The low down on ZEROREZ® and their Empowered Water™

ZEROREZ® , a company that has grown very fast, most likely due to their advertising campaigns describing their seemingly magical Empowered Water™, claims that they clean with patented Empowered Water, a non-toxic sanitizer that leaves zero residue behind. The company states that other carpet cleaners use soaps and shampoos that leave a residue in the carpet and they don’t. Is this true? I will provide you with the facts, to the best of my knowledge, and you can decide for yourself.

ZEROREZ® uses a product called “Primacide B fluid”. This product is either made by EAU and shipped to ZEROREZ® or ZEROREZ® has purchased the generators necessary to manufacture this fluid. EAU Technologies (the creator of empowered water™) describes this fluid as “the active ingredient in Primacide B is sodium hydroxide”* and that it “leaves no film residue associated with chemical detergents”*. Sodium hydroxide, also known as Lye is found in many drain cleaners and oven cleaners, it is highly corrosive (in high concentrations) and will eventually turn into sodium carbonate when exposed to carbon dioxide in the air.
*These statement can be found on the EAU website. http://eau-x.com/eau_technology/page5.html

What we know so far:
  1. ZEROREZ® uses a fluid that contains a man-made chemical that is corrosive at high concentrations and is also used in drain cleaners and oven cleaners.
  2. ZEROREZ® claims to leave zero residues behind when EAU claims that “Primacide B Fluid” leaves “no FILM RESIDUE associated with CHEMICAL DETERGENTS“.
Now let’s research the competition. Hot water extraction with detergent is the most common process for carpet cleaning. Because of this, I am going to use this method as the comparison. We will call the competition “Company B”. Hot water extraction is used by both Company B and ZEROREZ®. Major carpet manufacturer’s recommend this method for cleaning carpets.
Now let’s focus on the differences. It seems that ZEROREZ® uses sodium hydroxide infused water to clean carpets and Company B uses a plant-based pre-conditioner that contains surfactants, also known as a surface acting agents along with PH builders much like sodium hydroxide. Surfactants are what EAU claims leave’s a “film residue”. Surfactants are a very important part of the cleaning process. Surfactants break the surface tension of water allowing the water based pre-conditioner to penetrate deeper into the carpet yarn, allowing for a deeper clean. Surfactants also work to break down and emulsify oils as stated by http://www.scienceinthebox.com/en_UK/glossary/surfactants_en.html#one “Each surfactant molecule has a hydrophilic (water-loving) head that is attracted to water molecules AND a hydrophobic (water-hating) tail that repels water and simultaneously attaches itself to oil and grease in dirt. These opposing forces loosen the dirt and suspend it in the water”. With this being said, it seems that cleaning with a product without a surfactant would be less effective that cleaning with a product with a surfactant.

What else we have learned:

  1. ZEROREZ® still claims to be residue free.
  2. Surfactants seem to be a very important part of the cleaning process.
  3. It seems ZEROREZ® uses chemically infused water without surfactants.
  4. Company B and ZEROREZ® both use hot water extraction, the method recommended by most carpet manufacturers.

Let’s dig deeper. We now can assume that ZEROREZ® uses chemically infused water. Knowing this, how can they claim to be residue free? It is well-known among the carpet cleaning industry that when you apply a solution to the carpet, you can’t fully extract 100% of what you put down. Both ZEROREZ® and Company B are applying solutions containing either man-made or natural chemicals to the carpet and both use Hot water extraction to remove said solutions. The difference is ZEROREZ® seems to be leaving a man-made chemical residue that eventually turns to sodium carbonate (or sodium chloride, depending on whether hydrochloric acid is used to neutralize the sodium hydroxide) and Company B is leaving a similar but naturally sourced residue along with a surfactant residue in the carpet. The question is – Which is worse? Or maybe the question should be – Who is more experienced, and who works harder to rinse out as much residue as possible? Both of these methods offer VERY low residue cleaning when properly done.

Hot water extraction has gotten a bad rap over the years because of the many inexperienced and unscrupulous cleaners out there that are more concerned about making a buck than providing a quality service for their customers. In my opinion, hot water extraction, when done by an experienced and honest company is still the best method out there whether done by ZEROREZ® or by small, Ma’ and Pa’ shop down the block.

This site is designed to enlighten readers about the chemistry behind Zero Rez. Comments and discussions are welcome and encouraged (especially by knowledgable individuals) on the discussion of the chemistry behind Zero Rez provided they are free of profanity, misleading information, derogatory statements or advertisements within comments. All other comments will be: deleted, spammed, or edited. Thanks for visiting!

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125 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by manther on March 5, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Nice article. It seems you hit the nail on the head. I hope alot of people read this!

    Reply

    • Posted by Cathy Pelino on May 1, 2014 at 4:20 pm

      This seems very strange to me. If it’s so harmful, then how does the Zerorez guy on the Morning Blend show drink it in front of people? It seems that something so extremely harmful as you are making it out to be, could not be drank?????????

      Reply

      • Posted by The concept on May 1, 2014 at 4:54 pm

        Are you sure that’s ZeroreZ and not Dirtfree . Because Dirtfree does the exact samething . I have actually drank the ZeroreZ water didn’t taste very good . For example we drink coke and coke is used sometimes to clean off batterie acid off of car batteries and we still drink it . Zerorezs water eats though metal and if the owner wants to destroy his teeth and intestines then let him. Its not good to drink ZeroreZ water , DONT BELIEVE THE HYPE !

        Reply

        • The b water or alkaline water is not harmful and is drunk in many countries to help with stomach issues. They have home generators and its called back to origins if you want to look it up.

          Reply

          • Sodium hydroxide, the active ingredient in premicide A, is basic in nature and in very low concentrations makes a great antacid. Sodium carbonate is much safer option.

            Reply

  2. Posted by Nathan on August 18, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    Very well researched from an outside view. Have you ever used and seen this “Empowered Water”? or are you taking information from statements made from websites? I would like to see what you think of the Empowered Water after using it. I can make a lot of assumptions about companies that are my competition that are affecting my business by finding tid bits of information online and then publishing hypotheticals. I don’t doubt you, just saying have you used the project yourself as the carpet guru?

    Reply

    • Hi Nathan. The chemistry behind empowered water doesn’t lie. The process the company uses is most likely the same process that chemical companies have used to make sodium hydroxide for years (Chloralkali process). It is a known fact that sodium hydroxide does not break down on it’s own. Hydrochloric acid is needed to break it down into water and sodium chloride. I have used weak solutions of sodium hydroxide many times in the past. Your claim that I am finding tid bits of information online and publishing hypotheticals is false. I went straight to the source to find my information. EAU Technologies (the company zero rez buys generators from) clearly states on their website that premicide B, the solution that zero rez uses, has sodium hydroxide as the active ingredient. What else can I say?

      Reply

      • Posted by Deb on August 24, 2013 at 7:03 pm

        Well, do they explain that perhaps the sodium Hydroxide is what causes your carpet to turn brown or rust colored when water comes in contact with it – post their clearning efforts ??

        We just had ZeroRes clean our carpets recently. I will share that the serviceman who came was professional and hard working. I was very impressed with that. He did not do a “rush job”. I was impressed with his service, as well as how “fresh”, bright and clean our carpets looked (we only had two rooms down – both with off-white carpeting) after he was done.

        A few days later, however, our very small 7-lb dog had a super tiny “spit up” accident on the rug (not that anyone wishes to have a visual of this, but its important to know that the “spit up” was just clear and foamy and was about as big as a quarter. ) It basically just sat atop of the carpet hairs and was easy enough to “life” off with a scott towel. Still, because we wanted to ensure we lifted any bit of it, as we would in the past, and knowing not to use any soap, we pour just plain clear tap water on that tiny (about 1 inch big) spot, as well as around a bit larger of a circumference. We took a clean, cotton, white hand towel and then firmly pressed to absorb the water. It looked fine – just wet – for quite a while…until it started to dry.

