Godfrey Hirst Carpet Maintenance and Care
Caring For Your Carpet
Thorough and frequent vacuuming, particularly in high traffic areas, is important for prolonging the life of your carpet and enhancing its appearance.
After your carpet is laid, vacuum to remove surface lint, dust and fluff. Thereafter, continue to vacuum thoroughly at least weekly and more frequently in high traffic areas. This will remove soil and grit before it works its way below the pile surface, where it is far more difficult to remove and can abrade the carpet and dull its appearance.
Three vacuum passes for light soiled areas is recommended, with five to seven passes for heavily soiled areas. Vacuuming against the natural pile direction first lifts the pile, helping to unsettle and remove dirt and grit while reducing matting. Then, vacuum in the direction of the pile to achieve a uniform finish.
To effectively clean your carpet use only a quality vacuum cleaner. Vacuums fitted with micro filter systems ensure fine particles (such as dust mite allergens) are removed and stay in the collection bag or canister. This is particularly important if you are dust sensitive. Consider your carpet type when selecting a vacuum. Adjustable height and suction are important features as they enable your vacuum to be used on a wide variety of carpet constructions.
Luxuriously thick, soft cut pile carpets: Use a high height setting so any beater bar/rotating brush just lightly touches the carpet surface. Use a suction level that allows the vacuum to move easily whilst lifting dirt and other foreign matter. Avoid vacuums with very concentrated or sealed suctions. Large wheels will ensure the vacuum glides easily across the carpet.
Loop pile or long pile carpets (including cut loop and berber): Vacuum with suction only. Vacuum powerheads, beater bars and rotating brushes should never be used as they may cause excessive fuzzing of the pile surface. Other carpet constructions: Use a vacuum with a beater bar to agitate the pile and loosen any foreign matter in the pile. Change or empty dust collection bags frequently (vacuum cleaner efficiency can be reduced when half full). Ensure the vacuum is kept in sound mechanical condition. Replace filters as recommended by the manufacturer. Check the height of beaters (if fitted) and ensure brushes are cleaned and replaced when worn out.
Depending on usage, carpet should be professionally steam cleaned (hot water extraction) every 12-18 months to revitalise your carpet and remove any oily, sticky and well-settled soils that cause gradual, significant dulling of colours. Steam cleaning should only be undertaken by a professional carpet cleaner (who is a member of a professional association) in accordance with the latest version of Australian/ New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 3733 “Textile floor coverings - Cleaning maintenance of residential and commercial carpeting”. Shampooing, do-it-yourself steam cleaning or dry cleaning is not recommended.
Other Ways to Protect your Carpet
Place mats at all exterior doorways and entrances to carpeted areas to trap dirt and moisture from shoes. Clean mats regularly. Use furniture cups and coasters and occasionally rearrange furniture to alleviate pressure marks. Plastic, slip free chair mats should be used under desk chairs with castors. Take care when moving furniture with wheels by placing a protective barrier between the wheels and the carpet. Use scatter rugs or carpet protectors in high traffic areas and in front of chairs to protect carpet from localised and uneven wearing. Rugs should be cleaned regularly, at which time you should clean and restore the pile of the carpet underneath.
Check rugs for colour fastness before placing them on carpet, as the colour in some rugs may bleed through. After steam cleaning, allow carpet to dry completely before replacing rugs. Exercise caution with all bleaches, tile cleaners, mildew removers, oven cleaners, drain openers, plant food and the like. They are strong chemicals that can permanently discolour or dissolve carpet fibres. Protect your carpet from prolonged periods of direct sunlight with curtains, blinds or awnings.
