Pros and Cons of Different Types of Vacuum Cleaners

Shopping for a new vacuum cleaner? With all of the brands and varieties on the market, it can be hard to know what model is right for your home or business. As Asheville’s top choice for professional carpet cleaning, we get asked about vacuums a lot. What type is best for cleaning carpets? Hard surfaces? Drapes and furniture? Which kind is best for air quality? While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, all types of vacuums have their own pros and cons. Take a look at the list below to help you narrow down your options.

  • Canister Vacuums- Canister style vacuum cleaners have a vacuum head that is attached to the main unit by a long hose. The main unit, or canister, rolls along on the ground behind you while you vacuum. These models usually come with multiple attachments for different vacuuming jobs, and a retractable cord reel that saves you the trouble of having to wrap and secure the cord yourself. One of the main draws of the canister vacuum cleaner is that it makes it easier to clean in nooks and crannies, and behind or underneath furniture. The wand style attachment also makes it easy to clean drapes, blinds, and walls. If you have stairs in your home, this might be the vacuum for you, as it is very difficult to tackle stairs with most other models. While a canister vacuum may be lighter weight and better for maneuverability than an upright, it isn’t as good at cleaning carpet, and storing it might pose some extra difficulties. If you have a bad back, you might want to go with another option—using a canister vacuum involves more bending than other types.
  • Upright Vacuums- Uprights are the most popular vacuum cleaners on the market. Their large, powerful heads make cleaning carpets a breeze, and it’s easy to store them because most of the space they take up is vertical. Most upright vacuums come equipped with longer cords and larger dirt capacities than canister models, and they often have motorized bristles for more effective carpet cleaning. The upright style can be heavy and unwieldy for lugging up and down stairs, but for straightforward vacuuming, it’s easier on the back than a canister style. Many uprights are designed specifically for carpets, so if you have different types of flooring in your home, make sure you purchase a model that can handle all of them.
  • Robotic Vacuums- Robot vacuum cleaners are great for busy people who either can’t move around due to age or injuries, or don’t have much time to clean. These little units clean while you’re at work, or at night while you sleep! Having your whole house vacuumed without any labor on your part sounds amazing, right? But there are a few drawbacks. First, these units can be difficult to program, so if you’re not tech-savvy, call a friend who is (or your grandkids) to help you get started. Secondly, robotic vacuums can miss areas that a human wouldn’t. But the biggest caution goes out to pet owners. It’s probably not a great idea to let your robotic vacuum have free rein of the house if you have pets, especially if they are not reliably house trained. There are plenty of horror stories on the internet about what happened when the cute little robot vacuum cleaner rolled through a puppy accident in the middle of the night. It’s not pretty, believe us!
  • Stick Vacuums- Another good choice for those with bad backs or limited storage, stick vacuums are made to be incredibly lightweight and their slim design means they’ll fit almost anywhere. The dirt receptacle in most stick vacuums is designed so that you can easily empty the container into the trash without touching the mess. But with all of that slimness and lightness, these vacuums sacrifice power and versatility. They tend to not come with attachments for different types of cleaning jobs, and their motors are usually weaker than other types, which means that they won’t suck up as much dirt and debris, and may have a harder time tackling carpets.
  • Central Vacuums- While central vacuum units pose a greater expense than any other type, the investment can be a worthwhile one. Central vacs are quieter, cleaner, and more flexible than portable vacuums. Their dirt capacity is huge, and they can often pump exhaust outside of the home. They’re great for cleaning hardwoods and other hard surfaces, and they’re the easiest of all of the options for cleaning stairs. One drawback is that they require professional installation, and if the unit breaks down, it can be difficult to find a local repair service. But if you’re looking to add value to your home for a future sale, central vacs are often a good investment.

We hope this list of pros and cons helped you narrow down the best vacuum cleaning option for your home or business! Check back for our next blog post, in which we’ll discuss bagged vs. bagless vacuum cleaners.

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and are looking for a professional carpet cleaning service, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or send us a message today!

 

What’s the Best Vacuuming Frequency for Your Home or Business?

There are many benefits to installing carpet in our homes and businesses. The most obvious one is that it beautifies our surroundings. Carpeting also reduces noise and vibration and keeps our feet warm in the winter.

But carpet serves another function—one that’s not as beneficial to the home or business owner. Carpet absorbs matter. It attracts and traps unwanted substances over time, whether these substances are visible or not. In other words, even though your carpet may not look stained or dirty, it can still hold pollutants as a result of normal use. These pollutants can include soils, fibers, and atmospheric dust, as well as allergens like pollen, fungi, mycotoxins, and mites. If you have pets, you can add pet hair and dander to the list, as well.