        At that point, the entire area that we had wet with the plain water was a tea-color stain! My husband then saw it before I could explain what happened, and and thinking maybe someone spilled something, he then repeated the water process….he poured just plain, clear tap water on the now on the tea-colored stain area, then also beyond that circumference. He patted it down to absorb the water. It looked fine. Then, when THAT dried, the same thing happened! It left an even LARGER tea-colored stain!

        Basically, whereever the plain water was put onto the carpet, there were tea/rust-colored stains appearing! This has NEVER happened to us in the past. IN the past, this is ALWAYS how we blotted up any spills of any kind and it always worked beautifully – no after staining or evidence of any issue. So, I called ZeroRes and told them what happened and asked if the “Plain high-level PH water” they use could possible create a chemical reaction to our carpet, but they swore NOT and told me that after they clean, the carpet is neutralized as the air hits it anyway. I can assure you that this is NOT the case….I made an appt for them to come and clearn up the spot (of course for a charge), but we can’t live with the carpet if this is going to continue to happen. I will talk to ZeroRes more about this and they will have to take responsibility if this also happens in the other room that they cleaned!
        I will update this Blog with our results, but for now, BUYER BEWARE!!!!!

        Reply

        • Your browning condition is most likely caused by a ph imbalance in combination with a couple of other things. It’s important to bring the carpets ph back to slightly acidic after a carpet cleaning. This is accomplished by using an acid rinsing method or by applying an acidic post spray after cleaning. The pre-spray and the rinsing agent Zero Rez use result in a alkaline ph, leaving your carpets on the wrong side of the ph scale. I used to work for Stanley Steemer many years ago and they had very similar issues that were attributed to the end ph of the carpets. Carpets that have natural fibers such as wool or cotton, or natural backing such as jute are susceptible to a condition called “cellulosic browning”. Three factors must be present for cellulosic browning to occur: 1) A cellulosic fiber must be present; 2) It must be overwet; 3) It must dry slowly. If the moisture that is present is alkaline in nature, then the resulting discolorations will be more severe. It sounds like you have met the conditions stated. Your carpet probably has a cellulosic fiber (jute, cotton), you over wet it with water, and it must have dried slowly. The ph imbalance which zero Rez created has exacerbated the condition. My guess is that when you used this procedure of cleaning spots in the past, you never experienced cellulosic browning because the carpet was in the “safe” ph zone of 6-7. You may be able to remedy this situation by using a professional carpet cleaner that uses an acid rinsing method on a regular basis (every 6-12 months). Try not to pour water on your carpet from now on though :) a spray bottle and repeat applications will work much better. Place a fan pointing on the wet spot afterwards.

          Reply

        • Posted by Toby on February 27, 2014 at 12:11 pm

          Your brown out as they call it has nothing to do with Zerorez. I has everything to do with the fact that the carpet was to wet for to long. This mans article does not give you all the facts. I’m sure EAU gave him a lot of falsified information to try and damage Zerorez’s reputation. Fact-Zerorez has cut ties with EAU because of there poor customer service, and lack of communication. Zerorez was making them a lot of money until the Franchise decided to go with another company to provide the B generator. This man fails to tell you that this water was originally produced for human consumption by the Japanese. So his corrosive and man made chemical take is just crap. The machine made by the Japanese is called Kangen Water (so yes you can drink the water). Another thing he failed to mention is the fact that the water is a surfactant; the molecular change that occurs actually lowers the surface tension of the water because it now lacks the Hydrogen bond molecule the H in H2O. He also doesn’t mention the fact that the PH level of the water 11.8 Which is very high which also gives it the ability to break down oils, lipid, and organic material. Here is the kicker the water has to be electrical charged for any of this to happen and because of the charge is why it is so effective, because when the water hits your carpet it breaks down the soil, dirt etc, and then it begins to neutralize it self to a lower PH because it loses its charge. There is know residue left behind I would love to give the results from the carpet and fug institute of america, but I can’t because its illegal. Every carpet cleaner gets rated from scientific test that the carpet and rug institute perform. The rating are bronze, gold and platinum but what I cant disclose is the level of platinum rating that Zerorez receives. What I can tell you is that it is far above any other cleaner that participates in this testing. So ever this persuasive artiest is above don’t listen to him his scare takcted garbage.

          Reply

          • Brown out IS exacerbated by an alkaline cleaning solution – http://www.icsmag.com/articles/cellulosic-browning-causes-solutions

            EAU and I have never spoke. You are paranoid

            Kangen water is one of the biggest scams on the internet – http://www.chem1.com/CQ/ionbunk.html

            Sodium hydroxide when mixed with a petrochemicals or oleochemicals becomes a surfactant. Sodium hydroxide alone is not a surfactant. Surfactants are what zero Rez claim are the reason detergents are bad for your carpets. You are saying that the water zero Rez uses contain the one thing that zero Rez claims they don’t use? I hope you are not speaking on behalf of zero Rez…

            How do pH of 11.8 and corrosive not go hand in hand?

            And yes sodium hydroxide is a great saponifier, an excellent product for breaking down oils and creating soap.

            Please show me proof that zero Rez water is self neutralizing. I would love to see your explanation.

            Ratings by the carpet and rug institute are bought. You have to pay thousands of dollars for the testing. Do you think the carpet and rug institute is going to turn down a cleaning system from a customer with that large amount of money invested? The fact that sodium hydroxide (a man made chemical) rinse water is combining with oils in the carpet to form soap is of huge huge concern to me, hopefully it is of great concern to the carpet and rug institute. My hunch is that zero Rez has the high rating most likely due to the quality of cleaning equipment used, which I give them credit for. In my opinion, and I’m sure many professionals agree, pre-conditioners should contain the alkaline components and the rinse water should contain chelating and neutralizing agents to reduce the amount of soap residues.

            I am not scaring people into thinking that zero Rez is bad. I have offered, to the best of my knowledge, scientific evidence that 1 system is no better than the other provided they are done by highly skilled technicians with high quality equipment.

            Reply

      • if that was the case the system I have in my home would be dangerous correct? That fact is we do not use anything harsher then salt water.

        Reply

        • You are incorrect! Salt water is used in combination with an electrical charge from an electrode to convert salt water into sodium hydroxide. You should definitely question your sources. Just google “premicide A” and you should get enough info.. Zero did not create this process.

          Reply

          • How am I incorrect. If we were producing the level need to be as harsh as you claim it would be dangerous to have in ones home. The issue I have with your information is that you are basing this on practices that are not used by zerorez. Yes can you up the voltage and increase the parts per million and the amount of Sodium hydroxide. But Zerorez does not use high level voltage. In the water making process. At our current levels our water is no more dangerous then salt water found in the ocean.

            Reply

            • Posted by T & J on July 14, 2014 at 11:48 pm

              Amen to that!

              Reply

            • Posted by Jason on September 19, 2014 at 8:45 am

              I don’t think the contention being made by the article’s author is that the cleaning solution is harmful in itself. It’s that the solution is not special, and that the company’s claims about not using harsh chemicals are bogus.

              A lot of acidic or basic substances can be diluted in water to where they’re not dangerous. Sodium Hydroxide is no exception.

              Reply

  3. I often try out to find the best way cleaning my carpets.
    I discovered out that steam cleansing is among the most effective cleansing approaches for that most carpets.

