ENCAPSULATION CLEANING A BOON FOR HOUSEKEEPERS
By Brian Clark Janitech Australasia
Every Hotel has carpet, some more that others. But, regardless of the amount
of carpet you have, most of us share the same problem – keeping it clean and
getting it dry afterwards.
There are many processes that are available to housekeepers for ‘cleaning’
carpet. They include Bonnet cleaning, foam shampooing, powders and water
extraction. However, water extraction is the only method recognised as deep
cleaning by the Australian Standard AS:3733:1995. The remainder are
relegated to ‘in-between’ or interim appearance maintenance and with
generally poor long term outcomes, they have virtually disappeared from
The big problem with most interim maintenance systems is that they leave
behind detergent residues which builds up & attracts more soil. As well as
long term appearance problems, they create more work and may void the
manufacturer’s warranty and even permanently damage some types of
Encapsulation changes all that. Imagine being able to clean or spot a room or
a function centre and have it dry in 20 minutes – with no resoiling issues!
Encapsulation is an interim carpet cleaning process with a difference – it
cleans deep down and gives exceptional results in most circumstances. The
chemical is the most important component, and works in combination with
equipment designed to enhance the encapsulation process.
An Encapsulating chemical
contains a special polymer
that works with the
detergent system to break
down and surround the soil
and other detergent
residues from previous
cleaning. Within minutes,
the polymer begins to drive
Figure 1: Encapsulation machines L-R: Windsor I-Capsol Mini
off the moisture and dries
deluxe, Windsor Chariot i-Capsol stand-on rider and the Cimex
into a hard, non-sticky
crystal, encasing the soil and the detergent residues. The dried crystals can
easily be removed using an upright vacuum in the daily vacuuming process.
The result is carpet that is clean and dry in about 20 minutes.
Equipment for encapsulation
Encapsulation has been around about 5 years now, but the big problem is that
only two manufacturers make encapsulation equipment that is suitable for
housekeeping operations. However, only one manufacturer offers a range of
specialist equipment designed for using encapsulation in all areas, from the
smallest rooms through to huge convention centres.
Encapsulation machines incorporate counter rotating disk or cylindrical
brushes, with special bristle patterns designed specifically to enhance
The smallest and simplest is the I-Capsol Mini range from Windsor Industries.
These little units (there are two models available) are light, simple to use,
very quiet and, best of all, fit any budget. They will allow your team to
effectively remove spots, stains, clean traffic areas or even a large room with
no noise, minimal effort and have the area available for use 20 minutes after
Windsor also have larger units for bigger area, including their Chariot i-Capsol
stand on rider unit which can clean over 1000 sq meters of carpet per hour.
Other models include the new Duo range, which switch from encapsulation to
extraction with the flick of a switch.
The Cimex Cyclone is effective for encapsulation, and has, up to now, been
the only machine suitable for commercial encapsulation. It is available in 2
models, but it’s weight and size are considered by some to be an impediment
to transport and use in small areas.
Both Windsor and the Cimex models are imported into Australia by one
company – Cleantec, part of the massive Campbell Brothers group.
Encap chemical is available from only a few of the professional chemical
suppliers and it is critical that the formulation you choose is properly
formulated for encapsulation and actually dries to a crystal rather than a
Revive from Cleantec, Zenith from Sonitron, Pro-caps from PROCHEM, Mist &
Brush from Advanced and Release-it are quoted on carpet cleaning forums as
the best encapsulation chemicals available.
Encapsulation doesn’t do away with the need for extraction, but in many
circumstances it makes extraction a periodic rather than a regular occurrence.
It is also greener than other methods with vastly reduced water usage and
total elimination of wastewater back into the environment.
Best of al, anyone can do it, it’s low cost and it enables Executive
Housekeepers to maximise room availability and presentation of carpeted
areas. If you haven’t seen it, ask your supplier. It is well worth the effort.
Windsor Industries and Kärcher Floorcare are committed to the environment. As major suppliers to the commercial
Cleaning Industry, they have instigated environment as a key component of their corporate strategies, including
design, manufacture, energy efficiency, productivity and durability. If you wish to discuss Green Cleaning further or
would like a presentation for your management group, Brian Clark can be contacted on Janitech@bigpond.com.