Fortunately, regular vacuuming is a highly effective way of removing most of these pollutants. (Bacteria and viruses can also hide in your carpet, but these are more difficult to extract with just vacuuming. See this post for more information.)

So, how often should you vacuum? Well, it depends upon a number of factors. The answer will vary, not only from home to home and office to office but even from room to room and season to season.

Once a week will suffice for a moderate-traffic room with no extra considerations such as pets, children, or high humidity. Light traffic rooms may need less, and high traffic rooms may need more. You can determine your carpet care maintenance needs by consulting the list below.

Some factors to keep in mind when deciding how often to vacuum are:

  1. Frequency of use: is the room a high traffic area, like a family room, waiting room or hallway? These sorts of rooms will need more frequent vacuuming than low traffic areas like guest bedrooms and conference rooms.
  2. Children: Do you have children living in your home, or does your business cater to a lot of children, like a daycare or an indoor entertainment facility? If so, you will want to vacuum more often, not just because children tend to be greater vectors for dust and debris, but also because they are more susceptible to illness than adults.
  3. Sick and Elderly: Does your business serve the elderly and/or infirm? If you are operating a medical facility or a nursing home, you will want to vacuum more often as well in order to protect the health of your vulnerable patients.
  4. Temperature, Humidity and Time of Year: Does the area get more traffic during the summer than the winter? Often, the carpet in homes will need more vacuuming in the warmer months because people spend more time outdoors and therefore bring in more dust and debris from outside. Humidity is also a factor: the moisture in the air can collect pollutants and then condense on the carpet.
  5. Pets: Have cats and dogs? You should probably double the frequency of vacuuming in the rooms where they spend the most time.
  6. Smoking, cooking and woodstoves: Smoke and ash can easily get trapped in your carpet, as can oils and other cooking residues.
  7. What floor is the room on? Ground level floors tend to absorb more matter from outside than upstairs floors.

We hope you found this post helpful and informative! If you are looking for professional carpet cleaning in the Asheville area, give Five Step a call at 828.772.1824 or shoot us a message.

 

Five Step Now Carrying Rug Pads!

What kind of rug backing should you use underneath your fine rugs?

We’ve been asked that question many times by our customers, and now we have an in-house solution!

Oriental rugs add beauty and character to your home’s interior, but they are often a pain to deal with. They slip around on your hardwood floors. They can bunch up and cause tripping hazards.

To help our customers keep their rugs in place, we have begun carrying Duo-Lock rug pads. The Duo-Lock is an extra cushioned, high performance, rubber-backed rug pad. It’s non-slip, and will work with your oriental rugs, Persian rugs, and any kind of area rug. It has maximum gripping power and can be used on hard floors or carpets. Using an underlay solution like the Duo-Lock can help prolong the life of your rug by eliminating friction to the bottom of the rug. It even provides added padding for the comfort of your feet!

The Duo-Lock can be trimmed to fit any rug size. It is mold, mildew, and moth resistant and is easy to clean. This pad is guaranteed to retain its non-slip properties for ten years with proper maintenance.

Duo-Lock rug pads are available now! To get yours, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or get in touch via our contact form today. And while you’re at it, why not treat those fine rugs to a spa day at Five Step’s Asheville facility?

 

How to Safely Clean a Hardwood Floor

Deep cleaning hardwood floors is one of our specialties. We’ve cleaned a lot of wood floors and restored shine and beauty to even the most hopeless of cases. But in between professional cleanings, you still have to clean your floor! Our clients often ask our opinion about the best way to keep their wood floors looking clean and beautiful, so here are some tips.

  1. Remove dirt, debris, pet hair, and particulates from the floor first with a dust mop or the floor brush attachment of your vacuum.
  2. Once every two to four weeks, clean the floor using a liquid cleaner or oil soap specially formulated for hardwood floors. Follow the instructions on the container and make sure to dilute it sufficiently in water so as not to leave behind a sticky or filmy residue after you clean.
  3. Mix the cleaning solution in a bucket and use a sponge mop to clean the floors, wringing out the mop after each dip in the solution to ensure the floors do not get too wet. Once the entire area has been mopped with the cleaner, rinse the mop thoroughly and wet-mop the floor without cleaner.
  4. Leaving your hardwood floor damp may damage it, so make sure to dry the floor thoroughly using a dry towel.
  5. Prevent scratches in your floor by providing interior and exterior doormats and using protective pads or discs on the feet of tables, chairs, and sofas.