    Reply

  4. Posted by Ivan Aufulitch on February 5, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    Thank you. If I remember correctly, Zero Rez’ intitial advertizing claimed no residue, without claiming that their water was “empowered”. I figured they added that descriptor because of complaints that their ads strongly implied that the water used was untainted. You have confirmed my suspicion. Sodium hydroxide when combined with animal fat/oils makes soap, doesn’t it? If less than %100 of the solution used on the carpet is removed then it seems that, in the end, some soap would be left behind.

    Reply

  5. I’ve always found the radio-announcer-testimonial ads of ZEROREZ to be annoying, and the whole “empowered water” line always sounds like snake oil. It’s so obviously oriented toward confusing listeners (or encouraging them to hear what they want to hear instead of dealing with facts) that it triggers my “nonsense detector” every time. I finally remembered to search online for more details, and that’s how I found this page. Very interesting, thanks for providing some insight into the actual process that is murkily presented to the public with their woo-woo marketing style.

    Reply

  6. Posted by court on March 17, 2012 at 3:32 am

    I own a small carpet cleaning company out of Atlanta and my customers ask me about zerorez all the time. I’m not knocking their company but me and a buddy of mines called them to clean his sisters carpets which were very heavily soiled and the water the used to clean with did not do a good job at all plus I ask the guy what he was pre-spraying with a he told me the same water they clean with, WOW! I love this article and will share this with other carpet cleaners so they know zerorez is not a big deal, they just dish out alot of money for advertising.

    Reply

    • Posted by Maggie on July 13, 2012 at 5:09 pm

      If it does not work then why have they become so big in Atlanta area? I work near their office and they have doubled in size each year for like three years now!

      Reply

      • Well any company that has the advertising budget to be on every radio station should grow. I mean they are shoved down your throat every day. So of course people will think it is something special. Lets be honest people in general are gullible.

        Reply

      • Posted by Doug Haerle on October 30, 2013 at 4:02 am

        Zerorez is required to spend up to 10k monthly on local advertising according to their franchise agreement.

        Reply

  7. To my understanding, this is the “pre-sray” Zerorez uses called “ChemFree”.

    http://interlinksupply.com/msds/msds_d085b_chemfree.pdf

    The main ingredients are Sodium Carbonate Peroxyhydrate and DeLimonene. Or, maybe this is what they are putting in their empowered water?

    Reply

  8. Primacide B Empowered Water

    Primacide B is an extremely effective saponifier and cleaning fluid with some anti-microbial properties. Zerorez Franchises, an affiliated carpet cleaner organization, uses EAU’s Empowered Water™ generators to create Primacide B for its highly effective cleaning capabilities. Primacide B is used as a replacement for phosphate based surfactants and cleaners. The solution is as effective as the toxic chemical cleaners commonly used in the industry, yet it leaves no film residue associated with chemical detergents. The active ingredient in Primacide B is Sodium Hydroxide, which is Generally Regarded As Safe (GRAS) by the FDA. EAU has the ability to create various levels of efficacy depending on the customers needs.

    Through the electrolysis process Sodium Hydroxide (NaOH) is created when the salt solution comes in contact with specially coated electrodes. The Na from the salt migrates to the negative side of the chamber. Those Na ions combine with water molecules split during the electrolysis process to create NaOH. NaOH is scientifically and commercially recognized as a very effective cleaning agent.

    Reply

    • Thank you for your feedback! Sodium hydroxide is the active ingredient in “old fashioned” bar soap and is a very effective saponifier. My research has lead me to believe that the only way that Premicide B can saponify is if it comes into contact with residual oils in carpets and textile fabrics. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the most common oils found in carpets are oils from skin (from walking barefoot) and oils from animals hair. When these oils come into contact with sodium hydroxide, they form a very crude form of bar soap. Bar soap, when combined with water, is known for leaving soap scum in showers that is very hard to clean. Detergents, on the other hand, do not have this undesirable reaction. I would imagine that soaps and detergents have similar effects on carpets and textile fabrics.

      Detergents were invented in the early 1930’s and scientists have continually improved them through research and development. There are many natural, safe and biodegradable options available today.

      Reply

  9. Posted by wow on August 18, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    Wow…u guys are so smart. Its amazing how a little bit of half information and assunptions have lead you to such a deliriously convaluted conclusion. Good work and keep up that amazing rationalizing boys. You don’t know what you just don’t know.

    Reply

    • Please, give me scientific evidence that supports your side of the story. I see you are the owner of a zero rez email. I’m assuming you work for them? I would love scientific facts to back up your claims. Look forward to hearing from you.

      Reply

      • Posted by Justin Thyme on July 8, 2013 at 10:11 pm

        I thought this might be a non-biased article when you mentioned that you are going to state the facts and let us decide for ourselves. But after reading your article and seeing your responses, I can see that you are certainly biased against Zerorez. Because of that, I have made up my mind on who to call. My next carpet cleaning will be from Zerorez! Thanks!

        Reply

  10. Yes indeed this article brought up a few very valid points and something to really consider. Thanks for the info.

    Reply

  11. Posted by The concept on November 2, 2012 at 2:00 am

    Hey guys I work for zerorez and I also worked for many other carpet cleaners in the past ,I know first hand that the empowered water works. BUT ! It doesn’t clean out everything it doesn’t take out dog oils it also doesn’t break down soap residue. For a moderately dirty home the water is affective like anything else in this industry theirs always someone trying to build a better mouse trap the key to any big company is es marketing the more money you but in to it the more you will get out of it . Now ! I don’t want to get off subject but I know for a fact that empowered water is and can be used as a catalist for enzyme cleaner to break down oils and also fiber rinesing soap residue out of carpet still does the job using empowered water as a rinesing agent it has been successful many times . But I’ve done a better job using formula 90 from chemspec I’ve never had any of my customers complain about recurring spots .

    Reply

    • Thanks for the input! I’m am glad to be finally speaking with an experienced cleaner who works for zerorez whom can filter through some of the “fluff”. I do agree, Empowered Water, containing sodium hydroxide, is an excellent catalyst for enzyme cleaners. Sodium hydroxide is considered a “builder” and is in many detergents today. Many detergents today have a builder like sodium hydroxide, a surfactant, chelating agent, and enzymes to help break down oils from animals fur. It would seem that zerorez is using only sodium hydroxide and skipping the rest of the ingredients and marketing this simple product as a more effective product, and then it sounds like when cleaners like yourself come across a problem with the effectiveness of empowered water, they are encouraged to use words like “catalyst” to convince customers that they know what they are talking about. I do have a question. What do you guys end up using when you come across a house that is heavily soiled by animals oils? I’m assuming an enzyme that leaves a residue?

      Reply

  12. Posted by The concept on November 8, 2012 at 7:05 am

    Well I’m none here at zerorez as the rebel , I do use what I want to use but I know by experience that enzymes help break down animal oils .these guy here trained to only use a fake version of chem free that they have had made for them to cut cost of buying it from the original makers of it. they also use protein cleaners which is a high ph amonia cleaner or traffic lane conditioner , I know that this is not right and a lot these guys try to learn better ways. But there hands are tied just letting you know that not all of the techs at zerorez are in the dark about the right way to clean . My self on the other hand use fiber rinse agent or acid post sprays to knock down reisdue from most pre spray cleaners . I’m always experimenting all the time with new products and procedures .

    Reply

  13. Posted by John on November 30, 2012 at 6:33 am

    I am a professional carpet cleaner and get asked the question, what do you know about Zerorez? My reply not a lot I know they use an extraction process…. So thanks for the information. I have had one customer tell me they would never use them again because after the carpet dried it felt sticky, would that just be a poor technicians work?

    Reply

    • Hi John and thanks for the comment. There could be many reasons why the carpet would be sticky after the carpet dried. If you will read earlier comments on my board, it sounds like zerorez sometimes uses products other than empowered water. This could be the sticky residue they are feeling. Another reason could be that the empowered water came into contact with an oil residue in the carpet which then was saponified (soap was made) and the soap wasn’t fully extracted. In short, yes I would say the main reason would be operator error, not fully extracting residues.

