Water damage restoration? Check.
Rug cleaning? Yes.
Tile and grout cleaning? You bet.
VCT stripping? That, too.
Stone and concrete work? Absolutely.
Air duct cleaning? Uh-huh.
Carpet Tech (Lubbock, TX) has a lot in its arsenal of service offerings. The one thing that most of the company’s add-ons have in common is that they rely on arguably the piece of equipment that’s most synonymous with the cleaning industry – the truckmount.
Today, Carpet Tech has between 75-80 truckmounts in its coup to service its market area of West Texas and Eastern New Mexico. Owner Chet Pharies says he has machines from just about every manufacturer in his fleet, but one type he’s gravitated more to over the years are those transmission-driven PTOs, of which he estimates make up about half of his total truckmounts.
Thinking Outside the Carpet
The advancements in truckmounts have opened the door for the equipment to be used for much more than just cleaningcarpet. How are you “thinking outside the carpet?” Log on to www.cleanrestoreconnect.com to share what else you’re doing with your truckmounts.
“Technology has made this a prestigious job,” he says. “I’m not saying it’s easy – you still work, you still sweat, there are still late hours, on-call hours, all that good stuff. It’s not a breeze job by any means. But it’s a career now more so than it ever has been for employees.”
Pharies knows a thing or two about how far truckmounts have come over the years. He started Carpet Tech out of his Chevrolet Astro van in the mid-90’s with nothing more than a Prochem cub. “It didn’t even have a freshwater tank,” he says. “I started cleaning, started growing – I added machines, added trucks, added locations.”
Today, Carpet Tech, a business that started out of a single van, has five locations, about 160 employees and is a multi-million dollar, turn-key operation. And a big part of this growth has been the strides Pharies has taken to diversify his business, largely because of the technological progress that the truckmount has made.
“The machines have progressed and we’ve just progressed with it,” he says.
After cutting his teeth with just carpet and upholstery cleaning throughout the first five years of his business, he expanded into flood cleanup. Then came other services like rug cleaning (all five Carpet Tech locations also include rug washing plants), tile and grout, VCT stripping, and stone and concrete work.
“We could probably be more successful if we picked and choosed a little bit more – I just don’t like to have my customers have to look elsewhere for something,” Pharies says. “So we do a lot.”
“Diversification is good, but you can have too many irons in the fire to not properly manage it right,” Pharies says. “And then you kind of hurt everything because of that. That’s happened to me before. I don’t feel like I’m there now because I’ve got enough people in place to take care of everything properly, but it can happen.”
From one cub to a fleet of 80 truckmounts. From a single van to five locations. And from just a few basic services to a whole slew of them, Carpet Tech has grown and expanded as the technology in the industry has evolved. And the key cog to much of this growth has been the truckmount.