Dalton, GA. (May 4, 2006) - The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) today announced the addition of deep cleaning systems to its Seal of Approval testing and certification program. The certification means companies that offer complete carpet deep cleaning "systems" carrying the Seal of Approval can assure customers that their technique and products together really do work.
The new CRI Seal of Approval for Deep Cleaning Systems evaluates the effectiveness of the overall cleaning process and includes testing of equipment and cleaning solutions used in combination. This part of the program addresses those processes which incorporate a specific machine to be used with a specific cleaning agent following the manufacturer's recommended procedure. This latest component joins CRI's successful Seal of Approval testing programs already in place for deep cleaning extractors and cleani ng solutions.
The Deep Cleaning Systems category will incorporate the same Gold-Silver-Bronze rating that accompanied the launch of the Seal of Approval for deep cleaning extraction equipment. Systems that exceed average soil removal standards receive a bronze rating. Those achieving higher soil removal receive a silver rating, and those receiving the highest level of measurable soil removal are awarded a gold level Seal of Approval.
The CRI also announced today the first companies to earn certification for their deep cleaning systems under the Seal of Approval program. Winning the gold Seal of Approval are deep cleaning systems from:
- Mohawk FloorCare Essentials, Fayetteville, Ga.
- Sears Carpet & Upholstery Care, Lewis Center, Ohio
- Steamin Demon, Clarksville, Ind.
- ZeroRez, Lindon, Utah
- Harris Research, Inc., Logan, Utah
In addition, Harris Research Inc., which manufactures products under the name Chem-DryTM, had two systems earn a silver rating.
The testing is done by Professional Testing Laboratory, Inc., Dalton, GA, and follows a stringent protocol to designate certification. The Seal of Approval Deep Cleaning Systems tests for eight performance criteria: soil removal, re-soiling, appearance retention, amount of moisture left in the carpet, surface appearance change, colorfastness, pH level, and optical brighteners.
"The Seal of Approval program addresses the issue of carpet cleaning effectiveness by testing and certifying only those products that meet high performance standards," said Werner Braun, CRI president. "Independent testing has shown that not all cleaning product clean equally well. We are thrilled to be able to tell people that companies who have earned the Seal of Approval can offer a complete and effective deep cleaning system, from start to finish."
The CRI created the Seal of Approval program in 2004 to help customers feel more confident about choosing carpet and to make sure carpet cleaning can deliver expected results. The initial program was designed to test the performance of carpet cleaning solutions in two categories: spot removers and pre-spray/in- tank solutions, which may be used in residential, commercial or institutional settings. The testing program's parameters include efficacy, resoiling, pH, optical brighteners, and colorfastness to light and the products must meet high standards in each category to earn certification.
Testing for extractor deep cleaning was added next and was made possible by a NASA-enhanced technology known as x-ray fluorescence (XRF). An x- ray analyzer "gun" used on Space Shuttle Discovery measures precisely how much soil is removed from household and commercial carpet.
The testing and certification program also rates extractors on effectiveness at recovering water from the carpet test sample and cleaning without damage to carpet fibers. These criteria are included because water and dirt left in a carpet negatively affect the appearance of the carpet, damage the fibers and create the potential for mold growth. Experience has also shown that some equipment can cause excessive wear on the carpet.
The XRF analyzer was developed by KeyMaster Technologies of Kennewick, Wash., and enhanced by NASA to help determine the composition of aluminum alloy parts used on the space shuttle.
Because the CRI Seal of Approval takes advantage of space technology, companies certified under the Seal of Approval XRF testing program are eligible to display the Space Foundation Seal.
"The Space Foundation is pleased to certify the CRI Seal of Approval program. This outstanding program underscores how consumers continue to benefit from space technology in new and unexpected ways," said Kevin Cook, director of brand management, Space Foundation.
More than 50 cleaning agents and nearly 30 extractors have been tested and certified under the Seal of Approval and can be found on CRI's website. Vacuum cleaners will be added to the program at a future date.