A good carpet cleaner can work miracles. Alas a lot of them wear 10
gallon hats & spurs. Try to find one who is a member of the NCCA or BICS.
Failing that, hire a Rug Doctor which will give a massive improvement.
The Bissel might use dry foam shampoo, in which case an extraction
machine will pull out all the residue and might over foam.
have a look here http://wiki.diyfaq.org.uk/index.php?title Êrpet
Dave - The Medway Handyman www.medwayhandyman.co.uk
Dave is our resident expert on carpet cleaners but I have used the rug
doctors on a number of occasions and they are brilliant. Like any
machine of that sort they don't do quite up to the edge and you have to
use the (less effective) hand tool for those areas. This can mean on a
badly soiled light carpet you may notice the edge remains a little
Buy the big bottle of detergent, it's far better value than the small
one and you can keep spare for the next time. Cheaper pattern detergents
work just as well but I haven't bothered searching them out yet, the own
brand stuff was too convenient and I wasn't doing enough to make the
Also watch out for dirt being sucked in under the edge of skirting and
actually making the edge of the carpet dirtier. This is a particular
problem in old houses where the skirting gap may have grown a bit and
there will have been longer for the dirt to collect in the underfloor.
Resolution is to test a small area and if dirt is being sooked in ease
off and don't go so close to the edge (I now seal all my shirting gaps
to avoid draughts & dirt ingress - old house).
On Wednesday, 14 November 2012 17:29:15 UTC, R D S wrote:
IMHO, the best thing is having your own (ours is the bigger Vax) and using it
_regularly_. They're brilliant gadgets. Also the big Vax is far more effective
You will be amazed at how dirty the water gets. Funniest thing is lending it to
houseproud Muslim friends. They're _appalled_ at how dirty their carpet water
You can rent a machine, it will likely do a better job.
They will also supply a better detergent.
It makes a surprising difference when the job is done.
You need to go over the carpet two or three times in my experience.
Takes longer and is harder work than you might expect. Amazing the
muck that comes out.
Get in professionals only if you are an idle git.
It depends which Bissell you have, the top of the range have a water heater
and rotating brushes. My neighbour has one and says it gives excellent
results. I had one of the mid-range Bissells until recently which didn't
heat the water and had a static brush but even that gave excellent results.
If you hire a RugDoctor take proof of identity with you. It's a heavy
machine so if you plan doing the upstairs and stair carpet you have to be
prepared for the lifting and carrying. The RugDoctor I hired didn't heat the
water (which amazed me) - as far as I know none of them heat the water. The
brush on the RugDoctor oscillates backwards and forwards and is quite
vicious, so if any of your carpets are nearing the end of their life (for
example, hessian backing coming away from the upper pile) then you might
find the carpet damaged. I can't say that I noticed much difference in the
colour of the carpets or dirty water between DIY with a Bissell or a
RugDoctor. I have never had carpet cleaning professionals in so I can't
comment on that.
On Thu, 15 Nov 2012 16:28:15 +0000, Rob Miller wrote:
Ours doesn't heat the water, but we put hot water in it, and it does have
a rotating brush. It's reasonably effective.
Our carpets aren't mega-manky or old but we have recently bought a new
sofa and moved some furniture around in a bedroom. Where carpet was
previously unexposed there is a visible difference so I just want
something that might clean a bit more aggressively.
If it doesn't work well i'll just dirty my shoes and walk all over the
clean bits for a while.
The rug doctor is about Â£30 for the day so it's worth a punt. I'll report
It performed better than I expected. Though I wish it had done a better
Carpets are infinitely cleaner, despite being reasonably happy with our
Bissel Powerbrush carpet washer I was surprised how much dirt was in them.
There were some areas it struggled with but in fairness we are talking
about 8 year old cream carpets and we live on an unmade road and have a
On Thu, 15 Nov 2012 16:28:15 +0000, Rob Miller wrote:
Ours had a water heater and rotating brushes; it was still a quite
spectacularly ineffective piece of junk in comparison to any of the
rental machines that I've used.
Bissells (French for Dung, I believe) seem to have a quite impressive
lack of suction, the tank's woefully small, the little whizzy thing
that's supposed to indicate when it's doing something rapidly jams and
does nothing. They're messy things because the seal between the
removeable tank and the chassis likes to leak, as does the plug-it-in-
upside-down bottle of cleaning fluid. Ours would regularly ingest the
gasket from around the flap-valve for the hand-held tools.
The final straw was when part of the front (which is just relatively-thin
plastic) cracked, leading to a major loss of what little suction it
originally had. If you want something to make your carpets completely
sodden then they're great, but a bucket of soapy water is far cheaper.
Ours has sat in the basement for the last four years. I'd drag it
outside, pour petrol on it, and set fire to it, but it's frankly more
trouble than it's worth. I don't think there are really even any useful
parts that I can scavenge from it for use on other projects, except for
perhaps for that big glowing red light that indicates that it's heating
the water by a fraction of a degree - that's got to be useful for
Thankfully most of our house (the Bissell was bought for a previous home)
is hardwood flooring, and the three bedrooms that have carpets instead
don't get the traffic to need wet cleaning.
Oh, just had a thought. I need to put some panelling in the basement at
some point - I think I'll just wall the bloody thing in for future
generations to discover and ponder over...
Useful info on the Bissells.
I agree the rug doctor is not ideal for stairs, I think the boxy upright
body is really designed for large flat areas but I haven't found it
heavy in use or moving around, maybe a half fill for use on stairs would
When empty I think it's pretty light and on the flat the good sized
wheels take the strain. I filled it with a gallon or so of hot tap water
from a bucket so I can't see a need for a heater.
We had a cleaning company in some years ago and have hired a rug doctor
machine since. Neither has been obviously better than the Numatic George
that we now have (both the Vaxes that I have used have been pretty poor.)
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