Carpet Wicking Spots

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Carpet wicking is a process where spots re-appear on carpets and rugs. Learn how to remove carpet wicking spots with cleaning tips from a vice president of a carpet cleaning company in this free video on housecleaning.

Part of the Video Series: Cleaning Carpet Stains
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Lisa Goldsworthy, vice president of ACE Carpet and Upholstery Care in Denver, Colorado. In this segment, I'm going to discuss reappearing spots. Often times, when you go into a client?s home and you clean their home and perhaps a day later, they may find a spot has reappeared and that is a natural occurring phenomenon called wicking. And basically, I'll kind of go through that and explain why that happens, so, let's go ahead and take a look at this carpet sample right here. This is a sample we used earlier. It was a candle wax spill. And we had really beautiful results in getting that candle wax back, really off the carpet fiber, and one thing that we didn't really notice is that that candle wax spill went through the bottom of the carpet. And almost any spill will soak the carpet and ultimately get into your carpet pad as well. So, take note of this, of this red spot here. That's where our candle wax was, okay? Now, carpet pad is just one big sponge and so when you have a spill, and we'll just use water as the example, wish it was so easy though, right? But if you have a spill, the carpet pad will ultimately soak that in like a big sponge, okay? So, for example, you know, when we had our candle wax spill, it would continue on. It still has to keep going somewhere and it would end up into your carpet pad. Now, as carpet cleaning professionals, when we come into a home, this carpet looks nice. There's no red, there's no red color whatsoever in this fiber, however, there is some right here. So, when we clean the carpet and we do a hot water extraction, cleaning out all the bacteria and really improving the air quality and cleaning this carpet fiber very thoroughly, we wet the carpet. So, we again get this wet, and in the drying process, when this carpet then dries with some air flow over it and so forth, this red spot, this red stain right here, can potentially come back up to the surface. And that, through that, because basically this is coming up trying to find air in its drying process and therefore, after this carpet is dry, after a professional hot water extraction cleaning, you may find there's a red spot. And what's that from? Well, perhaps three years ago you had that candle wax spill. You did the proper way of extract, you know, getting that candle wax off the carpet fiber, not realizing that that red went all the way through to the bottom of the carpet and most likely, into the carpet pad. Now, what happens to the, what happens to the spill once it gets into the pad? Often times we find that a very small dime shaped spill, let's say, that looks real small in the carpet area, well once it hits that pad, it can spread out to the size of maybe a dessert plate. Maybe even a dinner plate depending on the magnitude of the spill. So, you've got a lot of liquid that's still trapped in here. You as a consumer, you're tackling the problem. You're getting that up off the carpet fiber, and it looks beautiful. You've done a great job in doing so. And there's really no way that you could of course tackle the carpet pad, it's under there, unless you want to do hot water extraction. So, that's, that's the really phenomenon of wicking. So, we find that these magic spots appear, but really they're spots that maybe you've forgotten about from several years back when you properly treated your carpet fiber, well it's still sitting in here, and it's still here, and through a professional cleaning, you're bringing that back out. Which is great, you're improving the, again, improving the air quality of your home, your cleaning, you're steam clean, you're killing bacteria, and it's bringing it back out. There are ways to absolutely take care of wicking with a reputable carpet cleaner. You know that you can call them back and say "listen, I've got this spot that reappeared." And any reputable carpet cleaner will know exactly what has happened. It's the phenomenon called wicking, and we know exactly what to do to remedy that situation, get you all taken care of.


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