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

Summer training – South and North West England

Get match fit this summer – get into training!

Check out summer/autumn dates for Prochem Europe courses in 2019.

  • July 16th – One-day carpet cleaning – Chessington
  • July 17th – Stain removal – Chessington
  • Sept 3rd – One-day carpet cleaning – Chessington
  • Sept 4th – Upholstery cleaning – Chessington
  • Sept 10th – Hard floor cleaning – Chessington
  • Sept 17th/18th   2-day carpet cleaning – Chessington
  • Oct 1st – One day carpet cleaning – Manchester
  • Oct 2nd – Stain Removal – Manchester

Do you know which product and process to choose to get a stain out?

Would you naturally grab a bottle of your regular stain removal product, for example, Stain Pro? Or would you consider testing the product on the stain first before making a final product selection?

Let’s be honest, a lot of cleaners would opt for the first option, but consider this advice :

Stain testing – Free tip!

Taking a cotton bud (or even more impressive looking, a medical swab), and dip one end into a water- based product, such as B144 Stain Pro and the other end into a solvent, such as B123 Solvall.

Britannia Hotel

Britannia Hotel

Gently wipe each end (solvent end first), on the unknown stain. One of the products will start to dissolve the stain and the residue will be seen on the cotton bud/swab.

That will be the product to use!

This simple test will save you time and chemical; plus, if the customer is watching, you’ll look more professional.

Well, you could enhance your skills and potential to impress your clientele with additional training (or at least a refresher course).

Make a date for Wednesday, 2nd October at the Britannia Hotel in Didsbury and learn about the fundamentals of stain removal.

The course also includes a session in the afternoon when attendees can get some hands-on experience removing stains and spills from a variety of carpets. The day’s also a great networking opportunity.

If you are seriously thinking about attending the Stain Removal Course in Didsbury, we have an exceptional offer for you, if you buy a PSK (Professional Spotting Kit) first.  Ask us about this, by calling the Sales Office on 020 8974 1515.

What about carpets?

No problem; the previous day (Tuesday, 1st October) we’re also holding a one-day carpet cleaning course.

Book on both and receive a helpful discount !

Attendees get a detailed understanding of carpet fibres and their construction, chemical selection, cleaning methods available to the contractor, and, for newbies, tips and advice on how to get into this fantastic part of the cleaning industry.

More on Prochem Training 2019 here

The fab FB for floods

Ever had a job just too big for your wet pick-up vacuum cleaner? June got off to a very wet start and it got us thinking …

Had to keep emptying the pickup bin, or not been able to remove enough of a flood? Had to turn a job down because you don’t have the equipment to deal with a substantial flood?

None of us want to disappoint a customer but there is a solution: it’s all in the perfect package that’s the Prochem FloodBuster FB50.

This unit incorporates a 35 litre pick-up tank with a pre-filter to ensure large objects do not make it to the waste liquid tank. The suction is created by a 5.7in vacuum motor through a 25ft 1.5 in hose. The open end of the hose can just be inserted into the flood: the motor is float-switch operated so that it turns off before ingesting any water.

When the FB50 reaches capacity, the float-switch operated waste pump is automatically switched on. This can deal with solids up to 1in. in diameter and move 50 gallons of waste liquid a minute through a 1.5in hose up to 50ft long, which allows waste to be pumped to a nearby drain.

The constant switching of the unit allows it to move waste liquid without having to empty it; and it balances the waste water between sucking up and pumping out automatically.

The FloodBuster FB50 comes with a squeegee head and aluminium wand to allow to you fully dry the surface being worked on.

Now when you’re asked, you’re well placed to bust that flood!

Bubble & Squeak step up to the plate!

With nightclub management getting in the way of being with family, Wakefield-based Pete Scattergood turned to a fresh career in professional cleaning in 2016 with start-up enterprise, Bubble & Squeak Cleaning Services and Supplies.

Operations manager, Pete Davison joined last year, bringing a welter of cleaning sales experience, and business has been lifting, not least thanks to local Bunzl dealer along with supplier, Prochem Europe.

Bubble & Squeak’s team of four in two vans cover the Yorkshire county region.

“We had already picked up a strong domestic customer list thanks to hard graft and lots of social media posting, so the time was fast-approaching when we took on more work with a bigger share of commercial contracts,” explains Pete Davison.

Investment was the answer, plus better solutions and machines.

“We bought two Prochem Steempro Powermax extractors, one for each van,” he tells us. “They were great but I felt we could do more with them plus we were having a poor experience with locally-sourced cleaning solutions.”

