My First Truckmount Cleaning Experience!

Discussion in 'the CleAn Room' started by green research, Apr 28, 2017.

By green research on Apr 28, 2017 at 11:49 PM
  1. green research
    green research

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    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.

    Not mine.

    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.
    Ack HOSES.JPG 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.JPG 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?!
    Dumping.jpg

    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.)
    starfiber, regarossa, scottw and 11 others like this.

Comments

Discussion in 'the CleAn Room' started by green research, Apr 28, 2017.

    1. Matt Wood
      Matt Wood

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      You knew about this website, yet you didn't contact us to help you find a reputable cleaner.
      And you seem to know more about cleaning carpet than the guy you hired with the way you described the job and the wicking. With as much as you are currently educated into this business, you should know that your carpet is already ruined.

      I don't want to get into the specifics about what he should've or could've done different. But one thing I do want to point out, is that you get what you pay for. He only charged you around $.23/sq. ft. That's the whole deal. With the way Google is, why didn't you pick the carpet cleaner based on their rating on the local listing?

      Sorry for being so harsh, but this guy might be new, or just had a bad day and came from a job similar to your basement, which is why you smelled that odor. The smell of urine in our waste tanks are boosted with bacteria and heat, making it smell twice as rough. Most of the time, we don't have time to clean our whole unit out in between jobs. No excuse, I'm just trying to vouch for the carpet guy.

      I recommend you call him back to fix it, if he promises customer satisfaction. Since you know about us and this website, we can give you a list of things to suggest to him in fixing it or at least making it livable.

      Since this is a basement, I recommend getting someone to come remove the pad underneath (if there is one) and then having your carpet guy come back to reclean it with the proper urine treatment.. You'll see more promising results.
      Able 1, Russ T. and icleancarpetz like this.
    2. Matt Wood
      Matt Wood

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      As for the "adorable" comment on slipping:

      Twice I've had a customer slip and fall.
      And once I had a customer trip over her own rug and fell away from me, getting a concussion. I was so mad at myself because she was elderly and she fell so fast, I didn't have time to catch her.
    3. Nomad74
      Nomad74

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      I agree Matt. I tell every customer, "Please be careful when transferring from the carpet to a hard surface. I'm introducing moisture into your carpet and I don't want you to slip and fall, and I suck at giving CPR." I always get a little laugh, but it makes my point. I always invite the customer to watch and ask me any questions as I work away. I remind them that they are not in my way, I'm the one in their way and I appreciate their business. I also warn them about the extreme suction of the main hose and of the heat of the solution line. Also to please secure their pets and children.

      The thought of a slip-and-fall occurrence scares the crap out of me. I once was stripping a VCT floor with that Bonesaw stripper. That stuff is slicker than snot. I had my signs up and doors locked, but the business owner just could not get it through her head that I needed the place closed while stripping the floor. An elderly man walked in and went ass over elbows into the stripper. It was all over his back, head and arms and he could not get off the floor. He just slipped around on the floor like a fish on the boat deck. I was sick inside. I couldn't get that job done fast enough. I ended up working 19 hours total on that damn VCT and will never do that god-forsaken flooring again. After the guy fell the lady finally got smart and stopped letting customers in the store. As for the man, He was okay, but it could have been very bad.
      Last edited: Apr 29, 2017
    4. icleancarpetz
      icleancarpetz

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      Lesson learn for me or moral of the story:

      Always carry and use a black light to locate and saturate the homeowner for allowing a mutt to run the house
      Prequalify the job (and customer) and set realistic expectations

      If that carpet was anything like the one I encountered a few weeks back, there is no way even the best of the best cleaner would have completely solved that problem. Best thing to do there is toss out the carpet and pad and treat the subsurface then get rid of the dog or home owner.



