Does anyone offer carpet cleaning? Can I pick your brain?

Variety is the spice of my life, and as the cold weather approaches I was thinking about carpet cleaning. I’ve always wanted to do carpet cleaning, seems there is even more demand then with windows and pressure washing. And most people realize it can be done year round, not just spring and fall. So anyone here offering resi carpet cleaning/steam cleaning? Can I pick your brain about it?


I’ve been cleaning carpet since I was 12 I’m 30 now.My dad owns the company,what ever you need to know I’m sure I can answer

We do to. low moisture carpet cleaning. encap or pad capping its called (623)206-3860

flooring, carpets, yes I can answer as well, go ahead and shoot, one of us will help or all of us will help !
I do low moisture and extraction as well

I was a trainer, sales rep and the top technician for a company with 15 truck mounts. Did you know that there are carpet cleaning forums like this one?

Much bigger learning curve for carpet cleaning. More overhead and risk for damage too.

We have a guy in my market who is on this forum now. He offers window and carpet cleaning. Sunshine Plus Window Cleaning. They obviously added carpet cleaning after they got started.

I think the two business would compliment each other very well. However I believe in keeping it simple and therefore I would choose one or the other and be GREAT at it.

I did carpet cleaning before I switched to window cleaning in the 80’s. Residential carpet cleaning dies in the winter just like window cleaning. I found it to be much less profitable because of overhead as Mike mentioned. But with the new low moisture systems that may not be the case.

Hey there all,
I do both because I have fibromyalgia, so I can not work 5-6 days a row on the same type of motion.

Fact, low moisture can be lower in cost to start up,
fact, training is everything

fact, you will get as many opinions on how to do the job, as there are companies out there.
fact, advertising is costly and different, though mostly similar to window cleaning

fiction, you can not clean carpet unless you use high moisture systems, HWE (really there are very few steam cleaning machines on the market)

You can royally screw up someones carpet without training and the learning curve is large. But, since you started asking question here instead of jumping in, I am sure you can safely do the job because you seek knowledge first, as opposed to … ooopppsss I screwed up a carpet or rug, how can I fix it.

Fact, there are Carpet Forums out there, lots of them, some dedicated to High Moisture, some to Low Moisture, and the better ones who take the lets do the job safely and do it the way it is needed type forums. (those are my type of forums and in MY opinion much better) Really the customer normally does not know or care how you cleaned the carpet so long as you did it properly and it is clean!

If you think some of the people get heated on a system here, traditional vs waterfed… LOL go and visit a carpet forum where there are really heated debates over the up to 25 different ways to clean carpets. Quite an eye opener, that is.

So, what is your budget for equipment, your budget for advertising and marketing. As for Marketing, you use your friends and current customers, the Advertising, is for new customers. A large point to note that there are as many low ballers out there in the flooring industry or more, than there are window cleaning low ballers, so beware!

E.G. here in a depressed economic region, due to GM shutting down and lowering the shifts and staff, along with Firefighters, who do extra jobs on their days off, it is more than competitive, it is nasty. I have now seen ads that state, we will clean your entire house, up to 2000 sqft for only $89. Ok… at $89 you can not afford to clean an entire house, even with a truck mount, because it costs you more than that per customer and to show up!

So, like I said what is your Idea and question, your budgets for material and tools, also the Budget for Marketing and Advertising!
let the games begin…

here is my first question on doing carpet cleaning and it may seem like a simple/silly question but one I never hear asked.

So I go to a home to clean some carpets, I arrive as a one man operation with my machine and chemicals (or what ever is used with the machine) and I go in the house and rooms that need to be done are full of furniture and what not. What is done about these obstacles? Who’s moving the furniture and anything else on the floor? Are the rooms cleared out entirely or just moved to one side? I only hired a carpet cleaner once and it was for my fathers condo that was entirely empty at the time.

I have cleaned well over a thousand residential jobs single handed. The company I worked for had 15 trucks and ran one man crews because two men on two trucks will clean more jobs in a day than two men on one truck. You can move anything alone that two men can move together if you know what you are doing.

