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Blue Sky Stone & Tile Care Joins D. A. Burns

Our team at D. A. Burns is pleased to carry on the stone and tile cleaning legacy created by Dallas and Denise Frakes, owners of Blue Sky Stone and Tile Care.  We share their pride in workmanship and are committed to continued excellence.

Over the past several months we have worked closely with Dallas and Denise and will continue to do so well into the future.  Providing service that exceeds your expectations is our goal.

If we have not already had the pleasure of meeting you, let us introduce ourselves.

Our D. A. Burns service team takes pride in carrying on our history of service with responsibility.  We have long been trusted to service highly valued and care-sensitive furnishings such as Oriental rugs, designer carpets and upholstered furniture.  For over 80 years, we have been an industry leader in carpet and fine fabric care.  The experience and training of Blue Sky Stone and Tile Care brings added strength to our service offerings.

As an invited guest into your home or business, we will be respectful of you, your family and your furnishings.  We will keep our service promises to you, with no surprises.  Training and individual responsibility are a high priority and one that we strive to improve every year.

Blue Sky Stone and Tile Care has relied on return clients and their referrals to others, as do we.  We put our energy into taking care of our existing clients and improving our services.

Winter is Coming!

 

Ted Buehner of the National Weather Service said La Niña may not be quite as strong as last winter’s, which was one of the worst in 60 years, but computer projections indicate the Northwest will see wetter and colder weather.

That doesn’t mean everything can be predicted, but being ready for possible power outages or snowfall requires planning, as a typical Northwest weather warning may not be enough time to buy snow tires or stock up on the items you need.

At D. A. Burns, we see the real effect of snow and heavy rain as we care for furnishings that have been damaged by water intrusion into a home. Surprisingly, widespread flooding is not the major reason for the weather related damage we often see.

Our top five list:

  • Surface drains around the home become blocked by fallen leaves, allowing ground water to seep under garage doors, into light wells and at other entry points.
  • Clogged gutters and downspouts can allow water to rise under roofing material and leak through to the interior ceilings and walls.
  • Sub-surface drains become clogged, allowing a build-up of pressure in the soil that can force water into basements that have never had a history of water leaks. (Remember that concrete can be considered a really hard sponge; even without cracks, water can move directly through concrete and mortar.)
  • Undetected damage to roofing, roof vents and siding.
  • Leaks caused by large windblown objects, tree limbs or the trees themselves.

Not top five, but deserving mention: Leaving windows open during a storm. No kidding.

In order to keep your furnishings safe from harm, this is the time to have any exterior drainage checked, inspect the exterior of your home, and get out in the fresh air after the storm has passed.

…and call us to clean your furnishings when it fits your schedule.

 

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Why Invest in Scotchgard® Carpet and Upholstery Protection?

The holiday season is time to enjoy family and friends.

Along with all of the celebration often comes an unexpected surprise.

Wine Spill Photo

Let us help you be prepared with our carpet and upholstery protector special offer.

When it comes to carpet and fabric protection, Scotchgard® is second to none. Scotchgard® forms a protective barrier between the carpet fibers, shielding it from dirt and grime. Not only does Scotchgard® help protect your interior furnishing investment, it is also committed to protecting the environment, with a patented formula that has passed the regulatory reviews of the Environmental Protecting Agency.

Benefits of Scotchgard® Carpet & Fabric Protector include:

  • Helping protect your carpet and fabric against oil and water-based spills such as fruit drinks, soft drinks, and other food and drink related stains.
  • Helping soils release more readily during carpet and upholstery cleaning.
  • Helping your upholstery and fabric stay cleaner, longer.

 

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Carpet Tile Goes Residential

 

flor_carpet_tile

 

In our last newsletter we mentioned the use of carpet tile as a solution in areas challenged by pets, since a section can be easily removed, thoroughly cleaned or replaced when severely worn.

Many of residential carpet tilesyou have found other applications of carpet tiles – mud room, laundry room, playroom, home exercise area – and a way to cover and protect hardwood flooring until the kids get a little older.  Basically, anywhere the look and feel of carpet is desired but without a more permanent installation.

