Five Step Carpet Care of Asheville NC provides rug and carpet cleaning services at the most affordable price in Asheville NC.

How to Clean an Outdoor Rug

Outdoor rugs are a popular addition to patios, decks, and backyard grilling spaces. They can provide extra comfort, a splash of color, and a sense of home-iness to any outdoor living space. But by their very nature, outdoor rugs are going to pick up a lot more dirt and dust than their indoor cousins. So, how to clean an outdoor rug? Read on to learn some tips.

 

Sweeping

Just like indoor rugs, outdoor rugs need regular maintenance to stay looking their best. Most outdoor rugs are woven with durable material, and you can sweep them. We recommend you use a soft-bristle broom to do this. Vacuuming is not the best solution when it comes to removing dust and debris from outdoor rugs, as too much vacuuming can harm the fibers.

 

Stain Removal

Barbecue sauce splatters? Beer spills? No problem. It’s fairly easy to remove most stains from an outdoor rug. Try to attack the stain immediately, if possible. Simply mix some mild detergent (laundry detergent or dishwashing liquid works well) in water and dab at the stain with a clean, dry cloth. For more stubborn stains, try club soda. Avoid using harsher cleaners on your outdoor rug. If you’ve tried all the milder solutions and the stain still won’t come out, it might be time to call in your local rug cleaning professional.

 

Hosing Off

Potting soil spill? One thing that’s nice about outdoor rugs as opposed to indoor ones is that they are made of tougher materials and can withstand a lot more in terms of traffic. This also means that you can simply hose them off with the garden hose to remove a lot of the dirt that they pick up. To prevent mildew growth while the rug is drying, make sure to hose off your rug on a day with low humidity and full sun. But go ahead and use the high pressure hose setting. The rug won’t mind.

 

Mold

If your outdoor rug has been subjected to very wet or humid weather and doesn’t get much sunlight, it might develop patches of mold. The first thing you’ll want to do in this case is to use white vinegar to kill the mold. Pour or spray it on full-strength and let it sit for a couple of hours. Then rinse with warm water and scrub clean with a brush.

To prevent mold from forming on your outdoor rugs in the first place, keep them in a sunny location or move to a sunny location for a day every couple of weeks.

 

Drying
Outdoor rugs dry just fine in the sun, regardless of whether it’s summer or winter. Spread it on the ground or drape it over a railing in full sun, then when the first side is dry, flip it over to the other side. If the weather isn’t cooperating, you can hang the rug up in front of a high powered fan for a few hours, then repeat on the other side.

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and need help cleaning your outdoor rugs, don’t hesitate to give Five Step a call at 828.237.3237 or drop us a line. We’ll be happy to help!

 

Why Customers Love Five Step

We couldn’t be more pleased. The five-star reviews just keep pouring in, and we love reading what our customers have to say about our service. From our punctuality to our ability to literally decrease the weight of area rugs, all of these customers hav found something to love about our service. Check out these reviews to find out what customers love about Five Step Carpet Care!

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and you’re in need of carpet cleaning, rug cleaning, upholstery cleaning, wood floor cleaning, or tile cleaning services, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 828.327.7233 or get in touch via our contact form. We’d be super pleased to give you a reason to love Five Step!

Best Wood Floor Cleaners in Weaverville, NC!

wood floor cleaners weaverville nc

Looking for the best wood floor cleaners in Weaverville, NC?

Even though you maintain the cleanliness of your wood floors through regular dust mopping and polishing, there will eventually come a time when your floors need a deeper clean. In order to maintain their original shine and luster, hardwood and pine floors require periodic polishing. Even engineered wood and laminate floors can benefit from occasional deep cleaning.

Our wood floor cleaning process is green and sustainable, and can restore the beauty and radiance of your floor, making it look as good as new. Our cleaning solutions contain no bleach, acids, enzymes, dyes, or colors.

And if cleaning alone isn’t enough to make your floor shine, we can remove old layers of polyurethane or wax coating and refinish your floor in a new gloss!

