Upholstery cleaning. Danger!! Has your operator extracted properly??

I was recently called out to where a cleaning Company was asked to clean a heavily soiled 3 piece suite covered in a Polyester Microfibre cloth. As I am sure you are aware the absorbent characteristic of Microfibre fabric combined with its oil loving nature can create a rather heavy soil problem in a relatively short time. The suite was full of solutions where the previous operator had extracted correctly and left a “sticky” residue behind.

The cleaning technician had picked up from past experiences or from the internet (not always the best way) that he could “get away with” using high pH detergents in both his pre-treatment ‘and’ the extraction solutions to achieve a good job….it had before…so he did. It’s true that highly alkaline detergents rarely cause damage to this particular fabric as they may well do if cleaning delicate natural fibres. …essential you get your identification right.

When people sit on furniture, there is direct skin contact with the fabric, this will include any detergent residues left within the fabric OR the interior fillings. There are more people these days who suffer allergic reactions to chemicals, food etc. therefore they are more likely to experience skin irritation after the fabric is cleaned. The same could be said for small children being allowed to crawl, sit or play on a carpet as well as soft furnishing fabric if it is not thoroughly rinsed.




All Professional Upholstery & carpet cleaners should be fully trained. Why?

a) As an upholstery & carpet cleaning technician, you need to fully understand the characteristics of the various fibres contained within the soft furnishing fabrics to be cleaned. Man-made fibres are less absorbent than Natural fibres. You need to ‘fully’ extract moisture/cleaning solution from the fabric.

  1. b) A full understanding of how the chemicals that are to be used actually work. Fabric cleaning chemicals are formulated to remove body fats, perspiration so when using them protective chemical resistant gloves should always be worn. Failure to do so can lead to Dermatitis a painful irritating rash or even more severe chemical burns. Any chemical left within the fabric during the cleaning process may well affect the customer and their family. That’s why they must always rinse and neutralise when cleaning soft furnishing fabrics.
  2. c) A low moisture upholstery tool like our Sheardry tool is useful, which limits the penetration of moisture within the fabric and doesn’t allow moisture to penetrate through to the interior…if correctly used.

The Sheardry Tool is so effective in fact that this in itself may lead to a problem if the pre-treatment chemical is over applied and allowed to penetrate into the interior fillers.

The hand tool is designed to rinse out the exterior and is only used by trained professionals. Therefore, having the correct training and accreditation is absolutely essential.

DIY, Hire and small machines do not have the vacuum power to achieve this. Those machines are small for a reason. They are ineffective and leave behind residue.


Any residue of cleaning chemical left behind will wick up into the surface area of the fabric as it dries out and remains there to be absorbed into the body of any person using the furniture.

To prevent pre-treatments penetrating into the interior is simple…select the appropriate chemicals and method of application. Be careful not to over apply your pre-treatment.

A reminder……

People do sit upon, sleep on and eat meals on their furniture. If cleaning product residues are left behind, there is always the potential risk of allergic reactions.

So here at Nethermoor Carpet Care, we adopt a safe policy for your cleaning process….”What goes in must come out’’

To discuss your upholstery cleaning needs call us on 01274 886020 / 07929 364080.

Nethermoor Carpet Care, safe, professional and green solution cleaning.