Application Technology - Bonnet Pad Cleaning - Progress in Cleaning Depth
Bonnet Buffing or Bonnet Pad Cleaning or Textile Pad Cleaning, the method has many names but is a simple concept: spray the areas to be cleaned with a quick-drying chemical and work on it using a simple rotary machine with a textile mop made of polyester or cotton.
This method, when done on a regular basis and started either after the carpet has been installed or has undergone corrective cleaning, is a low cost but effective way to maintain the carpet and increase the interval size between corrective cleaning by way of extraction cleaning or a combination of shampooing and extraction.
The low cost, as we all know, arises from the low labor intensity of this method. In addition, the drying times are fast, decreasing the down time of the cleaned areas; plus moisture sensitive carpeting may be cleaned in this manner as well.
Opponents have always argued that this method is only superficial, that is, it only cleans the top of the pile and does not penetrate deeply into the pile. Thus the carpet only appears clean.
This argument may be countered with hard facts: wherever this method is applied correctly, corrective cleaning is not necessary as often as when it is not applied. Anybody who has employed this method in the described manner will agree with this statement. Of course, like all other methods, it is not perfect. But manufacturers of bonnet pre-spray products, like CEBE, try to improve the effectiveness of the method all the time.
The effectivenes relies on three factors: the cleaning agent used, the bonnet pad used, and the machine used. One could also add the time given for the chemical to work or the time per square meter. We will assume, for the sake of this discussion, that these factors are constant.
The machine's effectiveness may be varied by increasing its weight or its RPM. However, there is a limit: too heavy may damage the pile and too fast may melt the fibers due to the increased frictional heat. The choice of bonnet pads is also limited, if we disregard the multitude of patterns they come in: use the short looped polyester or cotton or the longer fiber polyester or cotton or both. One is mechanically more active, the other absorbs more moisture. Given the time it is probably recommendable to use both - first the short looped one, then the long fiber one to absorb remaining dirt and as much residual moisture as possible.
It is the chemical agent that can make the most difference. The principle behind it is quite simple: the pad is clean and the floor is dirty so that a potential driving force to carry the dirt into the pad is there.
How to activate this driving force?
With an agent that makes it possible for the dirt to travel. This is accomplished with the pre-spray. The better this pre-spray works, the more dirt will travel from the carpet into the pad, until the pad is dirty.
Bonnet Pad Cleaning - Schematic Representation
It is the chemical that determines how fast and how efficient this transport is. The more active the chemical, the deeper it will delve into the pile of the carpet and the more dirt will be removed from the carpet.
This means that with the right pre-spray bonnet buffing no longer needs to be a superficial cleaning of the carpet's surface!
At CEBE this concept has been understood for quite some time. In addition it has always been a matter of principle that a bonnet cleaning product not contain any surfactants since this would only accelerate the resoiling process. Even a surfactant with crystalline residue is not good enough, you only need some rain before the next day's vaccuming to see why.
CEBE has had to find other substances that will clean, wet and then dry quickly. In addition the effectiveness of loosening dirt and eliciting its transport into the pad have been under close scrutiny.
The first product relied heavily on hard solvents back in the early 80's. This was altered by using alternatives that were less hazardous for the user and more pleasant in smell. The 90's brought about a complete change. CEBE came out with Tapi Bonnet in 1995 based on isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) as the ingredient to accelerate drying and a combination of salts and enzymes to enhance the effectiveness of cleaning. This product has had great success on the European and Asian market because the cleaning has become more effective and user friendly.
The trend away from solvents occupied product development since and in 1998 BioMatrix® was introduced. No solvents are contained in this product. It has a unique combination of organic and inorganic salts that are extremely effective in loosening dirt and carrying it into the pad. No odor is associated with using this product making it perfect for use in objects where inhabitants are allergic or sensitive to odors.
With a different working mechanism that is even more effective in drawing soil and stains from carpets, the product Grandioos was launched in 2001. This product also contains no solvents and is odourless.
Continuous research is being done at CEBE on improving the products' effectiveness and making this carpet cleaning method even more thorough.