Manufacturers have responded to homeowner demand by offering more color and style options, in higher pile and lighter-weight constructions, and some with attached backing cushion.  Also, some carpet tile installation has been simplified with “floating” techniques that use clips or adhesive tabs and are not adhered to the floor at all.

Both commercial and residential carpet tiles can vary in price.  The more expensive tile will typically have a heavier backing material and more dense construction, so may be worth the cost in high use areas.

If properly installed, carpet tiles can be cleaned in place or individual tiles can be brought to D. A. Burns for a thorough wash.

 

Why Re-apply Stain Protectant?

Madelyn from Lake Forest park asks: 

“Why do I need to re-apply stain protectant to my carpet?  It was marketed as being stain-proof!”

As almost all carpet made today is treated with a protective coating that helps resist damage from spills and wear, this is a fair question.  Even some “stain resistant” synthetic fibers are treated to reduce permanent discoloration from foot traffic abrasion.

Some of the protectant is worn away with normal use and can also be removed by some home cleaning products.  Most carpet manufacturers recommend having protectant re-applied after each cleaning to preserve the like-new resistance to wear and soils.  They say, in general, the conditions that led to the carpet needing to be cleaned also lead to a need to refresh the protectant.

It is always worthwhile to refresh the protectant with every cleaning in areas of heaviest traffic (entries, hallways, stairways) and areas subject to food and beverage spills.  We’ve observed that bedrooms, and areas that get limited use, can maintain an adequate level of protection through more than one cleaning before needing re-application.

While not making a fiber completely “stain proof” the stain protectant does make fibers more resistant to spills so they can be more easily blotted up.  It can also reduce damage from gritty, abrasive soil in high traffic areas.

Remember:

■  The carpet protector applied during manufacture will become less effective with normal wear and  periodic cleaning.

■  Our re-application of carpet protector will help keep your carpet cleaner looking longer between cleanings.

■  Our carpet protector preserves your carpet’s appearance by allowing easier, faster and more thorough removal     of spots and spills … preventing them from becoming permanent stains (inexpensive “insurance” to preserve your carpet’s appearance).

 

 

Cleaning Neglected Outdoor Fabric

We had the opportunity to clean an outdoor fabric that had been neglected for some time. Although this was a good quality synthetic boat top, the soil that had accumulated allowed mold, moss and lichen to take root. Often the discoloration of soil and moss can disguise damage that will then be apparent after cleaning.

In this case we warned the owner that mold and lichen could leave permanent marks and damage the fabric enough to cause leaks. We also noticed the boat top had been sewn with cotton thread which was beginning to decay.

D. A. Burns cleaning outdoor and marine fabric

The black areas are dirt, mold and algae, green areas are algae and moss and the light spots are lichen. Our job is to get all of this to release from the fabric so we can remove it without harm to the fragile cotton-sewn seams. This first step will take 24 hours.

 

Above is one of several tanks used to gently soak fabrics and rugs to help remove severely impacted soils. A pump will circulate cleaning solution around the fabric while in the tank. The boat top will spend as many as 24 hours in this tank.

 

The above picture is after the first stage of cleaning. Organisms are no longer active and removal of discoloration can begin.

 

After cleaning the top is supported for faster drying. Overall discoloration has been removed but the spots from lichen growth are a part of the fabric.

Close-up photo of an area damaged by microbial growth. If growth was invasive enough, the dark areas may be a source of future leaks. In some cases a leaky top can regain water repellancy with a coating of polymer waterproofing, but it would be best to avoid the damage by keeping the fabric clean.

In this case the owner reports that the cover looks better than he thought possible, is working well and his fellow boat owners seem a little more friendly!

 

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White Spots – Diagonal lines in Oriental Rugs

 

Jan M. from Edmonds called about her Chinese rug and the white spots she noticed after it came back from cleaning. What happened?

Elizabeth H. from Issaquah said that her entry rug is starting to look like it was a victim of an industrial accident. “When vacuuming, I noticed some distortion in the nap that looked like a short diagonal line. Looking closer there seem to be several more. I never noticed them before – what causes this?”

Both the “spots” and the “lines” come from the same place; knots in the foundation tied when the rug was made.

