Pew, What Is That Smell?
The question came from
your friend who lives next door. Embarrassed, you answer, "Well,
...my cat...you see..., ah....she had an accident."
And now you have a good reason to tackle that odor and get it
out of your house! You attempt to clean the area and add some deodorizer,
but you discover the foul smell doesn't go away! Now what?
For those of you who do not have pets, read on because there is
a wealth of information in here that you may use later, or you
can pass it on to a friend. But also, think about this. What if
you should purchase another home? What will you do if the former
owners had pets? What can you do about that? Well, keep reading!
Pet odor is a real (stinking!)
problem. As a carpet cleaner I run into all kinds of situations
that have to do with pet odors.
Not too long ago I cleaned an entire house of carpets leaving them
spotless and smelling nice. These folks had a rather large dog
(he was a big one!) and within one week of the cleaning he left
his deposit (some call it "his calling card") on one
of the downstairs carpets. He happened to have the "runs." After
the mess was cleaned up somewhat, guess who they called?
In most situations the problem is urine, but pet urine is no simple
matter! Here is why:
PET URINE NEVER GOES AWAY!
You see, pet urine penetrates
the fibers of your carpet with some of it settling at the bottom
near the backing. It soon turns to
urine salts and, interestingly, never fully dries out. This is
why pet urine can often be located with the use of a moisture detector.
But even after months, when the odor is hardly noticeable, it "revives" on
a hot, humid day. It is due to the moisture in the air and temperature.
Incidentally, the older a cat becomes the stronger the odor will
be. Or if a cat is in heat (obviously one that is non-neutered),
the odor is much more intensified.
I had my male cat (non-neutered) do his thing in one of my shoes
a while ago, and we never could get the odor out. At that time
I was not in the carpet cleaning business and didn't know what
could be done. Boy, was I some upset with my cat! Consequently,
I had to throw the shoes away. But, now that I have been schooled
on pet odor, I now know what to do.
THE PROBLEM GETS
WORSE WHEN. . .
you have a dog, especially a male. He can soak a carpet right
down through to the sub floor! This poses a serious problem. You
may possibly have the carpet treated by a professional, but if
only the surface is treated, you will have a return of the odor
in a short period of time. I'll show you how you can solve this
problem without having to discard the carpet and get a new one,
which may be what some carpet cleaners will suggest. That could
be very costly for you.
You see, a larger dog can put as much as six ounces of fluid into
your carpet during just one incident. Try pouring six ounces of
warm water onto your carpet and see how wet it is! It is soaked
through to the padding at least, if not all the way to the sub
IF THE PROBLEM IS NOT SOLVED. . .
then you've got a very serious situation. For cats, they will
continue to urinate at the same spot as long as that odor is present.
Other cats, when they smell the odor, will also go in the same
spot compounding your problem. If you neglect to do something about
this, bacteria will multiply in the carpet and now you have a health
BEWARE WHEN YOU PURCHASE A HOME!
When purchasing a home, it is not a bad idea to get the carpets
cleaned before moving into it. The wet shampoo will revive the
urine salts, if any, and you can then have the problem fixed before
you move in. Believe me, this is a problem that occurs quite frequently.
When you place an offer on a home you could ask the owners to have
the carpets cleaned after they move out. This is especially necessary
if you know they had pets. This way they pay for the cleaning and
the odor removal if needed.
WHAT CAN BE DONE TO SOLVE THE PROBLEM?
Of course, you are wondering what can be done about the problem.
Here is what I would recommend you do in order to totally solve
1. You can, yourself,
use a little white vinegar and water to reduce the odor temporarily.
This is not a permanent solution.
Of course, you can absorb as much as you can of the moisture if
the cat or dog is seen "doing it". Put a soft, absorbent
cloth on the area and step on it repeatedly until most of the urine
soaks up into the cloth or towel. Then you use 1/4 cup of white
vinegar with 1/4 cup of water. Spray it on if possible and let
it sit for ten minutes. Then use a towel to get as much of the
moisture out as possible.
2. Then you can apply
an enzyme treatment to the area. I carry an excellent product
called, "Bottom Line Pet Odor Removal".
It sells for only $10.95 per quart. Again, this may only be a temporary
solution, especially if the urine has gone deeper beyond the fibers.
Even so, it is still only a fast temporary solution, for example,
when you are expecting company.
