we treat your rugs like they were our own.

Full Immersion
Hand-wash Cleaning

offering the only Full Immersion Hand-wash in Central New Hampshire


We take our responsibilities seriously when it comes to taking care of your investment. In addition to regular vacuuming, you will prolonge the life of your rug by performing regular maintenance as you would do for your vehicle. We recommend our full immersion hand-wash every 3 to 5 years, depending on the amount of traffic the rug gets. In addition, your rug should be rotated periodically to even out any wear patterns to the rug or the fringe. At Little River, your rugs will be meticulously hand-washed and detailed.

 

We offer free local (Concord) pick-up & delivery, and can wash all types of rugs: new, antique, hooked*, flat-weaves, braided, tufted*, machine-made, hand-knotted as well as all types of fibers: wool, cotton and synthetics. We can wash silk or rugs that are bleeders as well, but the costs are higher. Please note, the entire rug must be washed - it cannot be "spot cleaned" or odor removed in stained / specific areas only. You may call and schedule an appointment for pick-up at 225-5512; outside of Concord we charge $0.25 per mile, each direction, to cover our fuel expense. Please kindly note that your rug(s) should be readily available at the time of pick up - meaning rolled or folded and ready to go into the van. If you need to keep it layed out to show us areas for repair or spot removal, that's fine. If you have an unusually large or heavy/thick rug, please advise that when you call so a hand-cart can be brought. If you have live moth activity, please advise that so it can be bagged and not contaminate other pieces. Please also note we are a small shop - there is only one person coming to pick up the rug and not a team of movers; he does not move furniture or tv's, he does not bring rugs up or down the stairs.

 

Wash Schedule:
Rugs are cleaned over a period that lasts approximately 3-4 weeks. If your rug comes to us the day or week we're picking up clean rugs/dropping off dirty rugs, you may be without your rug for nearly 6-7 weeks, so please use this schedule as a guideline of when we expect to make our next trip.


To make the next wash cycle, we'll need your rug(s) by:
end of day, 5 PM, on Tuesday, July 11th.*
*please note we will be closed Sat July 1 thru Mon July 10 for Summer Vacation.

These rugs, without any repair work or live moth issues, should be available Thursday, August 3rd.
Our Summer Hours are Tu-Fr: 10-5, Sa: 10-2 but we will be closed on Sat July 1 thru Mon July 10 for Summer Vacation.

We now have direct parking in front of the store, but the bus stop we used for wash drop off / pick up was eliminated in the Main St. redesign.

We now use our basement for this. You can access the back entrance on Kennedy Lane (a one-way street NOT accessible from Pleasant St. Ext.).

Off of North Main, go down Depot St (a one-way, between Caring Gifts & Speers Jewelers). Kennedy Lane is on the right.

We are the only garage door on the block, it has Little River signage and a doorbell. It is between Siam Orchid's back entrance and Flag Works.
If you would like a visual, click here



1) Process:
Our Full Immersion Hand-wash is a proprietory process is comprised of many steps. It starts with 'Dusting and Beating.' The rug is first turned upside down on a screen and beaten from the back to remove all dry dirt, dust, and debris. The rug is then turned face up to vacuum whatever has lodged at the tips of the pile. If the rug is a delicate antique or is in compromised condition, it will be secured firmly between two pieces of screen to prevent further loss of pile. Your rug will be cleaner of loose dirt and sand than it has ever been. Rugs are dusted until no more debris is ejected - often an taking hour or more!

To make certain colors in the rug are fast, a 24 hour test for dye run is performed. If colors have the potential to run, the washing process is adjusted so that dye transfer will not occur. When washing obviously damaged or unstable ends, there is particular care given to these areas. Only after stabilizing fragile areas does the the actual full immersion hand-wash occur. The rug is immersed in water in a wash tub where it is agitated (or hand-brushed in the case of delicate antique rugs) using a natural soap. Both sides of the rug are agitated, working soap deep into the rug's fibers. A neutral, mild, pure solution which does not remove the natural oils and lanolin from the wool, is used.

During the soaking process, the water in the wash tub is constantly circulating with clean water running in and dirty water pumping out. The soaking process allows time for age-old dirt and contaminants to dissolve and separate from rug fibers.

After soaking, the rug is flushed and rinsed out. A flushing tool is massaged over the rug to flush contaminants out of the fibers. In the same stroke, the tool replaces the contaminated water with fresh clean water.

Rinsed, wet rugs are laid flat on screens and air dry; the screens allow climate controlled air to circulate on both the front and back. Dehumidifiers, heat and air circulating fans are used to enhance drying.

The fringe is then addressed and hand-washed. Chlorine bleach will never be used to lighten cotton fringe. Bleach will cause the warp ends to deteriorate over time. Normally a solution based on potassium bisulfate, which does not harm the cotton, is used. Cotton does tend to grey out over time, so it not always possible to get the fringe white and 'new' looking though it is clean.

