In this issue:

Missed the last issue? You can read it in full here…

Truck mounted cleaning: Nick takes the fast lane

Nick and his van

Nick and his van

Once you buy into the world of truck mount cleaning you don’t tend to leave. In fact there’s only one way to go – and that’s up!

Dunmow, Essex-based Herts & Essex Carpet Cleaning got into the Prochem truck mount habit only two years ago with a brand new Sapphire 370SS to tackle contracts like London’s iconic Leadenhall ‘Cheesegrater’ office building.

At the time business owner Nick Woods saw the machine as ‘something of a game-changer’. And it’s all been going so well that Nick fast-realised an upgrade was needed to cope with all the work.

Realising he could work faster with another cleaner alongside him, Nick now has a new Prochem Apex 570 dual operator truck mounted carpet, upholstery and hard surface cleaning system nestling in his 2019 Transit.

With its powerful, reliable liquid-cooled Kubota petrol engine and proven Gardner Denver TriFlow® Rotary Tri-Lobe vacuum blower, this machine is ideal for cleaning carpets, hard surfaces and flood extraction and most importantly for Nick provides dual-wand capability for larger jobs.

Heat and power

Heat and power

“We’ve picked up more office work where a key aim is to be on and off site as quickly as possible. The Apex provides the means,” says Nick. “Customers don’t want to see us filling tanks and waiting for heat-up times.

“This machine is fast and furious, it’s got unparalleled heat, suction and power,” he continues. “I can be more competitive than others as I get the job completed much quicker than portables due to the shorter drying times achievable with the Apex.”

Herts & Essex is now picking up de-flooding work while their clubs, pubs and gyms business begins to pick up again post-pandemic.

Says Nick: “this machine does everything I was told it would do. It’s put this business onto a different level.  Our contract at RAF Mildenhall has just been renewed on the strength of this machine and we’ve been asked to provide de-sanitising to the site, too.

“I don’t have to advertise – business comes to me. People see the machine running in the van and they want to know more.”

Presentation is important to Nick as he hires a further team member and gets another van (his builders’ clean business is booming, too).

“We are all uniformed, the vans sign-written and we’ve got a great web site.

“That’s what customers who pay good money want to see in their suppliers and particularly at the moment where their confidence in us is so paramount.

“I’m going to be renewing vans and truck mounts every three years now. I want the best, plus Prochem truck mounts have tremendous residual values.”

Prochem training – coming to a screen near you!

Phil Jones – driving online training at Prochem

A popular alternative to traditional classroom courses, Prochem’s One-day Carpet and Upholstery online cleaning sessions are to continue after lockdown.

“With many people starting up new cleaning businesses, there has never been such a high demand for training, but due to the lockdowns it has been hard to get to a classroom to learn,” says Sales & Training Manager, Phil Jones.

The company’s solution was to convert detailed knowledge, normally passed on visually at the Prochem Training Academy, into multimedia including new videos of cleaning methods showing stain removal techniques, pre-cleaning tests and providing related product information.

Bundled into an online ‘classroom’ via the Zoom platform, the outcome has proven popular with professional cleaners unable to get to Chessington due to the travel distance involved.

Students gain the same high-level of technical knowledge that they would if attending a face-to-face course and being live-streamed courses enable student interaction with other attendees as well as instructors by asking questions and enhancing overall the learning experience.

And the student feedback said it all:

“Extremely well organised and informative, excellent value for money and I wouldn’t hesitate in highly recommending this to others looking to partake in CPD,” was Hampshire-based Luke Barnes’s opinion.

Narramor in north-west London said:  “I am new in this business but the material was very impressive and the instructors were truly inspiring. I am more confident to accept upholstery cleaning jobs as a result of the training. I look forward to attending the C1 next week.”

David McMahon also found the U1 online course useful. “Interesting, with a lot of useful content, and presented to a very high standard,” he fed back.  “As I am some distance from the Prochem Training Centre online courses probably suit me best, but hopefully I could attend a course in Chessington at some stage.”

“Probably the best online course I’ve done if not one of the best courses in general,” remarked Simon at Castleford Carpet Cleaning.