3. You can call me. I will come out and inspect the problem and
offer you a permanent solution. It could mean only as much as $20.00
out of your pocket if it is a small area. I can treat it with professional
products that work. I can also remove most of the urine out of
the carpet with my extractor. Usually after my treatments there
is no further problem. However, if the urine did penetrate the
pad or even the sub-floor, we have a more complex problem/solution.
The carpet must be pulled back and the contaminated padding cut
out. The sub-floor must be properly sealed and dried, and then
the back of the carpet treated. We must then put a new piece of
padding in where we cut it out. Then, the carpet is stretched back
into place. This can cost toward $200.00, but it is far better
than purchasing a brand new carpet.
There is one more helpful preventive solution--
GET CARPET PROTECTION!
You should have your
carpets treated with a protective coating such as Scotchguard
TM Carpet and Upholstery Protector. This keeps
liquids from being absorbed into the carpets and upholstery, thus
providing easier removal of the urine salts when "accidents" happen.
A carpet protectant is excellent for prevention of colored drink
spills which can actually dye the fibers of your carpet and upholstery.
Some of you have experienced this already where the stain could
not be removed.
The average investment, and it is an investment, is around $15.00/20.00
per room. This is a small price to pay compared to carpet replacement.
Have you ever considered having your car or van treated with Scotchguard
TM Carpet and Upholstery Protector? I am a licensed applicator
and can provide that service for you if you want it.
The next time I come
and clean your carpets or upholstery, ask me about protection
and possibly purchasing a quart of "Bottom
Line Pet Odor Removal". (if you have pets).
Well that's it for February. Hope the information is helpful.
It is still a good time to call now and have your carpets and upholstery
cleaned. As I said in the January newsletter, with the house all
closed up, the chances for more germs to collect and harbor in
your carpets, (not to mention the millions of dustmites), greatly
Next month we are going to look at why it is important to choose
a good carpet cleaner. I want to give you information on how to
be sure he will do a thorough job. Until then, see how well you
do on this quiz. It is true or false. I'll give you the answers
1. "Bait and Switch" tactics
have to do with effective uses of fishing lures.
2. When a carpet cleaner
tells you he uses the "best" method
for cleaning carpets, it is a signal that he is a good carpet cleaner.
3. All carpet cleaners use the correct cleaning agents for your
carpets and upholstery since they are trained technicians.
4. Ammonia mixed with chlorine bleach (used in cleaning) is deadly!
It releases FATAL gasses.
5. Hot water damages your carpet.
6. The company that offers the lowest price is the company you
7. A company that is well known, but doesn't offer a money-back
guarantee is still a good company to choose.
8. Asking a carpet cleaner to give you some references is a wise
thing to do.
9. Rental machines do a fairly good job in cleaning your carpets.
10. Carpet cleaners should be well-groomed and wear uniforms.
*Important Note: In the January issue, I mentioned to you that
if you had your carpets cleaned in January or February, I would
take $50.00 off the invoice. Well, you could get two rooms cleaned
for nothing that way! However, what I meant was that I would take
$50.00 off the invoice if you did the entire house. Sorry about
any misunderstanding. Additionally, this discount does not apply
to cleaning furniture. But, the other discounts do apply.
I also have vacuum cleaners
that are exceptional in getting out the dustmites, pollens, dirt,
and dust. It gets all those pet hairs
out of the carpet that conventional vacuums won't. They are super
light in weight and built for commercial use. They cannot be purchased
in any store. They are exclusively sold to carpet cleaners. They
are called "Powr-Flite Enviro-Clean Upright Vacuums"
If you would like more information and prices, call me and I will
promptly send you the free information.
I'll come over and demonstrate
one for you, and if you like it, I'll make a risk-free offer
to you that you can't refuse. You will
be able to see the dirt come out right before your eyes when I
use my "dirt meter."
And remember, I give $10.00 in cash to the one who provides me
with a referral. You could save up this money and get a couple
of rooms done free! It isn't difficult to get four or more folks
to call me, or for you to give me their names and phone numbers.
I'll simply call them, introduce myself, and offer them my 100%
money back guarantee. You will be making them happy and I will,
of course, be happy. That's why I want to reward you for providing
me new clients. For every $100.00 in business that I get, I will
send you $10.00. That is a promise! Try me and see!
Happy house cleaning!
Stonemark Carpet Cleaners
7004 Church St.
Loudon, NH. 03301