The Petes went to Elaine Mellor of Bunzl Castleford for advice; she recommended dedicated Prochem training on the extractors and a revision of chemicals.

“Thanks to Elaine, Stuart Macmillan from Prochem came to our office and showed us how to get the best out of the machines and what chemicals to use with them,” says Pete.

“The biggest issue we had was with a chemical film residing on carpets after cleaning. It was time to change detergents and also get into better rinse agents like B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse, which immediately gave better shine and odour.

S789 Power Burst is fantastic as is S710 Trafficlean. We’re over the moon with B107 Prespray Gold and the spotters and E840 Citrus Gel are in the vans, too, now,” says a delighted Pete.

Stuart’s training day proved invaluable to the team at Bubble & Squeak: they learned more about their Powermax units and what and when to use to get the best out of them as well as gaining a full understanding of pH values and balances.

Check out some eye-opening video footage of the team’s Steempros at work at

Obituary – Ron Tilley

Ron on his last training day at Prochem, aged 74...

Ron on his last training day at Prochem, aged 74…

It was great sadness we had to announce, last month, the passing of our founder and chairman, Ronald ‘Ron’ Tilley at the age of 88 years.

A man of abundant charisma and wit, blessed with the capacity to engage all about him while putting them at their ease, Ron built a highly successful career in the cleaning sector and with it, a company that was to go on to become one of the most innovative solutions developers and a leading light in the training of the cleaning professional (a job designation that did not exist when he entered the business in the early 1950s).

One of four children, Ron Charles Tilley was born on 29th June 1930 in North Kensington, growing up in Southall and spending his whole life living in and around London.

Initially training as a carpenter, he enlisted in the military in 1948 serving with the Royal Engineers in Malta, Cyprus and the Middle East.

Whilst based in Malta in 1952, Ron hitched a lift home on an Army transport plane and a Naval ship to marry Thelma. Returning to England six months later, he transferred to the Reserves and settled in Hillingdon. Soon after daughter Linda was born, and then a son, Alan, who was to join the company in 1977 and is today its managing director

When Ron joined Servicemaster in 1959, the carpet cleaning industry barely existed. Shampoo Crystallisation was the new technology; there was no such thing as a soil extractor, and no training was available. As a result of a back injury in 1968, Ron could no longer continue as a carpet cleaning operative and a new position of trainer was found within the company.

Under the auspices of his newly-formed Professional Chemical & Equipment Company Ltd in 1974, Ron set to putting matters right, and his courses on carpet, upholstery and floor cleaning held at the old Victory Club near Marble Arch in London on behalf of the BICSc were enthusiastically received.

These courses were not only benefiting cleaners by empowering them to do their jobs better and enjoy a better living, but proved highly formative in developing a presentation technique for Ron that was in itself a winning formula. Many years later, in 1998, Ron was to receive the first Lifetime Achievement Award to be presented by the NCCA in recognition of Outstanding Services to the Carpet Cleaning Industry.

Prochem (the new found abbreviation for the company name) started up a Technical Help Line and carpet manufacturers soon came to Prochem for cleaning advice.

A man with a keen eye on the interests and needs of the cleaner, Ron also set to work establishing associations with manufacturers to import hot water extraction equipment from the USA where the innovation had started.

In 1977, Ron’s son Alan joined the business and in 1980, the company began manufacture of chemical products at its new premises in Kingston upon Thames. During the next 15 years products and formulations were developed and refined to meet the growing demand from its now extensive distributor network.

In 1995, the company re-located, once again, to larger premises in Chessington where space became available for manufacturing expansion, storage, laboratory product development and equipment sales and service.

The new building also perfectly provided for a dedicated two-storey training facility which has subsequently seen thousands of trainees attend Prochem courses in a period of over 20 years.

“We capitalised on what we had and made even more of training,” reflects Alan.

“We invested and continued to invest in our resources and expanded the course range. They were successful from the word go because, as my father noted, it was clearly no good being the best carpet cleaner in the world if you couldn’t sell the fact to the customer.”

Ron remained active at Prochem, training cleaners well into his seventies.

A member and past president of Kingston Rotary Club, he was much involved in fund raising for charity over many years. Delighted to become grandfather to six and great-grandfather to 13 children, Ron is survived by Thelma.

And finally, a big Thank you to readers familiar with Ron who have already passed on their condolences and best wishes to his family…

Cleaning Show 2019 high score from Prochem Europe

The 2019 Cleaning Show in London confirmed what many already suspected – that there is a future for trade events.