“I was very happy and learnt so much. The tutors were amazing, the course duration was perfect, content was good and in depth for newcomers like myself and it was easy to digest.  Zero technical errors with the connection and most of all enjoyable.  I would highly recommend a Prochem course.”

“Online training has been such a success we’re planning to continue to offer the Zoom option to students, even when training recommences in the classroom, at least once or twice a month,” says Phil.

For further information email or follow Prochem on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with new dates for courses.

Putting on a show with Micro-Mist

Ben Waterer and the tools of the trade

Another Prochem user winning the anti-Covid cleaning challenge with a Micro-Mist is Ben Waterer at Waterer’s Services in Coulsdon, Surrey.

The business has been cleaning show homes for 35 years now and today has 14 developers across Greater London and as far as Kent and Oxfordshire on his books.

With a niche like that carved out Ben needed a solution to hand when customers asked him for the best disinfecting treatments for homes before owners moved in.

Prochem distributor Cleaning Spot in Wimbledon supplied Ben with a Micro-Mist and he’s delighted with it. “It’s a great bit of kit – fast acting and fast drying,” he says.

Waterers have been fans of Prochem products ever since dad Darren set the business up. A former bricklayer laid-off in recession he turned to window cleaning for show homes and didn’t look back.

Expanding into floor and vertical surface cleaning, Ben now works with a team of 30 in the field in 11 vehicles with three working on misting and a further three cleaning carpets and upholstery.

The work is primarily commercial with some domestic. “We have been particularly busy doing completion cleans on show homes and misting on request of purchasers,” he says.

They use a Prochem Galaxy as well as a Steempro for larger jobs such as schools and a range of Prochem chemicals including the PSK Professional Spotting Kit (“fantastic to have on the vans because there’s something for every eventuality,” says Ben).

The bottom line for Ben seems to be that Prochem provides the solutions and the service he needs to make his business work, and work well. “I’ve completed all the training courses, too,” he adds. “It’s a one-stop shop.”

Back on the rails after sticky start

As we climb slowly out of lockdown, it’s time to start removing and replacing some of those lines of yellow and black social-distance tape that have kept people apart.

Nene Valley Steam Museum Railway in Stebbington, Cambridgeshire are one of many businesses preparing to re-open to the public.

But when General Manager Kim Shaw tried to remove tape lines from the quarry tiled station entrance area and safety flooring in the café and museum shop, she was left with lines of unsightly sticky marks.

Kim called Jangro-member CCL Supplies in Cambridge and CCL Sales Representative Annie Berry got in touch with Prochem for advice.

Phil Jones, Sales & Training Manager at Prochem, suggested B123 Solvall and offered to go to Nene Valley Railway and assist.

Once Phil arrived, he tested the B123 Solvall on a cloth in an inconspicuous area to ensure no colour or texture change occurred to the flooring and then went on to effectively remove the adhesive lines.

Kim was delighted with the results but mentioned that they now needed to clean the floors, ready for re-opening, As the Railway was a charity, it would take time as all the volunteers were currently working on range of other maintenance jobs.

The LW30

As it happened Phil had a Prochem Floor Pro rotary machine with a green pad and an LW30 Floor Pro washer drier to hand and offered to clean the entire floor.

Says Phil: “it hadn’t been cleaned for a while and being close to old steam trains and engines I decided to use A217 Ultrapac Renovate which is a good, all-rounder for carpets, upholstery and walls as well as most types of hard flooring.

“It proved the ideal ‘carbon-breaker’ for soot and smoke contaminated areas and quickly cut though all the soiling.”



Removing sticky adhesive residue from floors – Prochem has it taped

The majority of businesses have had to put safety guidelines in place to stay operating due to COVID-19.

Now with restrictions easing across the UK, many will begin to find that when removing 2 metre yellow and black social distancing tape from carpets or hard flooring they are left with a glue and adhesive residue.

Pre-empting this, Prochem has been testing its products on a selection of tape and variety of flooring types over recent months.

So, to work: to return carpets to their former glory, use E840 Citrus Gel.  This is a solvent-based, gel-like spot remover that, once fed down onto the tape lines, is gently worked in and given five minutes to dwell before either wiping away with a damp cloth or, ideally, rinse extracting.