During the final detailing process, the rug is dusted again with a dry air tool. This ensures that any stray lint or loose grit that may still be clinging to the rug is blown away. The rug is then reinspected and groomed with a brushing and vacuuming.

All this results in a superior wash. Not only is your rug cleaner, but it will smell better, look brighter, and last longer because it is free of abrasive particles. We're sure you'll appreciate the extra care your rugs get when they're washed with Little River Oriental Rugs!

*Please note: regularly washing certain types of rugs, specifically Hand or Gun-Tufted, or Hand or Gun-Hooked rugs - will shorten the lifespan of those rugs, rather than extend it. These types of rugs are easily identified by a glued cotton backing (see image below). They have a rather short lifespan anyhow, typically only 7 to 10 years. The yarn is secured into the cotton base it was gunned into with latex. Latex deteriorates in time naturally anyway (often smells like sulfur/rotten eggs or burnt rubber, sometimes it just turns into a very fine powder) and it is not water friendly. We cannot fully immerse gun-made rugs for that reason. We will get your rug clean, get urine out etc. but with these types of rugs, having them washed often 'just because' is not recommended. {Regular washing of hand-knotted rugs however, does extend the life of the rug and is recommended.} This type of rug cannot be treated for moths as with the backing, there is no way to completely flush out any eggs. They need to be discarded. Please note, as these rugs are considered disposable and the more issues this kind of rug has, the harder it is to clean, we may refuse to even attempt to remedy this quality of rug depending on the circumstances of what's going on with it.

Please note that Silk can lose up to 20% of its strength when it gets wet, and abrasive cleaning agents, hot water and steam cleaning can damage its fibers. For this reason, silk or "silk like" rugs (viscose or mercerized cotton) need to be sponge cleaned rather than fully immersed. We also need to Sponge Clean rugs that are not color fast, Navajo rugs/wall hangings, delicate tapestries, thick rugs like Rya's, Flokati's, Sheepskin and some Moroccan's. Due to the extra special care needed for the Sponge Cleaning, costs are higher than our standard Immersion Cleaning.



Treatments:
We offer additional services for your rug while it is being cleaned:

 

1) Enzyme treatment:

Pet eliminations are a very common problem and need to be treated with an enzyme. There is no guarantee that odor can be completely eliminated. If you know that there is urine in your rug, and you opt for our regular wash because it was 'a while ago' or 'doesn't smell that bad', please be aware that rugs that are contaminated, but not treated, tend to 'bloom' in the wash once the water hits it, and the odor is activated - making your rug clean, but now smellier, when it gets back to you than when it came in. Then you're going to ask us to wash it again, with the enzyme this time and it just costs more in the long run for both price and time. We're honest with our customers- if a rug comes in and you don't ask for treatment of urine, we'll let you know when we think it's probably a good idea to opt for the treatment. Rugs that are severely contaminated are subject to an additional fee. Our cleaner will call to discuss those rugs when they occur, and you'll be given a call with the details before it goes any further. Rugs that have old contamination, as we often see with "This was my Grandmother's rug and she had 7 cats and she passed away 10 years ago and now I'm getting it cleaned" are not as successful. Over time, the uric acid has crystalized and is now very hard to properly treat. Think you might have urine but don't want to pay for the treatment if you don't have any? Of course you don't, so we'll have it checked under a blacklight and process it accordingly. By the way, we tend to see a lot urine rugs in the 'dog days of summer', when the humidity has kicked in and suddenly it's apparent there are eliminations. (Please also be aware that left untreated, eliminations can easily lead to dry rot, leaving permanent damage to your rug.)

 

2) Live Moth Larvae:

If you've got clothes moths, there's a good chance you've got a new generation just waiting to grow, hatch, mate and lay more eggs - and they're probably in your woolens: rugs, sweaters, blankets. Moths love to lay their eggs on wool rugs, and they especially love rugs in undisturbed places, and rugs that are old and/or dirty. If you see eggs (very, very tiny) and/or larvae (little, tiny white worm looking buggers), your rug will need special treatment to kill the living larvae/eggs before it is able to come in contact with the other rugs at the facility or be washed. If you have eggs/larvae, your rug needs to be contained in a trash bag, tarp or something similar when it comes to the shop and will stay that way until the cleaner receives it and can kill them. We would recommend that you also have Moth Repel done as there is a known issue in the house, which should also be addressed before any rugs are put back down. Please note that our cleaners have treated many, many rugs for moths but cannot guarantee that 100% of the eggs in an infested rug have been removed. In the case of moths, the problem is always greater than what one can see. You should also dispose of any padding used under an infested rug. Please note: Rugs with live larvae and/or eggs typically need to be held for at least two wash cycles (six weeks) to properly treat the infestation. Any padding/underlayment will need to be destroyed. Pads cannot be cleaned and may certainly be harboring eggs/larvae as well. Please note we cannot treat and kill larvae/get to eggs on rugs that are gun tufted or gun hooked (they usually have a piece of cotton glued to the back of the rug) as they are not penetrable from both sides. A rug of this quality with a moth issue has to be disposed of (see image below).
If you have a backing like this, we cannot treat for live moths (or severe urine contamination)


