How do you tell the above-average carpet cleaner apart from the average carpet cleaner? One way to do so is to see if the carpet cleaner is certified. In the carpet cleaning industry, there are certification organizations that provide the cleaning standards by which cleaning and restoration should be done.
The Institute for Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification
The most prominent of these organizations is The Institute for Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). The IICRC has written standards that are also certified by the American National Standards Institue (ANSI). Many standards are also recognized by the carpet manufacturers, insurance companies, and the carpet industry as a whole. The IICRC has certified instructors who hold in-person classes all over the country. These classes teach and test carpet cleaning professionals on the cleaning standards found in the IICRC S100 publication. The S100 is also called the “Standard for Professional Cleaning of Textile Floor Coverings.”
Within the IICRC certification tracks, there are different rankings.
Certified Technician – Certified in any track they choose.
Journeyman Technician – Has taken multiple classes, has passed the appropriate exams and has 12 months active service in the industry
Master Technician – Requires expert knowledge in multiple areas of carpet cleaning and repair plus a minimum of three years since receiving their original certification
Why These Certifications Are Important
Many carpet cleaning companies do not send their technicians to any formal classes to gain this knowledge. They simply teach the technicians on the job from what they have learned. Without formal education and testing, these technicians can miss out on important knowledge about the science of cleaning. Formal education from an IICRC certified instructor lays the foundation upon which a technician will continue to learn and put their knowledge into practice.
Without this education, a technician will lack knowledge of many things including:
- How the PH of cleaning solutions affects different stains and materials
- Soil suspension
- Spotting techniques
- Pet urine neutralization
- Fiber identification
- Use of personal protective equipment
- Carpet construction
Certifications at Hydro Clean Carpet Cleaning
At Hydro Clean Carpet Cleaning in Colorado Springs, all of our technicians are IICRC certified. Some are certified in multiple cleaning and restoration disciplines. When our employees return from a certified training course they have a better understanding of why we do what we do. Besides having certified technicians, we are also an IICRC Certified Firm. That means we follow the IICRC standards when we clean and we follow a code of ethics and have a written customer complaint procedure. We do not engage in false advertising, we carry the proper insurance and we have a commitment to continuing education.
Our cleaning and restoration technicians have a photo id badge when they arrive at a customer’s house. On the back side of the badge, they are required to keep their IICRC certification card and have it available for inspection by any customer. This is a company policy we have set in place to show our commitment to the continuing education of our staff. Certification does not mean every job will go perfectly, but it means the frequency of a non-exceptional cleaning will be few and far between.