Bitumen bleed after cleaning with a liquid solvent-based product

It’s the ideal solution for those smaller areas, such as the 2 metre ‘discs’, and the safest method in offices where carpet tiles are fitted.

Note that while using a liquid solvent would possibly be quicker when cleaning carpet tiles, it could cause a bitumen-bleed stain to appear, as the liquid solvent softens the bitumen (or tar) in the back of the tile and allows it to ‘wick-up’ to the surface.

If you have larger areas to tackle and are being presented with long lines of adhesive residue as tape is taken up, then a more cost-effective method, in both product and labour, would be to use S789 Power Burst.

This is a super-strength, alkaline powdered pre-spray, that once diluted into a sprayer, can be applied to the flooring area and gently agitated in, and then left for 15-20 minutes to help dissolve the adhesive. Then the carpeted area benefits from being rinse extracted with B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse or a similar detergent.

After the carpet has dried, this should have cured your problem.

If not, then consider adding B845 Citra Boost to the Power Burst. This is a specially blended mix of detergents and solvents that works as a de-greasing additive and can help to enhance your pre-treatment. Pre-test if using on bitumen-backed carpet tiles.

With regard to the cleaning of hard flooring the suggested way to remove adhesive tape residues on products from the likes of Polyflor or Altro, is as follows.

Firstly, try rinsing with plain water and if that is ineffective, use a neutral detergent, such as E457 Natural Multi-Surface Floor Cleaner.

If the adhesive remains, then the chemical choice could be upgraded to an alkaline cleaner and then, finally, a high-alkaline detergent cleaner.

On hard floor surfaces, such as safety flooring, vinyl, or quarry tiles for example, high-alkaline D488 Powerclean is the most effective solution, especially at the highest dilution ratio.

Diluted with warm water and pre-scrubbed into adhesive residue using either a green floor pad or a scrub brush, Powerclean gives excellent results. The operator can then mop the floor with either plain water or an acidic detergent, such as C255 Prorinse, to neutralise the high alkalinity.

Finally, a word of caution: being a high pH12, D488 Powerclean may affect certain floors, such as linoleum or rubber flooring, causing a dye migration, unless an acidic rinse is used afterwards.

Also, do avoid using products that contain either alcohol or ethanol on hard flooring as these could degrade the PUR coating that protects the flooring.

Making a Champion job of it

When it comes to hard floor cleaning, Essex couple Dennis and Sam are the Champions!

A refresher course at Prochem has helped set the duo up in hard floor heaven.

Champion Services Group carries out end of tenancy cleaning for landlords and tenants in Essex and London. An NCCA member, it expanded into hard surface care when Covid bit last year.

“Expansion proved a huge success for us,” says Dennis. “We picked up a lot of stone and marble care work which the course work has helped with tremendously.

“The knowledge I had was gathered over the years from hand-me down information so to have such a structured course is great.

“It will also save us money,” continues Dennis.  “I have been round and am checking doses and we were using far too much chemical.

“The lower doses and using Prochem’s analogy of building up a sandwich of layers are already having a positive effect on the work we do. Wood and marble floors are becoming easier to clean and beginning to really shine.”

Dennis and wife and business partner, Sam encounter plenty of these at Chelmsford contract Hylands Estate.

This prestigious Grade II listed park homes a beautifully-renovated Neo-Classical villa in Hylands House.

In addition to carrying out a lot of the hard flooring and maintenance work around the Estate, Dennis and Sam are tasked with cleaning the house’s fabulous collection of carpet and rugs.

Sam at work on a rug at Hylands

“Most recently I had to clean a fine fabric, wool rug there,” says Sam.

“Dennis had learned on the course that both Fiberdri or Procaps could be used safely on this and Prochem kindly loaned us a Lindhaus LS50 CRB hybrid wide area floor and carpet vacuum to carry out the work.”

This multi-function hybrid battery-powered machine comes with optional converter for encapsulation cleaning of carpets using a dry compound.

Says Sam: “It’s easy to use, not too heavy and ideal for moisture-free cleaning of the delicate wool carpet and substantial runners that the house features. It works the material into the pile, and then you just change to vacuum and it restores original colours beautifully.”

The Champions have had the Estate contract for over 10 years. Being able to offer hard floor expertise as well as their established carpet and upholstery knowledge has carried the business through the loss of commercial work during the pandemic.

