Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Thursday's Ask the Experts: Wicking

February 19, 2009
Thursday''s Ask the Experts question from a cleaning professional on the International Custodial Advisors Network (ICAN) "Ask the Experts" page: I have spots on my carpet that disappear when cleaned, but gradually come back over a two week period. How can I stop it?
The answer:
This is a common occurrence called wicking. One of the worst offenders is ice melt compound (calcium chloride). During the carpet cleaning using wet methods, the soils deeper in the pile are loosened and, as the carpet dries to the air, they move along with the moisture to the tips of the fibers. If the material is sticky it will attract soils that show up as spots after exposure to foot traffic. Or, the soils themselves may just be darker than the carpet’s color.
Since this is due to incomplete soil removal, the answer to your question is, rinse more thoroughly after shampooing. Or, you can touch up the spots with a bonnet (or encapsulation) which will remove ... — Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX Associate Editor
lekrafft@juno.com
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