When he gave us a helper the helper moved EVERYTHING!!! His job was to keep the carpet cleaner moving as if the home was empty. If he couldn’t stay ahead of you and needed your help moving things he simple wasn’t doing his job. This is not my opinion it is a fact. Two man crews make less money.

Furniture gets pulled away from the walls. The rug where the furniture was gets cleaned. Everything gets put back on the wet carpet where it was and gets blocked or tabbed. All the open areas get cleaned and the room is done.

call me if you like

lets try answering again… grrr…

Mike great answer !

Sears in Canada charges High $$$ and to move stuff, even more $$$
I only charge if there is excessive stuff to move, simply ask the customer to move the clutter out before, and normally they do a great job.

Blocks and Tabs are used under the legs to stop the dies, Tannins and Metal from leaching and wicking onto the fresh wet carpet. Tell the homeowner to remove in a day or so. Normally depending on the humidity.

Can you say slidders !!! they are awesome, and then there is the move all, another piece of great kit.

Mark, no silly questions except the ones not asked!

Same here give a call if you want,

Top reasons I want to get into carpet cleaning:

  1. VARIETY - I go insane cleaning just windows all the time, that’s why I do windows, gutters, pw’ing, etc…
  2. I believe if someone hires a window cleaner, they would definately hire a carpet cleaner. I hear all too often that my customers want the windows done first, before the carpet guys get there. I think it would be an easy cross sell.
  3. No risk, no reward. Sure carpet cleaning has a lot of overhead, but nothing ventured nothing gained.
  4. I started this wc’ing business from nothing, and have made a decent living. Why not grow again?

So that being said, I am looking into a truck mount unit. I personally believe more in hot water extraction cleaning versus low moisture. Sort of like I believe in traditional nose to glass wc’ing over WFP. Same way that I believe in a car wash with brushes works better than a touch free car wash.

So as winter approaches, and the jobs begin to taper off, I’m sure I will have more and more qquestions.

Budget: $10k
Goal: Cleaning carpets by Spring.

[B][U]Both photos taken of a job, test area, that was cleaned 1 day before by someone with an extractor HWE ![/U][/B]

we also do carpets, floors and janitorial services. Actually window cleaning is the smallest part of our business. You should definitely start providing some other services so you can stay busy in winter. If you are looking for more information about carpet cleaning go to . There are a lot of people who know a lot about carpet cleaning there, you can learn from them. Good luck.

Hey Turner, Must have been a “blow and go” HWE, or "stanley"type "basic clean, You and I both know that isnt a fair example. I HWE only and have for a looong time. I am sure I could come up with a few of the same type pics in the reverse.

The same applys to CC get educated, get strong equipment, and use good products. charge accordingly, and you will be fine, I do ok @ carpet cleaning, Tile and Grout, and stone restoration.

I cleaned carpets with my brother for 3 years. I am so glad that I am not still cleaning them! I actually liked cleaning commercial carpet, especially restaurants. You go in late at night and get to work - no one bothers you and the carpets are so dirty that anything you do to them only makes them look better. Simple enjoyable work.

Now residential carpet cleaning is another story. Often the customers will want you to move all their furniture (you have to put foam blocks under all the furniture) even large entertainment systems! I have moved furniture and have seen that the carpet was practically hermetically sealed underneath - completely clean… but the customer will often want you to clean it anyways. I did many jobs where the carpet looked 100% brand new, but they still want you to clean it… why? A good percentage of my customers seemed to be “germ freaks” and were very concerned about “sterilizing” the carpet.

I’ve cleaned clean glass a few times. It doesn’t bother me because the motion of window cleaning is enjoyable, there’s a certain amount of grace and style to it. Plus it is one fluid motion and then your’e done. Already clean carpet is a different story, I would keep forgetting which areas I had already done since it’s one giant piece. Pulling a wand back and forth on the carpet is not too much fun either (for me). The plus side is that it’s easier to train someone to do basic carpet cleaning than window cleaning. The learning curve is steeper with knowing which chemicals to use and what temp to set the water at etc. But if you are supervising, it is really easy to show someone how to pull the wand back and forth across the carpet.