White Spots/White Knots

The rug’s pile is actually hand-knotted onto a foundation of warp and weft yarns. Vertical yarns (the warp) will be strung under tension on a loom. The wool yarn that becomes the face of the rug is knotted around the warp. After each row of knots is tied a horizontal yarn (the weft) is woven between each warp yarn. Basically, the rug maker is weaving a flat fabric foundation at the same time the pile is being knotted in place.

In most Oriental rugs, cotton is used for the foundation because it has very good “dimensional stability” – meaning it doesn’t shrink or stretch as much as wool and is stronger than other natural fibers.  It does break though, and breaks are repaired by tying in a new piece of cotton. Every broken warp will generate two repair knots, and these become the white spots that Jan mentions. These white knots are considered to be just a part of a normal hand-knotted rug.

 

1:30 video showing warp repair knotting

Diagonal Lines/Sections Lines/Lazy Lines

D. A. Burns rug cleaning inspectionMost larger rugs are woven by several weavers sitting side by side. They all work at the same rate and weaving progresses for the full width of the rug, one row at a time. If one weaver works on a larger rug, they may build several rows in one area rather than shifting position to complete a row across the entire width of a rug. The weaver will tie a knot on each row at the end of their reach, shift position and repeat the procedure. This will result in a diagonal line of knots between each section of weaving.

Whether this is considered a normal part of rug weaving is open to debate. Those that feel this style of weaving is appropriate call these section lines. Others that think the weaver should complete one row at a time call them lazy lines.

When a rug is new these cotton knots may be hidden by the pile of the rug or maybe by a little art work (marking pen) on the part of the rug maker. When the rug is put into use the knots can work to the surface, the pile will wear and get compressed, and the marker can rub off. Usually the rug is becoming soiled at the same time and the soil will disguise the knots. Cleaning will remove the soil and the knots will become more apparent.

Unfortunately the diagonal lines in Elizabeth’s rug and the spots in Jan’s rug will become more prominent with use.

 

What can be done about this?

The cotton knots can be removed from the finished rug and the resulting holes can be repaired by reweaving. Reweaving the multiple knots can become costly though, so most rug owners will accept that this is part of the look of their rug. Although it won’t be a permanent fix, others may decide to visit an art supply store and do a little artwork of their own.

 

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Fresh Spill on Carpet – First Steps

Having a few common cleaning products on hand, and keeping our spotting guide handy, can reduce the anxiety if spills occur.  With any spill, the first step is to remove as much of the spill as is possible before applying any cleaning product.

Stain protectant on white carpetIf liquid is spilled, blot (don’t rub!) as much liquid as possible with a white cotton cloth or white paper towels until you no longer see a transfer of the spilled substance onto the toweling.  If your carpet had a stain-resist treatment applied, this may be all you need to do.

If the spill is semi-solid, remove the majority using a spoon or other dull-edged tool. The exception would be for chewing gum or caulk, which may be more easily removed if left on the surface of the carpet nap and peeled away after it has hardened.  (We suggest avoiding doing any caulking during your holiday party.)

 

Build a Spot Removal Kit

To be prepared to remove spots before they can become permanent stains, a few common products will help:  dishwashing liquid (mild detergent), household ammonia, white vinegar, rubbing alcohol and a “dry” solvent are what you’ll need for your spot removal kit.

Our Spot-Off carpet spotter is a great option for the mild detergent, but in a pinch you can use a few drops of dishwashing liquid in a cup of water.  Naphtha has proven to be a good choice as a general “dry” cleaning solvent; just remember that it is flammable and can damage a carpet backing if applied too freely!

To learn the spill-specific techniques you can follow THIS LINK to the handy D. A. Burns carpet spot removal guide.  Organized by types of spill, you can scroll over the red text to show the proper recipe for your spot removal effort.

TIP:  Keep this link on your phone and you can be the spot removal hero wherever you go!

 

What if a spill occurs on upholstered furniture?

The basic ‘blot first’ still applies, and if the fabric was treated with a stain protectant you have a greater chance of just blotting being successful.

Spot removal from upholstery fabric is more complex than carpeting due to differences in the fibers and fiber blends used.  Be cautious about using tips from the carpet spotting guide on upholstered furniture, as you’ll need to know if the fabric is sensitive to water or dry solvents.

