Welcome to The Nature's Quick-Dry Forum. Feel free to post a message.
I have been intrigued by the idea of leaving cleaning products behind altogether, no matter how green, if I found that engineered (electrified) water could actually be the Holy Grail of carpet cleaning. There is already a franchise company out there doing one form of this. They are called Zerorez.
Some on industry forums have looked at how they operate, and have accused the company as being hucksters. They have been described as being a well-heeled
marketing company, first and foremost, and a carpet cleaning company second.
There are at least three ways of using an electrical charge in plain old tap water to produce something of greater value. It depends on which mineral or metal is part of the innards of the machine which generate the engineered water.
Zerorez uses a technology which splits water into two streams: one stream is of high alkaline water - around a pH of 12, as I have read. This is for cleaning carpet and rugs, but which I think might have the potential to damage natural fibers, due to the very high pH (alkalinity). Their generators also produce a separate stream of acid water. Acid water has the potential to be both an odor neutralizer and a disinfactant. But these jobs would have to be performed separately.
A second method of altering water with an electric charge results in separating water into hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen - the ultimate fuel. But the cost remains too high (for the electrical energy input) for this to yet be widely economical. Actually, with the right equipment, I could do this at home, at no cost, as my house is outfitted with a 6 KW solar pholtovoltaic system. 100% free electricity. Hmm, maybe I'll go off and become a hydrogen energy baron.
The third engineered water technology is to use an electrical charge to produce what is termed either aqueous ozone or ozonated water. The ozone is simply taken from the air surrounding the generating machine, and infused into the stream of water passing thru the machine. I just bought one of these - a Xytoblast 9000M. The "M" is for the mobile version. There is also a 9000W model, the "W" standing for wall-mounted. These are mostly being purchased by places with hard, flat surfaces in need of cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting: hospitals, university and private laboratories, meat-cutting plants, etc. Very little, if any, use has been made to date of ozone water to clean materials such as carpet or upholstery fabrics. The retail price of the Xytoblast 9000 is $3495, although I obtained mine at lower cost. Since, if I find my experiments with it for cleaning carpets results gets results on a par with the use of cleaning products, I may switch to using it. If I do like what I see, I will probably offer it via the Nature's Quick-Dry website as an option piece of carpet cleaning equipment, and/or possibly start a whole separate carpet cleaning franchise or biz-opp based on it. I set it up just yesterday, and cleaned the entry hall runner in my own home with it. Cleaned up very nicely. Better than with Orbit Natural or Encap-Green? Not necessarily, but the results, to me and to my wife, looked comparable.
More on this as I spend more time with it in different carpet situations.
I did one other experimental job with my Xyto-9000. Again, the results were fine. What I did find as I spent more time moving the box around, hooking it up to faucets, or, rather, trying to connect it to various faucets, is that it
is too much of a handful to want to use on a daily basis. Another issue: debate rages re. how long the aqueous ozone (AO) holds its strength as a cleaning product. Some say, just 15 minutes to an hour. Others claim for many hours, maybe up to 8. So I went to Amazon and bought an ORP (Oxygen Reduction Potential) meter, which was supposed to measure the strength of the cleaning
power of the AO. When the tip was immersed into the water, the numbers on the meter just jumped wildly all over the place, rather than moving to the 900+
range, where they are supposed to indicate excellent cleaning strength. Plus,
my Xyto-9000 came with 2 warnings printed on the container: one said not to use this device in occupied areas, and the other said to wear a carbon filter mask
when operating it (and, I suppose, have your customer/s put on a carbon filter mask as well.) Well, now I felt that instead of moving to even greener cleaning, I was flirting with Brown Cleaning. I then contacted the company where I bought it, and told them that their Xyto doesn't really work for me or my business, and would they take it back. This request was quickly rebuffed, so I am finished with my experimentations with Ozonated water, and have moved on to electrified water which produces high alkalinity in water, giving it reportedly excellent grease-cutting possibilities. More on this in an upcoming post.
All right. My experiments to try and determine the carpet cleaning effectiveness of electrolyzed water are advancing. I have received the 2-gallon batch-type water ionizer that I ordered a few days ago. It is composed of 2, attached side-by-side square-ish 1-gallon water containers; 2 platinum-plated titanium electrodes - one for each 1-gallon container; and a plug-in power supply with two alligator clips - one red and one blue. Each container is filled with about a gallon of tap water. A trace amount of sea salt (1/8 of a teaspoon) is added to and mixed into each gallon of water, for the purposes of increasing the conductivity of the water. Hang one electrode from the lip of each container into the water, attach the alligator clips to the electrodes, plug in the power supply, and that's it. I left it alone for a few hours. My tap water was around 7 pH. Now, in one container, I have water with a pH of 11.35 (high alkalinity) and one with a pH of 2.3 - strong acid water.