And there you have it! Follow these simple steps and your hardwood floors will stay bright and lustrous between deep cleanings.

If you live in the Asheville area, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or get in touch via our contact form today to schedule your wood floor cleaning! (And yes, we clean pine and laminate floors, too!)

 

 

 

Are Health Hazards Hiding in Your Carpet?

When it comes to carpets, cleanliness is not just what you see on the surface. Carpet health hazards often go unaddressed because we can’t see them. Vacuuming is a good start to keeping clean carpets, and it’s great for dealing with unwanted debris and particulates, like mold spores. But for a healthy clean at the microscopic level, periodic professional cleaning is required.

When you prep raw meat in your kitchen, do you clean up with a wet paper towel, or do you use a cleaning solution to take care of any bacteria remaining behind on the kitchen surfaces? Chances are, you put the cutting board and knife into the dishwasher, where it will be scoured with steaming hot water and an antibacterial detergent. Then you spray the counter with an antibacterial spray, and you wash your hands, too. Not taking these steps could pose serious harm to your family’s health.

We may not eat food off of our carpets. But when your carpet is overdue for a deep cleaning, it can harbor the same types of health hazards found in a kitchen, like bacteria and viruses, plus extra ones like mites and fungi. They ride in on the soles of your shoes, or on your pets’ paws. They settle into the carpet fibers and make themselves at home. Vacuuming alone can’t tackle these invisible threats. Some of the contaminants may cause odors, which, over time, can impact not just your health, but also your enjoyment of the home.

But there’s good news. Periodic professional deep cleanings can eliminate those contaminants and leave you confident in not only the cleanliness, but also the healthiness of your home.

Five Step Carpet Care can eliminate the health hazards hiding in your carpet. With our unique, environmentally friendly, and sustainable five step process, your carpets will look as good as new, even under a microscope! Our cleaning solutions are 100% non-toxic and safe for you, your family, and your pets.

Live in the Asheville, NC area? Give us a call at 828.772.1824 or get in touch via our contact form today to schedule your cleaning!

 

Amazing Before and After Area Rug Cleaning!

It’s been awhile since we did a Before and After post, so I thought it would be a great time to share some photos of an area rug we cleaned recently.

We clean area rugs, including fine and oriental rugs, in our facility in West Asheville. Each rug that visits our facility gets a luxurious spa treatment, complete with a tub soak in our all-natural, non-toxic cleaning solutions.

As you can see, this particular rug looked a bit worse for wear when it arrived. It appears that a large piece of furniture has been sitting on top of it for a long time, and it hasn’t been cleaned underneath. There might be a little staining from spills, as well. But that’s nothing we haven’t successfully dealt with before. Trust us, we’ve cleaned far worse.

BEFORE

Now take a look at the very same rug, after being treated to our amazing five step cleaning process! It looks as good as new. The texture is restored to the rug fibers and the color is renewed. Seriously, if I saw that rug for sale in a Home Depot, it would never occur to me that it wasn’t brand new.

AFTER

If you live in the Asheville area and are looking for a top notch area rug cleaning service, give Five Step a call at 828.772.1824 or drop us a line via our contact form. For our area rug cleaning prices, check here. We offer convenient pick-up and delivery service, or you can drop your rugs off at our facility yourself.

How to Protect Your Carpets Between Cleanings

protect your carpet

Your carpets represent a substantial investment in your home. Carpets protect the subfloor beneath. They add comfort, color, and warmth to a room. They provide a barrier between your bare feet and the cold floor in the winter months. Carpets do many jobs in our homes, and they’re not cheap to replace.

Periodically having your carpets professionally cleaned goes a long way toward ensuring that they’ll remain both functional and attractive for as long as possible. But there’s more you can do to keep your carpets clean, lush, and beautiful for years to come.

Here’s a list of simple Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to maintaining your carpet investment.

DO

  • Place welcome mats at ground level entry areas to contain dust and soil tracked in from outside.
  • Clean these mats regularly.
  • Ask family members and guests to remove their shoes at the door.
  • Implement a regular vacuuming schedule (daily for most businesses dealing with the public; weekly for homes; twice weekly for pet owners.)
  • Vacuum room edges and under furniture every second or third time you vacuum.
  • If you have pets, bathe and brush them regularly to reduce hair, dander and dirt in the home.
  • Avoid bringing juicy or sticky foods into carpeted rooms.
  • Serve beverages to children in cups with tight-fitting lids.
  • Spills happen. When they do, act fast to mitigate the stain. The longer you wait, the more likely the stain will set in the fibers and absorb into the carpet padding. This can lead to odor and mold growth.
  • Keep a small remnant of your carpet for testing new spot cleaners or other cleaning solutions before using them on the installed carpet.
  • Have your carpet professionally cleaned for maintenance (Yearly for homes, more often for businesses.)

