Garden snail and Red slug, Arion rufus, in front of white backgroundSlugs and snails are a common sight in every garden but sometimes they make their way into the house. Not that you’ll be able to spot them (they tend to come out at night) but the slimy, criss-cross snail trail they leave behind on your rugs, carpets and hard floors will tell you all you need to know. What to do?

Slugs and snails are mollusca, a group of invertebrates – meaning they have no bones – and they are harmless creatures. Snails have hard shells on their back that they retreat to when they sense danger; they also hibernate during the winter. Slugs don’t have shells and they are present and active all year round.

09 slug snail ANIMALS CLEANINGOutside, they live under stones and in nooks and crannies in the garden where they hide during cold or sunny weather. They come out when it’s damp and dark and can wreak havoc on your flower or vegetable beds. Of course, outdoors there are natural predators such as hedgehogs, birds, chickens and ducks to control the population. But what if a slug gets into your house?

Slugs have a good sense of smell and are often attracted to pet food, kitchens or pantries. Being invertebrates, they have the advantage of being able to squeeze through the tiniest of cracks or crevices – space under doors or between floorboards, joints along walls, holes drilled for pipes or wiring; they can even climb vertically or upside down. So how do you keep them out?

  1. Take a close look at last night’s snail trails (a torch can be helpful) and trace them back all the way to any entry points. Obviously, in the unlikely event that you spot any slugs, remove them immediately!
  2. Next, check for any holes and gaps under cupboards, along walls, around doors, pipes and vents – anywhere that could have provided an entry point. Seal any gaps using silicone sealant for small cracks and expanding polyurethane foam for larger gaps.
  3. Get some slug pellets from a DIY store or garden centre – but beware that there are different types. Old style slug bait contains metaldehyde which is poisonous not just to slugs and snails but to pets, birds, wildlife and people too. The new generation of slug pellets is based on iron phosphate which is effective for getting rid of slugs, but is harmless to children, pets and wildlife – a much better choice all round.
  4. Place slug pellets around all likely entry points (inside and out) and anywhere slugs are likely to hide – under the fridge, behind cabinets etc. Once the bait is eaten, the slugs will stop feeding and crawl away to die a few days later.
  5. If all else fails, and you’re desperate to eliminate the slimy mess from your floors and carpets, use salt. It’s a cruel way to kill a slug because salt essentially melts slugs – all that’s left is a slimy mess of salty goo to clean up – and therefore not recommended, but it does do the job.
  6. Once you’ve successfully dealt with the slug problem, all that’s left to do is get everything nice and clean again. Treat your carpets to a professional deep clean to eliminate every last disgusting bit of snail trail, and be extra vigilant about hygiene around the home.

Written on September 2, 2016 · Tagged: , ,

original_carpet_beater

Do you beat your rugs and carpets? Or is that an odd question when you think of carpet cleaning?

Not all that long ago, the traditional carpet beater was a standard household appliance. Typically made of wicker or cane – although wire, wood or steel could also be used – the implement consists of an intricately woven head with a strong, flat surface on the end of a long handle. By beating a rug repeatedly with it, dust and dirt are released and the carpet is cleaned. Simple!

In the days before fitted carpets became commonplace and before the invention of mechanical carpet sweepers and vacuum cleaners, the only way to clean rugs and carpets was to sweep them with a broom or to take them outside and give them a good beating. Not surprisingly, this was an unpopular and physically demanding task, particularly for big, heavy rugs. However, in the absence of better alternatives, the practice became well established in virtually every home.

Only from the 1960s onwards, when more advanced carpet cleaning devices started to become affordable – anyone remember the Ewbank? – did carpet beating decline.

Interestingly, you can still buy traditional carpet beaters today. Better still, many experts still recommend the occasional beating of rugs as one of the most effective ways to get rid of dust and household debris.

Other good ways of keeping your rugs fresh and clean include:

Regular vacuum cleaning

Bear in mind that suction cleaners are safer than those who have rotating brushes, which may damage the fabric over time. Hoover from the inside out and make sure that carpet fringes don’t get caught up in the vacuum.