“People say that the shows may be getting smaller in numbers of exhibitors and footfall, but the quality of attendee just gets better,” reflects Prochem Europe sales manager, Phil Jones.

Visitors ranged from commercial and local authority specifiers updating their knowledge to distributors looking for the latest in technology and chemicals solutions developments.

Prochem’s stand offered up a strong balance of new and established products, ranging from the just-launched FloodBuster FB50 to the latest entry in the company’s premium Endeavor extractor range.

For Prochem, a strong reason for being at the show was having the chance to show its machines at work.

“That’s where the Carpet Cleaning Village worked so well,” says Prochem Europe sales executive, Jon Ewing.

“The National Carpet Cleaners’ Association arranged this in order to attract more carpet cleaners to the show and we offered to support the initiative with machines and personnel.

“Participation secured us new clients on the strength of seeing machines in action.”

In all, money well spent?

“Yes, while this continues to bring together so many of our friends and important players in the market, we’re with The Cleaning Show!” smiles Phil.

… and a great trade event is all about meeting up with familiar faces.

So, congratulations to Prochem 2018 Distributor Award winners!

Some visitors to the recent London Cleaning Shown were delighted to find themselves being presented with awards when they visited the company’s stand.

Here’s Jon Ewing (right), Prochem area sales executive presenting Ashley Wentzell, director of Capital Cleaning (Kent) with his Distributor of the Year 2018 Award…

While Keith Churchill, sales director of CJS Portsmouth, picked up a Distributor Award for Exceptional Sales 2018…

Here’s Prochem sales manager Phil Jones presenting International Distributor of The Year to Joanne Gilliard, CEO of JANGRO, on behalf of Industrial Cleaning Equipment in Dublin…

And in the field more Awards for Exceptional Sales …

After the show, Jon got himself over to Mayflower Washroom Solutions where Paul Harrison (Sales Director) was delighted to receive his company’s Award for Exceptional Sales

Phil Jones congratulates Anna Wodzinka from AGP Supplies for her Award for Exceptional Sales…

…and Jeremy Thorne at Avica UK for his…

While sales representative Stuart Macmillan congratulates Darren Ford at Moston Janitorial Supplies for his…

…and JK Cleaning Supplies’ Dennis Relihan (seen here with daughters Julie and Karen) for theirs…

Congratulations to all!

NCCA Cleaning & Restoration Show 2019

In the broad field of cleaning, restoration forms an important (and profitable) part.

Prochem will be exhibiting at the NCCA’s Cleaning & Restoration Show 2019 in Harrogate this October to reveal more of the company’s extensive offer in the field.

Held at the Harrogate Convention Centre, look out for front-runner technology including the Endeavor 500 & 1000 psi extractors,  the FloodBuster, CR2 Multi-Surface, Galaxy with Heat ‘N Run and the TM4 Renovator Kit and PB14E dry compound systems.

Also on show are best selling Steempro, Bravo Plus and Fivestar portable machines.

Stain removal techniques will be shared with visitors throughout the day, with discounts on offer for the products used, plus a draw to win Prochem training courses.

The show takes place Saturday October 19th.  Details via this link

Galaxy goes strong on the mat

Jon Ewing works his magic

Jon Ewing works his magic

More on the training front, and this time Prochem travels to the south coast where major hygiene and washrooms solutions distributor CJS Portsmouth realised that the best way to convert an undecided customer is just show them what can be achieved with a Prochem extractor.

Our man-on-the-spot, area sales and training executive, Jon Ewing reports: “CJS had a customer in who had an eye on our Galaxy extractor but wasn’t quite sure about taking the plunge!

“CJS regularly arranges product demonstrations either at customer locations or in its trade shop. Carpet cleaners, scrubber dryers, vacuum cleaners and rotary machines can all be presented, accompanied by a machine expert ready to answer questions.”

In this instance, Jon was that expert, and an especially unlovely mat the subject of the demonstration.

That’s one dirty mat!

That’s one dirty mat!

For the prespray Jon used Prochem S709 Multi Pro, followed by B106 Extraclean for the extraction rinse. B230 Fresh Breeze Odour Neutraliser was added in as a deodoriser, which left the whole shop smelling brand new.

Says John: “The visible change in the mat certainly stunned everyone watching, but the colour of the water emptied out of the machine proved just how effective that Galaxy had been.

“And yes, the customer bought the machine!”

‘No’ to water-extraction cleaning? Don’t get heated!

Some commercial customers fight shy of having hot water extraction cleaning in certain areas of the building.