      Reply

  14. Posted by housedad on December 4, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    I’m trying to find a local cleaning business that can compete with zerorez…
    My only complaint about their past results with our home was their scheduling.
    They’ve ALWAYS shown up at the end of their estimated arrival time.
    I got smarter and asked for a first-in-the-morning appointment. The best they offered was an “eight hour window”. That is complete BS.
    There’s nothing worse than a wet carpeted home in the evening, with kids.
    Other companies I’ve tried can provide a morning slot, so why can’t zerorez?
    Their pricing is high because of heavy advertizing. They didn’t get my business again.

    Reply

  15. Posted by barb pumphrey on December 11, 2012 at 9:32 am

    I used zero res for the first time and am highly disappointed. I usually use Stanley Steamer, but thought I’d try the zero res concept. First, they told me I needed the more expensive pre-treat, so the carpets ended costing me more, even with their promos then other cleaners. That wouldnt have been so bad if my carpets looked good afterwards. But they were crunchy and stiff, the few minor stains did not come up, and basically they just looked like crap! Anyone else have a similar experience with the stiff and crunchy texture on carpets? What would have caused this?

    Reply

  16. Posted by Anna on February 6, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    I’d been listening to the Zerorez commercials for about a year and decided to give them a try. This was my experience: Light beige carpet, no pets, three adults and we seldom wear shoes in the house. We had some high-traffic walk areas and the normal wear of the carpet, but that was the selling point of Zerorez. The gentleman came out, and he answered all my questions and asked about my concerns. When he finished, the carpet looked okay, but not great. After the carpet had completely dried, the walk area did not look clean and the overall appearance of the carpet did not impress me; vacuuming gives us the same result. I called the office and arranged to have someone come back out, and they did; however, again, after the carpet dried, it was the same. If you have a steam cleaner, and we do, use it, and save your money.
    My Opinion: Absolutely Not Worth the Money.

    Reply

  17. Posted by Nancy McGillivray on February 26, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Need some help here! My sick dog has been vomiting dark yellow bile all over my light beige carpet and now need a professional carpet cleaner. Have used Stanley Steemer and Dalworth over the years for her pee, etc. but stains eventually come back. What do I do now? Any suggestions? (Dog has died now and need to clean the carpet thoroughly). Appreciate some advice!!!

    Reply

    • Use a carpet cleaner that uses a “water claw” to remove penetrating stains. Their chemicals should contain embrittling copolymers. The product I recommend it ARA by pro’s choice. If stains are bad, you may want to replace the padding in the effected areas before the carpet cleaner comes.

      Reply

  18. I hope you do not mind me visiting and thanking
    you for your post – it helped

    Reply

  19. Posted by Jim on March 22, 2013 at 11:03 am

    Thanks for the article. Explains a ton of the results we had with Zerorez. First, there was a white residue on our walls from the cleaning machine. we can not get it all off and are going to need to repaint 4 walls. second, I understand the challenges of spots and so the day after they left i tried a little elbow grease on them and was amazed how much of the grime came out. So I picked up a bissell carpet cleaner to hit the spots and a lot of dirty water was coming out of the carpet. So I cleaned 3 rooms with the bissell and of the 8 tanks of waste water, they were all black with filth. Total fail on zerorez because that was some nasty residue.

    Reply

  20. Posted by missy barger on March 27, 2013 at 12:52 am

    DONT USE THIS COMPANY…bad. They will quote a price and start cleaning your carpet. Mid way through they will switch techs and the new tech will suddenly play dumb as to the amount he first tech quoted. They will try to charge a lot more SCAMMM !

    Reply

  21. Posted by The concept on March 31, 2013 at 12:50 am

    To the last post not all techs are like that or all company’s but it seems they still rely on bait and switch marketing
    There are some honest carpet cleaning company’s out there just got to keep an eye out for them

    Reply

  22. Posted by mh on April 16, 2013 at 5:17 am

    I work for Zerorez now, i am trainer manager. “B water” as we call it, does infact use sodium hydroxide, but here is the difference, It is made electronically not chemically. We have had many studies done on our water by multiple Universities Including Berkley. If you approach the make up of “B water’ as a chemist, it doesn’t make sense, however if you approach it with a physics point of view it makes sense……or instead of just guessing on what you think you know, you can call any one of the zerorez franchises and they will be more than happy to explain our process!

    Reply

    • I’m sorry but what you said makes absolutely no sense! Sounds like a lot of fluff to confuse the customer. Making sodium hydroxide with electricity is still man made sodium hydroxide. Adding the word electronic just makes it sound cool! Can you direct me to literature pertaining to, and the validity of the University studies done on your water?

      Reply

      • Posted by Aaron on October 30, 2013 at 1:58 am

        I also work for Zerorez and have for many years now but before I managed and cleaned carpets for my apartments and found that there is nothing like what we do at Zerorez and if you doubt our products or are concerned about them i will be happy to drink them in front of you.

        Reply

  23. ***this post edited to remove zero Rez advertisements aka spam. Pertinent info remains***I have worked for Zerorez for 8 years. Some real nonsense has been posted here, including information purported to be from Zerorez techs (such as the “rebel”) whose affiliation with Zerorez is highly doubtful. We pretreat with ChemFree (Sodium Carbonate Peroxyhydrate and DeLimonene) diluted in water. ChemFree has no soap or surfactant, and rinses clean. We do not use any other products for general pretreating, so the comment about bait and switch is not likely. However, we do encounter problems that require additional treatment (rust, vomit, urine, etc.) and we will spot pretreat with the appropriate product to ensure our cleaning process is effective. Those are the exception, so about 95% of pretreating is done with ChemFree and nothing more. Of course we charge extra for these additional treatments, since they are not part of a standard cleaning. We rinse with a hot water extraction process using “B” water. “B” water is a 12 pH alkaline water that is generated by running soft water through a generator that has platinum “cells” and a low voltage current. The result is a cleaning solution that is so pure you can drink it (in small quantities, since the high pH would clean you out like nobodies business!). Fibers rinsed with “B” water completely purges the ChemFree and DOES NOT leave residue because it is simply modified water. Occasionally there will be so much soap left from previous cleaners that it will wick and need a second extraction.

    Reply

    • Posted by Doug Haerle on October 30, 2013 at 3:21 am

      Please show us you can drink it. We really want to believe you. How do you clean 5th generation carpets? I understand that a high PH will void the warranty.

      Reply

      • Posted by Jessen on October 30, 2013 at 3:40 am

        A high PH from a detergent or surfactant to void a warranty, where there isn’t any of that it doesn’t. I’ve drank a ton of that water and I’m just fine. Doesn’t taste very good but has great purposes for the human body!

        Reply

        • Posted by notoleranceforstupidy on August 5, 2014 at 1:31 pm

          Did your doctor tell you that? Or did ZR give you that?
          Your doctor doesn’t have any skin in the game, ….
          Dave, your 8yr ZR veteran just posted it’s not such a good idea in anything buy small quantities.
          There are many people who consume really strange stuff and end up driving our healthcare costs up due to stupidity.
          Have you ever eaten any of the carpet also? It makes as much sense.

          Reply

      • Posted by Jessen on November 5, 2013 at 8:18 pm

        First you need to get a cup, then walk over to the machine and get water from it. Do I need to tell you the rest? It doesn’t taste very good but I have drank tons and tons of it. It actually really good for you!

        Reply

        • It is considered safe to drink sodium hydroxide in a very diluted solution. It’s in toothpaste as well which get swallowed all the time. Further indication that premicide b is in fact sodium hydroxide based. You guys do a trick where you put iodine in water and make it disappear with premicide b, don’t you? A sodium hydroxide solution has the same affect on iodine.