We’ve found that a relatively safe product to use on many fabrics is “K2R Spot Lifter”, a dry solvent/dry powder compound that comes in an aerosol form and can be readily found from grocery and hardware stores to boating supply companies.  As with anything used for cleaning, it helps to apply some in an inconspicuous area to determine if there will be adverse effects before using it on a more visible area.

 

Furniture Cleaning Codes

The furniture manufacturer may have included cleaning codes with your furniture to help you know what cleaning agents can safely be used:

W means water-based cleaners can be used.

S indicates the use of dry cleaning solvent only.

W/S denotes that you can use water or solvent based products.

X would suggest you keep the furniture in a safe place for the duration of your event, as there is little you can do after a spill occurs.

Leather furniture also has cleaning codes:

P is for leather that is protected (painted) and will usually allow you to wipe up a spill.

Codes N and A are more like the “X” rated upholstery fabric, as both can be quickly and permanently affected by a liquid spill.

Broyhill Cleaning Codes

Hopefully with these tips you can take care of most minor spills before they become permanent stains.  If earning the title “Master of Spot Removal” is not on your bucket list, call D. A. Burns at 206.782.2268.  We can do some coaching by phone or send one of our friendly, experienced technicians to the rescue.

Enjoy the holidays!

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“There is hardly anything in this world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and those people who consider price only, are this man’s lawful prey. It is unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much you lose a little money – that is all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot; it cannot be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better.”

            … John Ruskin (1819 – 1900)

 

Upholstered Furniture         October 2012

 

What’s the best upholstery fabric?

Kristen G. from Redmond called to say that she was looking at some fabric swatches and wanted to make sure the fabric would clean easily. Her choices were beautiful, but fragile and sensitive to spills, so maybe not the best choice for her use. The next question was: “What’s best?”

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What’s ‘best’ depends on your use and expectations. If you want something that is high style and finely tailored, you have lots of choices. If you want a fabric that is budget friendly, pet friendly, and will last through the teen years, you have lots of choices. If you want all of the above in one fabric you won’t have many choices, so the best choice for you will often be a balance between practical and pretty.

Durable, synthetic fabrics may be a good choice for high-use furniture, but with more limited color, pattern and texture choices. It is not uncommon for more expensive fabrics to be the most care sensitive. Silk, moiré, metal weaves and hand-painted fabrics can be visually striking but may not be designed with durability in mind and probably shouldn’t be selected for high-use areas

Finding the best upholstery fabric for your application will require you to make an honest assessment of your intended use, your budget considerations and how long you expect your furniture to last before being reupholstered or replaced.  Experienced design professionals, furniture salespersons and upholsterers can guide you with a fabric selection that will provide years of enjoyment.  We are happy to share our fabric cleaning experience as you consider your fabric choices – and future cleaning.  Just call us at 206.782.2268.

 

Fabrics from around the world.

Over the years, the manufacture of hand-made rugs and upholstered furniture has moved around the globe in search of talent, materials and economic efficiencies.  Our cleaning methods and procedures have responded to changing textile manufacturing techniques. Unfortunately, our experience has also revealed occasional short-cuts in the textile manufacturing process that often become an unpleasant surprise for the consumer and professional cleaning service provider.  These “surprises” include unstable dyes, inferior backing treatments and the “bleeding” of hidden manufacturer’s markings.

Recently, Asia has been a popular source of textile furnishings in response to consumer design and price considerations.  American furniture manufacturers have chosen to either buy fabric from Asia or have much of their product line built there. This can have a direct impact on you, as a consumer, and on us, as your favorite upholstery cleaning company. We’ve discovered that while much of this furniture looks great, there may have been compromises in the selection of manufacturing methods and materials.  We’re experiencing well-woven Asian fabrics that have been compromised with unstable dyes and manufacturing markings that bleed to the face of the fabric – and become permanent discolorations – in the event of a spill or cleaning.

We pre-test upholstery fabric in an attempt to determine these limitations prior to cleaning, but often the problem only becomes apparent as the fabric dries.  Unfortunately, the bottom line for the furniture owner is that fabrics with these “hidden” conditions cannot be safely or effectively cleaned without encountering such manufacturing defects.

