DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES AND CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCE
People often use the terms drapery or drapes and curtains interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. Many drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services companies are more than capable of dealing with both types of window treatments, but some are specialists in one or the other. Therefore, it is good to understand the difference between the two, as it may play a role in the selection of the best cleaning services company for a job.
Generally, drapes or drapery that are handled by a drapery cleaning services company are made of thick fabric and have a liner or backing that faces the window side of the treatment. Their purpose is to block out light from windows, insulate a home or office from the heat and cold transfer, and provide some privacy to residents of the home or office. They almost always hang from the tops of a window down to the floor or bottom of the window and have mechanical elements that allow for opening/closing and adjustment, such as pull/twist rods or cords.
Curtains, however, are different. Curtain cleaning services are quick to point out that while they are also window treatments just as like drapes, and typically hang from the top of a window, there are many more variations of length and style. Some cover only the top of a window, some just the sides, and some are full length just like drapes. Almost always, they are a lighter, thinner fabric than that used on drapes, and are often semi-transparent or sheer. Curtains do not have a backing or liner. Functionally, they offer little privacy or insulation and are almost always purely a decorative element.
As there are many similar aspects to these different window treatments, many drapery cleaning services, and curtain cleaning services also use the terms interchangeably and combine or modify their company names accordingly. Some companies, rather than specializing as just a drapery cleaning services or curtain cleaning services company may call themselves something like a drapery and curtain cleaning services company. Additionally, some deal with other types of window treatments, including vertical and horizontal blinds, shutters, and shades, and refer to themselves more broadly as window treatment cleaning companies.
DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES AND CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – TECHNIQUES
The specific methods and techniques that drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services companies use will vary significantly based on the material type, experience, and expertise, as well as geography (some chemicals and other methods prohibited in some jurisdictions). However, the main categories of approaches to cleaning are below.
DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES/CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – DRY CLEANING
Dry cleaning is the most typical method used by drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services. Like commercial dry cleaning of suits, dresses, and other delicate garments, this process uses a variety of chemicals to remove dirt, stains, and wear from the fabric, without using water. Most of the materials from which drapes and curtains made are sensitive to hot water and would either become damaged, change size/shape or shrink if just cleaned or laundered with water in a way like regular garments.
Drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services have a variety of specialized solutions available based on the material of the drapes or curtain, which are intended for window treatment cleaning without causing any damage. Many of these chemicals and the machines involved are not available for consumers, which is another reason why hiring a professional drapery cleaning services or curtain cleaning services company is usually the best choice rather than a DIY or handyman option.
DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES/CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – STEAM CLEANING
Steam cleaning is another method, typically used by drapery and curtain cleaning services companies for thick and heavy drapes that might be hard to take down and transport or may become damaged due to their weight if they uninstalled for cleaning. While consumers might be tempted to use commercially-available or rentable steam cleaners and perform this task themselves, there is a great deal of expertise needed to ensure that the drapes or curtains are not damaged.
Drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services know the proper techniques and methods, such as how far away to keep the steamer from the fabric, to prevent damage, shrinkage, or other problems from developing. Further, most reputable drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services offer a guarantee on their work, and in the unlikely event that they damage the drapes or curtains, they will take responsibility for replacing them.
DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES/CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – HOT WATER EXTRACTION
For drapes or curtains that aren’t water-sensitive, hot water extraction is another cleaning method that drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services may offer. Hot water, along with a cleaning solution, applied to the drapes or curtains. After allowing some time to permeate and deal with any stains or discolorations in the fabric, the cleaning solution and water are vacuumed out of the window treatment. Then, the drapery cleaning services or curtain cleaning services may instruct consumers to allow the window treatment to air dry for some time before moving it.
Drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services caution that this method cannot be used on many of the fabrics and materials that are on the market today and should not be attempted by untrained consumers. When using this technique and everything is done correctly upwards of 95% of the dirt and stains in window treatment can be removed.
DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES/CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – VACUUM/AGITATION CLEANING
For simple cleaning of drapes and curtains that are not overly stained or discolored, and merely have accumulated the natural dust and dirt that develops over time, drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services utilize specialized, gentle vacuums or beaters/agitators to extract the dust and dirt. Cleaning must be done cautiously, to avoid damaging the fabric and therefore is also not recommended as a DIY solution.
For best results, one should consult the experts at a drapery cleaning services company or curtain cleaning services, as they do these things professionally and can guarantee the best outcome.