          Reply

          • Posted by Jessen on January 2, 2014 at 5:17 pm

            There are fats in iodone that get emulsified by the “B water” Windex will do the same thing but would you rather drink a bottle of Windex or a bottle of “B water”

            Reply

    • If Chem Free has no surfactant, why is it that the d-limonene in the solution can mix with water? Solvents such as d-limonene will not mix with water without the aid of a surfactant. Chemical manufacturers don’t need to disclose chemical ingredients in their “proprietary” cleaning solutions on the MSDS provided they aren’t considered toxic and more than .999% in concentration. My guess is that Chem Free DOES have a surfactant and Zero Rez chooses not to disclose this. I did some research and found out that Zero Rez is not only a consumer of Chem Free but they also manufacture it.

      Reply

  24. Posted by cher on June 8, 2013 at 3:47 am

    I used zerorez yesterday. It was suppose to be a 99 dollar visit. After the technician came, he showed me with a black light, that we had dog urine everywhere. I spent over 400 dollars. He wanted 800 at first and I told him no way. Carpet looks fine, but now curious if cleaning the entire two story house was really necessary. We have a steamer, but like to have either zerorez or Dalworth come a few times a year between out cleanings.

    Reply

  25. Posted by Francesca Louise on June 9, 2013 at 7:50 am

    Carpetguru10 is right. I’m not a carpet cleaner, but have an extensive college level chemistry background. I have absolutely NO opinion on ZeroRez vs. steam cleaning. I’m just a homeowner with dirty carpets who came across this post while researching my options on the Internet. So I thought I’d take a stab at explaining some basic chemistry to whomever isq interested.

    Sodium hydroxide is a molecule, chemically represented by “NaOH”. That is, it’s chemical makeup is composed of:
    1 sodium (Na +) atom, which naturally carries a positive charge, PLUS
    1 hydrogen (H +) atom, which is also naturally positively charged, PLUS
    1 oxygen (O 2-) atom, which naturally carries 2 negative charges.

    Molecules form and become stable only when the charges between all of the atoms are balanced. Since oxygen (O 2-) has a charge of negative 2, it has to have 2 positively charged atoms (or one atom w/ 2 positive charges) in order to be stable. Atoms (just like most people!) LONG to be in stable relationships! So, whether you use a straight up chemical reaction or apply some electrical current to speed it up a bit, the reaction that creates NaOH from its individual components is fundamentally driven by electricity, as in the movement of positively and negatively charged atoms or molecules in their endless, yet fickle search for a “stable relationship”! :-). And the resulting NaOH is exactly the same as every single other NaOH molecule on the planet. And the “physics” of how those NaOH molecules interact with other molecules on the planet will also be identical. Trying to say anything about the physics of the way a molecule behaves being determined by the way in which it was formed is just crazy. You could easily use an extra hydrogen atom in place of the sodium (Na +) and you would be making H2O, as in WATER! Do you think that the water I your glass would BEHAVE differently, i.e. from a “physics” standpoint depending on whether or not it was formed with the help of an electric current? Of course not.

    Sorry MH, looks like you got hoodwinked by ZeroRez’s own internal marketing. They are counting on the fact that anyone working for ZeroRez is VERY unlikely to have enough understanding of either chemistry or physics to know what’s BS and what’s not. Don’t feel bad though, they have spent a TON of money to hire lots of very intelligent highly educated individuals to come up with something that sounds good enough to scam almost everyone who didn’t specifically study these subjects in college level classes.

    Reply

  26. Ive been Cleaning for 41yrs, this Zero Rez is a joke, I can out clean any 1 of these Zerorez Companys, Just another Snake Oil Sales,Process.These Cleaners should be Kained.

    Reply

  27. Posted by discovery on June 29, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    I worked for Zero-Rez for 2 years,they used tons of Morton Solar Salts,and Rock Salt to process this water,but most of the time the engineered making machines are never running because of the calcium buildup on the plastic and pvc lines…there process and advertising are so misleading….just a shame…I love working for these Mormons

    Reply

  28. Posted by Doug Haerle on September 21, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    So lye or sodium hydroxide is caustic to the skin, bad for the lungs, etc, etc. so then how does zero Res make it okay to put on the carpets? Also sodium hydroxide is an inorganic so how is their product organic?

    Reply

  29. Posted by Karen on October 22, 2013 at 5:30 am

    Appreciate the “low down” was very interesting as my husband has been hearing many advertising on the radio here in FL and highly talking about the “residue free” which of course sounds great to the listener and the mom who is cleaning continuously. So, I began researching almost over an hour and God I believe has led me to The Answers I was looking for through your knowledge and experience in this field. So, I will use another company, the appointment was already set before my husband mention zerorez. Thanks again, have a great day or evening.

    Reply

  30. Posted by Johnson on October 25, 2013 at 12:08 am

    Check out http://www.zerorezcomplaints.com. Evidently Zerorez Omaha pissed off the wrong people.

    Reply

  31. Posted by Jeff Kondra on November 4, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    zerorez uses the same chemical solution that we use in the carpet industry. It is a soap free compund that rinses freely. Being a carpet professional and not a guy who wants to just make a buck, time needs to be taken to rinse the carpet and then do dry strokes to remove excess water. At $125-$150,000 a truck, marketing material and radio ads are needed to justify that cost. Just my opinion… I clean carpet better than anyone in xxxxxx and use the same product that zerorez does…

    Reply

  32. Posted by Dennis on November 5, 2013 at 9:30 pm

    What is the difference between the Zerorez ‘A’ Water and their ‘B’ Water? I have just had an experience with Zerorez and very bad carpet odors. One set of carpets were on slab and smelled *very* sour…. the other set were on wood sub-floors and had a very acrid almost dusty smell. Both *very* strong. The technician was very adamant that their ‘A’ water would get the odors out. It didn’t. For the carpet cleaning specialists here, should the technician have been able to tell that he wouldn’t be able to resolve our odor problem (and thus have recommended against cleaning)? Especially after he pre-sprayed (with ‘A’ water?) and it really activated the odors in the carpet? I have had a property manager and an odor specialist both tell me that in their place they would not have even tried to clean the carpets and that the technician really shouldn’t have tried either.

    Reply

    • A water, known as Primacide A, is a disinfecting water known to kill microorganisms and bacteria that cause odors. Not all odors are caused by microorganisms and bacteria however. An experienced carpet cleaner should be able to properly identify orders and treat with The proper deodorizers. My guess is that he should have been using a bacterial enzyme or zinc salt to properly take care of the odor instead of using A water.

      Reply

      • Posted by Dennis on November 6, 2013 at 4:14 pm

        Thank you sir. As an update, Zerorez Atlanta has made a full refund on the service without a ‘lot’ of pressure. I feel bad about that, but, I do think that their technician should have known if he would be able to handle the problem or not with what chemicals he had and acted accordingly. I am certainly grateful to them for standing up and doing the right thing as I had made it clear to the technician that he should be sure he was going to be able to resolve the problem before he started.

        As for my ‘problem’… are you saying that a bacterial enzyme or zinc salt might be a good way to go before I give up and just replace the carpets? And is that something a DIY’er could get/do?

        Reply

        • It depends upon the smell. Zinc salts are a very effective deodorizer as they pair with offensive odors and change the way the olfactory nerve senses the way the odors smell. Very effective for malodors. Please explain in more detail what the smell resembles. Urine or ammonia odor? Trash like odor? Chemical odor? Does it smell like a locker room?