We are also finding that price is not always a factor in avoiding these hidden conditions.  Some of the higher priced furniture pieces share the same quality control issues as their budget cousins.  Not to be alarmists; be assured that the majority of Asian sourced furniture will provide you with a long service life and be perfectly cleanable.

When purchasing new upholstered furniture, we recommend that you consult with an experienced designer or retailer and understand the return and customer service policies.

 

Links

Imported furniture scandal 

Some of our customers have been disappointed to find their American or Scandinavian branded furniture was actually made in China. This article shows how the Chinese feel about it.

Small American furniture manufacturer

Traditional smaller volume workshop with computerized fabric cutter. Time-lapse video runs about three minutes.

Large American manufacturer

While many of the larger American manufacturers have moved manufacturing to the Far East, this manufacturer shows how automation and lean manufacturing techniques could bring large volume furniture making back to the USA. This video is an ad piece for the company – approximately nine minutes.

Making low-cost furniture

Video that shows what goes into “reduced price” furniture making. The finished product looks good, but what’s inside counts. Approximately three minutes.

Reminder

We can also clean your outdoor cushions before putting them away for the rainy season!

 

 

 

Pad for Area Rugs

D. A. Burns customers often call us with questions about pad for their area rug. Recently, Karen R. from Bothell asked, “My rug feels pretty comfortable as it is. Do I really need a pad?”

For most rugs and in most applications, a pad for your area rugs is a good idea. Even the heaviest rug will allow fine particulate to sift through to the floor, and the slight shift of the rug with normal foot traffic can then damage the floor and the rug. Thin rugs will travel easily and become either a nuisance or hazard. A large, heavy rug in a lightly used room may be fine without a pad.

There are many kinds of carpet pad (AKA: underlayment or cushion) for use under wall-to-wall carpeting and all have their own strengths. However, only a few types of pad make a good choice for use under an area rug. Since an area rug isn’t nailed to the floor under tension like installed carpeting, it will flex more and this movement can cause the wrong pad, or a poor quality rug pad, to rapidly fail. Also, pad made for wall-to-wall use is stapled or glued to the floor, so doesn’t have any non-slip properties. We’ve chosen to offer what we consider the best padding on the market and have four choices that are appropriate in these situations: Over a hard surface floor – Durahold and Wunder Grip. Over an installed carpet: Nomuv and Wunderlock.

 

Durahold is made from recycled new carpet fiber, and is billed as being non-allergenic. It has enough cushion to protect the rug from foot impacts and increase comfort, will contain fine grit that works through a rug to keep it from damaging the floor, and has a back-coating to resist movement. It is washable and comes with a ten-year warranty.

This is the best overall pad we’ve found for use with area rugs.

 

Wunder Grip is made from expanded vinyl foam mesh. It will not degrade or discolor flooring like some look-alike products. It is appropriate for smaller rugs or where keeping the overall rug height low is desirable. It is washable and is warranted to maintain non-slip properties for twenty years.

This is the best pad we’ve found of this type. Many others will dry out and crumble or get sticky and discolor hardwood floors.

 

Nomuv is a firm pad made from recycled new carpet fiber and has one “grippy” side and one “slippy” side. When placed over installed carpet, the slippy side allows the pile of wall-to-wall carpet to move without moving the rug and pad while the grippy side holds the rug in place. It is washable and comes with a ten-year warranty.

We’ve found that some wall-to-wall carpet will have such a deep nap or strong nap direction that an area rug can’t be used, no matter what kind of attempts are made to keep the rug in place. Still, Nomuv is the best product we’ve found for rug over carpet.

 

Wunder Lock is a unique product. A thin white felt is coated with a dry adhesive that won’t transfer to carpet. It works exceptionally well to hold small rugs in place and in some cases can be used under larger rugs. It can be placed and moved several times without losing tack.

Some customers have used Wunder Lock on hard-surface floors if they have a rug that seems particularly difficult to keep in place. Our testing has shown that after many years in one place the adhesive will transfer to a hard surface. It doesn’t damage the floor, but will require some effort to remove.