      This was my was my job a few weeks back. Homeowner allows these two muttleys to run the home as they please. As I'm cleaning, one of the dogs would poop here and there. This huge finished basement. Once I got done homeowner wanted me to put her on a every six month reminder schedule (as if the stink pee would not remind her the carpets need treatment or her). I couldn't get out of there fast enough once done.
      IMG_0593.JPG IMG_0592.JPG IMG_0591.JPG IMG_0590.JPG IMG_0589.JPG
      Last edited: Apr 29, 2017
    5. Nomad74
      Nomad74

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      I sure wish Marty would show up. It just isn't a party without him.
      Russ T. and Matt Wood like this.
    6. icleancarpetz
      icleancarpetz

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      There is a way to keep the van a bit fresher between jobs. Dump before the next job then take about 1/2 gallon or little less of good cheap smelling enzymatic product and suck it into the waste tank. Works every time.
      SamIam, Nomad74 and Matt Wood like this.
    7. D Luke
      D Luke

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      So classic!

      1. Homeowner who decides to live in a literal pet toilet.

      2. Carpet cleaner who seems to at least not be a total hack realizes there is no hope for total remediation of the situation so does what he can at a fair price to make a little money and be on his way.

      3. Homeowner in denial that this was just a seasonal issue and the dog won't be back to pissing before the carpet is dry.

      4. Ok, the draining right on to the driveway was a hack move, but can't really blame him for wanting to leave that payload behind. Should have at least ran a whip to the lawn though.
    8. icleancarpetz
      icleancarpetz

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      I agree with you D Luke. Should have run a whip to the lawn and the homeowner.…grass love it and maybe the homeowner will too. :biggrin:
    9. Nate The Great
      Nate The Great

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      I'd Host it and problem solved... Adorable dry carpet cleaning is awesome...
    10. Desk Jockey
      Desk Jockey

      THE GREAT SANTINI

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      Yes but we are talking about dog piss, so its almost like he's here! :biggrin:
    11. Nomad74
      Nomad74

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      You just made coffee come out of my nose
      Old Coastie likes this.
    12. jcooper
      jcooper

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      Encap... It fixes everything.

      :biggrin:
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    13. steve_64
      steve_64

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      Call the next guy in six months and report back.

      Kinda cool hearing from a customers point of view. Thanks for the info.
      SamIam and Nomad74 like this.
    14. Doug Rice
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      Winters?, more than one. I wouldn't have used my vac in your house either and yours reeks of dog pee every time you use it. Your not an everyday normal customer after dumping pounds and pounds of Host crap on your carpet for years. I wouldn't worry too much about the beautiful old woodwork in your house now as it smells just like your carpet as all that old dry wood has absorbed the pleasant aroma your used to. You do know all your clothing and furniture have the same smell? I think you need to ..................... well I could go on and on but you think your problems are from the CC and not the dog.
      cobra likes this.
    15. Lee Stockwell
      Lee Stockwell

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      Welcome back Debbie! Forgive some of our righteous newbie pups.

      I'm taking notes on your experience, and appreciate the feedback.
    16. green research
      green research

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      Next time I will look you up! Will you come to Racine?

      And yeah I AM concerned about all the untreated stuff going into the lake; aren't you?
      Lee Stockwell likes this.
    17. Jimmy L
      Jimmy L

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      While I didn't read all of your story it did flow just like a romance novel. As I gazed at the story I teared up........became emotional..........a sudden rise......as I began to gently move to and fro in my recliner..........visions overcame me.......I became even more excited.............then the moment passed............and my eyes began to close.............ZzZzZzZzZzzz.
    18. green research
      green research

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      No, the cleaner didn't discuss not being able to deal with the urine -- "I have a really great deodorizer that will take care of it," or something along those lines. His confidence gave me confidence. I think I paid and extra 30 or 35.

      The smell permeated the house immediately when he started up the truck, so I'm going to answer that it was exhaust. How do you prevent this kind of thing if you're a cleaner, needing to park kinda close and have the door open? Door sealing? Seems overkill on a good-weather day to me. Exhaust filtering? At least telling the customer that their might be an unexpected odor?
    19. steve_64
      steve_64

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      Now this would be fun!

      I Live on the St Joe river in Niles Michigan. It dumps into lake Michigan so I get it too.
      Erik and green research like this.
    20. green research
      green research

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      Hi Lee! Thanks.

      It's really all just a bit of fun. But it was an interesting experience, having my carpets cleaned by a professional stranger. I recommend it.

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