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Friday, October 31, 2014

Question

We have a carpet that has had stripper spilled on it. We have tried wet extraction and the spot has returned. What else can we try?


Answer

Answer #1:
I trust you actually mean stripper or stripper solution, and not the slurry of spent stripper and emulsified floor finish, which is another problem in itself. See answer #2.
This is a case of “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, again.” Keep in mind that a loss of color and or a change in the appearance and or texture of the face yarns are a definite possibility. Time is of the essence so the sooner you begin the spot removal process the better results you'll get. Before the spill or spot dries is much better than tomorrow or in a few days.
Any spill with some volume will sink deep into the carpet and will take some effort and time to get it out, even with a powerful extractor. And there may be some wicking as it dries. You maybe able to reduce the wicking by using a "Water Claw" which is a tool used for flood clean up. (www.waterclaw.com)
Use an extractor with an acid rinse agent in the solution tank and go over the spot several times. The acid rinse will neutralize the alkaline stripper and the flushing action will remove it from the fibers.
As with any wicking problem, if only a small amount has made it to the fiber tips to form the returning spot, use a damp, absorbent towel to remove it without adding enough moisture to draw more discoloration from below. Other options include the use a dry vapor cleaner/extractor and micro fiber cloths in the spot removal process.
Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN associate editor for ATEX
lekrafft@juno.com

Answer #2:
It depends on whether the stripper was fresh or wasted. They are two separate issues. If the fresh stripper permanently stripped the dye from the carpet, then you are looking at replacement.
If it was wasted (mainly comprised of dissolved floor finish) then you will need to:
1. Mix up a strong extraction cleaner, traffic lane cleaner or pre-conditioner (pre-test if in doubt regarding possible color loss).
2. Apply this to area and allow 10 minutes contact time
3. Use a bonnet/brush, shampoo brush, striped bonnet or power head brush on an extractor and aggressively work the area until all evidences are that the wasted stripper has been dissolved. Do not run machine on dry carpet.
4. Carefully use a scrapper to remove any remaining residue.
5. Extract thoroughly
If the stripper was fresh, then you will need to:
1. Prepare a solution of acidic rinse agent-diluted 1:5 and apply to the spill (pre-test in an inconspicuous area if concerned about possible color loss).
2. Allow 10 minutes or more contact time and then agitate with a grooming brush.
3. Extract
In both cases, you may experience browning or wick back in a couple of days. This is easy to correct with this procedure:
1. Mix acidic rinse agent 1:5 in spray bottle
2. Apply liberally to area
3. Bonnet with just slightly damp spin pad
4. Repeat again in 2 days, if necessary
Note: Acidic rinses:
1. Remove high pH alkaline residues from the carpet
2. Stabilize color dyes
3. Correct and prevent browning
Gary Clipperton
National Pro Clean Corp
(719) 598-5112
www.nationalproclean.com