The other thing about carpet cleaning is that more “problems” arise. It is not as “cut and dry” as window cleaning. Unless there are hard water stains and/or scratches on a window, you can start with dirty glass and get really good results. Very psychologically rewarding. Some carpet cleaning jobs are psychologically rewarding - super dirty carpet that cleans up really nice. However, there are a lot of jobs where certain stains won’t come out, and a lot of jobs that have permanent traffic wear that you can’t do anything about. And then you have Olefin and white Berber - carpet that will drive you crazy.

Another thing that drove me crazy was that you never knew when the job was over. You go clean some windows and if you did a good job, you are done. A carpet, on the other hand, may look great after you are done but then a day later some of the stains can magically reappear. Some stains go all the way into the subfloor and will wick back out of the carpet. Sure there are techniques that can minimize this, but there is the lingering fear that the stains you just removed will come back and then the customer will call you back upset and wanting you to come back and fix it.

Lastly, the biggest reason that I didn’t like carpet cleaning is that many customers will follow you around the whole job. It doesn’t feel like you are your own boss when someone is “supervising” you the whole time. I think they are just concerned about the different stains they have and want to make sure they are coming out, but it still can drive you crazy. I would have people follow me around the whole job saying things like. “can you go over that area again, it’s really dirty”… “did you already get that side of the room because it doesn’t look as good as that room over there” Arrrrg.

One more thing, I am a perfectionist and I have found that window cleaning is so much easier and cheaper to be a perfectionist at. I mean what does a top of the line squeegee cost? How expensive is it really to use top of the line window cleaning gear? With carpet cleaning, I always felt like I didn’t have good enough equipment. Heck even the cheapest wands cost $300. Some wands cost $2,000! You want to get a decent truckmount system you are looking at easily sinking $50,000. And customers are always scrutinizing your eqipment. The carpet cleaning industry is very equipment oriented. You go out there and get a decent setup and the next thing you know your rival company in your town has an xj26 with 3,000 lbs of water lift and dual carburated intake valves (I’m just making up terminology :)) and they go around convincing everyone that you can’t really get carpet clean without their system. Or they put out a bunch of advertising about there system and the next thing you know, you get phone calls from customers saying “do you have a xj26, because I only want my carpets cleaned with one of those” I’m exaggerating, but it often seems like a cold war “arms race” in the carpet cleaning industry.

The comment was not directed at you or HWE in general, it was a shot at the low life who runs around here!
I also posted that I do both in two above comments, so thanks for the feedback!

  • Jesse
  • I agree with you so much that in the last few months I have let all my Resi customers go, I only do Window Cleaning and some select Commercial Carpet Cleaning now.
    I am also thinking of just dropping everything else and focus on Window Cleaning and Restoration only.
    You posted a lot of things with Carpet Cleaning and I agree with almost every single one of them, I also just enjoy Window Cleaning more, it is a lot more relaxing and less stressful!
    cheers to the Window is half full theory … LOL

Hey No worries… I personally love my job, and am always up for the challenge. I know how much carpet and windows to schedule in a day… It works out well for me, and my customers, I think Shawn (I believe that is his name) could do well introducing it as an add-on service. Low Moisture has it’s merits, I am just a firm believer in HWE.

I researched carpet cleaning when I found info on the web about window cleaning. I chose windows not just for the cheaper initial investment but it seems that there are a ton of carpet cleaning companies around here. Last week I got the blue envelope, Valpak in the mail. I always check it out. There were 5 carpet cleaning companies and the prices seem so low for the work involved( there were no window cleaners). I’m sure they are making good money, but as often as I have had my carpets cleaned over the years, it looks a heck of a lot more physical than window cleaning. Not saying I wouldn’t clean carpets, but I think I’ll stick with windows.

Hey free candy man
Residential carpet cleaning pretty much drops off after christmas, kinda like window cleaning in july. Look into Bane clene equipment
very inexpensive. They work good.