We can custom cut a new pad to fit your rug, and (within our service area) can deliver and place the new pad as well. Let us know if you have any questions or to place an order. 206.782.2268

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▪ Opening Day of Boating Season

▪ What’s Special About Outdoor Fabrics

▪ What Does UV Stabilized Mean?

 

Opening Day of Boating Season

The spring rain may keep some of us in hibernation, but it’s time to feel optimistic about better weather just around the corner. With the annual opening day of boating season on the first Saturday in May, we often have a rush of last-minute service requests from boaters who are spiffing up everything from ski boat tops to yacht interiors.

It might be time for you to put the “show” back in your floating showpiece. Here are three ways we can help:

 

1. Cleaning of Outdoor Marine Fabric.

We can clean boat tops and all manner of marine deck fabric … from sail covers and rain dodgers to your window and tender covers. All exterior fabric cleaning is protected with a stain-repellant treatment to keep your boat looking its best, longer.

 

2. Cleaning Marine Interiors.

We have extensive experience cleaning and protecting marine interiors – carpet, upholstery and headliners – and are mindful to protect adjacent finishes.

 

3. Edge Treatments for Weather-Resistant Carpet.

For carpet exposed to the elements, we can apply Sunbrella™ brand acrylic edge-binding with a variety of finished widths.

Beat the Opening Day rush and call or come in today!

 

Outdoor Furniture and Area Rugs

For those of you that enjoy the outdoors on land, we can also clean outdoor furniture cushions on-location or in our shop, and clean patio umbrellas and larger outdoor fabrics at our shop. We can add a weather-resistant edge binding to carpet that can put the finishing touches on your outdoor living space. Come in and see our unbeatable color and style selections at either our Seattle of Bellevue locations.

Call us — 206.782.2268 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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What’s Special About Outdoor Fabrics?

Today, most outdoor fabric is made of a synthetic material designed to be resistant to sun fading. Closed-cell foams are used for cushion interiors so a little rain won’t hurt. They’re tough enough to stand up to both the weather and the more aggressive use that comes with being used outdoors.

Still, the effects of sun, contaminants in the air, “friendly droppings” and even moss and fungi can significantly shorten the life of these materials. As tough as they are, using inappropriate cleaning procedures can result in fabric shrinkage. (Unfortunately, a fact not known by many carpet and upholstery cleaners.) The use of the correct fabric protectant is also critical, as the wrong choice can do more harm than good and may void the fabric’s warranty.

At D. A. Burns, we work directly with leading carpet and fabric manufacturers, so our technicians are always up-to-date with the best practices and procedures needed to care for your furnishings.

 

FAQ: What Does UV Stabilized Mean?

Almost everything is affected by exposure to light, with the ultraviolet (UV) spectrum being the primary culprit of color fading, weakening of cotton and the oxidizing of synthetic fabric plasticizers. For outdoor use, synthetic fabrics have a component built-in to protect against the effects of UV exposure, making them superior to the cotton that was once used for boat tops and patio awnings. Nothing lasts forever, but synthetic fabrics that are “UV stabilized” will last longer when put to exterior use.

That’s why we use “UV stabilized” thread whenever we apply a Sunbrella™ binding to a carpet. Contrary to common industry practice, D. A. Burns stands behind our work – and materials. Longevity of your carpet investment is important to us … and, we want to clean the carpets we fabricate so they provide you enjoyment for many seasons.

Links:
D. A. Burns & Sons
Opening Day of Boating Season
Windermere Cup
Sunbrella stain removal chart

 

 

 

 

Good Citizens

 

At D. A. Burns we’re proud of our commitment to being good citizens of our community. As a company, we do more for our combination of communities than any other local firm in our industry. We go to a little extra effort and expense to provide the most favorable outcome from our services, as you can see from the list below…

 

For health

Carpet and soft furniture coverings are actually very beneficial. Soft furnishings don’t create dust; they keep it away from your lungs. Our number one concern is that our cleaning creates a more healthful indoor environment. We’re removing soil, to containment outside your living space, using a process that leaves the least residue possible. While we have the ability to use any cleaning method (and each has their place) most often we’d prefer to use hot water extraction. Although this requires the most expensive equipment and highest level of skill, it also removes the most soil while leaving the least residue behind. We use cleaning products chosen for the safety of our technicians and customers, and specify that no dyes, odors, bleaches or brighteners be added. We’re providing clean, with no cover-ups.

