Haven't posted here in looks like seven years (hi!), but I thought I'd jump in and share this long but hopefully entertaining and maybe interesting thing: today I was a Regular Ol' Residential Carpet Cleaning Customer.
So I hired my very first truckmount cleaner today. This horrified and amused and excited me. Why would I hire such a person, you ask? Well, mainly because it took me five or so years to use up the HOST I had stashed after I left there. And I needed a cleaning. I thought about renting a Thing of Vileness at my local hoo-ha and making a game of it but decided to make a different game of it that involved less work: try a truckmount person.
Who to pick then. I thought about calling upon my network to see who was good, but for whatever reason I decided to just be average lady homemaker with no cleaning network and look through my coupons that I usually just toss. I have an aversion to such things though, except for the Chinese food one, and ended up refusing to hire anyone who sent me a coupon. So I turned to the ever-supplying internet, and picked a cleaner based pretty much solely on the look of his website and lack of grammar mistakes. Hired!
Like most residential folks calling for a cleaning, I'm calling for one reason: spots. Specifically, urine.
The dog, a southern dog who lately is called Jerk Dog, has decided that Wisconsin winters are just too durned cold to go out in. So despite my best attempts to train her to use the lawn I actually grew for her in the basement this year, she spent the entire winter letting her guilty effluent out on the at least 25, maybe 35-year-old nylon carpet. I decided to wait until that sweet spot of spring, between the approaching wall of humidity and the temperature being warm enough that Jerk Dog will go outside. Now.
Hired Guy has been informed of all this and assures me the problem will be solved. I agree to pay extra for deodorizing, no problem. Okay, let's do this thing. I pre-vac like a mofo because I have trust issues. And I'm glad I did because he didn't.
Shows up on time; good lad. I'm equally amused and horrified at hoses being run in my door for the first time. True that I don't appreciate them being dragged along my old woodwork though.
I am surprised by the truck stink--something I'd never considered or experienced before. He says the things all cleaners learn to say, like "be careful going from the carpet into the kitchen as it may be slippery." I find this adorable for some reason, but also understand it kinda secretly might mean "get out of here lady I'm working." I split and let him work, taking a few surreptitious pictures on my way to the garage to hang out with my mess there for a while.
Some kind of cleaning tool.
When he's wrapping up he has me walk through with him to verify my happiness. I know that such a thing is not yet possible though; I reserve happiness verification until it's dry. I say nice things anyway. I do however point out that I can very easily smell wet urine. He lays down more deodorizer. Meh. I'm going to have to take care of this myself after all, dang. Visually, most of the spots are gone and overall it looks pretty good and matches my fair and realistic expectations: wettish carpet, most of the spots gone or hidden, no real improvement of my very worn traffic lanes, no magic fluffing of the crushed loop in my daughter's room. But I thought he would be able to deal with the urine--my main reason for calling--and he couldn't.
He's outside packing up when I hear water running. I go to the window and I can't believe it but he is dumping right in my driveway. And my street drains right in to Lake Michigan; extra not cool. And now my driveway is going to smell?!
He gets my email address "to send a receipt" but I know it's really for a reminder for next year. Sigh. He was honest about the dry time, which I appreciated, and suggests using a 50/50 vinegar/water mix for spotting. I smile and thank him. Overall, I thought he did a decent if disappointing job, he was likeable, and he obviously has had training but then the driveway dumping put him in to hack territory for me.
Just for fun, since he left I've been taking not-so-calibrated temp & RH readings every hour or so:
Outside at time of cleaning: 52.5F and 63% RH
Inside 3 ft. above floor: 67.5F and 59% RH
At carpet: 2:15p 57.9F and 87% RH
3:00p 65.3F and 91% RH (urine still smells after 1 hour dwell))
4:00p 65.2F and 92% RH (several urine spots wicking)
5:00p 65.5F and 91% RH
6:00p 67.6F and 95% RH
7:00p 69.1F and 90% RH
8:00p 68.7F and 86% RH
9:00p 68.5F and 81% RH
10:00p 68.7F and 74% RH (urine still smells after 8 hour dwell and still damp but much improved)
Poor guy left thinking he had a satisfied customer, since he was satisfied. But now I have to either call him back when I don't want to see him again or deal with things a different way. Which at least I'm capable of doing. Especially if Jim sends me that magic urine-removal stuff I know he has.
Oh and since I figure some of you might wonder: I paid a little over 200 for about 650 sf, including stairs and aforementioned deodorizing. Since I have now paid a cleaner to do my carpet for me, a truckmount user no less, I feel like I can move on from the industry now. (That's probably not true, but it felt like a good way to wrap this up, ha.)