          Reply

      • Posted by Dennis on November 6, 2013 at 4:41 pm

        Hmmm…. sour is a good word for the carpets on the slab. Almost as if they were left wet too long at some point. There was one stage where there was a faint odor of a dog grooming salon/vet office (slight wet dog kind of smell), but the primary overriding odor is one akin to the sour smell in a pool locker room or bath house (without the rotten wood smell that is sometimes present). The upstairs that is on a wood floor, I can’t describe other than as an acrid almost throat burning smell that has a slight ‘dusty’ component. It is very different from the sour smell downstairs. Both odors are very strong within minutes of getting any water on them and then the odor dissipates, but doesn’t go away, as they dry. The carpet guys say urine on the sour smell, but, I disagree (in ignorance/inexperience I admit). I had an odor specialist that said dog oils on the sour smell. No one has been able to ID the acrid smell upstairs (wooden floors). It might be similar to the smell of wet particle board only much much stronger. I’m sorry I can’t do better….

        Reply

        • Hmmm. I guess I would have to smell it to know what to use but Hydrocide by Bridge Point Systems is a very good product to neutralize unpleasant odors. The trick to its efficacy is to make sure the Hydrocide physically touches the odor causing material. Example…If the smell is coming from the pad underneath the carpet and you don’t saturate the pad, the smell won’t go away. Have the cleaning tech use hydrocide in the cleaning solution and also do a post spray with Hydrocide and an enzyme deodorizer mixed and then have him or her rake it into the carpet fibers. It may be a good idea to pull up a corner of the carpet and see if you can see any water marks on the back of the carpet. Smell these spots. If they smell, the odor most likely is coming from a liquid spill that has saturated the pad. If this is the case replace the pad where needed and maybe seal the cement/wood floors with Binz primer.

          Reply

  33. Posted by Aaron hirsch on December 19, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    Wow I’m impressed… And where do you source your information? Because I work for Zerorez and everything you just said is wrong!

    Reply

    • Oh really? Please offer me detailed information on your process including scientific explanation and any research done from an independent laboratory. Can you explain how the zerorez system works without using the standard zerorez fluff to distract enquiring individuals from the truth? I have not yet received a valid explanation as to how the zerorez system works since this blog was written 2 years ago. I have spent hours researching and have found some pretty solid info explaining how zerorez works. Please enlighten me…

      Reply

      • ***this response edited to remove advertisement for zero rez. Pertinent info remains*****
        I thought this was an honest blog, it turns out that this is just a chance for people to post incorrect/dishonest comments about Zerorez. Not sure who Carpetguru10 is, but I am disappointed. Your constant requests to “prove it” are old, I and other Zerorez respondents have sent ample information, but it is never enough.

        Reply

        • Posted by Dennis on December 30, 2013 at 9:31 pm

          Sorry, I’m with CarpetGuru on this one. That kind of response (which is like all the other Zerorez responses) does not provide detail. You only say ‘it works’ and expect us to just accept that.. And the anecdotal evidence of all the ‘clients’ in the DB does not say how (or if) it works either. I am sure their carpets are somewhat cleaner if all you did was rinse them with plain hot water. And *many* people would believe you did a wonderful job with only that if you charged them enough for the job. I would like to believe that Zerorez is something new and special, but, I haven’t seen anything proving that.

          Reply

          • Posted by Brandon on May 13, 2014 at 3:25 pm

            As for the purpose of this Blog, it was very helpful for me. Wanted to research whether or not Zerorez was really what the advertisements claim, and I’ve more than reached the conclusion that no, it isn’t. For those of you that don’t always question and aren’t always skeptical of what others claim with no evidence to support it, you should be. This is what propaganda is, granted not political, but it is however corporate, and really isn’t that still political nowadays anyway. So please start learning to only believe that which is factual and unbiased, not just what others tell you to be the truth because, well they say it is. Always be skeptical, and you will never be fooled. In closing I pose one last question. Who really stands to profit the most from these unsupported claims, Zerorez, or you the consumer?

            Reply

        • Posted by The concept on December 30, 2013 at 11:05 pm

          Wow I can’t believe how incredibly stupid I am. I need help!

          Reply

        • Adding an electrical charge to water with electrodes and using words to make the process sound mystifying is not response enough to educate your potential customers as to the efficacy of your process! The accusation that I am lying is what’s being debated here. This is why I am asking for solid info on the Zero Rez process. I am aware of your previous post, and thanks, which did enlighten me on the process somewhat, but I have questions.

          1. According to you, chem free is the main solution used in pre-treating textiles. The MSDS states the active chemicals, pretty much oxyclean and d-limonene. Why is it that zero Rez claims the process is residue free with chemicals like d-limonene? D-limonene, like oil, does not mix with water. In order for d-limonene to be an effective cleaning agent in hot water extraction, it needs to be emulsified with water by way of a surfactant which Zero Rez claims are not used in their process. How can this be?

          2. The main question is if Zero Rez uses sodium hydroxide infused water aka empowered water. I hear statements like “electrolyzed water”or “it’s so pure you can drink it” (You can drink diluted solutions of sodium hydroxide by the way. It doesn’t mean that it isn’t a man made chemical) These statements, in my opinion are misleading along with the whole empowered water trademark because it would insinuate that zero Rez is using pure, slightly altered to do a better job, water. My best educated conclusion, this is false. Eau technologies, the company Zero Rez uses to purchase their generators from, states that the active ingredient in premicide B is sodium hydroxide. From a scientific view, sodium hydroxide will not neutralize or promote rinsing of d-limonene from textile fibers. How are you able to properly rinse d-limonene from the carpets? How does Zero Rez emulsify d-limonene in its chem free? Have there been any independent studies testing the carpet for residues after Zero Rez cleans?

          3. Sodium hydroxide is a saponifier, meaning it makes soap when mixed with oils. So when Zero Rez applies sodium hydroxide to soiled carpets that contain oily substances, which most carpets do, they are creating soap which according to zero Rez is very bad. How does zero rez address this problem? I’m assuming this is why Zero Rez uses deionized water? Deionized rinse water would prevent the soap created from saponification mixed with hard water in the rinsing process from turning into soap scum which would then be deposited into the carpet fibers. Deionized water wouldn’t rinse the carpets free of this soap however. How is rinsing carpets to a residue free clean achieved?

          PROVE your claims in a scientific manner, and if my educated speculation is wrong, I will gladly remove this blog. No disrespect but I speculate that you are not informed enough to explain the process. You only know what the big wigs at Zero Rez headquarters want you to know.

          Reply

  34. Posted by Stranger56 on December 25, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    A friend of mine wants to bring this system to Australia. I hope he reads this blog. For my part , I was involved in introducing Stainmaster carpets to the country and was a member of the technical review panel for the first australian standard on carpet cleaning. Basically, with different fibres used like wool, nylon, polyester, polypropylene etc, I would not recommend cleaning any carpet fibre with caustic soda (aka, sodium hydroxide) in general, let alone from a generator that does not specify the concentration it produces. The tachiness and scunchy sounds (scroop) is due to residue in the fibre and caused by not neutralising the alkaline nature of chemical with an acid and insufficient rinsing. To summarise, I would not use this system without seeing some truly independent testing.

    Reply

  35. Great article! I agreed that unscrupulous carpet cleaners have given carpet cleaning a band name. Cleaning carpet using ‘Hot Water Extraction’ is best when done properly. Often, I see the carpet from repeat clients home’s that looks better year after year. Thanks for sharing this information.

    ~Sean

    Reply

  36. Posted by Bob M on February 3, 2014 at 6:04 am

    Didn’t my comment about fit in with your preferred narrative? Just use xxxxxxxx and forget about the other infer methods. Oh, your a “xxxxx,” aren’t you? If so, that explains it.
    ****this comment edited to remove advertising*****

    Reply

    • Hi Bob,
      If you’ll look at he bottom of my blog, you will see a paragraph that reads

      “This site is designed to enlighten readers about the chemistry behind Zero Rez. Comments and discussions are welcome and encouraged (especially by knowledgable individuals) on the discussion of the chemistry behind Zero Rez provided they are free of profanity, misleading information, derogatory statements or advertisements within comments. All other comments will be: deleted, spammed, or edited. Thanks for visiting!”

