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Cleaning Your Carpets the Green Way (and the Facts Behind the Hype)

By Michael Hilton

Going green with your carpet cleaner can be a good way to conserve environmental resources and help fight asthma-causing enemies like toxins and bacteria. Here's how to tell green cleaners apart, and why hiring a green carpet cleaning service can be better for both your home and the world.

Getting to the Green
There are plenty of carpet cleaning products and services that advertise their environmental friendliness, but how do you know what's really green? Read on for some science behind the "green," and learn what to look for in cleaners and services.

The Quest for Green Carpet Cleaning
Many household cleaning chemicals are petroleum-based, contributing to toxins and an anti-environmental element in your home. Carpet cleaners themselves are made from perchloroethylene, a neurotoxin and an offensive chemical not only to our environment, but ourselves.

On the other hand, green carpet cleaning chemicals are typically natural, made from plant, fruit, or nutrient derivatives.

Look for the Label
The Carpet and Rug Institute has created a label for the products it certifies as "green." Look for the "CRI Green Label©" on carpet cleaning products if you're planning to do your own cleaning.

The CRI awards this label to products that emit a low quantity of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that act as toxins to the human body.

Be Green and Exfoliate Your Carpet
One professional carpet cleaning company based in Florida advertises its green techniques as a customer selling point. It uses an organic citrus compound that "exfoliates and absorbs the dirt, dust mites, bacteria, pet and environmental allergens, and even mold," the company told Fox News last week. (This company also guarantees its service based on drying time and stain removal).

Choosing a professional carpet cleaning service that uses green cleaners, or requesting that your current service choose green cleaners for your home can be a good way to ensure your "green commitment."

Checking how much water your company uses is also a good tip on keeping companies honest in their "greenness." Some companies use low-moisture extraction machines to help decrease on their water consumption.

A little conservation can go a long way with carpet cleaning.

Sources
Cape Coral Daily, OMDT Carpet Cleaners Gets It Clean but Keeps It Green
The Carpet and Rug Institute, Helping Improve Indoor Air Quality
Examiner, It's Sort of Easy Being Green
The Green Guide, Are There Any Green Carpet Cleaners?

About the Author
Michael Hilton was the original creator of Carpet Buyers Handbook. Having owned and operated a carpet wholesale company, Hilton has a vast knowledge about all-things carpet related as well as other types of flooring.

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Cleaning Your Carpets the Green Way
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