“You never stop learning,” reflects Sam.

Uni-Clean – leading Prochem growth in Saudi-Arabia

The Saudi-Arabian cleaning sector is one of both challenge and ever-growing potential.

One of the Kingdom’s leading janitorial suppliers, Riyadh-based Uni-Clean Ltd has been making significant inroads there – and Prochem products have been helping spearhead it with technologies like the CR2 ‘touchless’ cleaning machine.

General Manager Aimun Alzrair has been a fan of Prochem solutions and technology ever since he visited the last Amsterdam Cleaning Show.

Aimun Alzrair

Aimun says: “I’d spent quite some time researching the best quality carpet cleaning and maintenance products and came across Prochem. Their experience and knowledge was evident and we made our aim to work with them.”

Aimun and colleagues took the 5,500 mile flight to Amsterdam to meet the Prochem team and negotiate a distributorship.

Aimun and his managers at Uni-Clean

“We thought we knew about carpets, cleaning them and which detergents to use, but then we met Prochem and realised we had found a perfect partner with whom we could increase the profile of Uni-Clean,” he says.

Uni-Clean enjoys a niche market supplying quality cleaning products to palaces, hotels, mosques, commercial offices, gyms and cleaning contractors, supported by their high level of customer service.

That service is important to Aimun, whose customers include palaces for the Royal Family and mosques where the quality of wool carpets is very high with costs running into the thousands of Riyals.

“Our clients agree about Prochem. They prefer the Woolsafe products such as B107 Prespray Gold, B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse, B106 Extraclean and especially, they love the fragrance of B124 Odour Fresh,” says Aimun

Team Uni-Clean

Uni-Clean also has a services department that is mobilised if a client wants to contract out the cleaning regime.

During their visit to Amsterdam, the Uni-Clean team encountered the Prochem CR2, multi-surface cleaning system. A touchless cleaning technology for restrooms and other wet areas that also can be used on carpet and upholstery, the CR2 combines a pressure washer with a powerful vacuum system for areas where traditional methods of cleaning like mopping are ineffective.

The machine works by breaking down loose dirt and grime from porous surfaces and hard-to-reach areas so that they can be effectively removed using the squeegee and vacuum system (see photo next item).

Aimun is delighted with the quality of the CR2. He finds selling the unit extremely easy and has found a market in hotels and mosques as they often demand a machine that has many uses and the CR2 fits that bill.

Since opening for business in 2019, the company has subsequently been ordering CR2s at a rate of almost one per month.

After the Amsterdam Show, Aimun had his managers flown to Prochem in the UK to learn the correct way to both use and more importantly, sell Prochem products inside their home market.

Looking to the future, Aimun expects to see his company enjoying the re-opening of markets and international trade with boosted demand for his products.

CR2 – what’s the fuss?

Uni-Clean is just one of a growing number of Prochem customers to buy into the CR2, not least because of its primary role in the fight against Covid-19.

A versatile ‘touch-free’ restoration system, it not only does away with the need for mops and brushes, but – with the addition of a carpet wand or upholstery tool – can also be used for carpet and upholstery cleaning.

The CR2 combines a pressure washer with a powerful vacuum system for areas where traditional methods of cleaning like mopping are ineffective.

The machine works by breaking down loose dirt and grime from porous surfaces and hard-to-reach areas so that they can be effectively removed using the squeegee and vacuum system.

The CR2 Multi-Surface hard surface, carpet and upholstery cleaning machine has a powerful 500 psi pump with built-in auto chemical feed system for cleaning and pressure washing and offers an optional Heat ‘n’ Run system to further boost cleaning performance.

A three-stage vacuum system enables swift and effective water and soil recovery. A built-in wand and hose caddy system makes the CR2 easy to transport with all necessary tools required to site. A wide range of optional carpet and upholstery cleaning accessories further broadens its application to multi-surface restoration, as and when required.

Prochem offers two solutions purposed-made for use with the CR2.

D500 Microsan® is a multi-surface biocidal cleaner for use on washable surfaces, carpets, fabrics and floors and has been approved to EN14476 standard as being effective against many bacteria and viruses including the Coronavirus Coronaviridae family (including MERS-CoV).

