As professional carpet cleaners, we know how important it is for your home to be clean and healthy. A healthy home starts from the ground up with clean carpet. Research shows that properly maintained carpet promotes improved indoor air quality for you and your family. In addition to having your carpet professionally cleaned every 12 to 18 months to remove embedded soil, we recommend daily vacuuming as the most important cleaning activity to extend the life of your carpet and enjoy a clean, healthy home.
Pet stains are not only gross, they are damaging to your carpet and floors. As professional carpet cleaners, we have seen pet urine stains and smells that are so bad they cannot be removed, which leads to expensive carpet replacement. “Pet urine stains is among the top reasons we replace carpets in homes.” said Marc Holt spokesperson for 651 Carpets. We love our pets and want to share our home with dogs and cats without having to spend money to clean up after them all the time. Following are some things you can do to prevent pet urine stains and our tips for pet stain removal.
Pet Stain Prevention
Prevention is the key to keeping your carpets free from pet urine stains through proper house training techniques, signs of pet illness, and applying carpet protector regularly.
House Training Tips from Dr. Black – We are experts on carpets, not dogs or cats. So we asked a local veterinarian to share her tips on proper house training techniques in order to prevent accidents from happening. Dr. Catrina Black, D.V.M. of Midtown Animal Hospital in Lawton, Oklahoma says:
For dogs, I think the best way to potty train is with positive reinforcement. Start with small puppy pads too. Some of them have pheromones to attract the puppies to urinate on them. When they are used to a pad you just start slowly moving it toward the door then outside. A lot of dogs will learn from other dogs too especially if you have a doggy door. Also, reward them after they do their business outside with a treat. Any accidents need to be cleaned and sanitized immediately so the area doesn’t smell like a good place to urinate in the future.
Cats will naturally want a litter box. It needs to be cleaned or scooped several times a day. Leaving poop or urine in a litter box is like not flushing the toilet. Nobody thinks it’s cool to lift the lid and see a gross surprise. Keep the litter deep and it is easier to keep cleaned. There should be a litter box per cat plus one. So a house with 3 cats needs 4 litter boxes. These boxes should also be placed in quiet low traffic areas where they feel safe to go. Most inappropriate elimination issues with cats are behavioral such as the cat not liking the dirty box, not enough boxes, or a stressor in-house like a new puppy not letting your cat get to the box.
Pet Urination Problems – Again, we asked Dr. Black, D.V.M. how to know if something is medically wrong with your cat or dog or if it’s just house training woe. She advised when to see a veterinarian:
- If they are constantly having inappropriate elimination issues, have your vet rule out infections or other diseases first.
- You should seek medical attention for any animal that is not producing urine. They could have a urinalysis blockage. That is an emergency. Cats, especially neutered males, can have a buildup in the urethra that can block them. Both dogs and cats can have urinary stones called uroliths.
- Bloody urine, super dark urine, or large amounts of urine also needs to be checked out. The animal could have anything from a urinary tract infection to diabetes.
- Even normal animals should have a urinalysis done every 6 months to identify and remedy any problems that may arise. Spending $40 every six months is better than $1000 for a urinary issue. An ounce of prevention is work 10 lbs. of cure.
Protect your Carpet – Carpet Protectors such as Scotchgard will form a protective seal around each carpet fiber to prevent spills from soaking in immediately, keeping them on the surface until they can be blotted up. Carpet protectors will not prevent pet urine from creating a stain, however the stain will not soak in immediately and give you time to clean it up without immediate damage. Most professional carpet cleaning companies recommend your carpets to have Scotchgard re-applied after a deep clean. A deep carpet clean removes the protector along with the soil in the fibers leaving it a neutral ph.
Pet Stain Removal
We would like to say there is a DIY pet urine removal trick that actually works, but the key is to remove the urine quickly and with a professional product.
