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Eco Friendly Detailing Talk About all your Eco Products here - Waterless wash / Steam cleaning etc

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Old 13-02-2010, 01:09 AM   #1
caledonia
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Arrow Interior cleaning (Steam)

Interior Cleaning.

The use of the steamer cleaner in the interior of a car is a helpful addition. Due to the temperature of the steam. There is very little moisture introduce into the fabrics and materials, within the car. Where wet vacuuming has its place and the steam cleaner will never fully replace this as some jobs especially when removing heavy mud and the like from heavily soiled mats and carpets. But I hope to show you the advantages of the steamer within this write up.

When working with upholstery It is never a great idea to introduce water into this foam of a cars seats. The foam stays wet deep down and this effects the mild steel within the seat as well and prolonged contact with the stitching. Which can eventually lead to the threads rotting away.

As anyone who has wet vacuumed a car before will tell you. The seats will stay damp for sometime, especially in the colder months where airing the car is not possible.

The steam cleaner works on a principal of heating the seat and slowly breaking down the bond between the grime and the fabric or leather. This bond is normally made up of oils deposited by us humans and dead skin cells.

Introduction of water is limited by placing a MF over the seat and applying the steam directly on top of this. This contains the heat within the fabric and catches excess water in the process.. Once the area has been cleaned a wipe over with a clean dry MF will remove any grime that has not attached to the wet MF and aid in drying off moisture also. You can vary the temperature and moisture being introduce by moving the nozzle closer or further away from the area being treated.

Different cleaner have different attachments and I have a small triangular head with soft bristles. To which I can attach an MF to this and use in a scrubbing motion. It has its benefits as it introduces friction as well as heat and moisture to aid the clean up.

You can also use dedicated cleaners into the equation also. The addition of heat increases the cleaning ability of the products, much the same as a warm pressure washer aids the cleaning ability of snow foam. It is up to the user as to what method or product he sees fit to use.

I personally would not use foaming product with the steamer as these may lead to being difficult to remove. Chemicals also boil off at different rates.

So again the user must decide on what products fit the bill, dependant on their steam cleaner and temperature output. You will notice you can cut down the dilution strengths of certain products with the addition of steam.

I have not touch. Hygiene so far.
As you know steam cleaner are used to aid in cleaning when you have allergies or to disinfect surfaces. This is a great benefit when used in car interiors. Used to kill all musty smells, Bacteria and the smell of cigarettes. Steam can go many places where a wet vac cant. Under seats and very tight areas, to name but a few.

Here are a few examples taken from resent write up and details.

Triangular attachment with MF.





On this particular Detail G101 was used at 1-20. Sprayed sparingly on area and worked in with a soft paint brush. The steamer was them used to clean the area and then wiped over with a clean MF after I was happy with the results.

Before


During







After


50/50 Drivers seat.


Completed cars.
Before.

After.

Before.


After.

Examples.














Before.



During.




After.




Another useful addition with the steam cleaner is the ability to steam clean vents and air con units.



I have not posted or highlighted the use of the steamer when working on head linings again. With the lack of moisture there is very little chance of the lining sagging. Care must be taken when applying the steam and careful monitoring of temperature as always when working with fabric glue. Work from a safe distance at all times. Once happy with the results wipe with a MF to clean and dry off as much as possible. Before moving to another area. Take your time and continue to work over the area making sure all areas are clean and uniform.

Any look forward to any question on this subject and I will update the post as further tasks are completed.
Gordon.
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Old 13-02-2010, 09:57 AM   #2
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Nice Fabia- and even nicer Porsche. When did you do the Porsche ?

As previously, I just think that the steam cleaner is excellent. As you have demonstrated with your recent posts, it can be used for loads of things.

One thing I always meant to ask you Gordon, I bought 303 fabric guard and was going o apply it,but I done it on an inconspicuous test area but it seemed to leave a water mark. How would i avoid this ?
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Old 22-02-2010, 12:53 PM   #3
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How would steam work with Alcantara ? or would it just destroy it ?
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Old 22-02-2010, 01:09 PM   #4
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From what I have learned in the past is that its not a good idea to use steam to clean leather as I believe it can be quite damaging to the coating on the leather. Aslo you should not use microfibres on the leather as they can also pull up the finsh on the leather. Leather should be gently cleaned with an appropriate cleaner and a soft bristled brush to get in the grain of the leather. Then patted dry with a good paper towel to aviod damage to the finish. After that a protector can be aplied to the leather to make it easier to clean in the future.

There is no need for condition on coated leather as it can no penatrate the coating of the leather, so in effect all you need to maintain is the painted finish on the leather not the leather itself.
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Old 23-02-2010, 12:17 AM   #5
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I have never had any problems with cleaning leather.
You just have to adapt your technique.

Lay a MF on the area being steamed and apply the steam on top of the MF. Not directly onto the leather and certainly not using the triangular brush. Once the area has been warmed slightly and the MF is removed you can the use the soft leather brush is really need to gently work into the creases. But in most case the steam will have softened the grime and this the as become attached to the MF laid over the top. So normally no need to wipe. Dab is all that is required. You can also turn down the steam output to accommodate your need.

So you can see it does work. You just have to change your techniques when working with any leathers. Still no chemicals introduce into the leather as they are not required.



As far as Alcantara is concerned. Much the same as above. But you cant spot clean you have to do the complete section. Apply steam through the nozzle onto a MF and the gentle wipe over with a clean cloth changing regularly. Once happy a gentle brush over with a dedicated brush to lift and revive the fibres. But always to full panels as you would with a dedicated cleaner with alcantara anyway.

Gordon.

Last edited by caledonia; 23-02-2010 at 12:26 AM.
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Old 23-02-2010, 12:23 AM   #6
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excellent write up there gordon

did you find that it took longer to work with than using say a numatic?

i find that the large numatics dont leave a lot of moisture behind. seat are left touch damp but it doesnt get to drop through the sponge with being sucked up as soon as it hits the seat (with correct tool on hose)
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Old 23-02-2010, 12:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karl_liverpool View Post
excellent write up there gordon

did you find that it took longer to work with than using say a numatic?

i find that the large numatics dont leave a lot of moisture behind. seat are left touch damp but it doesnt get to drop through the sponge with being sucked up as soon as it hits the seat (with correct tool on hose)

Horse for coarse Karl.
It take roughly the same time to do upholstery. Carpets on the other hand and dependant on dirt your wet vac might still be required. Both machine work hand in hand with each other. The real benefit is using less products as water at present is free.

But again when you look at the full picture. Wheels, glass, head lining engines as well as upholstery. Also a nice sterile enviroment. And then you can start to see where the little machine has its benefits.

Hope this helps.
Gordon.
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Old 23-02-2010, 12:47 AM   #8
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Good write up Gordon, as you know I am a big steam fam myself.
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Old 23-02-2010, 12:57 AM   #9
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This machine is all ive ever used as it is defently one of the best for carpet and upholstery:

http://www.prochem.co.uk/steempro_powerplus.htm

We also have this is are other van!very handy for marine work but again one of the best in the world, but not cheap!

http://www.prochem.co.uk/apex.htm
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Old 23-02-2010, 12:45 PM   #10
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