good fabric care is leaving everything in a natural pH balance. This is achieved by applying a rinse finish spray. Not only does it leave the upholstery in a natural acidic pH and act as a colour brightener for natural based fabrics, it also stops bacteria and spores from operating. Acting also as a deodorizer it has a pleasant temporary fragrance.

6Dressing & Drying
The final 6th stage of the process ensures that upholstery is dressed and dry in no time. Dressing involves making sure that if the upholstery fabric is velour or pile based it sits in the right direction. Ensuring that it doesn't dry in opposite directions. Then fast drying is achieved with a combination of the following:

  • Powerful vacuum strength and good hand tool technique ensure that
    almost all the water used is recovered at the cleaning stage.
  • With towelling down. As each section of upholstery fabric is cleaned, it is towelled off with terry towels. This helps remove any remaining surface moisture.
  • With powerful air movers the upholstery will be totally dry in around 15 minutes.

Method 2

  1. Pretesting
  2. Dry Vacuuming
  3. Professional Crystallizing Application
  4. Dry Vacuuming
  5. Professional Crystallizing Re-Application

In Greater Depth..

1Pretesting
As the previous 2 methods. If it has been decided to use the following method, it would either be to minimise use of water or to keep cost to a minimum - perhaps even in a commercial setting.

2Dry Vacuuming
As before the next stage of the upholstery cleaning is a thorough Dry Pre-Vacuum. Pre-Vacuuming gets rid of the loose dust and grit held in the sofa and armchairs' fabric. It removes dust that is hard to eliminate once damp. Failure to begin with this first basic step can mean that this dirt is never properly removed.

3Professional Crystallizing Application
This is a Hand Professional Shampoo. This process is a safe or maintenance clean option. It uses a special formula of crystallizing shampoo and optical brightener’s. Firstly after the shampoo is applied, its crystals encapsulate the dirt and soil in the fabric, allowing them to be vacuumed away. Secondly it enhances colour and shine in natural fibres. This process is not a deep cleaning method as method 1 is, so should not be viewed as thorough.

4Dry Vacuuming
Dry Vacuuming by hand now removes the encapsulated dust and dirt from the previous step.

5Professional Crystallizing Re-Application
A re-application is made of the Crystallizing shampoo. In this step it is left. At the time we would make the recommendation to vacuum the next day.

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