Carpet Cleaning Products – Most carpet cleaning companies will recommend a quality stain remover to purchase for use at home in-between professional cleanings. Sometimes they will even make their own pet stain removal product, such as A-Team Carpet Clean’s Urine Stain Remover. Carpet cleaning products sold in stores are not professional grade and do not remove the urine or the odor, so the extra cost for a professional cleaner is worth the price.
Professional Deep Carpet Cleaning & Stain Removal – Your carpets should be professionally deep cleaned a minimum of once a year, but more often if you have pets that live in the home. A professional cleaner has the equipment and products necessary to remove not only dirt and grime, but also pet hair and possibly urine stains. If a professional is not able to remove a pet urine stain, then it cannot be done and your carpets will need to be repaired or completely replaced.
We hope you find these tips helpful in maintaining a clean home for you and your pets.
Did you know that water damage is among the top 3 reasons that homeowners in Lawton, Oklahoma filed an insurance claim in 2015 (according to a handy little tool on Allstate.com)? Reduce the risk of incurring water damage in your home with these preventative tips.
Common Winter Issues
From our experience in water extraction services, the most common leak prone areas during the winter months are bathroom sinks, outside water faucets, hot water tanks, and attics with plumbing. Recommendations for water damage prevention:
Bathrooms – When the temperature falls below freezing, keep bathroom cabinet doors open and leave hot and cold faucets at a steady low stream. These tips are good for all faucets within your home.
- Outside faucets – Protect outside faucets with an insulated cover. Try not to use outside faucets during the winter. This helps reduce the risk of frozen pipes. If you have a crawlspace under your home, be sure to close vents and ensure pipes are properly insulated during the winter.
Hot water tanks – The average life expectancy of a water heater is 8-12 years, dependent on many different factors. Tanks that are never drained tend to leak earlier. Click here for more tips from Lowe’s about when to replace a water heater.
- Attic plumbing – Attic pipes are more prone to freeze. This can cause a major flood in your home. If your plumbing is in the attic, it needs to be properly insulated in order to prevent freezing and bursting.
When Prevention Does Not Work
So you tried to prevent water damage to your home but the elements had another idea? Sometimes the best preventative methods cannot stop a catastrophe from happening. If a flood occurs in your home or business, immediately call a professional cleaning company to perform proper water extraction services. Don’t try to clean up the water damage on your own; mold and bacteria can form in your carpets and walls within hours. Only professional cleaning equipment can safely and completely remove water damage in your home. A Team Carpet Clean offers 24/7 emergency water extraction services to residents and businesses of Comanche County in Oklahoma.
Oklahoma has been breaking rainfall records this spring. Due to the excessive flooding, we have been on so many calls for rain water getting in homes. Here are our DIY tips to test your home for potentially harmful moisture that should be removed with professional extraction, cleaning, and drying equipment.
Tips on how to check for “smart” water that could damage or produce a foul odor in the future:
- Get some toilet paper or a paper towel.
- Place on floor about 6 inches from exterior walls. Common areas for water to collect are near doors and walls where the yard slopes down towards your home. Moisture is also commonly found coming through cracks in the foundation.
- With your bare foot, press down as firm as possible. Your carpet cushion or “pad” will absorb 90% of the moisture and spread to dry areas of the cushion. Continue to do this traveling in the direction of the slope of your natural foundation or along the tack strip holding your carpet in place.
- By applying pressure to the cushion, you will force the “smart” water to the carpet fibers. It’s a hide and seek game, and if you don’t find it now you will smell it later.
If you notice moisture during this test and live in Comanche County Oklahoma, contact A-Team Carpet Clean at 580-713-1018. A professional water extraction and carpet cleaning company should have your home dry again in 24 hours and can provide tips and ideas on how to fix the problem.
The holidays are fast approaching and many people will host at least one family gathering this year as well as a few overnight guests. Keeping a clean house is not only inviting to others, it is important for the health of you and your houseguests.