      This is why I never posted your original post as it had advertising within the post. I chose to edit the advertising other of this post. Have a great day!

      Reply

      • Posted by Vanessa on February 7, 2014 at 1:20 pm

        So is zerorez toxic or unsafe to use then? I have a baby and want to safely clean my carpets

        Reply

        • D-limonene, which is used in the zerorez cleaning system, is a VOC. VOC’s are of concern and may be linked to SIDS in infants. Do your research before you hire ANY cleaning company if you have a newborn. I would recommend cleaning with hot steam only. I’m sure you could talk a local steam cleaner into omitting cleaning chemicals and steaming only. This will also remove a portion of chemicals in the carpet which off gas and could also be a contributing factor to SIDS.

          Reply

          • None of our are products are toxic in anyway. I operate a Zerorez and am more then willing to have the carpetguru come and ride with me and see for himself

            Reply

            • Can you drink your chemfree? I would like to see that…

              Reply

              • Yes you can drink chem free, but why would you want to. Stuff taste horrible. The only issue I have with this blog is it should be non- basis. Zerorez does not call out any of it competitors. We focus on the issue of sufactant’s being left behind by some carpet cleaning system. Which is pointed out by Shaw and many other manufactures. If you take issue with how we clean I’d ask you take the time to see it first hand. like all companies there will be tech’s that take short cuts and break the rules. It is rather common in this line of work. We at Zerorez strive to provide our customers a great cleaning experience without the bashing of the other companies in our service areas. We follow the same guidelines set out by the IICRC as most of you do. We have had all of our products tested for the safety of our clients and our employee’s. So I ask that before just doing a Google search ask a Zerorez employee or location for the information. Because you can not believe everything you read on the internet. My offer still stand Carpetguru for that ride-along.

                Reply

    • Posted by The concept on February 5, 2014 at 1:26 am

      Hey Bob M stop crying and dry your tears with some sodium hydrochloride towels and get over your self . If can’t say nothing nice don’t say anything at all.

      Reply

  37. Posted by Michelle E on February 7, 2014 at 10:58 am

    I have a large house with a lot of off white carpet. I also have two large dogs and two cats. I have used several different carpet cleaning companies. Zerorez has given me the best results by far. I have used them 3 times with great results. Before I used Zerorez I had a problem with recurring spots, now I do not. I can’t say that their “Empowered Water” is better than the cleaners other companies use, but I can say that the results are better and their technicians have always been courteous and thorough.

    Reply

    • Thanks for the post! Experience and courtesy are great characteristics of a good carpet cleaner. My advice, remember the name of the technician and request him or her next time.

      Reply

  38. Loved the article. With your permission I would like to use it. We also use a sodium hydroxide based pretreatment followed by a truck powered 235 degree rinse. Just softened water.

    Reply

  39. Posted by thefifth on March 9, 2014 at 11:28 am

    I have been cleaning carpets, mostly for residential customers since 1995. I have used a powdered detergent, “Dry Slurry” manufactured by “Prochem” as my primary cleaning product with awesome results this entire time. It leaves “trace residue” when dry that is removed during the first vacuuming after the cleaning is done “when used as directed”. It for sure doesn’t dry “sticky” and it for sure doesn’t cause resoiling issues. I have many clients that have been with me for over 10 years that can attest to that. It is also one of the “go to” products used by this industry. My question is, Is it toxic in any way? This seems to be the issue with Zerorez’s commercials.They insinuate that it everyone else’s cleaners ar. It has a 9.5 – 10 ph which is far less than Zerorez’s “empowered water” 12 ph that they have to neutralize after each cleaning. I thought that the latest carpets fibers aren’t supposed to be cleaned with anything higher than a 10 ph without causing damage…neutralized or not? Can you fill in any of the blanks here?

    Reply

  40. Wow that was odd. I just wrote an extremely long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up.
    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again.
    Anyhow, just wanted to say fantastic blog!

    Reply

  41. Posted by Tim on March 21, 2014 at 7:55 am

    Here in Dallas, a Zerorez radio spot says they use only water. They also say that they are the only company that won’t void the carpet manufacturer’s warranty. It is absolutely laughable that employees of this fly-by-night company come on here and defend this nonsense.

    Reply

    • Zerorez will not void your warranty we have a platinum rating from the carpet and rug institute. Which is above the minimum gold standard that most if not all manufactures require.

      Reply

  42. I have been cleaning carpets since 1988, using the same chemicals in all that time. When I clean pile carpet I use a non-residue dry foam made by Mission laboratories applied by a rotary brush followed by an acetic acid rinse (All Fiber textile rinse made by Chemspec) applied by a portable extractor. When cleaning berber carpet I apply Liquid One Clean made by Chemspec. Neither the dry foam or the extractor cleaner has a pH over 9.5. These chemicals have proven to be safe for everything I have encountered so far. I tend to agree with our host that any product that leaves the carpet with an alkaline pH is not as effective in the short run and COULD be damaging in the long run (say ten years or more). Since Zerorez hasn’t been around 10 years, we’ll have to wait and see. The business model reminds me eerily of Chem-Dry with their MBA-driven ad saturation and “magic water”. I suspect that just like Chem-Dry the corporation will make tons of money and the franchisees will have a very hard time surviving the next recession. Whether you use my method or any other in your home or business, it makes sense to stay away from high-pH or the volatile solvents used in high heat extraction.

    In closing I want to thank our host for this forum and the valuable information he’s provided. His research seems to be thorough and his explanations easy to understand. (and no, I am not related to said host).

    Reply

  43. Posted by Kathy on May 1, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    I used Zerorez a few weeks ago; and now have a very sickenly sweet smell in one of my rooms. The house has been empty since the capets have been cleaned. We are trying to sell our house, and the odor has prohibited potential buyers from going past the first room upon entrance to the house post Zerorez cleaning. Any thoughts?

    Reply

    • Dennis posted a comment on November 5, 2013 with similar results. He and I went back a forth with possible solutions. Page down until you find the comment and reply to his post. Maybe he came up with a good solution to his odor problem.

      Reply

    • I would suggest an encapsulating deodorizer like Hydrocide by bridge point systems.

      Reply

  44. Keep on ԝriting, great job!

    Reply

  45. Zerorez is blowing up the airwaves here in Nashville, TN with their waging war against surfactant. As a carpet cleaning business owner here in Nashville, I get requests from people to clean their carpet, rugs and upholstery using water only. I simply tell them I will but only if they tell me they use water only to wash their hands before dinner. They get the point pretty quick. Same with zerorez. I wander if they use empowered water at home to do their dishes, laundry, or washing their vans?

    I’m ok with their marketing a new way to clean carpet, but not at the expense of proven industry methods. Surfactant is an amazing substance, and does an excellent job cleaning most surfaces when used proportionality. It does more than help remove soils – it helps us breath!

    Reply

  46. Posted by Joanne Scavio on June 30, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    OMG! I was just about to make an appt with Zerorez to clean my carpets. I am sooo totally confused, that I am really scared to use them!! I don’t know who to use, now! I need my carpets cleaned!!!