Homeowners in Weaverville and across western NC call us for their hardwood, pine, and laminate wood floor cleaning needs. Our reputation for top-quality, professional wood floor cleaning services can’t be beat!

Don’t believe us? Check out the photographic evidence! Here are some before and after pictures of our work.

If you live in Weaverville, Asheville, or anywhere else in western NC, and you’re looking for excellent wood floor cleaning with a smile, give us a call today at 828.237.3237 or get in touch via our contact form.

A Brief History of Vacuum Cleaners

The ancestor to our modern vacuum cleaner was a “carpet sweeper” invented in 1860 by Daniel Hess of West Union, Iowa. The non-motorized machine used a complex system of bellows for suction, and spinning brushes to pick up dirt.

A slight improvement on the original design was patented in 1865 by Ives McGaffey of Chicago. His invention was hand crank-operated, which made it unwieldy to use, as one had to turn the crank and push the machine across the carpet at the same time.

In 1901, Englishman H. Cecil Booth invented a large machine called a suction cleaner. It was powered by an internal combustion engine that ran on gas, and the monstrosity had to be mounted to a horse-drawn cart, and later, an automobile, in order to be transported from place to place. Booth found a receptive clientele among British nobility, which inspired others to improve upon his design.

These early vacuum cleaners did not appeal to the average consumer due to their bulky designs, loud operation, and the odor produced by their exhaust systems. But over the years, enterprising people from around the world fiddled with various suction-cleaning concepts, contributing to gradual improvements.

But then, a breakthrough! In the 1920s, an Ohio janitor named James Murray Spangler created a carpet sweeping contraption out of a soap box, a broom handle, a pillow case, and an electric motor. He then began to sell his machine to local housewives. One of these housewives was a woman named Susan Hoover. (You might recognize the name!) Her husband, William, invested in the mass production of Spangler’s machine and eventually purchased the rights to the design. He named his company Hoover’s Electric Suction Sweeper Company.

The first plastic vacuum cleaner was produced in the 1930s, and the precursor to modern central vac systems was created in 1952 by the Hoover Company, whose name was now synonymous with “vacuuming”.

By the 1960s, vacuum cleaners were much more lightweight and easy to use. The Oreck Corporation produced a uniquely portable model for the hotel industry, and in response to demand from hotel housekeepers, began marketing it to the public.

All of the designs since the first Hoover had used bags to collect the dust and debris suctioned away from carpets. But in the 1970s, James Dyson conceived of a different way of doing things. He thought the vacuum cleaner would benefit from dispensing with the bags altogether. Five thousand one hundred and twenty-seven prototypes later, Dyson unveiled his Dual Cyclone Machine in 1993. Bagless technology was a huge hit with the public. Fast forward to today, and the majority of vacuums sold are the bagless type.

But the bagless vacuum was not the last innovation to disrupt the household cleaning market. In 1996, the first robotic vacuum cleaner was manufactured by Electrolux of Sweden. This serviceable gadget captured the attention of consumers, but ultimately was discontinued because of the ineffectiveness of its early sensors, causing it to collide with other items.

In 2002 the first Roomba was produced by the iRobot company. This robotic vacuum can change directions to avoid colliding with household furniture. Its sensors can detect debris on the floor and keep it from falling down stairs. Only time will tell if robotic vacuums may someday replace manually operated ones, but one thing is for sure: the vacuum cleaner is still evolving!

 

 

 

 

What We Are Thankful For in 2020

Almost every year on the blog, we have done a Thanksgiving post, celebrating our successes of the year and expressing our gratitude for the things (and people!) that give our lives joy and meaning here at Five Step Carpet Care.This year’s a little…different. 2020 has not been easy for any of us, and it can be difficult to find gratitude in our hearts in times like these. But they say the most important time to count our blessings is when times are a little rough. Being thankful warms our spirits and gives us hope for tomorrow.

So we’re going to give it a try. Let’s see if we can find a few things to be thankful for in 2020.

