Thread Number: 17898
The Host Carpet Cleaning Adventure
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Post# 194723   8/13/2012 at 22:56 (2,785 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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As I've said before my family bought a new house with very soiled carpets that need to be cleaning. The whole story is quite long and spans literally the last two months so I won't tell the entire thing. After asking you guys and reading much more than usual about carpet cleaning, we decided the cheapest and best way the clean the carpet would be to use Host carpet cleaner along with the Oreck Orbiter.

At last we closed on the house late this afternoon and I went to work as soon as possible. First I had to pre-vacuum the carpet. This took me about an hour. I cleaned for about 30 minutes with the Hoover Concept One(I was hearing grit being picked up the entire time) then went back over with my Eureka Express. What I picked up was amazing. Keep in mind this is one room.

Post# 194724 , Reply# 1   8/13/2012 at 23:00 (2,785 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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So after that I went back over with the Hoover and picked up much more. I would say I filled the brand new A bag with about a pound and a half of grit when it was all said and done. Then I started cleaning with the Host. This product is amazing. Instead of going on about how well it cleans, look at this picture:

Post# 194726 , Reply# 2   8/13/2012 at 23:03 (2,785 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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Just to show you how fantastic the Orbiter is, this is a the difference the Host and dry cleaning brush made in just ONE pass. More pictures to come tomorrow.

Post# 194862 , Reply# 3   8/14/2012 at 16:14 (2,784 days old) by floor-a-matic (somewhere)        

VERY nice work, Nathaniel.

If you've got a Sanitaire SC888; maybe you'll pick up more dirt before using the Oreck Orbiter & Host.

The one house I moved to had very dirty SHAG (SHAG-A-DELIC!) carpets; first I vacuumed with a Eureka ESP; then I used the Electrolux Turbotool Rug Washer; then rinsed with a Hoover Steam Vac SpinScrub or Rainbow AquaMate w/Kenmore Spray Mate.

If I were to deep clean shag carpets again, I'll use the Dial-A-Nap & a Bissell Big Green.

Post# 194929 , Reply# 4   8/14/2012 at 20:06 (2,784 days old) by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

You will be amazed at how much of that host compound will remain in a plush carpet. You will be vacuuming that stuff out of the carpet for months. It is hard to pick up off of level loop commercial carpet with any vacuum. I have used every kind of upright fitted with various aggitators. Don't believe me? Examine the the carpet. Move the carpet fibers and you will see that stuff stuck to the pile. Even after you think you vacuumed all of it up.

Another thing to be ware of is some animals have allergies to the chemicals in that stuff. We had a Yellow lab that was our office mascott that reacted to the residual chemicals in the host carpet cleaner several times. Ended up taking her to the vet to get some medicine to take care of the allergy. We no longer use the host compound in our office.

Post# 194941 , Reply# 5   8/14/2012 at 20:55 (2,784 days old) by dustin (Jackson, MI)        

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How large of a room will the box of host clean? I am going to be doing some filthy carpets soon and this is an option.

Post# 194953 , Reply# 6   8/14/2012 at 21:37 (2,784 days old) by Trebor ()        
The Host can only absorb..

so much, just like a sponge. If it is still sticking to the carpet, there is more soap from previous cleanings still in the carpet, and a second application should remove it.  The compound is wet with a solution of primarily water with some detergent and solvent in it. The amount of detergent in the Host is miniscule compared to what is injected in extraction cleaning. If you allow unused Host to dry, it will not stick even to itself, so it has to be sticking to residue still in the carpet.  A 6lb box will cover 500 sq ft of average soiled carpet.  When people opt to rent a Sanitaire with the Host, I send a 3 pack of bags with it, and tell them to change the bag before picking up the host. Three F&G bags full of Host is pretty much the volume of a 6 lb box. If you pick up that much, you pretty much got it all. Allergies to Host are rare. It is used in health care facilities.


Thanks for the pics.  I had no idea the Orbiter would work so well with the Host.

Post# 194959 , Reply# 7   8/14/2012 at 21:49 (2,784 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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Thank you everybody for your commets. I did notice that the Host tends to stick within the fibers. I have been cleaning basically all day now and I just now got on the Internet. The living room looks even better now, and most of the bedrooms are clean. Tomorrow I finish the carpet and start on the grout. I am on the Kindle right now, so tomorrow I will post the pictures. Sorry for the delay.