DRAPERY, CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – IN-STORE CLEANING VS. ON-SITE CLEANING
One of the decisions a consumer may have to make with regards to drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services companies is whether they offer on-site cleaning or only in-store cleaning, and which option to use for a situation. There are advantages and also disadvantages to both possibilities.
In-store cleaning is generally necessary for techniques like dry cleaning, which use specialized equipment and chemicals that aren’t safe to use in the home. Generally, in-store cleaning allows for more flexibility by the drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services in how they tackle a cleaning problem, as they have all their tools and techniques available at their disposal in the store. However, this can cause inconvenience for consumers, who might be left without window treatments for several days. It can also be costlier and more time-consuming, especially in the case of older, fragile, or heavy window treatments, as the drapery cleaning services or curtain cleaning services company must exercise great care and expend a great time in disassembling the window treatment before transport to their store for service.
On the other hand, on-site cleaning can offer great convenience for consumers. There is typically no wait or delay when drapery cleaning services or curtain cleaning services come for an on-site cleaning appointment. Their equipment and methods are available for use in the home or office, or sometimes the trucks themselves have a mini, portable dry drapery cleaning or other facilities inside. However, in many cases, these methods are not available on a portable scale or not available for use in the home, so the ability to clean on-site varies by company and window treatment material. As always, distinguished drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services should provide a free consultation, either in-person or over the phone, before committing to work, allowing consumers to shop around for the solution that works best for them.
DRAPERY CLEANING SERVICES AND CURTAIN CLEANING SERVICES – CONCLUSIONS
Drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services can provide a much-needed revival to home or office window treatments, without the need for expensive repairs, upgrades, or replacements. They have a variety of different methods available to clean drapes and curtains, which vary based on the material and style of window treatment. Consumers should always consult drapery cleaning services and curtain cleaning services rather than attempting to clean window treatments themselves, as these experts have the skills, equipment, and knowledge to do the job right.
Shade & Blind Cleaning
When curtains or drapes don’t quite meet a style, blinds and shades are usually the go-to options for a room. But whether they are real woods, faux woods, woven woods, vignettes, or vinyl shutters – these all have one thing in common. They all need to be cleaned regularly. However, blind and shade cleaning is a time-consuming job, having to go vane by vane (or slat by slat). It may be easier to take that out of the equation and hire some professional blind and shade cleaning services. As such, this article will serve as a customer’s guide to why it is essential to keep blinds and shades clean, plus daily cleaning services they can perform before getting the pros. It will touch upon the usual professional methods for blind cleaning and give customer advice on what to look out for when hiring a blind and shade cleaning service.
WHY CLEANING BLINDS AND SHADES IS IMPORTANT
It is probably the first question that enters anyone’s mind when they’re advised to get their blinds and shades cleaned. What is the point? Does it make that much difference? Of course, the answer is “yes” and for a long list of reasons, most of which warrant the need for pro blind and shade cleaning services.
Aside from the obvious, aesthetic issues posed by dusty or, in worse cases, moldy blinds and shades, there are some of the health-related implications to be wary of.
First, remember what dust can contain. Pollen, domestic animal hair, the list goes on. All these things are common allergens. Hay fever sufferers will not have a pleasant time in a room with dusty blinds, particularly in high-pollen seasons. Actioning regular cleaning services, even if it’s just a once-over with a dusting cloth, will help prevent these situations.
Furthermore, consider the location of the blinds and shades. They’re up against windows, a commonplace to find household condensation, which in turn leads to damp. Even on blinds made from PVC, although it is more common on pleated fabric blinds, these conditions provide ideal breeding grounds for household mold.
Not dissimilar to the dangers posed by excess pollen and allergens, the continued growth of mold releases airborne spores into the air around rooms (in properties both residential and commercial). These spores are harmful, even potentially poisonous in certain species. They cause all sorts of trouble and sickness, especially if there are sufferers from asthma or other respiratory conditions.
In the cases where mold has grown on the blinds in a way that isn’t manageable by a simple cleaning routine, waste no time in getting the professional blinds and shades cleaning services. Even they may not be able to get rid of the problem entirely. They may recommend a mold specialist or replacement of the blinds and shades in question.
EVERYDAY BLIND AND SHADE CLEANING
Naturally, most wouldn't like to pay for a professional – blinds and shades cleaning services – if they could do a good job fixing the problems themselves. The best thing would be to put preventative measures in place. Do enough to see that the problem doesn’t arise, and there will be no need to bring in the pro blind and shade cleaning services.