  1. Our health! We say this every year, but this year it’s definitely number 1 on the list. The global pandemic situation has really magnified for all of us the reality that our health is not something to be taken for granted. Our deepest compassion and well wishes go out to all those who have experienced loss of a loved one this year, or medical issues of any kind.
  2. Our staff. Our wonderful crew has amazed and humbled us with their commitment to continuing to provide stellar service to customers across western NC. When we re-opened after the temporary shutdown in April-June, these guys adapted seamlessly to the new operations practices, like masking, extra sanitizing, and social distancing. With all the stress that everyone is feeling right now, it’s not easy to keep your head up and keep doing your best work without complaint. But all our guys have pulled together and dealt with it admirably. We couldn’t be more thankful for—or prouder of–our team.
  3. Western North Carolina has been spared the worst of the pandemic fallout. Our local hospitals and medical personnel are staying on top of the situation. And although we certainly have not gone untouched by COVID, we’ve also avoided a major outbreak. In these trying times, that’s definitely something we can be thankful for.
  4. Autumn doesn’t care how weird and crazy 2020 has been. Leaf season this year has been phenomenal! Being surrounded by all that natural beauty while we’re driving around Western NC to serve our customers, sometimes we can’t help but feel a little gratitude.
  5. Our business has been able to withstand the most devastating economic impacts of 2020. In a year when over 100,000 American small businesses have permanently shuttered, this is nothing to shrug off. We are truly, deeply grateful for each day that we get another opportunity to clean carpets and upholstery in the Asheville area. It means that our business will survive. But more importantly, it’s a sign that our community will be okay. Of course, we have our customers to thank for all of it. More than any year before, you—our customers, loyal and new—have been our reason to keep going.

Thanksgiving 2020 may be a little different than normal Thanksgivings. A little smaller, a little more somber, perhaps. But for us, the meaning of the holiday will be more poignant, more deeply felt this year. We’ll be appreciating each bite, each hug, and each moment. We hope you will be sharing some warmth, good food, and family togetherness, too. Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Five Step Carpet Care.

 

How to Clean a Fabric Couch

how to clean a fabric couch

There’s nothing like sinking into a comfy couch to watch your favorite show or read a good book after a long day of work. But after a couple of years of use, the upholstery on your comfy couch can start to feel not-so-comfy. Over time, the fabric collects spills, dirt, oil from your skin, and pet dander, leaving it looking—and feeling—grimy. Luckily, if the damage hasn’t gone too far, it’s a fairly simple DIY matter to clean a fabric couch. Here’s how to do it.

  1. Vacuum first. Thoroughly vacuum the cushions, arms, and back of the couch, and don’t forget to remove the cushions and vacuum underneath to get rid of crumbs and dirt that might be hiding there.
  2. Stain removal. Most types of fabric upholstery (both cotton and synthetic) can be cleaned with a mixture of vinegar and water. Use one part vinegar to three parts warm water, and squeeze a small amount of dish soap into the mixture. Dab the mixture onto the stains, or mist the area with a spray bottle. Use a clean cloth or towel to wipe the stain until it lifts, then rinse the towel and dab the area to remove any soap residue. Pat dry. (Note that this method might not work for certain types of stains, like ink, or for stains that have set for a long time. If you have stains that won’t come out with vinegar and water, your best bet is to call Five Step! We’ll get the stains out in no time.)
  3. Allow for drying time. Once you’ve patted all of the excess moisture out of the upholstery, allow the couch to air dry for 3-4 hours. You can direct the airflow of a fan toward the couch to speed up the process, or if you live in a very humid climate.

The above method works great for periodic maintenance of your cloth-upholstered furniture, but it’s intended to spot clean stained areas, and not the whole couch! Your fabric couch will still benefit from professional upholstery cleaning on occasion, to deep clean it and make it look like new.

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and are in need of top-notch upholstery cleaning services, give Five Step a call at 828.237.3237 or get in touch via our contact form today!

