If you’ve looked into your carpet and upholstery cleaning options, you’ve probably noticed there’s several methods that different companies are using. Some of the more common questions out there may be “Is Chem-Dry a steam cleaner?” or “Is Chem-Dry better than steam cleaning?” We’ll look at these questions to help clear things up for you!
First, let’s look at whether Chem-Dry is a steam cleaner or not. The short answer is no, Chem-Dry isn’t a steam cleaner. To explain a little further, most steam cleaning is done by heating water past its boiling point, mixed with soaps or detergents, and forced through high pressure lines that let the hot liquids out in a vapor. Finn's Chem-Dry, on the other hand, uses a process called Hot Carbonating Extraction (HCE for short). Coupled with The Natural®, a green-certified solution, low-pressure carbonation comes through a rotating power-head. The carbonated solution breaks up dirt and grime, then lifts it to the surface where it is sucked up by the power-head.
This brings us to our next question: is Chem-Dry’s process better than steam cleaning? The use of carbonation allows an almost 80% reduction in the amount of water used during a service. It penetrates deep into the carpet, making it a highly effective deep cleaner below the surface where dirt can settle. High pressure steam uses water faster and pushes it into carpet backing, which takes much longer to dry, often a day or two! With the HCE process, you can expect dry times between one or two hours. Depending on the air flow and humidity, this can cause mold and mildew if drying is prolonged.
The Natural® is registered on the FDA’s G.R.A.S. (generally recognized as safe) list, so your kids and pets aren’t put at risk even right after cleanings. The quick drying process also helps avoid premature soiling and discoloration from soaps or detergents that can attract dirt after application. Especially if carpets or furniture aren’t dry for two days, that’s a long time to be able to soil freshly cleaned carpets! Based on these differences, we would say that Chem-Dry is better than steam cleaning.
These explanations aren’t totally comprehensive, so you may still have questions. If that’s the case, feel free to give us a call! We have specialists available to answer your questions.