Of course, there are some natural occurrences that a householder or commercial property owner cannot control or prevent. In these cases, the pros will have to come in. But the Internet is rife with do-it-yourself remedies for keeping the standard blind and shade issues at bay. This little guide examines the ways to clean the more popular types of blinds.
VENETIAN BLIND CLEANING
These are among the most popular styles of blind and shade that people choose for their windows. They are also notorious for being incredibly troublesome when it comes to cleaning them. They are, in short, dust magnets. As such, getting pro blind and shade cleaning services to do the job when required will be an expensive endeavor. A bit of due diligence on the householder’s part will reduce the regular costs.
The vane by vane cleaning routine will be off-putting to many. Luckily, nowadays some machines can clean Venetian blinds three vanes at a time, which will make the task less arduous and time-consuming.
However, these are generally used for household dust, for blinds and shades in domestic areas like living rooms, and isolated rooms in commercial properties like offices. For blinds in a kitchen area, they will encounter another household menace – grease. To be done correctly, get the professional blind and shade cleaning service in, but if those are an expense that can’t be handled, cleaning each vane with a vinegar and water mixture is recommended.
PLEATED BLIND CLEANING
Blinds and shades made from pleated fabrics are a whole different story to Venetians. It is not unheard of for people to use their vacuum cleaners to help clean these kinds of blinds. It works, but when the correct settings on the machine are used. It can end in disaster if the vacuum cleaner model doesn’t have any low-power, gentle setting.
The other dependant factor is what sort of fabric the pleated blinds are made from; Stains and grease will prove a much more onerous task if the material is not wipeable. If they are, it’s a simple case of wiping away any such marks with a sponge or microfiber cloth, either of which has been dampened a little in some soapy, lukewarm water. Applying this to the afflicted areas in a gentle, blotting motion will solve the problem. Also, be sure that the blinds or shades are completely dry again before raising them.
ULTRASONIC BLIND AND SHADE CLEANING SERVICES
If the above, everyday methods have run their course and it’s time to get the professional blind and shade cleaning service in, ultrasonic blind and shade cleaning services are the customer’s best bet.
The ultrasonic blinds or shade cleaning service’s process will clean way more than just a set of blinds or shades’ vanes. Cords, ladders, wands, even the headrail – these are all catered for as well. This type of blind and shade cleaning service is required when the blinds need a lot more than just dusting down; when every nook and cranny of a blind needs attending.
Ultrasonic deals with all kinds of blind and shade, eliminating any possible problem that any style can attract. It includes the removal of nicotine stains (in smokers’ households), plus soot and grease, which can affect PVC blinds as much as the pleated fabric shades. It will even handle any dirt or oils embedded in the pull cords, which are virtually impossible to do-it-yourself-style appropriately.
Furthermore, any bacteria-related issues or problems with pollen, allergens, mold will also be handled. Anything that would otherwise contribute to a health problem in the house by way of the blinds can be dealt with using ultrasonic blind and shade cleaning services.
The professionals who operate the ultrasonic blind and shade cleaning services have two methods, which can be chosen according to the customer’s preference and convenience.
Firstly, they could take the blinds down and transport them to a mobile trailer. There, the pros will clean them with the help of ultrasonic blind cleaning equipment. After this, the blind and shade cleaning services provider will check that the blinds are appropriately dried, before hanging them back up again. Since this blind, shade cleaning process is relatively quick (it should take a matter of minutes) and not too invasive to a property, this is the one most customers prefer.
The other method is more invasive to a household or office, in that the cleaning services provider brings the ultrasonic blind cleaning machine into the property to do the blind or shade cleaning. An on-site blind or shade cleaning service, in short. When hiring, check their availability times. Some blind or shade cleaning service providers offer to perform blind and shade cleaning services in the evenings or at the weekends, particularly in cases when there are considerations toward the security of a building.
A CHECKLIST FOR HIRING BLIND AND SHADE CLEANING SERVICES
- Be mindful of how many years’ blind or shade cleaning experience the company has. If the blind and shade cleaning services company dealing with other services as well, such as window fitting or upholstery cleaning, make sure they have an adequate amount of experience in blinds and shade cleaning.
- Make sure the blind or shade cleaning services are certified or accredited by a professional body, authority, or manufacturer.
- Ensure the blind or shade cleaning company in question deals with the type or style of blind or shade in question.