How to Clean a Velvet Couch

Velvet upholstered furniture is beautiful and luxurious, but this upholstery can be one of the trickiest types to clean. Stains don’t only sit on the surface of the velvet, they also coat the individual fibers and seep into the backing, causing quite a mess! So how do you clean a velvet couch, chair, or ottoman?

 

Know what type of velvet you are dealing with:

If your couch is upholstered in synthetic velvet (or velveteen), you should be able to clean it yourself without too much trouble. If, however, the velvet is made from cotton, silk, or wool, you’ll probably want to call in an expert. Cotton velvet is especially finicky, and the fibers can bunch and kink when they come into contact with soap, water, or cleaning solutions.

 

To get stains out of synthetic velvets:

Clean the fabric as soon as possible after staining occurs. Do not allow the stain to dry on its own, as it will set into the fabric and become much harder to clean. With a clean cloth or towel, gently press the stain to absorb any moisture and wipe away any loose debris. Prepare a mixture of lukewarm water and dish soap, and apply the suds to the stain. Rinse by dabbing with a damp, soap-free cloth. Allow the velvet to dry and then brush it carefully.

 

For regular maintenance:

You can clean your velvet upholstery with a furniture brush to remove dirt, lint, and fuzz. Vacuum regularly with the furniture attachment on your vacuum cleaner. Velveteen can be safely steam cleaned. For cotton, silk, or wool velvet, check the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions.

If you’re not sure whether your upholstery is synthetic velveteen or natural fiber velvet, you’re likely better off calling a professional upholstery cleaning service to handle the job. If you live in the Asheville, NC area, we would be happy to help you with your velvet couch, chair, or other furniture. Give us a call at 828.237.3237 or drop us a line for an estimate today. We look forward to hearing from you!

 

 

10 Amazing Historical Facts About Carpet!

Carpet is so commonplace in American homes today that we take it for granted. But it wasn’t always that way! Here’s a list of fascinating facts about the history of carpet.

  1. The oldest carpet known to historians is the Pazyryk carpet. It was discovered in a burial mound in Siberia in 1949 and had been preserved in ice for thousands of years.
  2. The word “carpet” comes from the Latin root carpere, meaning “to pluck.” This is because ancient carpet makers practiced their craft by plucking unraveled fibers. The Latin phrase carpe diem originates from the same root, meaning “to sieze (or pluck) the day.”
  3. “Rolling out the red carpet” is a custom rooted in ancient times. Kings, politicians, and dignitaries walked atop red carpets to mark their routes through crowded cities. The first recorded reference in history to the custom was for Agamemnon in 458 BC.
  4. Cyrus the Great was said to have introduced carpets (and the art of making them) to Persia, after having been awed by the beauty of the carpets he saw when he conquered Babylon in 539 BC.
  5. Early colonial settlers in America used large rugs woven from wool to cover the floors in their homes.
  6. Before vacuum cleaners, no one had wall-to-wall carpets. Instead, they used large area rugs that had to be taken outside and beaten with sticks or wire carpet beaters to clean. This was typically done only once a year, during spring cleaning.
  7. In 1971, the first woven carpet mill was opened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania by William Sprague.
  8. The kind of wall-to-wall tufted carpets we are familiar with today started out as blankets. Catherine Evans Whitener of Dalton, Georgia, began making bedspreads out of muslin cloth with tufted yarn sewn into it. These became very popular, starting a new cottage industry in the region which eventually led to mill-produced, tufted carpets based on Whitener’s original bedspread pattern.
  9. The first factories producing wall-to-wall tufted carpets were started in the same town of Dalton, Georgia after World War II, and to this day, Dalton is considered the carpet capital of the world, producing 70% of the world’s carpets.
  10. The Hoover company had a hard time selling its original prototype vacuum cleaners because people were offended at the idea that their carpets might be dirty!

Virtual Tour of the Five Step Facility!

Ever wondered what happens to your rugs when we pick them up for cleaning?