    Reply

  47. Posted by j on July 9, 2014 at 11:14 pm

    I have worked for a major locally owned carpet cleaning company in Indiana for 5 years. we use the top of line extraction and rotary equipment to clean . we also use a product called extreme clean as a prespray for cleaning all kinds of carpet and it does an excellent job …but when I started this career I was a strapping athletic healthy 25 year old young man with no form of respiratory illness flash forward 3 years into the industry and I have developed terrible asthma to the point where holding a conversation with out losing my breath is a challenge ….at this point a career change may be my only option…my pulmonologist calls it work related asthma and is adamant about me leaving the industry … my comment would be don’t believe any hype from any carpet cleaning company about it being totally safe. companies can sugar coat their marketing and vocabulary to make it sound how you want to hear it but the fact is that 99 % of them use some sort of “chemical” to clean ( the industry actually tells techs when they are taking classes to be certified “not to use the word chemical even though we know they are chemicals it scares homeowners” so basically just lie so they use you )…there are a handful of products out there that clam to be free of chemistry and natural but unfortunately in my experience don’t do as good of a job and every person who wants their carpet cleaned wants it to look brand new well if you are concerned about what is going into your carpet and the air in your home you may have to sacrifice your expectations of the end result unfortunately. I am living proof that what these companies use in your home can be harmful to you! I understand my exposure is 100 times higher than homeowners may face and I could be allergic to something in the chemicals I am exposed to but so may you or your children ! it is obviously harmful in some way shape or form if you look at the label’s on these detergents and pre sprays they advise not to breath in any of the vapor how can it be a good idea to fill your home with that ……my advice as a clean trust certified textile professional is save your money invest in hard wood or lament flooring and some rugs stop exposing your family to any sort of heavy chemicals ! sorry carpet cleaners the truth hurts and so do my lungs lol.. ohh yea and don’t tell my boss about this post …

    Reply

    • Thanks for the post j! The unfortunate truth is that no matter what you bring into your house for flooring, with the exception of unfinished wood floors, you are bringing in chemicals. Carpets, laminates and varnishes from wood floors all off gas chemicals which aren’t meant to be breathed in. One possible advantage of carpets for an asthma or allergy sufferer is that they trap dust and dander until they can be vacuumed up rather than blow around in the wind or get kicked up in the air. Very hot water ONLY does work pretty decent for very routine carpet cleaning but no one wants to have a cleaner out every month.

      Reply

    • J, I understand your asthma concern, but I wouldn’t blame it on chemicals without considering some other factors in your daily routine. Have you considered your vacuum cleaner spewing dust particles back into the air, or maybe the exhaust from the truckmount? We use detergents and rinse that are simple and natural without any voc’s, butoxyethonal or phosphates, yet I had respiratory issue a few years back and found I was breathing some of the exhaust at shut down when lubing the blower w/ wd40. When I realized I should stand out of the exhaust’s way the symptoms went away.

      I’m not saying all carpet cleaning detergents are safe. I won’t touch most of what my distributor sells mainly because of phosphates and cheap synthetic additives and solvents. I make my own nontoxic carpet cleaning detergents/rinses, which is where this industry is taking me. I recently had a local carpet cleaner try my detergent and he gave it a 9 out of 10 when compared to pro’s choice firewater. I appreciated the compliment considering mine line is green!

      Reply

  48. Please tell me why that would make a difference?

    Reply

  49. Posted by j on July 10, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    because, while finished floors and carpet may contain voc’s from the manufacturing process you don’t have to have hard surfaces cleaned with heavy chemicals every 6 months… not to mention we both know the best carpet cleaners leave some of those chems in your carpet ….and the whole idea that carpet traps in allergens is still debatable it also holds them then you have to pay someone to come in and clean your carpets with even harsher chemicals than what may naturally be in their make up or blowing around on your hardwoods and carpets ……trust that the stuff around your home that is blowing around and becoming airborne is nothing compared to what your carpet cleaner is going to spray all through your house as a fine mist.. so then your stuck with his chemicals on top of carpet that is just going to be full of the natural allergens in your home anyways dust, dander ect.

    Reply

  50. Posted by j on July 10, 2014 at 8:56 pm

    so my philosophy would be that with carpet you are just stacking layer on top of layer of nasty harmful irritants and never truly removing all of it you yourself even mentioned that it is known throughout the industry that it is not possible to remove all of the contaminates from carpet and none of this even addresses what maybe being pushed down into your padding and subfloor if you have ever removed old carpet and pad then you would certainly understand what I mean the pad is always more contaminated than the top of the carpet fibers which is all that the carpet cleaning process from even the best cleaners addresses…. what ever is in the carpet backing, the pad, and the subfloor is never going to be improved by cleaning only going to become more contaminated

    Reply

    • There are pretreatments out there that contain “fairly safe” cleaning agents such as sodium carbonate. Sodium carbonate dries to a powder and them can be removed with a vacuum.

      Reply

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  52. Posted by Jonathan on July 14, 2014 at 6:53 pm

    You posted one article on this blog over 3 years ago. What is the purpose of the blog? Seems to me like Zerorez is a competitor of yours? Any advice on any other carpet cleaning service out there?

    Reply

    • Hi Jonathan. The purpose of this blog is to share with readers what I have found to be true from lots of researching zerorez. The advertisements seems to offer up this mystical process which doesn’t quite get fully explained. After talking to zerorez employees, I haven’t gotten much more info.. In my opinion there seems to be a lot of “fluff” in their explanation as to how the system works. I needed to find a scientific explanation as to how it worked. There is plenty of information about the system, it’s just hard to find. Now zerorez competitors and potential customers that read this blog can get scientifically based sources of info, which I have cited, to put the pieces together and come up with a conclusion on there own. As far as advice goes on choosing a carpet cleaner…check the BBB rating and also ask if they use a low residue system and if they guarantee against premature re soiling from residues left behind. Most reputable companies will back their work.

      Reply

      • Thanks for sharing your research on the topic – it’s very informative. As a consumer, I’d rather see a comparison chart between 2 or more companies providing same or similar services. A typical consumer does not have the time or knowledge to determine which service actually provides the best value. We can look at reviews and search BBB, but these methods are not reliable (unless the company provides utterly terrible service). Based on my research, it seems just about all carpet cleaning companies claim “zero residue”. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s just carpet cleaning, and it doesn’t matter much who you go with as long as they are reputable.

        Reply

  53. Posted by Bill Ross on August 18, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    This is the deal on Zerorez. It is a good cleaning service, probably better than most, but it is also founded on deception. The Empowered Water or Promicide B water has no more cleaning power than regular water, it is basically worthless as a cleaning agent. The power of the cleaning system comes from its prespray Chemfree which has plenty of cleaning chemicals in it which leave residue. The author of the original post is correct in that the Promicide B does leave a sodium residue, but I doubt there is a lot of harm in it, however the residue left from Chemfree can also enhance resoiling. Zerorez is very skillful in marketing this smoke and mirrors concept and the only ones who are harmed by it are the franchisees who pay dearly for a Promicide water generator that has no cleaning power. Ask a Zerorez tech to clean a dirty carpet without Chemfree and use only Promicide B water and see what you get.

    The other critical success factor for Zerorez is that they are very skilled in the upsell. They say they will not bait and switch, but if they do not upsell you they have failed in their mission. Be aware of the great harm you are imposing on your family if you don’t get your air ducts cleaned immediately and you might even get your carpets cleaned for free. Oh did I say they don’t bait and switch, oh well never mind.

    The bottom line is that Zerorez has superior marketing skills and they usually provide a good service (better than most) and usually have high quality people coming into your home (not going to steal your stuff), but you might be had with the final price you pay. Now you know the rest of the story. Good day!

    Reply

  54. Posted by Jim on August 22, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    What should we make of the fact that the Carpet and Rug Institute gives Zerores it’s platinum seal of approval? Is the CRI a neutral professional and industrial evaluator?

    Reply

  55. Hello! I’ve been reading your weblog for a while now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Atascocita Tx!

    Just wanted to tell you keep up the great work!

    Reply

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