B125 Clensan® is a multi-surface biocidal sanitiser that may be used on carpets, fabrics and hard surfaces and has also been approved to EN14476 standards. It is effective against a wide range of bacteria and enveloped viruses including Norovirus.

Have these three to hand when you are asked in for deep cleans and sanitising of all types of built environments.

Stain removal priority for Prochem training post-pandemic

Photo taken pre-pandemic. Socially distanced ‘hands on working’ now in progress

Photo taken pre-pandemic. Socially distanced ‘hands on working’ now in progress

Face to face training is returning to Prochem’s Chessington, Surrey Training Academy and that includes its Stain Removal Training Courses.

This is much to the relief of many cleaners judging by the numerous calls received asking for technical assistance from the company.

With most of the UK population locked within its own four walls for the past year sofas and homes have taken a hammering with carpets and fabrics particularly in need of some serious stain removal!

Stain Removal Training Courses enable technicians to test their skills against an array of spills and stains on carpets using Prochem products under advisory conditions.

Looking ahead: the next available 1-Day Stain Removal Course is planned for 15thJuly; email  to keep up to date with developments, as if there is sufficient demand more courses may be scheduled or even create an event at your premises if you have sufficient numbers of techicians on payroll.

Shorter-term: check out stain removal videos at on each product page where available.

Right now: here are some important factors you should consider before tackling a fibre stain:

  1. What is the stain? Is it water-based (drink, food, blood ) or solvent-soluble (make-up, oils, grease)?
  2. What is the carpet type? A water based stain will be more difficult to remove from a natural fibre yet slightly easier to remove oily marks, whereas a synthetic carpet will be the opposite.
  3. Can you test the pH of the stain? Got a pH pen?  This would help to identify the chemical make-up of the stain and to aid your choice of the most suitable product.
  4. Has the customer already tried to remove the stain and what have they used? If so, good practice is to merely rinse out all previous chemical attempts with plain water before commencing your test.
  5. What are the customer’s expectations? Some stains may be fully removed and some may not, but you should expect payment either way. Knowing the above factors will help you qualify the potential results to the client.
  6. You should pre-test your spotting products on the ‘unknown’ stain before commencing. Dip a medical swab or a cotton bud into your spotter and gently touch it on the stain. If it is the correct product, then the cotton bud will show you!
  7. You should be able to recognise a permanent stain. This could be a re-colouring of the carpet fibres by a dye, such as red wine, coffee. It is important to identify this as it could be an entire waste of time if you spend time trying to remove the stain and get no result. Urine contamination, for example, is deemed to be permanent damage. This is because as the urine dries, it changes from acidic to alkaline and that change, permanently changes the colour of the carpet.

More useful advice here

Kent school adds Prochem misting system to anti-Covid cleaning programme

A leading Kent special educational needs school is keeping Covid-free with regular treatments of Prochem antimicrobial solutions using the company’s new M500 Micro-Mist surface disinfecting system.

Bradfields Academy in Chatham is an outstanding all-through special needs school based in Walderslade, Chatham. It provides child-centred education to children aged 3-19 years as well as supporting young adults aged 18-25 years with education, health and care (EHC) plans to further their life chances through supported internships.

Run by the Fortis Trust, the academy homes 320 children and 175 staff across a large campus with the Lower Site for students aged 4-14 and the Upper Site for 15-19 year olds.

Summer 2021 sees the two-acre campus accommodation expanded from two to three buildings.

Overseeing 19 estate staff with 9 direct-employed cleaners, site manager Paul Harris is a champion of Prochem cleaning products.

“We use chemicals like Defoamer and Urine Neutraliser regularly as well as Prochem machines so when our area sales representative Jon Ewing told me about the Micro-Mist, I asked for a demonstration,” says Paul.

A complete solution for rapid-disinfecting of large surface areas as well as touch-points, the Micro-Mist system provides the operator with a compact and powerful package for the application of Microsan and Clensan solutions in a fine, “non-drift” mist to interior surfaces, floors, carpets, seating, upholstery and multiple surfaces and touch-points.

“Jon’s the kind of person who delivers on promises so the moment he told me about the machine I was on board,” says Paul. “He was demonstrating the machine in one of the classrooms when our headmistress walked by and looked in. She was so taken with what she saw we were able to approve purchase on the spot.”

