“The carpet will always dry in the same position it was laying when wet.” This statement has been repeated so many times by Melbourne carpet cleaning that they don’t take notice that not all carpets are created equal, nor does each carpet have similar absorbency properties and fibers. When we look at carpeting or rugs as well as any fiber material, they have different characteristics including but not limited to carpet fiber gauge or carpet yarn size, carpet construction (tufted high density or woven lower density), and carpet stain resistance.
The primary variable that affects carpet absorbency is carpet yarn size. Carpet fibers are measured in microns with a higher number indicating a finer fiber – for example, 100 microns indicates a much finer fiber than 30 microns. The higher the carpet fiber’s diameter the less likely it will absorb liquids due to its very fine microscopic surface area.
What is “Wicking? in Carpet Stains”
Wicking occurs when carpet fibers are made so fine, or carpet yarn is made with a higher carpet fiber micron count, that it actually pulls liquid up from the carpet backing. This happens because liquids are pulled to the carpet surface through capillary action and then absorbed by the carpet instead of being soaked up into the carpet backing. If more liquid is pulled than soaked in, there will be a visible stain or mark on top of the carpeting. When water is left sitting on any material for an extended period of time a “wet spot” will appear. In carpets, this wet spot doesn’t go away and can leave behind a permanent wet location (stain) if allowed to stay damp and absorb more moisture over time.
The carpet and carpet backing (which you can’t see) are glued to the carpet padding using water-based glue which is 100% biodegradable. Yet, carpet manufacturers never consider carpet construction when marketing carpet as “reversible” or “professional-grade flooring.” For example, commercial grade carpets would never be used in residential homes – they are completely different products requiring specialized training and certification to install. In fact, carpet mills consider all of their carpeting products as simply a commodity with only two differentiating factors being price and durability. Carpet fiber is carpet fiber regardless if it is installed in a commercial office building or a residential home.
How do carpets “wick” stains?
Carpets are made with carpet yarns that have a long carpet “pile” or carpet fiber length. Therefore, as carpet fibers absorb liquids they will also pull liquid up from the carpet backing and into their individual carpet fibers and carpet padding causing a wet spot on top of the carpeting. This is why it’s more important to clean the carpet backing (which you can’t see) than cleaning the carpet surface – since most stains occur below the surface of the carpet where you can’t see them!
The way we look at how well a carpet absorbs liquids is called Precision Optical Testing. It measures in real-time how much liquid is absorbed by a sample of carpet fresh out of production. The samples are placed face down for thirty minutes to create carpet fibers that have the same carpet yarn length. We then weigh them to test how much liquid was actually absorbed by each carpet sample.
Use carpet sliders to move furniture out of the way and leave carpet shapers under your bed, sofas, and tables because those devices would help pull out the carpet dent. Don’t forget to remove carpet indentation marks from corners and edges as well because that’s exactly where most of them are likely to appear on carpets in your home.
Carpet Cleaning Melbourne
At Drymaster Carpet Cleaning Melbourne we have been carpet cleaning for over twenty-five years and have used state-of-the-art carpet testing technology to develop our own carpet care program. Our carpet sampling, testing, drying, and using carpet steam cleaning procedures are superior to any carpet care program that you will find in Melbourne. We’ve learned how crucial it is to test your carpet’s absorption properties because every carpet fiber has unique characteristics when it comes to absorbing liquids.