Where are you safest applying the 5-second rule for dropped food:
- Toilet Seat
- Dirty Carpet
- Clean Carpet
Would you pick a potato chip off your toilet seat and pop it in your mouth? If you saw one of your children picking a piece of dropped candy off the commode would you rush to stop them from putting it in his or her mouth?
The very thought of eating off a toilet seat is a little sickening, but probably not as sickening as eating off a dirty carpet. Research conducted by Philip Tierno Jr., Ph.D., a microbiologist and immunologist at New York University Langone Medical Center and the author of The Secret Life of Germs indicates your carpet is likely to be 4,000 times as dirty as your toilet seat.
“Your carpet probably contains about 200,000 bacteria per square inch, making it 4,000 times dirtier than your toilet seat. “Rugs are botanical and zoological parks,” says Tierno, who says hundreds of thousands of different types of species live there. These invasions occur because the average person sheds about 1.5 million skin cells every hour; these skin cells hit the rug and serve as food for germs. Add in food particles, pollen, and pet dander, and you have a gratis buffet, he says. And since a vacuum cleaner’s suction and rotating beater brush don’t usually reach the bottom of the carpet, you’re bound to have communities of E. coli, salmonella, staphylococcus, and other bacteria down there. Every time you walk on the carpet or roll around on it with your kids, you disrupt the bacteria, bringing some closer to the surface… Your cleanup: Hire a company to do a deep steam-cleaning …” – Daniel Braff in “Eliminate Germs in Your House,” for Men’s Health Magazine
Unfortunately, if you’ve had your carpet professionally cleaned, you might be better off eating off a dirty floor. Most professional carpet cleaning companies use chemicals on your carpet that you wouldn’t ever want on your skin, much less in your mouth.
Even carpet cleaning companies that advertise their services as “zero-residue” or “green” can leave behind poisons that can harm you, your family or your pets. When professional carpet cleaners refer to residue, they usually mean soaps or detergents left behind in the normal cleaning process. But the real danger comes the chemicals left behind when they treat spots or stains. Most spot treatments leave no soapy residue because they contain no soap. But some contain chemicals so dangerous that if you called the fire department and told them you spilled some on the driveway, they’d show up in haz-mat suits.
Many “dry” carpet cleaners are now referring to themselves as “green” because they use no water. But like the dry cleaner you take your suits to, they use chemical solvents that can have lasting effects.
The basic ingredients of carpet cleaners are perchloroethylene (used in dry cleaning) and naphthalene … The fumes given off by rug cleaners can cause cancer, damage your liver, and have been known to cause dizziness, sleepiness, nausea, loss of appetite and disorientation… Be sure to use these products in well ventilated area and try not to breathe the fumes. – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Another problem with dry cleaners and “zero-residue” low moisture cleaners is that they don’t clean your carpet all the way to the backing. Both are good at making the surface of the carpet look clean, but only hot-water extraction (commonly called steam cleaning) removes the dirt, germs and skin cells that accumulate at the base of carpet fibers.
SafeTGreen Carpet Cleaning’s spot and stain treatments are safe to use and safe for your family, pets and the evironment. Our main carpet cleaning solution is so safe that its OSHA-required Material Safety Data Sheet features “4 zeros,” meaning it poses less hazard than toothpaste, and is certified by the EPA’s Design for the Environment (DfE) program as one of the safest, most effective and most eco-friendly products available.