Carpet Cleaning – Terms to Know

Whether you’re the one scheduling your carpet cleaning appointment and want to brush up on your vocabulary, or you’re simply tired of having conversations about the cleaning process and not being able to keep up with the industry lingo – we’re here to help! We’ve put together a glossary of key terms, used by your Certified Carpet Cleaning Technician, to help you understand in the industry lingo.  

Antimicrobial: A chemical treatment used to help reduce the growth of bacteria, fungi, yeast, mold, and mildew.

Blooming: When carpet fibers untwist, this process is known as blooming. Blooming may occur for several reasons including improper heat setting, improper cleaning and maintenance techniques, and general wear and tear.

Carpet Tiles: Unlike wall-to-wall carpet, carpet tiles are individual carpet squares that are commonly found in commercial settings because of their high level of durability. Carpet tiles can be solid in color, textured, or patterned, and can be removed for individual spot cleaning and/or repairs.

Crushing: Also known as “matting,” crushing occurs when fibers become bent and compressed. Eventually, all carpet will show signs of crushing. However, scheduling regular cleanings, using firm padding below the carpet, and frequently rearranging furniture to re-direct traffic patterns can all help to greatly hinder crushing.

Denier: Denier refers to the total amount of yarn per carpet area; carpets with more denier have a higher yarn count.

Face Weight: Similar to denier, face weight plays a great role in carpet performance and durability. Face weight is defined as the total weight of fibers per square yard of carpet. Note: when measuring face weight, backing is not included.

Fibers: Fibers are the basic material that carpet is made from. While the majority of carpet manufactured today is made of synthetic fibers (i.e. nylon, olefin, polyester), other types of carpet are made from natural fibers, including wool, cotton, silk, and bamboo.

Fray: As a result of high-traffic, wear and tear, and improper cleaning methods (i.e. using incorrect cleaning products, scrubbing stains instead of blotting, etc.), carpet fibers can fray. When fraying occurs, the carpet fibers become damaged, expand, and change textures.

Hot Water Extraction: Recommended by major carpet manufacturers, hot water extraction is a cleaning process that agitates carpet to break down the soil and grime buried deep within the fibers. After a thorough rinse with eco-friendly cleaning solutions and a rapid turbo-drying process, carpets are not only cleaner, but they are stronger as well.

IICRC Certified Carpet Cleaning Technicians: The IICRC is a certification and standard-setting non-profit organization for the inspection, cleaning, and restoration industries. In partnership with regional and international trade associates, the IICRC serves more than 25 countries with offices in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. Woodard’s team of cleaning technicians are proudly IICRC certified.

LEED Certification: LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices. To receive LEED certification, building projects satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification. Prerequisites and credits differ for each rating system, and teams choose the best fit for their project.

Maintenance Program: A scheduled program of cleaning and restoration services that is personalized and customized to meet the unique needs of commercial buildings, office spaces, educational settings, and other facilities.

MOR™ Cleaning Machine: The industry-leading rug cleaning machine system that evenly shampoos, rinses and extracts moisture through rolling pin wringers all in one machine. The MOR™ cleaning machine is recognized as the finest automatic rug and carpet tile cleaning system available in the commercial market today. Click here to learn more about The MOR™ cleaning machine.

Padding: Also known as “carpet cushion,” padding is the layer of cushion that is installed between the carpet and floor board. Padding is essential in prolonging carpet life, appearance, and quality.

Pile: Sometimes referred to as “nap,” pile is defined as the visible portion of carpet fibers. There are several different types and styles of piles, including cut pile and loop pile.

Pile Reversal: Also known as “shading,” pile reversal occurs when high-traffic activity bends the carpet fibers in various directions. Pile reversal is highly common at pivot points (i.e. hallway corners, doorways, etc.), and directly results in the creation of a discolored impression.

Resilience: Carpet’s ability to resist crushing/matting is known as resilience. Type of fiber, padding, backing, and other characteristics are used to qualify the amount of resilience a piece of carpeting has.

Rippling: Typically caused by excessive amounts of heat and humidity, rippling is the technical term for wave-like or ruffled patterns that appear on wall-to-wall carpeting. In most cases, rippling can be corrected by contacting a qualified contractor or carpet retailer to re-stretch the carpet.

Seam: The line where two pieces of carpet intersect is known as the seam. Since most carpet is produced in 12-foot wide rolls, avoiding seams is rarely a possibility.

Shedding: Post-installation, new carpet has a tendency to shed fibers for several weeks. While shedding is more common in cut pile and wool carpets, it is still a minor issue for synthetic fiber carpets. Regular vacuuming is the best method for resolving a shedding issue.

Soiling: When dirt particles, germs, and grime build up in carpet fibers, soiling occurs. A maintenance program, regularly scheduled professional carpet cleaning services, and routine vacuuming are all ways to prevent soiling from occurring.

Tufting: Tufting is the first step in the carpet manufacturing process, and is defined as the loop (cut or uncut) of pile.

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Showing 6 Comments

Bryan A. wrote on August 18th, 2016 01:08:56am
This is a great list of terms most carpet cleaners use when describing their services to customers, and when they inform them of any issues with their carpets. it helps to have something to refer to if customers don't understand the terminology. Thank you for sharing!
Rochell Huges wrote on May 24th, 2017 07:05:11am
you have explained the terms very well. It is very helpful for those who are seeking to opt for professional for carpet cleaning. Now, they will understand the basic terms of their carpet
Richard Learner wrote on January 3rd, 2018 12:01:07am
Thank you for providing these important terms. Very nice blog about the carpet cleaning. Very helpful!
RichardLearner wrote on January 9th, 2018 01:01:04am
Thanks for sharing this blog. It has bring so much clearity regarding the best method for Carpet cleaning. i always have to clean carpet myself. it takes me a lot of time.
RichardLearner wrote on January 18th, 2018 02:01:32am
This is such a nice blog. It is very helpful to know about carpet cleaning service. This is important for everyone. I want to get the most out of the carpet cleaning service I need. Thank you for sharing this article.
RichardLearner wrote on February 23rd, 2018 11:02:25pm
It’s a great post & tips which are given in this post are really beneficial for carpet cleaning. It would be very informative for us. Thanks for your great post.