Posts Tagged: health

Carpets Or Wooden Floors?

Carpets or wooden floors?

There has been a trend in recent years to remove carpets from the home and to install wooden and laminated floors. Some do this for aesthetic reasons, but quite often, there is a perception that carpets are a less healthy option than wood or laminate floors. I will try to illustrate the latest thinking in these matters.

Is a hard floor surface more hygienic than a carpet? Hand on heart, I must say yes. Any hard surface has the potential to be a much more hygienic option. However, there is a big BUT. In most homes, the largest everyday health hazard comes from poor Indoor Air Quality (IAQ). People most at risk of illness from poor IAQ are those with respiratory problems. For example, Asthmatics.

With any hard floor surface, it is not unusual to dry sweep a couple or more times a day and perhaps damp mop too. Each time, a considerable amount of dust, hair and other fibres will be removed. Even in a closed room, the smallest of movements by the occupants, or even different air temperatures within the room from, say, sunlight or a central heating radiator, will cause these minute dust particles to become airborne and float around the room. These particles are then easily breathed in by all, and sensitive people will suffer.

Carpets can help to improve IAQ. Although carpets have the potential to absorb much larger amounts of dust and soil than hard surfaces, they are also very efficient at retaining these soils. It is therefore more difficult for the dust to become airborne. Think of your carpet as a filter.

Your daily housekeeping is much simpler with carpets. Most allergens are retained in the carpet, awaiting their removal at your leisure. Even a few days worth of accumulated dust is hidden from view, unlike wooden floors. Just vacuum the carpet. Much quicker and easier than dry and damp mopping. Please read my blog entry KenDry Vacuuming Tips.

If you do have people in your home who are sensitive to these airborne allergens, we at KenDry recommend the following precautions to be taken when vacuuming the carpets and other soft furnishings.
• Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter
• Keep all filters and bags clean
• Open windows in the rooms being cleaned
• On completion, close off the room, but leave the window open for at least 20 minutes
• Keep sensitive people away from the room(s) for at least 20 minutes after cleaning has been completed
• Wear a simple dust mask if you are a sensitive person who cleans
• Have your carpets professionally cleaned at least once a year

Professional cleaning of your carpets, especially the KenDry Deep Cleaning Rinse/Extraction process will decimate the allergen population in your carpets and upholstery, bringing a source of relief to those sensitive to these allergens.

There is evidence from Sweden that over a ten year period, after they too had a fashion trend away from carpets to hard floors, the number of asthmatics during this time increased by something like 300%

Carpets are also wonderful insulators not only of heat, but of sound too.

A spillage on a carpet, whilst it is unsightly, can be quickly rectified
with prompt and correct first aid treatment The same spillage on a wooden or laminated floor becomes a serious slip hazard. The consequences may be dire!

Have you ever noticed that offices nearly always have carpets? A primary reason is to help with dust control for the sensitive computers.

In conclusion, my advice for those affected by IAQ issues is to keep carpets, and maintain them correctly.

Safe and happy cleaning
Ken