Rotate your rug

To even out wear and tear and traffic patterns through the room, rotate the position of the rug periodically to keep it looking younger for longer.

Refresh and deodorise

To keep your rug smelling clean and fresh, you can use a commercial deodoriser such as Febreze, Glade Shake n’ Vac or Neutradol. Alternatively, sprinkle liberally with baking soda and hoover up after 15 minutes (or ideally leave overnight).

Remove stains

Minimise the damage of any stains by acting without delay. Scrape off any solids and blot liquids, then follow the manufacturer’s instructions for stain treatment.

Professional carpet cleaning

Have your rugs cleaned professionally every year to remove deep seated dirt and grime that your vacuum cleaner won’t shift.

Written on April 5, 2016 · Tagged: , , ,

Keeping a clean carpet is essential; it is good for your health, it improves general home hygiene, and it lifts the atmosphere in any room, which is particularly useful when you’re having guests over. Whether you’ve been meaning to do it for weeks and have never found the time, or you lead a busy lifestyle and simply know you can’t spare a few hours, it is important that you have a good plan of action when it comes to getting your carpets cleaned. Professional carpet cleaning is quick, easy and affordable.

So what do you need to remember when preparing for your next clean?

 

1. How Often Should My Carpets be Cleaned?

While it is important to clean up spills straight away and regularly hoover your carpet – once a week should do it, though some people hoover every day –  it is recommended that your carpet is professionally cleaned by a qualified technician every 12-18 months. Otherwise, you will allow the build-up of soil and dirt, greatly reducing the life span of your carpet.

 

2. The National Carpet Cleaners Associationncca

If you are unsure where to search in your bid to find advice on carpet cleaning, you can always start with the National Carpet Cleaners Association. They provide a plethora of hints and tips and helpful advice on what you can do to prepare for a clean.

 

3. Carpet Cleaning Companies Registered with NCCA

Many professional cleaning companies are officially registered with the National Carpet Cleaners Association (NCCA), making it easier for the NCCA to recommend their services to you. While it is not mandatory for carpet cleaning companies to be on the register, it works very much as a seal of approval in that professional registered companies work to the best possible standards in order to thoroughly clean your carpets. Apple Clean is an NCCA registered company, giving weight to our quality promise of first class carpet cleaning services every time.

If you happen to have an issue with an NCCA registered company, they can provide an independent arbitration service up to solicitor level. However, they will recommend that you contact the member in question and voice your complaint to them formally. Many member companies will be eager to resolve any complaints before the NCCA needs to get involved.

 

4. Moving Furniture in Preparation for the Clean

Apple Clean is one of the carpet cleaning companies that is more than happy to move furniture in preparation for cleaning, as it is important that furniture is moved out of the way, properly stored and protected in order for every inch of carpet surface to be properly cleaned. We understand that in some cases, our clients may have furniture that is delicate or perhaps antique, so utmost care is given when moving these items. However, it never hurts to move some of the furniture yourself if you prefer to do so!

Conducting a thorough carpet clean every 12-18 months should always be done professionally as experienced cleaners will be able to use the appropriate professional cleaning materials to achieve the best result. If you attempt a DIY job, you may end up causing irreparable damage to your carpets, so it is always better to go through a professional. Get in touch with Apple Clean to find out more today!

Written on January 20, 2016 · Tagged: , , ,

Cleaning your home, whether it is a small weekly clean or a larger, more in-depth spring clean, can take some time and effort. From the minimalistic design of contemporary homes to more traditional, trinket-filled cosy cottages, every type of home needs to keep on top of dust and dirt build-up. If you’re having trouble to fit in a home clean, Apple Clean can help.

Plus, as a WoolSafe Approved Service Provider, we are certified to work with a wide range of different carpet collections, offering expert advice and assistance on cleaning your carpets.