Environments that run 24 hours a day and/or are sensitive to excessive machine noise, such as call centres, have water sensitive carpet backings (shrink) or have multiple electrical points within the floor deck spring immediately to mind.

We hear of carpeted areas that cannot be effectively quarantined while they are cleaned or drying and have to be cleaned during shifts, and complaints of extractors drowning out call centre telephone operatives.

The solution is to opt for “dry” cleaning or to give its proper title, low moisture cleaning.

This method is often recommended by leading carpet tile manufacturers such as Interface and Milliken, to ensure warranty compliance. The process involves a compound and application technology.

Prochem’s C803 Fiberdri is made from organic, natural compound (charged with low moisture surfactants) and is simply spread on the carpeted area and brushed in.

Leave it dwelling for 20-30 minutes to release and absorb the soils back into the compound, and then vacuum it away.

The application technology to go for here is a brush-roller machine like Prochem’s 16” wide TM4 or the smaller 14” PB14E. The PB14E is also useful for brushing in presprays, when extraction cleaning.

The former, handily, comes with renovator trays that you just attach and then let their brushes do the work of flicking the soiled compound back into the trays for you.

Heavy soiling?  Traffic lanes, toilet entrances/exits or general choke-points in offices will benefit from a pre-treatment of B109 Prespray Gold prior to feeding the C803 Fiberdri down.

And thus the customer gets what he or she wants.

Being a low moisture method, carpets are walk-on dry virtually immediately and the whole process is undertaken more quietly than with an extraction machine.

£5000 rug gets protection

Busy organising a viewings reception for exclusive customers, north London fitted kitchen and furnishings retailer Valcucine decided that the £5,000 rug they’d be standing on would benefit from some protection, come the day.

A call to Prochem prompted a visit from Carpet Preservation Services (CPS), Essex-based specialists in cleaning the capital’s demanding quality hotels and leisure market, one long-characterised by high service levels with strong sales returns.

“This was a very prestigious location with some fabulous fixtures and fittings, not least this enormous rug,” says CPS Director of Operations, Nick Bull.  “The reception came with canapés, wines, coffee and so on, and it was clearly sensible of the owners to get us in to protect an investment like this.”

CPS operative, Lance Martin, with 30 years’ experience under his belt, went in and treated the rug to an application of Prochem’s Fluoroseal® CF Carpet Protector.

Suitable for protecting most wet-cleanable fabrics and carpets after extraction cleaning, this highly-effective protector using cationic fluoropolymer technology is WoolSafe approved and ready to use without dilution. Below, Lance applies the protector using a spray, brushes it into the rug and allows it to dry.

Carpet protection work of this kind is on the increase at CPS, who clean top-ranking West End hotels and venues. Fluoroseal CF is their stand-by solution for protecting fabrics, says Nick.

The family-run business employs him, wife Lois, Lance and one further operative.

“Ours’ is a personal yet professional service offer that’s enabled us to work with some of the finest venues in the region since we started in the nineteen eighties,” says Nick.

CPS provides a professional carpet, upholstery and curtain cleaning service, predominantly to four- and five-star hotels throughout London and the Home Counties.

“As always, quality contracts demand quality solutions and Prochem offer a very comprehensive range of chemicals that get the job done effectively and quickly,” adds Nick.

Getting started – Prochem’s all-in-a-box solution

I want to be a professional cleaner … where do I start?!

It’s a common enough question – and a good one.

There’s plenty of choice out there but if you’ve bought into the idea of buying quality then the next question has to be, “well, what solutions are going to work best for me to get started with…?”

Once you’ve got yourself Prochem-trained, the answer is going to be the company’s Starter Package.

Because, like all things-Prochem, it does what the name suggests.

Any of the company’s three Steempro extraction systems can be included in the Starter package, as well as another popular starter machine selection, the Prochem Galaxy.

With these, you get a wide choice of chemicals and accessories to get to business with.

The Package includes x 2 containers of Extraction Plus, x 2 Multi Pro, x 1 Liquid Woolsafe, x 1 Liquid Defoamer, x 1 Fibre & Fabric Rinse & x 1 Odour Fresh.

There you have the basics to start a carpet cleaning business:  a dedicated prespray that’s a pre-treatment and designed to break down soils in the carpet; three proven extraction rinses – Liquid Woolsafe is also included and is a great option for those more sensitive fibres such as wool; a floral fragrance deodoriser that can be added to any of the extraction rinses; and last but not least, a liquid defoamer that’s crucial in preventing the waste tank from over foaming and getting into the machine’s vacuum motor.

All of this plus all the accessories included are the essentials required for a professional carpet cleaner to carry out the job to the very best of their ability.