Kitchens, bathrooms, beds, couches, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, and especially carpet, tile, and wood floors all become unsanitary through daily use; more so during the holidays. In the cold and flu season it is important that these are cleaned routinely to minimize disease and germ transmission. Something as simple as an oven temperature knob can transmit E. coli to your turkey dinner and make all of your guests sick.
Try the “Top-Down” method to thoroughly clean your home; start with fan blades and dusting bookcases and work down to the floor. Below is a cleaning checklist to assist you in the many cleaning tasks to consider:
- Dusting – Dust/disinfect ceiling vents, fan blades, blinds, light switches, doorways, doors/doorknobs, walls, and wood furniture (bookshelves, cabinets and handles, dressers, nightstands).
- Kitchen – Wipe down all kitchen surfaces and clean with disinfectant. This includes: countertops, sink, backsplashes, stovetop, oven, cabinet interiors, fridge exterior, shelves, and handles, microwave interior and exterior, and any other surfaces or appliances that are exposed to weekly use. Pay special attention to tile, grout, and porous surfaces (like granite countertops) since grime in these areas can be stubborn. For professional tile and grout cleaning call a cleaning company such as A-Team Carpet Clean.
- Bathroom – Clean and disinfect every surface in your bathroom including: walls, mirrors, shelves, shower curtains/curtain rod, sink, water faucet/knobs, toilet, towel racks, TP holder, trash cans, hamper, tile, tub, and faucet/shower head.
- Guest Rooms – Pay special attention to guest rooms that aren’t regularly used. Clean sheets and bed frames, and use Lysol or a similar product for mattresses and pillows, nightstands, and of course doorknobs. Mattresses can get especially grimy over the years. To get a deep clean on a dirty mattress, call A-Team Carpet Clean. They can have your mattress ready for sheets a few hours after cleaning.
- Furniture – Vacuum any upholstered furniture, use Lysol to disinfect upholstered furniture in your living room, and hire a professional cleaning company to deep clean and deodorize your upholstery. Clean and disinfect throw pillows, blankets, coffee tables, chairs, media areas, game systems, and lamps/lamp switches.
- Other Rooms & Stuff – Clean and disinfect any other rooms, basement, appliances, and utilities in the house; washer/dryer, vacuum, humidifier, standing fan, windows, and central air intake.
- Exterior – Clean and disinfect exterior house surfaces that have daily contact, including; door handles, doorbell, mailbox, garage door controller box/opener.
- Floors – Vacuum, sweep, and mop or disinfect all floors in your house. Shampoo or steam clean carpets and rugs. Sometimes trying to tackle a stubborn stain alone just makes it worse. Hire a certified cleaning company that offers steam cleaning for your upholstery as well area rug cleaning and carpet cleaning. Contact Chris@ateamcarpetclean.com if you need your upholstery deep cleaned or just touched up. A-Team also offers advanced pet stain and pet odor removal and deodorizer.
- Prevention – Use Scotchgard to prevent stains from setting in on couches, rugs, and carpets, or call A-Team Carpet Clean to have professional grade Scotchgard or Teflon advanced carpet protector
- Water Damage & Mold – Pay special attention to water damage and mold (mold is a source for respiratory disease and other sickness). Check basements, bathroom walls and floors, and areas around sinks, washing machines, or water heaters for signs of mold or water damage. Use a mold testing kit if you think an area might be moldy, or call A-Team Carpet Clean who offers mold testing and water damage restoration. They can get deep mold out of couches, cushions, and carpets.
Most house cleaning chores are easy when done regularly. For those difficult jobs during the holiday season, make it easy on yourself and hire a professional cleaning company. Hopefully this checklist will help to break down and keep track of your cleaning efforts.
If you live in Lawton, Ft. Sill, and surrounding areas of Comanche County, OK then A-Team Carpet Clean is here for all of your cleaning needs. We offer professional steam cleaning services, carpet stretching and repair, and tile and grout cleaning. We are available for 24 hour emergency services – good for when you need water extraction after your pipes bust on Christmas Eve.
Happy Holidays friends!
