Encapsulation Carpet Cleaning is the Other Carpet Cleaning Method

Encapsulation Carpet Cleaning is the Other Carpet Cleaning Method


The encapsulation carpet cleaning method is a low-moisture form of carpet cleaning, which can prove healthier for the indoor environment. While the extraction method if very effective, it can take carpet more than 24 hours to dry. In such cases, there is a chance for mold or mildew to develop. With the encapsulation method, carpet is often dry and open to foot traffic in minutes.


Another benefit of the encapsulation method is that the chemistry has advanced considerably. New, greener chemistries have been developed, allowing some encapsulation products to earn certifications, such as the Seal of Approval from the Carpet and Rug Institute. This certification verifies that a product is not only effective but has a reduced impact on the environment.


So how does it work? (h3)

In most cases, the encapsulating chemical is sprayed onto the carpet and then agitated – one of the core components of professional cleaning – with a cylindrical or rotary brush floor machine, similar to what cleaning professionals use to clean and polish hard surface floors. The encapsulation solution should be applied to the most soiled areas of the carpet and traffic lanes. Other areas are lightly misted.


Within minutes, the encapsulates surround the soil particulates and crystallize. This allows them to be vacuumed up with regular vacuuming. This is why the carpet often looks better with each vacuuming … more soils are removed.


Along with being a low-moisture form of carpet cleaning, other benefits of this method include the following:

  • No special equipment is needed. Most all facilities and all cleaning professionals have both floor machines and vacuum cleaners as part of their cleaning arsenal.
  • It tends to be a much faster way to clean carpet. While cleaning rates can vary, some cleaning professionals can clean more than 2,000 square feet of carpet per hour with this method. This is typically faster then when cleaning carpet using the extraction method.
  • There is no “wicking.” Wicking occurs when soils deeply embedded in carpet fibers disappear after cleaning but re-appear shortly thereafter. This is a big problem with commercial glue down carpet, found frequently today in commercial facilities.
  • Re-soiling is eliminated. Some encapsulation chemistries dry quickly after application leaving no sticky residue that can accelerate re-soiling. When cleaning carpet with the extraction method, some of the cleaning solution may be left in the carpet. The cleaning solution can act as a magnet, attracting new soils into the carpet.
  • Encapsulation can help reduce cleaning costs. Carpet extraction tends to be costly, especially if a large amount of carpet must be cleaned. Because the encapsulation method is faster, these costs are less.


We need to explore this cost factor in a bit more detail. Yes, per cleaning, the encapsulation method may be less costly. Further, many facilities use the encapsulation method as an “interim” cleaning method. Using this scenario, the carpet is cleaned using the encapsulation method two or three times before it is extracted. Stretching the extraction cycles like this also reduces cleaning costs.

To discover more about the encapsulation method, click here.

The Avmor blog is for cleaning professionals looking for expert, practical advice on how to keep facilities clean, healthy, and looking their best. We also suggest techniques that improve worker productivity, ensure worker safety, and protect the environment. Our goal is to help you become a leader in the Canadian professional cleaning industry. For more information, contact us at support@avmor.com.

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