I've done a couple of small cleaning tests so far - each dealing with the ability of the high alkaline water to clean out oily/greasy frying pans and woks.
Each pan cleaned up quite nicely without my having had to resort to adding
some form of dish soap or detergent. I have also disinfected the 2 sponges we use around our kitchen sink using the acid water.
Still waiting to receive shipment of my Immerse-a-Clean device.
Back to the subject of EW (engineered water) or EAW (electrically-activated
water) as some call it. I have received my Immerse-a-Clean (IAC) device from
Geneon Technologies (www.geneontechnologies.com) It is a tool much better suited to being used in a real-world carpet cleaning situation than my 2-gallon batch water ionizer. The batch ionizer is really too small and too slow to be useful. I have been thinking of seeing if I might be able to have it specially made for me in, say, a 5-gallon size. If I go this route, I may add batch ionizer to the items in my Packages.
The IAC is able to create the volumes of EW needed as pre-spray on a carpet cleaning job. I can make a full 2-gallon pump sprayer of EW in just 2 minutes. I could make 5 gallons of EW also in 2 minutes, simply by increasing the tiny volume of what Geneon refers to as Catalyst that is mixed into the water prior to running the IAC's electric device. The device ends in a kind of wand, which in immersed into your water container. The Catalyst is potassium carbonate (tartar salt). Each time you twist the small handle on the catalyst container, a small, pre-measured amount of catalyst goes into the water. Kind of like salting a steak. The Catalyst is used to increase the conductivity of the water. So you are able to make up a full day's amount of pre-spray before you leave your home or office for the day, or make it on the job site itself.
I have performed several jobs over the last couple of weeks substituting IAC-
generated EW for my usual green cleaning products: Challenger's Orbit Natural and Vacaway's Encap-Green. I have been unable to see any reduction of the quality of the results when using EW, nor has any customer told me that the results don't look up to our usual standard. This past Saturday we
did a several thousand sq. ft. job in an industrial building. The carpet was in pretty tough shape, soil and stains-wise. I would normally have encapped it, with my Orbitec CX-20 and Fiber-Plus or maybe even Fiber-Max pads. Then I might have re-done the areas which still looked a little dark with absorbent pads, either terrycloth or microfiber. Instead, I used the IAC's EW as my prespray, and 19" MicroBeast pads to do the whole job. The pads' scrubber strips easily sliced thru all the really bad spots and stains, and the same pads, being absorbent microfiber, then absorbed the liquified soil. And unlike terrycloth pads, MicroBeast pads can easily be squeezed out and re-used on the job site, so you don't have to have so many on hand as when using terrycloth pads. The Facility Manager of this industrial building sent me a post-job email, saying
"Whoa !! How's you do that? No one has ever gotten these carpets to look so good before. Stand by, and I will be calling you soon to do the rest of the building".
On the residential side, I have done a good mix so far on synthetic fiber carpeting, as well as on all-wool rugs and carpeting. So EW as produced by the IAC seems to be a cleaning product with some versatility.
You can find additional info on both the Immerse-a-Clean and Geneon Technologies by conducting your own online searches. Let me know if you have any interest in obtaining your own IAC. They are priced at $2995. You might save that amount of money in a year, just by not buying all those gallons of whatever cleaning product you now use.
I have now been using the electrolyzed water generated by my Immerse-a-Clean device for everything I do for much of this calendar year. In addition to finding that there has been no dropoff in the quality of my carpet cleaning results since switching from bottled cleaning concentrate, I have also been pleased with its performance with spots and stains. I recently re-encountered a reddish pink stain on a customer's carpet. I had tried previously to remove it with one of the products made expressly for this task, but it was still quite visible. This time I pre-treated it with a squirt of EW (electrolyzed water). I came back about a half-hour later, ran my OP over it a couple of times, and it was gone.
I have also been experimenting on using EW when cleaning upholstery. I clean
upholstery using my little 6" orbital tool, with the head covered with a 14"
terrycloth pads, held in place with a couple of rubber bands. Sounds simple, but the customers continue to be really pleased. In some cases I have applied
my EW, not with the usual pump sprayer, but instead with the very fine particulate spray, or fog, produced by the Geneon Mist
It spreads the cleaning solution more evenly on the fabric than does a sprayer,
but with enough force to penetrate it a bit into the fabric. Also, any overspray is less like water, and more like mist or fog. So while the Mist device may raise the humidity level in the room by a few points, it won't really wet anything but what you are trying to clean.