Halloween is near, which means time for jack-o-lanterns, candy, costumes, black cats, and parties! All of these things are festive, fun, and MESSY. A-Team is here to provide you some tips and tricks from a pro on how to remove spooky stains and more.
Since you know this season will be messy, how about taking some time to prepare your carpets and upholstery with the power to block stains.
Step 1: Vacuum your carpets and upholstery well making sure all debris is removed.
Step 2: Scotchguard is an excellent protector for carpet because it fills in the dye sites that the stains would adhere to. You can buy Scotchguard at almost any store. Follow the directions on the can and spray all of your carpets and upholstery.
Step 3: Skip both steps and call a professional such as A-Team Carpet Clean. They will use advanced products and equipment to ensure your home is clean, deodorized, and protected. A professional job is always more thorough and effective than DIY techniques.
Pumpkin, Candy, Blood & Witches Brew Stain Removal
Carving a pumpkin? Kids going trick-or-treating? Serving up some witches brew? Dressing up as a zombie? All of these scenarios are common during Halloween and almost always leave stains in your home. If you prepare your carpets and upholstery, stains should easily lift off when you blot the area. For more difficult stain removal, try these steps:
Step 1: Scrape off any excess candy, pumpkin puree, or pulp with a dull knife. If the stain is fresh it is much easier to remove.
Step 2: Mix a solution of two cups cool water and one tablespoon dishwashing liquid.
Step 3: Using this solution, sponge the stain from the carpet or upholstery with a clean white cloth.
Step 4: Next, blot at the solution until the liquid is absorbed.
Step 5: Repeat steps 3-4 until the stain is removed from the upholstery or carpet.
Step 6: Now that the stain is removed you should get plain cold water and a new white cloth and sponge the area to remove the cleaning solution, and then blot dry. Distilled water is the recommended water if available.
Hint: Be sure to get the upholstery only as wet as necessary for stain removal. When using any over the counter spotter always use water after stain is removed to rinse out any soapy or high alkalinity. That will help lower the ph of the spotter you used. Lowering the ph to a neutral 7ph will keep spots from coming back.
Step 7: Some stains are more stubborn than others. If these steps do not remove your stain, a professional carpet cleaner is in need. No stain is a match for the HydraMaster equipment and professional stain removers used by A-Team Carpet Clean.
Candle Wax Removal
Step 1: After scraping off as much wax as possible, cover the stained area with a damp brown paper bag. Use a damp white towel and place on top of the brown paper bag. This will help keep you from damaging your carpet.
Step 2: Place the iron on top and press lightly for 15 seconds. The candle wax will transfer to the pores of the paper bag allowing it to lift.
Step 3: Then turn down the iron, remove the paper bag, re-wet your towel, and place the towel over the candle wax to remove the color wax.
Step 4: Replace or move the cloth frequently. Be careful not to spread the stain further if you choose to move the cloth around.
CAUTION: Before using the iron on your carpet, test it with the cloth in an inconspicuous area. Some carpets made with man-made fibers can melt even at low temperatures, meaning you would do more harm than good trying to get the candle wax out using this method in such a situation.
Black Cat Hair Removal
Black cats are a traditional symbol of Halloween, but they also leave coarse, black hairs in your home. Black cats are not the only ones to blame – any other colored cat and most dogs shed their fur as well. Here are some tips to help rid your home of excess pet hair:
Step 1: Use a quality dog or cat brush to regularly remove the hair from your pet. Brushing captures excess fur and dander in the brush instead of leaving it to cover your home.
Step 2: Remove pet hair from your carpets and upholstery with various methods:
- Use the window squeegee method
- Vacuum regularly and thoroughly
- Buy a carpet grooming tool from A-Team to use after vacuuming which helps remove hair and returns carpet to its natural look
Step 3: Nothing will remove the excess pet hair, dander, and odors from your carpets and upholstery like a professional cleaning will. The Carpet and Rug Institute recommends that carpet be cleaned a minimum of every 12 or 18 months, before it shows soiling. Daily vacuuming is the most important cleaning activity, but deep Hot Water Extraction cleaning must be performed to remove stubborn or embedded soil.