Post# 195310 , Reply# 8   8/15/2012 at 22:10 (2,783 days old) by djtaylor (Salt Lake City, Utah)        

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About a month ago I was hired by a friend to shampoo his mom's house with my Bissell Pro Heat Pet. I know, I know... it's not the same. It's only a domestic machine and not going to do a very good job, BUT in this case it did. It was not until after it was all over that anyone told me that they only vacuumed the carpet one a month, and then only with a Garry Vac. My poor Bissell was pulling up so much crud and leaving long rolls of hair and lint (all looking like dog doo) and I vowed that the next time someone hired me to shampoo carpets I was going to bring one of my own Kirbys and give the carpets a heavy vacuuming before I even get the Bissell out of the car.
The next week a member of the forum came down from Idaho with some machines to trade, one of which is a Blue Line Sanitaire SC684. Once I have that fixed-up it is going to be the Shampoo Job vacuum.
Again, I know that the Bissell is not commercial strength and there are loads of other machines that would do a better job, but I am glad to have the Bissell... and now the Sanitaire.

Post# 195321 , Reply# 9   8/15/2012 at 23:24 (2,783 days old) by Kirbysthebest (Wichita, KS)        
First I wish to inter a plea of ignorant

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Is the Zorb, Capture, Host the same type of stuff that my Mom used to use, Glamorine, or at least on that principal?

I know I have told this before, but I'm old so let me ramble. When we bought this house five years ago, the first thing I always do even though the house was immaculate, is vacuum before I move anything in. So I pull out the trusty Ultimate G with a brand new bag and proceed to pull bags full of the gray powder from the carpet. This went for several rooms and continued, but at a lesser amount for a few days. I took one of the bags to the carpet store down the street and he said that either the previous owner used a lot of carpet fresh, or they used a dry cleaning system.

If this was the stuff, it takes a long slow vacuum session to get the stuff out.

Post# 195337 , Reply# 10   8/16/2012 at 03:20 (2,783 days old) by Vacuumfreeeke ()        

Hey Buster, you promised us pictures and I'm anxiously awaiting!

Post# 195378 , Reply# 11   8/16/2012 at 08:25 (2,783 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        
More Pictures

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Sorry, I did not have the time until this morning to upload. Here is a before and after shot of a bedroom carpet. The room was in the best shape, so it is not very dramatic. The after side is one the right.

Post# 195381 , Reply# 12   8/16/2012 at 08:28 (2,783 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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Here is what came up after I let some Host sit over night. Somehow it pulled up a bunch of dog hair. I believe this picture is from the same bedroom.

Post# 195383 , Reply# 13   8/16/2012 at 08:33 (2,783 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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This area was cleaned with a degreaser and grout cleaner. I still can't tell if the grout is really that white or I scrubbed something off. Any ideas would be helpful.

Post# 195643 , Reply# 14   8/16/2012 at 22:50 (2,782 days old) by dustin (Jackson, MI)        

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How large of a room does a box of the host powder clean? We just moved into a new house too, and the downstairs carpets are disgusting to the point of either they come clean or get ripped out. Does it help eliminate odors (cigarettes smoke especially)?

Post# 195725 , Reply# 15   8/17/2012 at 09:04 (2,782 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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The Host has a pretty strong smell; almost like oranges. Whenever I finsh a room, that part of the house smells very clean. It took me about three-fourths of a 12 pound box to complete my dirty living room. I'm not sure what the square footage is. But then again I cleaned two bedrooms, one hallway and a large stairway with just one box. I'd buy at least four boxes of Host for your house, unless you think you need more.

Post# 195729 , Reply# 16   8/17/2012 at 09:29 (2,782 days old) by trebor ()        
The stated square footage...

for 'average' soil is 500 for 6 lb, and, obviously 1000 for 12 lb. If the carpets are really dirty, misting with the pre-spray and brushing before applying the Host will help. Once the carpet is clean, maintaining is easy.

Post# 195818 , Reply# 17   8/17/2012 at 16:37 (2,781 days old) by dustin (Jackson, MI)        

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Ok, If I decide to do it this way, I will probably only need 2 boxes, the upstairs has already been cleaned with my Hoover Steamvac.

Post# 195950 , Reply# 18   8/17/2012 at 23:12 (2,781 days old) by DURANGO159 (State College, PA)        
Your tile?

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My guess is that the grout is actually that white color but it could be the cleaner you're using. Is this tile on your shower wall, or on a floor? Is the tile greasy and what degreaser are you using?

