Carpet Colonics

Okay. The burger thing worked. So let’s try the next issue.

For the next three days, Sparky and I are doing some heavy duty Spring Cleaning, budget talks and vacation planning. I have lists and lists of lists. We are busier than a skeeter in a nudist camp.

This morning we’ve been doing our phone work which includes, but is not limited to, finding a steam cleaner of rugs.

The rug I need cleaned is a wool Ikea rug I use in the cleaning room to catch the cat litter that dirty cat paws track all over my hardwood floors without. Back in December, when Sparky and I were in America, Cleo expressed her displeasure of our absence by pissing all over it. Our friend, who was house sitting and not familiar with Cleo’s antics, had no idea why the room stunk so badly. For three weeks, cat piss sat unattended. I have since attended to it, but it needs a good steam clean. It was about 199.00€. Too expensive to toss and replace.

Once, in a previous life, I worked for a steam cleaning company. I am more than familiar with the varied processes that Americans use to clean their rugs. I know all about the magic stick – the moisture detector that they use to convince you to use an enzyme additive for the low, low price of $49.99. I know about chemical cleaners and the residue that is left on the object to be cleaned and the sales pitch that it is healthier and better for your fabrics (not true). I know all the way that rug cleaners in America try to rip you off and how they actually help. I also know that most carpet cleaners, like movers, have police records a mile long. And I know that steam cleaning is the high colonic of carpet care.

I want my rug to have an enema. Apparently no one in Germany does this. Of the six rug cleaners we’ve called (actually Sparky called) everyone one of them says they know about steam cleaning, but no one knows of anyone who does this. One lady says she’ll wash our rug by hand in 30°C water and that she does not recommend steam for wool, as it will shrink. Well, yes and no. If you know how to do it, it is perfectly safe. Like anal sex, don’t force it and everything should be fine.

There is the homeopathic remedy: Shake a salt in a closed container 100,000 times then sprinkle conservatively (the shaking increases the intensity of the salt, be careful) and vacuum. Then there is the spiritualist way of just hovering above the rug and asking it to cleanse itself. The hausfrau method of beating the rug like a dead horse will not remove the odors, but then maybe I just need to learn to love the smell.

Of course, the rug is German. It might just not want to change.

So I’ve called my interior designer. She sold us our living room rug. Let me tell you, this firm is all about customer service. They bend over backwards to help us. However, they told us to call Ikea because all wool is different and they don’t want to “lean out of the window” regarding carpet care.

Argh. So, if anyone knows what steam cleaning is called in German – maybe its not a literal translation, Dampfreinigung, please let me know.


8 thoughts on “Carpet Colonics

  1. wool will “felt” if washed at too high a temperature but as your designer said, it really just depends on the wool and what the actual fibre content is of this rug and/or how long the fibres are etc.

    re the actual contraption:

    you can obviously just go from there now you know what they’re called 😉

  2. Sorry, I’ve got nothing to offer on the topic of steam cleaning, but I can help you with a burger! See Feed Me.


  3. Yeah, Dampfreinigung is right. I’m surprised that the carpet cleaning companies don’t do that. We have an old Chinese wool carpet that we’ve had cleaned several times (Stichway was the name of the company, they do dry cleaning and stuff) but I think they just used chemicals on it.

    I found this company where you can buy a ‘Diavolo’ machine that will supposedly steam clean your carpet but if it’s only going to be cleaned a time or two it probably wouldn’t be worth it.

  4. Whooo Hooooo! You are hella funny! You said “anal sex”! And just like that you were on to something else without looking back! Damn funny Jen! Sorry I cant help you with the carpet. I am looking for a new school in Darmstadt. Any ideas? I remember that you didnt speak too highly of the one you attend, but what is the name of it? HOpe all is well.

  5. I don’t have a clue what you’re talking about but I’m on the edge of my seat waiting to see how this all turns out. I think I’ll pop some popcorn and get comfy for the long haul.

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