Moths and Carpet Beetles and Wool Carpets
All Godfrey Hirst wool carpets have insect resistant treatments applied during manufacture. The treatment does not stop insects from entering your home and moths/ beetles can build up an immunity and in some areas have developed a tolerance to treatments. The insect deterrent treatment is embedded in the carpet fibre and needs to be ingested by the insect to have an effect and stop further spreading – such that some fibre loss may occur and good housekeeping is essential. Regular vacuuming along the skirting, under furniture and in corners will discourage insects and reveal any infestations at an early stage. If you believe there may be a minor infestation thoroughly vacuum the area (spraying the contents of the vacuum cleaner with insecticide prior to disposal) and treat the infested area, extending 15 cm beyond the boundaries of the activity, with an insecticidal aerosol spray or dust following manufacturer’s directions and precautions. In the case of serious infestations or if the initial treatment is not successful, it is recommended you contact a professional pest control operator.
Spot Cleaning Guide
Prompt and immediate attention to any spillages or stains is paramount to avoid the penetration of a stain into the carpet fibres. Liquids (particularly hot liquids) must be attended to immediately. If allowed to cool or dry, the stain will be almost impossible to remove. Care must be taken as haphazard attempts at spot removal can cause permanent stain setting, pile distortion and loss of colour.
Basic Carpet Cleaning Steps:
1.Immediately remove as much of the spill as possible. For solids use a blunt knife or spoon. Blot up liquids by applying pressure with white paper towels or tissues. Use a wet/dry vacuum for large spills. NEVER scrub or rub the carpet during the stain removal (or rinsing) process as a fuzzy area may result. Always work from the outside of the stain or spillage towards the middle to avoid further spreading using a blotting or dabbing motion.
2. Triexta carpets: Cold water is all that’s needed to remove most stains from Godfrey Hirst triexta carpets. Always work from the outside of the stain or spillage towards the middle to avoid further spreading the stain. Apply clean cold water to the affected area with a sponge or spray while avoiding over wetting the carpet and blot up with a sponge or use a wet/dry vacuum to remove the water. Repeat until no discolouration is evident in the carpet or removed water. Once this has been achieved repeat the cleaning 4 or 5 times to remove any remnant stain hidden in the pile Once the stain has been removed with cold water, press dry with a clean white cloth or white paper towel.
Most common household food and beverage stains (not including stains containing strong dyes or substances which destroy or change the colour of carpet) need to be treated solely with cold water (for solution dyed nylon, polyester & polypropylene carpets) or warm water (for wool and wool blend carpets) immediately applied to the stained area. Repeat treatment above until no stain is evident on the cloth or towels used to press dry the area. Ensure carpet is press dried with a clean white cloth or white paper towel to remove excess moisture. Do not rub, as rubbing can alter the carpet’s texture. Should the stain remain, using a clean white cloth or sponge, treat with a mixture of 1 teaspoon of laundry detergent and one teaspoon of white vinegar in 1 litre of warm water. Rinse with cold water, repeating treatment until no stain is evident on cloth or towels. Alternatively, try using Godfrey Hirst Spot Out ® Carpet Stain Remover spray. This non-toxic, PH neutral carpet cleaner is gentle on carpet but tough on stains. Available from Godfrey Hirst carpet stockists. See packaging for usage instructions.
3. After the spill or stain has been treated, place several layers of white paper towels over the area and place a flat weight on them until dry. A hair dryer may be used to speed up the drying process but do NOT overheat the area. Do not walk on the carpet until dry.
4. Sometimes stains will reappear due to ‘wicking’ as stains hidden in the pile resurface as the carpet dries. If so, allow the carpet to dry fully and repeat the above treatment until no stain is evident (this process may need to be repeated over a number of days).
5. If stains fail to respond adequately to treatment, call a professional carpet cleaner immediately. It is important professional steam cleaners continually treat any areas affected by stains until there is no sign of discolouration in the carpet or removed water, following which the cleaning cycle should be repeated a number of times to minimize the risk of wicking. Stains should be differentiated from soiling. Ensure that any residue from spills or cleaning mixtures are fully removed. For example, many sugar based spills, such as soft drinks and coffee, leave a sugar residue after removal. Similarly, when spills are cleaned with a detergent solution and the area is not sufficiently rinsed, a sticky detergent residue can remain. This sticky residue attracts soil from ordinary foot traffic and the resulting discolouration appears to be a stain. If so, repeat stain removal procedures above.