Technology in Cleaning and Restoration

December 10, 2004
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Professional cleaning and restoration technicians are always searching for equipment and technology to help them do their jobs better and more efficiently. ICS Cleaning Specialist looks at some of the innovative machines and technologies making their way into the industry.

To try and include every single process, development and piece of equipment that has affected the industry in a single feature would be ridiculous if not impossible. This is not a "Best of the Best" list; it is a chance to see and hear about some of the equipment making its way to the marketplace.

Principles and long-accepted methodologies need not be shattered in order for something to be innovative. Some may have already seen some of this technology at various trade shows and exhibitions, while others are getting their first look at what the cleaning and restoration industries has to say about some of its latest developments as we head into 2005.

Infrared Cameras

The ThermaCAM E65 from FLIR Systems offers high-performance thermal sensitivity; visible and audible alarming; thumbnail image gallery; increased JPEG storage and automated text comment functionality.

"The E65 is an ideal first camera for companies just starting out in thermography or a good choice for companies that might already own a full-feature camera - like our new ThermaCAM P65 - that wish to expand their infrared inspection programs by equipping more operators with an infrared camera," Tom Scanlon, vice president of FLIR Americas Thermography Products, said.

The E65 comes with ThermaCAM QuickView software, enabling the creation of basic IR inspection reports and the seamless downloading of thermal images to a PC. The E65 is also configured to use a wide range of additional and optional software to help the end-user expand its capabilities.

Cleaning Technology

Tennant Co. has introduced a new commercial-carpet care technology called ReadySpace. Unlike most other wet-cleaning commercial-carpet care products or technologies on the market today, the patented ReadySpace technology creates clean carpet spaces that are dry and ready for foot traffic in about 30 minutes or less.

"We see this as a breakthrough technology that will further position Tennant Co. as a leader in carpet care," Janet Dolan, president and CEO of Tennant Co., said. "The technology is expected to have a profound impact on the way commercial carpets are cleaned."

ReadySpace technology relies on sprayer units that apply water to two counter-rotating, specially designed fabric rollers that pick up soil from the carpet. As the rollers turn at a rate of approximately 400 times per minute, they are rinsed with a solution spray, and a built-in vacuum extracts the soil from the rollers.

Filtration

The DefendAir HEPA 500 air scrubber from Dri-Eaz delivers true, tested High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filtration of 99.97 percent at 500 cfm - the typical airflow level demanded on restoration jobs. The HEPA 500 also offers the assurance of the maximum Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR), an official standard set by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM).

"Our goal with the DefendAir 500 is to offer restorers the ultimate air scrubber for on-the-job performance, versatility and confidence," John Ormsby, director of customer relations at Dri-Eaz, said. "The HEPA 500 combines true, tested particulate removal with innovative features - such as daisy-chain capability, stackable operation, and Microban antimicrobial product protection - to make it ideal for any restoration job."

The HEPA 500 also features advanced, high-quality filter media from 3M; multi-stage filtration; easy filter access; low-amp draw; and a built-in ring for easy ducting.

Electronic Technology

The BLUELine ThermalWave 5M and 5M-HP truckmounts are designed to let the operator say "good-bye" to the throttle cable, choke, carburetor, and all of their related linkage: the air pump; catalytic heat exchanger; manual diverter valve, and vacuum pre-heater radiator cores.

The electronic fuel injection (EFI) and a simplified heat exchange system are so technologically advanced that all the troublesome maintenance and costly components formerly associated with the older technology has been eliminated without compromising heat and performance. Heat still exceeds 230 degrees without spiking, and the combination of the Nissan 50-HP industrial engine, with EFI and electronic ignition, makes the ThermalWave a smooth and efficient operator at just 1-gallon per hour of fuel consumption.

Urine Stain Removal

Urine-Off from Bio-Pro Research introduces a solution to urine stains that goes beyond what any other cleaning agent has been able to accomplish in the effort to keep floors and other surfaces free from these marks and associated odors created by furry household friends.

Urine-Off uses a very specialized combination of bacteria and enzymes developed specifically to target the salt crystals that give urine its staying power on any surface, as well as every other component of urine. Instead of covering the crystals or using a stronger smell to overpower the urine odor, Urine-Off attacks and completely eliminates the problem.

The bacteria and enzymes in Urine-Off are designed to thoroughly release and break down the molecular structure of urine. They are isolated in a production process that requires seven steps and are then blended with water and a mild surfactant in an extremely high concentration for maximum effectiveness. Urine-Off contains no alcohol, encapsulators or masking agents because it does not need them - it breaks down and remediates the urine, including uric crystals.

Air Mover Technology

The Phoenix Axial Air Mover is the industry's only air mover specifically engineered with patent-pending FOCUS Technology. FOCUS Technology revolutionizes evaporative drying by producing air velocities at least 40 percent greater than competitive product offerings. Additionally, this highly focused airflow is directed towards restoration industries problematic drying areas namely, carpet and pad, sub-floor, and walls. Finally, the Phoenix with FOCUS Technology sustains these airflows over 22.5 feet.

Phoenix's Axial Air Mover includes a 2-speed fan delivering a FOCUSED 3,000 cfm air stream; lightweight stackable enclosure designed to fit technicians' vehicles; onboard duplex GFCI outlet; circuit breaker; and superior cord management.

Hard-Surface Cleaning

The Turbo-Hybrid Hard-Surface Cleaner from Turbo-Force is capable of cleaning hard and softer polished floors. Utilizing a special boot that can be changed without the use of tools, the Turbo-Hybrid operates up to 3,000 psi as hot as 240 degrees.

The deck is constructed of a high-impact co-polymer mounted to a stainless steel handle. A new rebuild kit for the ceramic swivel is also available.

The Turbo-Hybrid features a cleaning capacity of 400 to 1,000 square feet per hour, depending on soil build-up and surface texture. Featuring a comfort-grip non-slip handle and easy-access inline filter, the Turbo-Hybrid carries a one-year manufacturer's warranty on all non-wear components.

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