The Academy’s Micro-Mist was supplied by local Prochem distributor Capital Cleaning (Kent) and for Paul it ticks all the boxes.

With a 15 litre solution tank and 250 psi solution pump the machine can apply disinfecting solution over large areas via a 70 micron misting gun connected to a 7.6 m industrial solution hose with brass quick connects.

Says Paul: “it’s easy to move about the site and its on-board caddy means you have all the tools and solution necessary to complete a job in one trip.”

His team cleans the campus buildings constantly, complemented by end-of-term deep cleans of carpets. Disinfection spraying to a blend of flooring materials spanning non-slip sheet hard flooring to carpet tiles is monthly, in the early morning or evening.

“With only forty minutes drying time, the day-to-day running of the school is anyway barely impacted on,” says Paul. “It’s a terrific piece of technology and is definitely enabling our children protection from Covid in school time.”

Halliday’s safe harbour for Fivestars

Care home supply specialist Halliday Healthcare based in Bacup, Lancashire have delivered a record number of Prochem Fivestar cleaning machines to customers during the past 12 months.  

“The Fivestar has always been popular with the care home sector “says General Sales Manager, Celia Roberts, although during the Covid pandemic sales have increased substantially, alongside products in the Prochem chemical cleaning range.

One regular customer is Harbour Healthcare. A dynamic and forward-thinking care home operator and one of the UK’s fastest-growing care home groups, it acquired Fivestar machines during the pandemic.

Established in 2011 by Andrew and Margaret Worsley and their three sons, the group started with just two homes and today operates nationwide.

“Companies like Harbour Healthcare appreciate the support, on-site training and guidance they receive from Prochem, together with the excellent product range, including Urine Neutraliser, Stain Pro and Microsan,” says Celia.

Team Halliday: (l to r) Gareth Ford, Steph van der Hoeven, Paul Halliday, Sue Halliday, Dieter Hecker, Paige Careswell, Terry Oughton

Halliday Healthcare was established in 1998 by directors Paul and Sue Halliday.

“Our success is, in part, due to being an independently owned family-run business which means we’re not as constrained as larger providers and can be flexible in meeting customer needs.”

“The company’s philosophy – ‘Here When you Need Us’ – was tested in March 2020 when Covid-19 hit our shores.”

“Staff across sales, engineering, warehouse and drivers all rallied, meeting the needs of care homes hardest hit, adjusting delivery times, working around access limitation and providing PPE when necessary,” says Sue proudly.

All this tremendous work was aided by manufacturers including Prochem who pulled out all the stops to help keep our customers’ care homes clean.

The future looks bright for Halliday’s and Harbour Healthcare whose properties range from the north of England  to as far south as Plymouth, where Devonshire House and Lodge (below) have just picked up a shiny new rating from the Care Quality Commission (CVQ).

Stop Press: The Legend of Arrowclean

Former newspaper printer-turned-cleaner Chris Bamping is always going to be a Legend for successor, son Ross.

Retiring from cleaning after over 40 years in the business, along with his Ewell, Surrey business Arrowclean, Chris has handed over a new Prochem Legend GT truck mounted extractor for Ross to put to work this year.

Chris traded in his 11-year old Sapphire SS370 as part of the deal: “just shows the longevity of these machines because that one worked and worked,” says Chris.

He came into cleaning in 1986 from The Times where he worked on the print line, one of generations of his family to work in the newspaper industry.

“I started buying Prochem machines and solutions from the off,” he recalls. “We had single and twin vac portables until I bought the Sapphire.

“In truth I’d shied away from truck mounts primarily because I regarded them as a problem with parking, but that didn’t turn out to be the case – and what fabulous performance!”

Sold on truck mounts, Chris returned in February of this year to Chessington to pick up the Legend.

“I’m training Ross up now,” he tells us. “Both of us have completed one-day carpet and upholstery and hard floor courses, very important to know what you’re doing in this business and we have a strong if demanding client base here in Surrey where there’s no shortage of competition.”

Arrowclean’s favourite Prochem chemicals include Fibre & Fabric Rinse, Multi Pro, Extraction Plus and Solvex.

