Encapsulation itself is not an incredibly labor-intensive process — and it can be handled in a number of methods. Typically, workers will use a CRB (counter rotating brush) machine, a brush applicator, a rotary machine or a sprayer. All of these approaches serve to push the solution deep into the fibers, where it can do the hard work of binding, separating and lifting debris for easy removal.  

This particular technique is valuable in a number or situations and environments, but is particularly effective in facilities that feature a high volume of foot traffic. The main reason for that is because custodians can turn over the area quickly and re-open high-traffic spaces. By reducing the need for shampoos and drying time, as required in other water-based methods, encapsulation processes allow carpeting to be used almost immediately upon completion of the cleaning process.   

Because the equipment needs are fairly minimal, the initial investment can be recovered quickly, and the time and resource savings make the choice even more appealing. Operators can be quickly trained on the operation and science of the equipment, and the steps to follow are intuitive and straightforward. Companies experiencing higher levels of turnover can bring new employees into the fold, train them to use the equipment properly, and deploy them to various sites earlier and more often.  

The encapsulation process can also be done either in conjunction with already existing cleaning calendars, or inserted at opportune times for the facility or cleaning company. Because the process is very effective as a supplementary strategy, it can be performed at monthly or even bi-monthly intervals with great effect.  

At its core, the encapsulation process is intuitive. A cursory vacuum run is performed to remove loose and easily lifted soils and debris, then an encapsulation solution is applied. A small quantity goes a long way — a few liters of properly diluted solution can cover almost 300 square feet — making the resource commitment of this interim cleaning method attractive.  Then use an agitation machine to work the solution into the carpet — less is more, as over-saturation can make it harder to pick up soils once they are enjoined. 

With encapsulation, a solution is worked into the carpet via a number of methods: it might be applied using a rotary machine, CRB counter-rotating brush, a brush applicator, or a compression sprayer. The method of application doesn’t really matter, though; what’s important is that the solution gets worked deep into the carpet.  

After letting the solution sit, it will eventually dry and crystalize. Once that happens, a couple passes with the vacuum will remove the loosened compounds, leaving behind a clean and dry carpet.  

Encapsulation offers the opportunity to reduce overall workload and it cuts drying time down considerably. This cleaning technique also allows frontline workers the ability to penetrate to deeper layers of the carpet than most standard vacuum units would be able to reach. Mixing this method into the cleaning program makes sense for BSCs looking to save time and money — while making job workloads and training times easier for employees.   

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Tips to Incorporating Encapsulation Cleaning