 

Cleaning green

D. A. Burns has been “cleaning green” long before the term came into popular use. We were the first company to work with a locally-made product called Safe Clean, and it is our primary choice of cleaning products. We dispose of the water we extract from cleaning properly, and have been a leader in working with State and local agencies to help get other businesses to do the same. It would be easier for us to buy a “green certification” from one of the many organizations now in business to sell those certificates, but we’d rather do the work and not be guilty of “greenwashing” our customers.

 

Commitment to ongoing training

We hold regular training sessions at our location and via the internet. We’ll also send our people to seminars anywhere in the country if needed to make certain we’re not working with outdated information. Our people were instrumental in the writing of many industry guides and training programs, so we give back to the industry as well.

Our technicians hold multiple industry certifications from recognized training organizations and we are one of the few companies designated “Wool Specialists” by Wools of New Zealand (the best wool for carpet).

 

We buy from local companies whenever possible

 In addition to reducing shipping waste and keeping money moving in the local economy, we get the advantage of being able to partner with local people we come to know and trust. In some cases we get to try new products and give feedback to the manufacturers, and we’re able to have products made for us so we have the absolute best product for a given circumstance. Our truck mounted cleaning machines are built in Mukilteo. Our cleaning tools and carpet dryers are made in Bothell and Mt. Vernon. The largest percentage of our cleaning products are made in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle and in Lynnwood. Our Spot-off carpet spot remover was developed by Dave Burns. (One of the sons of D. A. Burns and Sons)

 

We go to a little extra effort to reduce waste in other ways

Equipment is monitored to reduce running time. We’ve installed timers and other automatic controls on electrical equipment, and motor vehicles are not left idling. We route our vehicles to minimize driving time, which allows us to reduce fuel use. Our delivery routes are even planned to take right turns instead of left turns to reduce the amount of idling needed when waiting for traffic to clear before crossing thoroughfares. Besides being better for the environment, the fuel cost savings will allow us to continue to provide pick-up and delivery service without charging an extra fee.

 

All of this is just a part of providing service you can trust at a reasonable price.

Expert Craftsmanship Like No Other

Posted by on Dec 12, 2011 in Video | 0 comments

Expert Craftsmanship Like No Other

Video – From our locations in Seattle and Bellevue we are able to provide state of the art cleaning services that no other company in the area can match. From large commercial projects to an individual heirloom carpet or furniture piece, our employees are the most experienced in the Puget Sound area. If you care about the quality of work as well as the experience of those that will be working for you, D.A. Burns is the best solution for you. Call us to schedule a visit at 206-782-2268

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Quality In-Home Services

Posted by on Dec 12, 2011 in Video | 2 comments

Quality In-Home Services

Video – Whether you want us to come to your home or prefer to have us pick up your important items and clean them in our state of the art facilities, you will be treated like royalty. Serving our customers since 1935, D.A. Burns employees, services and results are the best in the industry. This brief video highlights a few of the many services available for you to select from.  We welcome comments from you about your experience.

 

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Good Citizens

Posted by on Dec 12, 2011 in Blog | 0 comments

Good Citizens

At D. A. Burns we’re proud of our commitment to being good citizens of our community. As a company, we do more for our combination of communities than any other local firm in our industry. We go to a little extra effort and expense to provide the most favorable outcome from our services, as you can see from the list below…

For health

Carpet and soft furniture coverings are actually very beneficial. Soft furnishings don’t create dust; they keep it away from your lungs. Our number one concern is that our cleaning creates a more healthful indoor environment. We’re removing soil, to containment outside your living space, using a process that leaves the least residue possible. While we have the ability to use any cleaning method (and each has their place) most often we’d prefer to use hot water extraction. Although this requires the most expensive equipment and highest level of skill, it also removes the most soil while leaving the least residue behind. We use cleaning products chosen for the safety of our technicians and customers, and specify that no dyes, odors, bleaches or brighteners be added. We’re providing clean, with no cover-ups.

