ICS Magazine

In the Market for a New Wand? Here's What to Look For

November 6, 2001
If you're in the market for a new wand for your in-plant facility or your truckmount, then here's some information on what to look for.

In the market for a new wand?

Here's what to look for, and how they work

Types of Wands:
3-jet Double Bend
These incorporate a 10-inch double bend design with a slanted head. The 3-1/4-inch height allows the wand to reach and extend easily under furniture and beds. These wands usually have three stainless steel jets mounted on a manifold.

12-inch single bend design wands with single jet.

14- and 18-inch wands. These are the same height as 3-jet wands, but with five jets. These wands are ideal for commercial grade carpet only. The head size improves productivity.

Weighted 'Drag' wands are usually 12-inches, and have wheels making wand stroking obsolete. However, while easier on the shoulders/arms, weighted drag wands also make agitation (see below) obsolete. These are an early design back in the 'early days' of hot water extraction (HWE cleaning).

RX-20 is a mechanical floor tool using rotary extraction action. It maximizes wand agitation to the greatest extent, and is excellent for commercial use. This wand requires high heat and maximum water flow (200 degrees Fahrenheit and higher; 500 psi minimum). However, it's too cumbersome for residential use, making the Roto-vac, which is lighter and smaller, the ideal residential version.

Upholstery tools (4-inches wide and head-adjustable) allow the user to control water flow volume for delicates, and a vacuum reduction valve, also for delicates.

Some terminology:
Wand agitation - This occurs as the wand shoe passes back and forth over the pile. The 'fluttering' of fibers when acted upon by vacuum airflow when a proper, multiple-pass wand stroking technique is used enhances the agitation. Proper agitation, which allows for dwell time/and maximum soil suspension, cannot be achieved this way as this action occurs too late in the cleaning sequence.

Double stroking - Used on preconditioned areas with heavy soiling. Double stroking incorporates a double rinse process.

Chop Stroking - Also known as 'flood and flush' technique, chop stroking is used in extreme, ground in soiling situations (entry areas). With trigger spray valve open, the wand is pushed forward over the carpet to an extended distance. The forward stroke is reversed and with the spray valve still open, the wand is pulled back six inches and then pushed forward three inches and so on-back. This is continued in rapid succession until the wand has returned to the starting point.

Parallel Stroking - Basic spray forward, spray and extract backward. With spray off, vacuum overlap and repeat sequence in a parallel pattern.