It is important that the carpet cleaner does not waste time and resources trying to fix a defect in the carpet itself or in how it was installed.  

Corn Rowing:  A condition in cut pile only where alternating rows of tufts bend over to fill in density voids in the carpet, thus creating a row like effect at right angles to the traffic patterns.  Most noticeable at the tips of fibers, they group together to form rows of varying widths, depending on the height and density of the yarns.  According to carpet manufacturers, this is not a mill defect, but a characteristic of some cut pile carpets. 

Reflections and Shadows:  These conditions are caused by reflections which make the carpet look light and dark due to un-obvious light sources.  Examples would be: pin holes in draperies, light fixtures, shades and window coverings that allow concentrated light to focus on a specific area of carpet.  Another source can be reflections of shiny objects such as mirrors, chrome, chair legs, and other items in a room or office.  These can be identified by blocking the light source to the spot.  Shadows cause a dark spot to appear, they can be eliminated by bringing in an alternate light source.  The addition of an inspection light is invaluable at this point. 

Wear:  Wear is a reduction in the amount of face fiber in traffic areas, especially as compared to non-traffic areas.  A carpet fiber is said to have wear when there is an actual loss of face fiber oftentimes demonstrated by a fuzzy appearance where fibers have been abraded.  If this is the result of improper cleaning by using abrasive bonnet pads or aggressive beater bar then the contractor may be held liable. 

Both hard floors such as VCT and soft floors such as carpeting and rugs have their own unique challenges when the day-to-day wear and tear takes its toll.  Cleaning for appearance is still important.  Don’t let bad practices create more problems.  

Your comments and questions are always welcome.  I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…


Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678.314.2171 or