Cleaning green

D. A. Burns has been “cleaning green” since long before the term came into use. We were the first company to work with a new locally-made product called Safe Clean, and once perfected it became our primary choice of cleaning products. We dispose of the water we extract from cleaning properly, and have been a leader in working with State and local agencies to help get other businesses to do the same. It would be easier for us to buy a “green certification” from one of the many organizations now in business to sell those certificates, but we’d rather do the work and not be guilty of “greenwashing” our customers.

Commitment to ongoing training

We hold regular training sessions at our location and via the internet. We’ll also send our people to seminars anywhere in the country if needed to make certain we’re not working with outdated information. Our people were instrumental in the writing of many industry guides and training programs, so we give back to the industry as well.

Our technicians hold multiple industry certifications from recognized training organizations and we are one of the few companies designated “Wool Specialists” by Wools of New Zealand (the best wool for carpet).

We buy from local companies whenever possible

In addition to reducing shipping waste and keeping money moving in the local economy, we get the advantage of being able to partner with local people we come to know and trust. In some cases we get to try new products and give feedback to the manufacturers, and we’re able to have products made for us so we have the absolute best product for a given circumstance. Our truck mounted cleaning machines are built in Mukilteo. Our cleaning tools and carpet dryers are made in Bothell and Mt. Vernon. The largest percentage of our cleaning products are made in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle and in Lynnwood. Our Spot-off carpet spot remover was developed by Dave Burns. (One of the sons of D. A. Burns and Sons)

We support local groups with charitable donations

Sometimes our charitable gift budget has more impact locally, or maybe it just seems that way.

We dispose of waste products properly and recycle

We’ve built waste water disposal stations at our Bellevue and Seattle locations to utilize the sanitary treatment system. We reduce waste by returning shipping materials to our local suppliers. We separate recyclables to recover paper and cardboard, plastic containers and plastic film, glass and metals. We’re working with a new local recycling company to recycle carpet remnants from our custom rug making facility. Even as we’ve grown, our recycling program reduced the amount of waste sent to landfills by 50%, and we’ve reduced that by another 25% just this year.

We go to a little extra effort to reduce waste in other ways

Equipment is monitored to reduce running time. We’ve installed timers and other automatic controls on electrical equipment, and motor vehicles are not left idling. We route our vehicles to minimize driving time, which allows us to reduce fuel use. Our delivery routes are even planned to take right turns instead of left turns to reduce the amount of idling needed when waiting for traffic to clear before crossing thoroughfares. Besides being better for the environment, the fuel cost savings will allow us to continue to provide pick-up and delivery service without charging an extra fee.

We go to a lot of extra effort to ensure we continue to be a leader in
the industry.

D. A. Burns is recognized as having the knowledge and diverse background to act as an unbiased resource for others. We were a leader in working with a multi-agency task force to write new regulations for carpet cleaning waste water handling, and were the only cleaning company to assist with writing the State of Washington’s Sustainable (green) Cleaning Program for public buildings. Our cleaning plant draws industry visitors from around the world that are eager to see our clean, efficient operation.

To learn what we’re going to be cleaning in the future, we’re members of two designer’s organizations and a carpet manufacturer’s association. (We’re always happy to assist with questions regarding the cleanability of a particular textile, as the most impressive looking item may also require the most care to maintain.)

D. A. Burns was a founding member of the Carpet Cleaners Institute of the Northwest (CCINW) in which we freely share best practices with other firms in the northwest US and western Canada. We are also a founding member of the Association of Rug Cleaning Specialists (ARCS) an international association of professional rug cleaning companies that likewise share their knowledge. Members of the D. A. Burns team have served as Directors on the Boards of regional and national organizations, and have had more than one Presidency in that mix.

All of this is just a part of providing service you cantrust at a reasonable price.

Welcome

Posted by on Dec 12, 2011 in Blog | 0 comments

Welcome

Welcome to the D. A. Burns & Sons website and blog. The intent of this blog is to provide more lengthy explanations and other information than we could on our website and allow our customers a way to have a thorough answer to questions about anything in our knowledge base.

We would also like to allow you to get to know our people. Although we invest in the best products and provide the best methodologies, we know that people are the most important component of the services we offer.
Please feel free to let us know your thoughts.