A great addition to the Starter Package is Prochem’s Professional Spotting Kit.

It includes all the necessary chemicals for many common commercial and household spots and stains. As well as chemicals it includes, pH test paper, white terry towel, Chewing Gum Perforator, spotting brush, Neoprene gloves and foil furniture pads.

And because the package includes a machine, it also comes with a free one day training voucher for the new business owner / operator to learn HOW to use the products and clean carpets !

That’s the tools sorted, now onto the job ….

Slime time!

Mums, dads, nans and more will tell you. For kids right now, it’s all about ‘Slime’.

The latest play-fad, it’s basically a glob of vibrant, wobbling goo that hands can stretch and pull, then drizzle back onto the table. The effect is inexplicably transfixing, soothing even – the way a spinning mobile will mesmerize a baby for hours.

There is a small problem, however, and that’s when it gets into carpets and fabrics and is allowed to dwell and harden.

A rubbery, synthetic polymer, one of the ingredients of Slime can be Elmers’ Glue. So, that’s PVA glue, wood glue, carpenters’ glue or school glue to you and me.

If you come across an instance of this stuff as a hard patch in a carpet, apply a small amount of Prochem’s E840 Citrus Gel to the area, let it dwell and work for 10-15 minutes, before rinsing away using an extraction machine. If it’s a synthetic carpet or fabric, put some S775 Extraction Plus in the tank and if it’s wool/wool mix, then use B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse.

A water-soluble solvent stain remover, Citrus Gel helps break down the synthetic oils and adhesives and can then be rinsed away easily. It can also be used on make-up, paints, greases and all other oil-based spills.

Keep it handy!

Qs & As

Your questions answered …


I’ve been asked to clean a mattress. Is that possible? I have a Prochem Galaxy machine. What would I use?


You could only really treat the outer surface of the mattress. If they are asking for you to deal with infestations like bed bugs, then perhaps you should recommend they contact a registered pest control company.  If the client is asking for it to be cleaned and sanitised, then you could do that rather easily.

Give the surface a thoroughly good vacuum and then gently spray and brush Prochem’s B144 Stain Pro into the fabric before using your Galaxy and hand tool to rinse extract with our B109 Fibre & Fabric Rinse.


To sanitise, spray on B125 Clensan and gently brush in, leaving for 15 minutes to deal with any bacteria, before re-rinsing as above. Lastly, plenty of vacuum passes with the hand tool and get the fabric as dry as possible, as quickly as possible.



I have just bought a Prochem Steempro 2000 Powermax. I was given a set of hoses but am finding that they often do not reach the upstairs back bedroom and I’m getting tired pulling it upstairs all the time. I even damaged a customer’s skirting board recently. Can I add hoses to it to make it reach further?


Yes, you can. If your machine has twin vacuum suction motors, you can add extension hoses to it. You get 7.5mtr (25ft) hose with your machine; double that with a PR3005E hose, and you should have you more than enough to reach the far upstairs bedroom.

Now you can leave the machine on the ground floor on a tarpaulin or an old bit of carpet that is yours (just in case of a leak) and run the hoses upstairs.

While we’re on this subject, you may benefit from adding a Velcro hose hook (HF2702) at the top of the stairs and attaching it to the banister or railings, just to hold the weight of the hose from naturally gravitating downhill.

Some contractors also add a corner guard (HF2701) on all corners to protect the customers’ paintwork from the ribbed vacuum hose as it’s often pulled around corners.

All of these parts and accessories are available from Prochem distributors or direct from the Prochem website at



I have a job coming up and the lady says that she does not want any chemical smells while cleaning. After a discussion, I let her smell some of the chemicals I normally use and she was okay with Fibre & Fabric Rinse but all the presprays I have were too strong for her. Do you have any advice? The carpet will need a prespray as it hasn’t been cleaned for some while, by the look of it.



The obvious choice is to use C409 Pure Clean. It’s a multi-purpose product that can be used for prespray, rinse, bonneting or even stain removal and contains no fragrance, VOCs, detergents nor soaps.  It’s also the ideal all-in-one product.

Alternatively, use E717 Natural Carpet Prespray biodegradable concentrate with eco surfactant, for pre-treating heavily soiled areas of carpets. E717 incorporates encapsulation technology to help prevent sticky residues that may attract soil and has a mild pH, which makes it suitable for applying to most carpets and rugs. It is a WoolSafe approved maintenance product for wool carpets and rugs and has a natural lemongrass and herbal fragrance, with a dilution rate of 1:10.

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