When we pick up a rug from a customer’s home for cleaning, we bring it here to our facility off of Patton Avenue in west Asheville. This is where the magic happens.

asheville rug cleaning

This is where we bathe the rugs and hang the clean rugs up to dry.

 

Here is the area where we extract dirt and stains from your rugs.

 

Every tradesman needs his tools! The Wolverine is one of our most used pieces of equipment.

Finally, here is a short video tour of our facility.

 

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and are in need of rug or carpet cleaning, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or get in touch via our contact form today!

The Worst Carpet Cleaning Advice We’ve Ever Heard

worst carpet cleaning advice

We’ve been in the carpet cleaning business for a long time, and when it comes to bad carpet cleaning tips, we’ve probably heard them all. From applying hairspray to carpet stains, to “ironing out” wax spills, here are the top seven worst pieces of advice we’ve heard!

  1. Just Google it. Actually, no, don’t. Google is an amazing resource for a lot of things, but when it comes to carpet cleaning, your best use of Google (or any other search engine, for that matter) is to find a reputable carpet cleaning company in your local area. There’s tons of “advice” on the internet for carpet cleaning, but just because you read something online doesn’t make it true! You’re much better off consulting a professional.
  2. Use Dish Soap. Dish soap can be used for a lot of non-dish related household cleaning chores, but carpet cleaning is not one of them. Although the sudsing action of dish soap might, possibly, maybe remove or reduce the appearance of stains, it will also leave behind a soapy residue that will not come out without drenching the carpet with water, which can cause mold and mildew to grow on and beneath the carpet. Dish soap can also dull the color and change the texture of your carpet. So keep the dish soap in the kitchen, and leave carpet cleaning to the professionals!
  3. Apply Hairspray. Honestly, who came up with this horrible advice? Hairspray leaves behind a sticky residue that will stiffen your carpet fibers and attract more dirt and contaminants over time. And it’s almost impossible to rinse out. In fact, hairspray stains are one of the more common problems we help our customers with, so obviously it’s a bad choice for a carpet cleaning agent. Remember: hairspray is for hair!
  4. Clean with Vinegar. Vinegar is enjoying a new revival as a multi-purpose, all natural household cleaning agent. You can find articles online that recommend using vinegar for cleaning anything from toilets to clothing to silverware. It’s true that vinegar is a powerful, non-toxic disinfectant, but it’s simply not effective for removing dirt or stains. (Sorry, vinegar evangelists!) And so it is definitely NOT a good choice for carpet cleaning applications.
  5. No. Just, no. First of all, if you use hydrogen peroxide on your carpet, you run a very real risk of bleaching or adulterating the color of the carpet. Secondly, peroxide can be harmful to the carpet fibers, causing them to fray. Again, leave the carpet stains to the professionals and leave the hydrogen peroxide in the bathroom where it belongs!
  6. Just Use Water. “It’s just water! What could it hurt?” Well, turns out, quite a lot. Applying water to a stain can cause the stain to spread, and, depending upon what caused the stain in the first place, wetting it could make it set into the carpet fibers and become permanent. If the stain was caused by an acidic agent, wetting it can reactivate the acid and potentially cause more harm to your carpet, and possibly to any people or pets who come into contact with the stain.
  7. Use a Hot Iron to Remove Spilled Wax. It seems like a logical solution—heat up the wax and it will melt and be easy to get off of the carpet, right? Well, not really. Often times, wax spills sit at the top of the carpet fibers. Melting the wax again can cause it to run down into the mat of the carpet, and possibly through the carpet backing and onto the subfloor. Plus, putting a hot iron on your carpet is a fire hazard. And you definitely don’t want to create a burn mark on your carpet. We can get out a wax spill, but we can’t get out a scorch mark!

 

We hope that this blog post helped clear up some of the confusion about home carpet cleaning advice that’s floating around the internet. If you live in the Asheville, NC area and you need carpet cleaning services from folks who know what they’re doing, give us a call at 828. 772.1824 or drop us a line now!