DON’T

  • Vigorously scrub a carpet stain. This is an ineffective practice that will actually push the stain farther down into the carpet, while fraying the carpet fibers. Blot instead of scrubbing.
  • Use the wrong cleaning product. To avoid permanent damage or discoloration, make sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
  • Use deodorant powders incorrectly. Deodorizing powders can leave gunky residue on your carpet, which can become more and more noticeable with repeated use.
  • Rent faulty carpet cleaning equipment. Unfortunately, rental equipment is often improperly maintained. Sometimes rental machines can do more harm than good.

With proper maintenance practices, you can get the most out of your carpet for many years to come! If you live in Western NC and are in need of one-time or regularly scheduled carpet cleaning for your home or business, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or use our contact form to get in touch today!

 

Carpet Cleaning Service in Arden NC

carpet cleaning arden nc

Looking for a good carpet cleaning service in Arden NC? Your search is over!

Five Step Carpet Care is Arden’s most trusted carpet cleaning company, for several important reasons. Our customers say they love our friendly crew, our prompt service, and our thoroughness and professionalism. They also like that we show up when we say we’re going to and never leave a mess behind.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that when we’re done cleaning your carpets, they look clean and vibrant as new, and they smell fresh, too. (We can even tackle hard-to-clean pet stains, and we actually get the odor out!) Or that our cleaning solutions are green, sustainable, and completely non-toxic for your family, pets, and the environment.

No matter the style or fiber of your carpet, and no matter what kind of stain, our exclusive five step process will get them clean with no damage to the carpet itself. Check out some of our before and after photos to see what we mean.

We’d love to show you what makes Five Step so special. If you’d like us to make you our next satisfied customer, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or drop us a line via our contact form.

Clean Carpets for Christmas!

Are you hosting guests at your home this holiday season? Maybe you’re planning a Christmas or New Years party, or just expecting family for Christmas dinner. Preparing your home for guests can be stressful at any time of year, but especially in December, when most of us have so many other demands on our time. From gift shopping to meal planning to putting in the extra hours at work to wrap those projects up before taking time off for the holidays, you’re probably stretched pretty thin. Not to mention that all you really want to do when you have a few minutes to spare is sit in front of the fire and stuff yourself with Christmas cookies, not deep cleaning the living room!

But there is one item you can cross off your list, and that’s the carpet and rugs. Our team of friendly pros can get your carpets looking sparkling new, and lightning fast. We also offer a convenient rug pick-up and drop-off service, so you can get your area rugs and even fine oriental rugs cleaned without even stepping outside the front door.

And, as always, our cleaning solutions are 100% green and sustainable, so you can pamper your home with no uncomfortable environmental guilt!

Even if you’re not hosting any gatherings this holiday season, having immaculately clean and vibrant carpets and rugs in your home is a wonderful way to start the new year off fresh. You might consider making carpet cleaning a New Years resolution for your home!

If you live in Asheville, NC, or the surrounding area, and you’re looking for top-notch, professional carpet cleaning, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or drop us a line using our contact form. There’s still time to get those carpets and rugs looking spotless before Christmas!

 

 

Top Wood Floor Cleaning Professionals in Arden, NC

wood floor cleaning arden nc

“Wait, you mean you’re a carpet cleaning company that cleans wood floors, too?”

Yeah, we get that a lot.

But it’s true! At Five Step, we clean more than just carpets. We’re also pros at cleaning your area rugs, upholstery, tile and slate, and yes! Even hardwoods.

Our reputation in Arden for high quality, professional wood floor cleaning services can’t be beat. But you don’t have to take our word for it. Check out these before and after photos to see what we mean.

If cleaning isn’t enough to restore your floors to their original luster, we can even remove old layers of urethane or wax and refinish the wood to a new gloss!

And as with all of the services we offer, our wood floor cleaning process is environmentally safe and sustainable. Our cleaning solutions are all-natural and contain no bleach, acids, enzymes, dyes or colors. They’re safe for you, your pets, and our precious waterways.

If you live in Arden or anywhere else in western NC, and you’re in need of some deep clean TLC for your wood floors, look no further than Five Step. Give us a call at 828.772.1824 or reach out via our contact form to schedule your appointment today!