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Often when discussing professional carpet care, a big question is are you going to pursue Wet Treatment, or a Dry Treatment?

What do the two mean?

What do the different processes entail? Are there pros and cons?

Read this article to find out.

A wet chemical is used during shampooing and contains foaming agents like sodium lauryl sulfate. Sodium laurel sulfate is an anionic detergent found in many toiletry products, such as soaps and shampoos. It is often used because it is an inexpensive and very effective foaming agent. There are many other similar surfactants used in cosmetic products because of their cleansing properties, and behaviors similar to that of soap. The purpose of shampooing is to create a heavy concentration of foam that attracts soil once it dries. Because the foam can cause resoiling if the flooring is exposed to heavy foot traffic after treatment, these chemicals often include a resin that keeps resoiling from occurring.

Dry treatment is a bit of a misnomer, a word which here means, a wrong or inaccurate name or designation. It’s a misnomer because it’s not a totally dry process. It does in fact require a small amount of water to activate. Dry compounds consist of an absorbent carrier, a detergent, a solvent and a small amount of water. During the treatment, the water dissolves the soil and the absorbent compound captures it. The professional then goes over the flooring with a powerful vacuum that removes the compound and soil together.

Hot water extraction utilizes an emulsifier, a word which here means, a substance that stabilizes an emulsion, in particular a food additive used to stabilize processed foods. However, because it is extracted, it leaves very little of the cleaning agent in the carpet.

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