Arrowclean’s Prochem Legend GT at work …before

…and after

With a 70/30 domestic/commercial client split, Chris and Ross cover London and the Home Counties.

He has had some memorable jobs.

“We’ve cleaned all kinds of spaces ranging from St James’s Palace and council estates to Ray Cooney’s home and the Barclays Bank in Trafalgar Square – bonnet up and hazard lights on with someone on lookout for the wardens, ” laughs Chris.

With Ross off in their Nissan Primastar with a shiny new Legend, he’s looking forward to post-lockdown visits to the old printers’ pubs of London!

Qs & As

Your questions, our answers..

…and with so many people staying at home, Prochem Technical & Training is receiving a large number of queries about stain removal from carpet and upholstery…


I was called around to a lady’s house to fix a yellow stain at the bottom of the stairs. She said it was her old dog that ‘had had an accident’. How do I deal with it?


It could be permanent, especially if the lady has tried to treat the stain with another product and it’s only natural for the customer to give it a go.

Firstly, rinse the area with plain, cool water. This removes all previous chemical products.

Next, treat it with B153 Urine Neutraliser and allow 5 minutes to dwell before rinsing out with B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse. Dry thoroughly – this will help to break down the uric crystals in the urine contamination and deal with the odour

The key problem here is that fresh urine is acidic and changes to ammonia, which is alkaline. This chemical reaction removes colour from most carpets, especially wool or wool mix.  When a dog urinates on the lawn the urine kills the grass, which then regrows. Of course, the carpet cannot.

There are more treatments that could be applied, such as B153 Oxibrite. This can be used to offer a controlled bleaching effect to the stain, but that is for another day perhaps.


My friend’s wife has asked me to clean a large corner sofa. They have four young kids and two dogs and it’s absolutely filthy (I wouldn’t sit on it but I can’t tell them that). It’s a cream off-beige corded fabric by the look of it. She said they got it from DFS about four years ago and said they haven’t had it cleaned before. Any tips apart from refuse the job?


Do the tests first. Identify the fibre and complete a burn test. It could be a basic acrylic corded fabric and could clean up well.

Once you’ve identified the fabric, vacuum thoroughly. Remove all dry particles, especially all that popcorn down the sides.

Supposing it is an acrylic cord, pre-treat the BCAs (body contact areas) with B108 Fabric Restorer and gently brush or agitate it into the fabric. After a few minutes dwell time, slowly rinse extract with either B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse or B106 Extraclean. If the arms are very heavily soiled with hand greases etc, then you could add a small amount of E845 Citra Boost to the prespray to give it a deeper, degreasing boost.

Then use your hand tool as many times as you can, to remove excess moisture.

Finally, use a clean white terry towel and absorb any further moisture and set any pile in the natural direction of flow.

If you have an Aqua Dri air mover use that as well, because it sounds possible that, as soon as you leave, the cushions will be put straight back on the sofa – if they are not fully dry, you could have a problem emerge later!


I’m being asked to clean more and more sofas recently and my current hand tool is making my arm and back ache. I’ve seen a few people, on the carpet cleaners’ social media platforms, rave about a hand tool called the Sapphire. What is that? Is it worth getting?


The Sapphire Upholstery Hand Tool is currently one of the best hand tools on the market – period.

All the carpet and upholstery cleaning professionals are using it.

If your machine has a water pressure pump of 220psi or more, then it’s ideal. A normal hand tool will have a spray jet or tip, that pressure sprays the solution rinse out and often deep into the fabric and therefore the filling, if you’re not careful.

The Sapphire Upholstery Pro has an internal spray bar which prevents over-wetting. The detergent rinse exits the spray bar and simply flows across the fabric, removing soiling, while its twin vacuum slots collect all that moisture whichever way you push or pull the hand tool, making it the most ergonomic hand tool aimed at relieving stress or fatigue on the wrist, arm or back.

It also has a flow regulator on the hose end and adjustable vacuum slots which allow the operator to pre-set the hand tool so you merely push and pull it and the tool does everything else itself.

Finally, most professionals like its frosted head, so you can see what is being picked up and also when the fabric is fully dry.

Is it worth getting? Well, all those cleaning professionals cannot be wrong!

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