ICS Magazine

2003 Truckmount Carpet Cleaning Equipment Market Study

August 11, 2003
The 2003 Truckmount Carpet Cleaning Equipment Market Study takes an up-close look at the truckmount-related preferences and opinions of floor care professionals.

Chart 1
The 2003 Truckmount Carpet Cleaning Equipment Market Study commissioned by ICS magazine takes an up-close look at the preferences and opinions of floor care professionals as they pertain to the use of truck-mounted carpet cleaning equipment and accessories.

The size and scope of the study dictates that only a fraction of the study can be reproduced here; see the “ICS Market Study” box at the end of the feature for more information.

The study sample consisted of 1,000 active, direct-request subscribers to ICS Cleaning Specialist who are professional carpet cleaners and smoke/water damage restoration specialists. The sample was selected on an Nth-name basis from the domestic circulation. The study received a 30 percent response rate.

A full 100 percent of those responding are individuals involved in the purchasing decisions concerning truckmounts. Company owners and/or presidents make up 80 percent of survey respondents.

It is important to understand the makeup of the sample responding in any study. The primary business of those responding is carpet cleaning, with 74 percent, while restoration and overall floor care logged 13 percent and 8 percent, respectively (Chart 1). The median number of people employed by responding companies is three, while 22 percent of respondents claim 10 or more employees.

Chart 2
Residential business makes up 70 percent of respondents’ business, with commercial/institutional/industrial comprising the remaining 30 percent. Sixty-eight percent of respondents use a truckmount in their cleaning business; of those, almost 50 percent own or operate two or more. The study found that, where applicable, respondents use truckmounts 69 percent of the time when performing residential cleaning, and 31 percent of the time when working in a commercial setting.

Slide-in truckmount configurations are far and away the most popular with those responding, at 80 percent, while direct-drive or PTO designs made up 30 percent (multiple responses were allowed, as many respondents operate more than one machine). Study respondents operate their truckmounts an average of 1,000 hours a year. Almost 40 percent expect their truckmount to log between 5,000 and 9,999 hours, however, before needing to be replaced. Twenty-five percent expect more than 10,000 hours out of their machine before replacement is necessary.

Heat exchange is cited as the primary heating method by 72 percent of those responding, with propane and fuel heating making up another 23 percent (Chart 2). Almost 45 percent of those responding operate their truckmount at average temperatures between 210 degrees and 220 degrees; only 21 percent operate their machines at an average temperature above 220 degrees.

Fewer than 10 percent of respondents claim to use a secondary heat source; of those, 42 percent use propane, 5 percent use fuel oil, and 53 percent claim various other sources, including diesel, hot water and blower exhaust.

Carpet cleaning is not the only service those operating truckmounts provide. When asked what, if any, additional services they perform using their truckmount, upholstery cleaning was claimed by 98 percent; hard floor/tile cleaning, 45 percent; pressure washing, 25 percent; and duct cleaning, 9 percent (Chart 3).

Chart 3
If a cleaning professional operates a truckmount, odds are that cleaner drives a cargo van. Cargo vans make up 90 percent of the responses when those surveyed were asked what type of vehicle their truckmount is located in. Box trucks, trailers and minivans trailed far behind.

One is the magic number, as far as wands are concerned. More than 70 percent of those responding claim to use only one wand (Chart 4). Of those operating with more than one wand, 98 percent of the time they are using two; three or more rarely make an appearance.

As stated above, truckmount operators expect their machines to last for a long time, and it shows in their responses concerning their next purchase. Fully 53 percent of those responding are not sure or don’t know their time frame for purchasing a new truckmount. Twenty-six percent plan to purchase a new truckmount in one to two years, with 21 percent expecting to make a purchase in less than one year.

Chart 4
But how much will it cost? Of those responding, 43 percent expect to pay anywhere from $15,000 to $19,999. Twenty-eight percent claim $10,000 to $14,999 as their range, with 6 percent finding less than $10,000 to be their comfort zone. Only 23 percent expect to pay more than $20,000 for their new machine.

The best way to improve the relationship between a manufacturer and an end-user, in any area, is for each to better understand the other. The ICS Market Study series is opening doors to allow just that.