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Filtration Soil and Carpet Cleaning

Filtration Soil and Carpet Cleaning

Filtration soiling, sometimes referred to as filtration marks, is the term used to describe those dark, grayish lines that are found on the carpets of many UK homes, and in some commercial environments. This is not a carpet defect, but is instead caused by dust and other airborne pollutants which accumulate on the carpet face fibers. Filtration marks are most noticeable in areas having a concentrated flow of air over the carpet, and also where there are through tiny cracks and crevices under the carpet. The soiling condition can occur quickly, or it may develop over a period of months or even years.

The level of soiling is dependent upon the volume of airflow and the level of pollutants in the air. Filtration soiling has no bearing on the quality of carpet selected; however, the condition will obviously appear more pronounced on lighter colours rather than darker colours.

Filtration soiling is influenced by Indoor air quality and the construction of the property. Mainly caused by can gas fire emissions, cigarette smoke and automobile emissions. Other causes include residue from furniture polishes, fine sand or clay particles, cooking oils, and a whole host of other soils and pollutants. Oily airborne contaminants trapped by carpet fibers will serve to attract even more dry soil, having a cumulative effect.

Most obvious along walls, under doors that are kept closed for a length of time, along the edges of stairs and under the skirting of furniture and upholstery. Occasionally filtration marks are noticeable away from walls where plywood sub flooring materials have been joined.

This is all very well, but what causes filtration soiling to accumulate in the areas mentioned, and can they be removed?

OK!  Here is the science bit…… As you aware, warm air being lighter than cold air rises upwards. As it cools it drops back down again – in the same way that a hot air balloon is able to increase or reduce its altitude by adjusting the air temperature relative to the surrounding air.

Another interesting fact is that warm air is always attracted to cooler areas or surfaces. This means that as the air is warmed up by your gas fire or central heating, rises up. Fully laden with pollutants, the warm air now starts to circulate moving in the direction of colder areas, such as outside wall or another room.

As the warm air moves towards the cooler areas it will squeeze its way under doors and push its way through gaps and crevices in your home. Cleaning its self as it travels; the warm air works its way through the carpet fibres and deposits its pollutants in the process. Your carpet at this stage is fast becoming a giant filter, gobbling up and holding onto any particulates that come in contact with it.

What is left behind is a build-up water soluble and solvent soluble solids. They are electrical charged, which means they bond firmly to the fibre, making removal very difficult.  As time goes by, more soils build up and soon you have a tremendous cleaning challenge on hand.

While single removal technique is successful in all filtration soiling situations, some simple steps taken over time can bring about a positive result. Prevent airflow through the carpet and carpet edges by sealing cracks in the subfloor, as well skirting boards and the edges of stairs. Keep indoor air as clean as possible, accomplished by reducing indoor air pollutants, such as cooking omissions, fire place smoke, burning candles and the emissions from some cleaning products. Vacuum at regular intervals and always use a crevice tool paying close attention to doorways and where the carpet comes into contact with the skirting.

Recent innovations in soil and stain resistant treatments applied to carpets have reduced the effort previously needed to remove the filtration soiling. However complete removal of the contaminants from the soiled area can be both difficult and complicated, depending on the composition of the contaminant material present. To achieve best results, the service of a cleaning professional should be considered.

At Oran Cleaning we have researched and tested many ways of removing filtration marks and we are now confident that we can remove all but the most stubborn of these. If you leave in the Birmingham, Solihull, Redditch, Bromsgrove or Sutton Coldfield area and you would like a professional opinion on these or any other  type of marks or stains call Brendan on 0121 472 3349 for a free consultation.

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