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Clean as a Whistle: A Truck Mount Carpet Cleaner Buying Guide

Carpet cleaning is big business in America. The industry as a whole generates billions of dollars domestically every single year.

If you’re thinking about getting into carpet cleaning, given the up economy and the number of people that have expendable income, there’s no better time to get started! Unfortunately, as with any business, there are barriers to entry when it comes to getting started cleaning carpets. Namely, you’ll have to buy a high quality, truck mount carpet cleaner.

Truck mount carpet cleaners come in so many varieties that even the most experienced cleaning professionals have trouble figuring out which cleaners represent a good deal and which don’t.

To help make your carpet cleaner search easier, our team outlines factors to keep an eye on so you can walk away with the perfect tool to power your business.

1. Decide on Your Cleaner’s Class

The first truck mount carpet cleaner consideration that buyers will want to think on is the class of cleaner they’d like. There are two primary cleaner classes: Slide in and Direct Drives.

Slide in Truck Mounted Cleaners

Slide in mounted carpet cleaners are a favorite solution amongst cleaning beginners. They’re great because they feature their own internal engines which power all of their functions. Given that slide in cleaners are 100% self-sufficient, the car that you use to transport them doesn’t need to have any specific features beyond cargo space.

Direct Drive Truck Mounted Cleaners

When you talk to career carpet cleaning professionals, they’re going to tell you that if you can afford it, you should pick up a direct-drive cleaning system.

Direct drive cleaners do not have an internal engine. They rely on your van’s engine to power them. The advantage of this is that you’ll enjoy outstanding, reliable cleaning performance. Maintenance will also be nominal since direct drives don’t have engines that can break down.

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The downside to direct drives is that you’ll need a good van to power them and will be putting wear and tear on your vehicle whenever you’re running your carpet cleaner.

2. Portability

After you’ve decided which class of truck mount carpet cleaner is right for you, the next consideration that you’ll want to mull over is the size.

In general, direct-drive cleaners are going to be smaller than slide-ins. The bigger the cleaner that you purchase in a particular class, the more water pressure and vacuum power that you’re likely to enjoy.

Talk to your truck mount carpet cleaner salesperson to understand the benefits and drawbacks that their bigger cleaners. That way, you can determine whether or not size really matters to your business.

3. Temperature Control

Consistent temperatures are essential when it comes to properly cleaning a carpet.

First off, hot water helps kill bacteria that has built up in your client’s carpet fibers. If your cleaner can’t provide a steady flow of hot water, you’ll be providing a half-hearted service that isn’t likely to earn you repeat business. Furthermore, water temperature changes that occur mid-clean can cause streaks in your client’s carpet.

The best way to deduce the consistency of a machine’s temperature output is to talk to business owners that have experience using the unit you’re considering. While machines do have temperature gauges, many of them are inaccurate since they are located near a cleaner’s warm “exchanger” which can artificially boost readings.

4. Vacuum Power

You’re not going to get far in the cleaning business if your truck mount system can’t suction well. To make understanding how well a carpet cleaner suctions easy to consumers, manufacturers have started using “CFM ratings” that communicate suction velocity.

In general, the higher a machine’s CFM figure, the better it’s going to do its job and the more expensive the machine will be.

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Professional grade truck mount systems usually fall in the 270 to 700 CFM range.

5. Warranty

Never buy a truck mount carpet cleaner that doesn’t feature a good warranty. Truck mount systems are expensive and slide-in units are particularly prone to malfunction.

You don’t want to drop thousands of dollars on a cleaner, have it break in 6 months and be without recourse.

6. Brand Quality of Service

A lot of carpet cleaning business owners have gotten into the habit of buying carpet cleaners at discount prices from foreign markets. We’re not advocates of that strategy because the savings that you’ll enjoy will almost certainly be short-lived.

Lower-cost units feature lower quality parts which makes them prone to malfunction. When you need help getting your machine back in action, you’ll be glad that you shopped domestically with a helpful manufacturer that’s going to step you through plausible solutions.

7. Price

We’ve reserved price as our last truck mount carpet cleaner consideration because frankly, you should focus on how a cleaner’s features stack up to your needs instead of shopping for a price-point.

If money is a big factor for you, fortunately, these truck mounts and others offer in-house financing that can make a $10,000 cleaner cost just a few hundred dollars per month.

With financing making your purchase options more flexible, we highly suggest that you don’t compromise when it comes to the quality of cleaner that you buy.

Use Our Guide to Buy Your Truck Mount Carpet Cleaner With Confidence

Now that you know everything that makes or breaks a truck mount carpet cleaner, we hope that you can shop for your unit with confidence!

If you need more mounted cleaner advice or need information on vans that you can mount your cleaner to, check out related content right here in our blog today!