The WoolSafe Organisation

woolsafeThe WoolSafe Organisation is a cleaning industry service provider widely recognised as a standard for excellence and the safety of carpet care chemicals, both for professionals and consumers.

WoolSafe covers maintenance product evaluation and certification, education and training and the promotion of professional cleaning and inspection services among other services.

As a worldwide recognised company for carpet cleaning excellence and products, WoolSafe approval for cleaning products and companies often goes a long way in giving clients peace of mind when looking for a professional cleaning company to suit their needs.

 

WoolSafe Approval for Cleaning Products

With the accreditation available worldwide to manufacturers of carpet cleaning chemicals, stain removers, soil and stain resist treatments and other products, it is often well worthwhile to apply for WoolSafe approval in order to give your products a certified, recognised seal of approval. Companies who have been given the WoolSafe approval will receive entitlement to display the WoolSafe mark on accredited products, will get their products listed in WoolSafe Directories and will be able to supply their products to WoolSafe service providers, among a variety of other benefits.

For local businesses or businesses looking to strengthen their relationship with both their customer base and connections to other certified companies, WoolSafe Approval is essential. Apple Clean is proud to be a WoolSafe Approved Provider.

Who Can Apply to be a WoolSafe Approved Service Provider?

Membership is open to all carpet cleaning franchises, independent carpet cleaning companies and in-house carpet maintenance divisions, although companies must have been practising carpet cleaners for a continuous period for a minimum of five years.

Companies are also required to attend and complete the WoolSafe Training Course or an In-House WoolSafe Training Course run by a certified trainer at their company. A written exam is part of the course, with a pass requirement of 80% needed to complete the course. When cleaning or maintaining wool or wool-rich carpets or rugs, WoolSafe approved products must be used.

The Wool Owner’s Warranty (WOW)

For customers who buy a wool or wool-rich carpet or rug from specific manufacturers, WoolSafe offers the Wool Owner’s Warranty, which guarantees professional assistance and care for the lifetime of your carpet. The initial warranty lasts 12 months from the date of purchase although this warranty can be extended indefinitely. All that is needed is that the carpet is professionally cleaned by a WOW Registered Carpet Cleaner once a year.

By being a WoolSafe Approved Service Provider, Apple Clean are able to continue to provide first-class wool and wool-rich carpet cleaning services for all our customers, ensuring 100% satisfaction at every turn. When you buy a beautiful wool carpet or rug, you want it to last, which is why we take extra care with our services and products to keep your carpet looking spotless for as long as possible.

Written on January 7, 2016 · Tagged: , ,

Reactions to grass pollen and other outdoor allergens are at their highest at this time of year, so it’s essential to make sure your home is free from allergens to promote a good nights sleep.

The best way to prevent hay fever and other allergic reactions is to avoid the allergen that causes your symptoms but if you are struggling with hay fever, you might find this task impossible. The most pragmatic step you can take is to get rid of any allergens present in your home…

What Is Hay Fever?

Allergies to pollen are known as hay fever and it this that causes the most allergic symptoms during the summer. Trees and grass release pollen particles into the air during the summer, causing plenty of mild yet uncomfortable allergic reactions in many people across the country.

  • Keep an eye on the weather reports as they often report the pollen count. Staying indoors when it is high is your safest bet.

  • Keep doors and windows throughout the home shut around mid-morning time and early evening, as this is when there is the most pollen in the air.

  • Shower often, wash your hair and change clothes after being outside as pollen can cling to the surface of almost anything and make it indoors.

  • Avoid grassy areas such as parks or fields and if you need to cut the grass in the garden, have someone else do it for you

  • Dry clothes indoors when the pollen count is high rather than outdoors

  • Have specialist cleaners visit your home and carry out a thorough allergy control service to rid your home of pollen and other suspected allergens e.g. dust mites or mould

If you are concerned that allergens in your property are the cause for your sleepless nights, get in touch with Apple Clean today and we will carry out a thorough allergy control service that turns your home back into the clean and healthy environment it once was.

 

 

Written on July 24, 2015 · Tagged: ,