Spots on new carpet and other mysterious soiling can be disturbing, especially when it starts showing up soon after installation. You know that you did not cause these spot on your new carpet but how did they get there? A number of manufacturing related causes can result to spots on new carpet along with streaks and overall soiling.
Black Spots on New Carpet
Black grease spots on new carpet. Manufacturing related, will be visible when the carpet is first unrolled. Grease spots not there when the carpet is first unrolled are not grease from a manufacturing machine. Dark grease that developed at a later date are rarely manufacturing related. Note: Grease is thick and should be visible. Machine Oil spots discussed next are different than grease.
Machine Oil Spots
Spots on new carpet that start showing within days or a few weeks of installation could be drops of clear machine oil that is now attracting soil. In such a situation the spots will become darker with time as they attract soil. Oil-like substances dripping on the carpet from other equipment or furniture can react in the same way.
Grease and oil from machinery can come in contact with the carpet during manufacturing. Occurs when the carpet comes in contact with bearings, or from leaking seals on equipment. Dark grease most always removed at the manufacturers plant. They will sometimes slip by.
Manufacturer related grease and oil spots on new carpet is a manufacturing related concern and not considered a defect. Grease spots can be cleaned off using a solvent based cleaner.
Mysteriously Developing Spots on New Carpet Showing as Dark Streaks – Loom Oil
Loom oil streaks are one of the most mysterious types of spots on new carpet. Loom oil carpet streaks may take days or weeks following installation before they show up.
These narrow loom oil streaks will always be in a linear direction, either lengthwise or widthwise. The streaks show up mysteriously. They start out as lightly soiled lines or bands and become darker as they attract airborne and walked on soil.
These latent streaks, caused by clear machine oil coming in contact with the carpets pile yarn during manufacturing.
Loom oil streaks spots on new carpet are usually a correctable manufacturing concern and not a defect. Loom oil removed from the carpets pile with a solvent based cleaner.
Over / Under Application of Soil Retardant
Even with carpet they’re can be too much of a good thing. This is especially true with the over application of fluorochemical soil retardant at the time of manufacturing.
While the purpose of a soil and stain repellent finish is to protect the carpet, there are times when an over application will make the carpet sticky and attract soil.
This problem can also occur when jets clogs during application of chemical. Unprotected bands up to several inches wide are left on the carpet and these portions of the carpet will soil more quickly.
An over or under application of fluorochemical can be corrected by a professional carpet cleaner who will first perform an extraction cleaning. The cleaning will remove the excess treatment and much of the remaining retardant and soil. The carpet cleaner can then re-apply the soil retardant or stain resist agent to the carpet.
To check for missing fluorochemical place a few drops of water on the the carpet in both the clean appearing areas and in the soiled appearing areas. Where present the water should bead up and where applied it will soak in. If sticky and attracting soil it will be felt. A cutting from an uninstalled remnant may need to be sent to the manufacturer for verification.
An over or under application of fluorochemical that is leaving spots on new carpet is considered a manufacturing problem but not a defect.
Excess Yarn Lubricant Poor Scouring
When excessive yarn lubricant is found it will usually be on a carpet manufactured with polypropylene (olefin) yarn. This excess lubricant can result in rapid overall soiling.
During manufacturing excessive, residual solvent soluble material (soap like substance) may be left on the carpet fiber. Scouring is an operation to remove the sizing and tint used on the warp yarn in weaving and, in general, to clean the fabric prior to dyeing.
To test for excess lubricant agitate a few drops of water into the pile surface. It is important that this be performed in an area that has never been cleaned including spot cleaning.
Excess yarn lubricant is a manufacturing related condition that is easily corrected by rinsing the carpet with a hot water extraction process, NO CLEANING AGENT IS TO BE USED. Yarn lubricant has surfactants (soap-like) in it and therefore the soap that is already in the carpet will clean the carpet and the clear water rinse will remove the soil and soap.
Properly cleaned, future soiling will not be caused by excess yarn lubricant. This is a manufacturing problem but not a defect.
Will the Manufacturer Replace My Carpet?
While all of the listed conditions are manufacturing related, the manufacturer does not consider any of them defects.
Since these conditions are related to the manufacturing process, the manufacturer will pay for the correction of these conditions. Most manufacturers will first want to have the carpet inspected and verified that it is a manufacturing related concern.
If a consumer is insistent the carpet be replaced, they may be entitled to a replacement. Many carpet manufacturers may insist on a correction before they will even consider a replacement.
For more information on cleaning and maintenance of new carpet visit the Carpet and Rug Institute website.
Need help with a floorcovering problems? Contact the Floor Covering Experts. Nationally recognized carpet and flooring inspectors serving Oregon and Washington.