We hope these tips will help you have a stain-free and happy Halloween!
Though it’s tough to keep stains, dirt, hair, allergens, and dust out of your carpets without calling in a professional, it can be done! Taking a little extra time to care for your carpet in between cleanings prolongs your carpet’s life and also helps you to cut down on cleaning costs. Use these easy, affordable do-it-yourself tips to care for your carpet and upholstery.
- Invest in a Window Squeegee
You might think that window squeegees are only good for cleaning glass, but they are also one of the best ways to remove hair from your carpet:
- Choose a squeegee with a long handle so that it is easier to work with.
- Pull it in a single motion across the carpet or across furniture upholstery.
- As you drag the squeegee toward yourself, hair and pet fur will begin to form small clumps and piles.
- To remove the most hair, repeat the process as you pull the squeegee in the opposite direction.
- You can also pre-treat your carpet with a homemade solution of water, fabric softener, baking soda and vinegar. Spray lightly over the carpet and allow it to dry. The solution will soften sticky hairs and make it easier to catch them.
This simple maintenance routine allows you to go longer between professional cleanings and can also reduce allergens and dust buildup dramatically.
- Clean Messes Promptly and Carefully
If you are living with kids or pets, you know that accidents will happen on your carpet and upholstery. Unfortunately, these accidents don’t just leave stains. They can also leave terrible smells that permeate your carpeting and furniture – especially pet urine! Follow these steps for Do-It-Yourself stain clean-up:
- Avoid Rubbing – To prevent the smell and stain from sticking to the carpet, it’s important to avoid rubbing during cleanup. Exerting too much pressure can make particles sink deeper into carpet fibers.
- Remove Solids – Pick up any solid matter that you can. Try to remove it quickly in order to keep the mess from spreading. Fill a spray bottle with club soda or cold water and spray the entire area. Blot the moisture with a towel.
- Remove Stain – Make a simple cleaning solution. Allow salt to dissolve into two cups of warm water. Mix in two tablespoons of rubbing alcohol, four ounces of white vinegar and one tablespoon of laundry detergent. Dab the mixture over the stained area with a sponge several times. After blotting with a towel, repeat this step. If you don’t want to mess with making your own solution, purchase a Stain Removal product that is made and recommended by professionals such as our DIY Stain Removers.
- Rinse & Dry – When the area is clean, use a towel and some warm water to gently rinse the mixture from the carpet. You can use a fan or dehumidifier to make the area dry more quickly.
- Professional Cleaning – Some stains just cannot be penetrated with DIY techniques. If you try these steps and the stain will not go away, you need a professional cleaning. A-Team Carpet Clean offers stain removal services to all of Comanche County in Oklahoma.
- Care for Old Stains
Do you have tough stains that have marked your carpet or upholstery for years? Try this simple stain removal trick:
- Use a Solution – Create another homemade solution by mixing equal parts ammonia and clear Windex or yellow Windex with hot water.
- Saturate Stain – Gently pour the solution over the stained area until the fabric or carpet is saturated. Then, lay a towel over the stain and carefully iron over it with a clothing iron set to a low temperature. Be careful not to press too hard or to use too much heat.
- Remove Stain – Remove the towel and blot the stain carefully while avoiding rubbing. If you can still see the stain, repeat the process several more times until it has disappeared.
- Stubborn Stains – Some old stains cannot be removed with DIY techniques. If you try these steps and the stain will not go away, hire a carpet cleaner for professional stain removal services.
While these simple tips can help you keep your carpets fresh in between cleanings, it is still important to invest in regular professional care to extend the life of your carpet and upholstery. A-Team Carpet Clean provides high-quality cleaning services for both residential and commercial properties. Contact us today for a free estimate or to schedule a cleaning in order to keep your carpet looking, feeling, and smelling brand new.