Have you ever walked down a hallway and glanced down and thought to yourself how dirty the carpet looked?
More than likely, you have had that thought at one time or another. However, in some cases, the carpet may not be as dirty as you thought. The simple fact of the matter is this look can appear for a variety of reasons. In many cases, there is nothing you can do about it other than learn what causes it.
So you may be wondering why do high traffic areas look dirty if they are not? Let’s take a few minutes and examine it further!
Sand, grit, and soil are all rather abrasive to carpet. When these elements get ground into the carpet, they have the ability to scratch the actual fibers and create a fiber distortion. This has the ability to increase the opacity in the carpet fiber in high traffic areas. When this area is next to an area that does not receive as much traffic, it manages to make the carpet look dirty.
When carpet fibers become distorted, they tend to reflect light at various angles than adjacent carpet that may not receive the same amount of foot traffic. This situation can make the carpets appear dirty.
High traffic areas are just that…areas of the carpet that receive the lion’s share of the traffic. The carpet fibers in these areas will flatten over a period of time and this reduction in fiber can create an illusion of being dirty. When this situation happens, there is really no way in which you can “fluff” the carpet back up.
There are times when the pile will lay in another direction as opposed to the rest of the carpet. This will cause the light to reflect in a way that makes the carpet look worn and soiled. However, viewing the carpet from another direction might give it a different appearance. Carpet extraction has the possibility of temporarily lifted the fibers, but it will not last long.
When you understand the basic of how carpet can simply look dirty when it is not, it brings you one step closer to being able to educate your customers on the limits of carpet cleaning.