The degreaser is the chemical that worries me. If its shower tile thats covered in soap scum I would get a good coating of Lysol Bathroom or Tilex Bathhroom soap scum remover on their, letting the product sit for about 10 minutes. Use an SOS green scrubby sponge with a multi purpose disinfecting solution in bottom of tub and wipe down down walls. Its important to let the chemicals do the work for you.

For a tile floor I have a 5 step process that I use every once in a while as needed for tile restoration:

1) Vacuum floor with bristled bare floor brush

2) Thoroughly wet mop floors with good cleaner and ensure they are very wet. Armstrong floor cleaner works very well, Mr. Clean or other professional tile cleaner works good. I'm not a fan of Pine Sol.

3) Soft Scrub cleanser and a good comfortable scrub brush. Lemon or Orange formula are best. DO NOT use a a gel or bleach based cleanser. Liquid regular soft scrub is the best. The thorough wet premopping with Armstrong has already started softening the dirt. Apply directly to floor Soft Scrub entire length of grout lines. Results are instantaneous.

4) Rinse-- attach floor squeegee to Hoover Steamvac with plain water only in clean water tank. Just like shampooing a carpet. Use the spinscrub, dispense water and suction up solution.

5) Wet mop floors with water only. This is the last final clean step to ensure all loose dirt and cleanser is removed for a nice finish. I highly recommend a rectangular shape with automatic ringer sponge mop. The automatic wringer isn't really automatic, but its the one up on the handle not down by sponge. The Libman gator works very well or Quickie automatic/ Clean Results from Lowes, or HomePro line. Since this is the final mopping, work to wring out mop thoroughly to absorb all liquid for a faster dry but gorgeous finish.

This sounds hard, its really not, it's great exercise, very rewarding and your floors will look new again!! I've been cleaning houses for years and this is my proven method. You can try a long handled deckbrush but you'll achieve much better results from hands and knees with a standard scrub brush. The compact, long ways design of a typical bathroom scrub brush means with each stroke you get much more contact with the surface and the brush better conforms to the grout line.

Post# 195980 , Reply# 19   8/18/2012 at 09:05 (2,781 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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That picture is from the kitchen next to the door leading outside. I'm using a citrus degresser and the Oreck Orbiter. Some parts of the grout look a light gray when I quickly brushed the aera. If you look closely in person, you can see that the black/dirtly part is thicker and elevated than the white part.

Post# 197476 , Reply# 20   8/26/2012 at 11:14 (2,773 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        
An Update

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A few days ago I brought in my UV flashlight to see if I had removed all the urine stains from the carpet. To be completely serious, I was literarily stepping on a carpet half drenched in urine. The Host did not even touch the urine stains. I doubt many professionals have seen such bad carpeting. Two of our neighbors say the house was filled with animals with it's last owner. Our painter even commented on the house smelling of cat urine. I tried everything to clean these carpets: large amounts of Host drying overnight, bonnet cleaning, and bonnet cleaning followed by exaction, but they would not come out.

At least one good thing came out of this: Home Depot is charging less to install new carpeting because it doesn't reek of urine. I guess there is fee to remove carpet that smells.

By the way, the carpet most filled with urine looked the cleanest. See reply #11 for the picture.

The adventure will continue when I clean the old house's flooring. Check back in a few weeks.

Post# 197540 , Reply# 21   8/26/2012 at 19:43 (2,772 days old) by Trebor ()        
The stains...

are likely urine molecules that have actually inserted themselves in between the molecules of dye in the carpet. Both are acidic. The molecules of uric acid are smaller than the molecules of dye.  It would be interesting to try the 'dye transformers' that actually break off an oxygen molecule from the dye to render it invisible in the visible light spectrum. I wonder if it would have the same effect in the ultra violet light spectrum.  Lindhaus makes a very effective chemical of this type.

Post# 197551 , Reply# 22   8/26/2012 at 23:02 (2,772 days old) by Kirbysthebest (Wichita, KS)        

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Simple Solution & Simple Solution Extreme.

Wet it down to the pad. Leave it! Blot to damp after five minutes then allow it to air dry.

When our dog died last December she lost control of her functions and soaked the carpet behind the couch. I thought I was going to have to replace the carpet. I used Simple Solution as directed by the lady at PetSmart and the odor is gone.
It has enzymes that break down the urine. A few days later I steam cleaned the entire carpet with a cup of Simple Solution in the water.

Post# 197651 , Reply# 23   8/27/2012 at 19:33 (2,771 days old) by TheHooverMan (United States )        

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Wow The Oreck Did Excellent

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