3) Moth Repel:

If you have had a moth issue, or your rug is going to be stored after being cleaned, you will want to consider our zinc based Moth Repel treatment. After cleaning, the rug is sprayed front and back with a non-toxic to humans and pets solution that encapsulates the yarn and helps to prevent moths from reinfesting. The solution does not kill moths, it forces them to leave- it makes the wool unpleasant in taste. As it is not a poison, the moths should leave your rug alone, but will find another food source in the house, such as others rugs, your closet etc. There is no guarantee that additional moth damage will not occur; the treatment will wear off over time with use, and sometimes a moth will still lay its eggs on a repeled rug, bringing the infestation back as a flying moth isn't interested in eating the wool any longer. If you have a moth issue in your home, it should be addressed before you put rugs back down.

 

4) Scotch-guarding:

Spot repellent treatment; also a temporary treatment as the solution will wear off the surface with time; high traffic areas will wear away sooner. As such, there is no guarantee that spotting will not occur, as it is impossible to tell when the solution has worn off.

 

5) Pre-spotting:

If you have spotting on your rug, often the typical wash will not remove them and they need to be specifically addressed and treated prior to cleaning, similar to pre-treating a spot on a garment before laundering it. If the marks are water based, we have had good success in removing them. If wine based, we have also had good success in removing the marks, even with red wine. If the origin is unknown, oil based, from rust or has been there for some time, we can attempt to remove it with the pre-spotting treatment, but the success rate is not as high. The quality of the rug will also determine what spots can and can't be well removed. The rule of thumb is that Spots can be treated and usually removed, but Stains are permanent. If it is due to pet urine, those are usually stains and not spots. In rug making, many (synthetic) dyes used are acetic. Urine, as it dries, become alkaline. This sudden change, from acetic to alkaline, creates a burning effect of the dye that causes your rug/carpet to yellow, or brown. A urine stain is not a spot like spilled soda, but rather a chemical reaction in the dye and is often a permanent reaction. Coffee and Tea are also known dyestuffs as they are used to naturally dye fabric etc. Spills of coffee and tea are often (permanent) stains, not spots. The faster you can treat spills of this nature at home with blotting up the liquid, the better. We have seen people who had berry bushes near their entry and the berries were getting tracked into the house. Again, berries can be used as a natural dye and will probably be stains and not spots. Our cleaner is very well educated in spot and stain removal and has a number of products at their disposal to treat accordingly, but they are not miracle workers. There is a certain threshold of aggression that they will comfortably use when treating spots; too much and they run the risk of permanently changing the fibers and marring the rug further. If you would like them to be aggressive with spot removal from the start, you will need to approve that in writing. Spot and/or Stain removal is not guaranteed, even with the pre-spot treatment. However, every reasonable effort will be made to remove spots without damaging the fibers.

 

6) Restore or Mildew Restore:

Rugs that have been involved in water situations, ie. a flooded basement, a burst pipe, leaking radiator or dripping air conditioner will probably want to have our restore treatment. Water damage soon leads to mildew, mold and unfortunately for some, dry rot. You should have your rug treated, not just 'dry it out on the deck on a sunny day'. If you had a contaminated water situation, such a toilet overflowing or waste/sewer pipe bursting, you will want to treat with both the restore and enzyme treatment. Mildew Restore is very effective at decontaminating rugs that have mildew or mold growth. We can often tell by odor if Mildew Restore is needed. Please note, sometimes mold/mildew has left a stain (often black) on a rug. We particularly see that on the cotton backside of tufted rugs. Be assured that your rug will return to you decontaminated, but that the stains caused by the (now dead) mold will still probably be visible.

 

7) Odor Deodorizing: Sometimes a rug just needs a little extra boost in getting some odors out. We see odors from storage (musty), from cigarette smoke, from dogs just laying on them and their oils leaving an odor behind, even from just general cooking/kitchen odors that get absorbed and retained by the fibers. We're honest with our customers- if a rug comes in and you don't ask for odor removal, we'll let you know when we think it's probably a good idea to opt for the treatment.

 

8) Dye-lock:

Dye bleeding, or color run, occurs when a colored fiber loses dye while wet. Uncolored or light colored fiber or yarn may readily soak up fugitive (runaway) dyes from the darker fiber or yarn and become stained. This is most often seen in rugs where deeply dyed shades (for example: reds, blue, blacks) become fugitive and bleed into white or light colored areas or fringe.

This can be for a number of reasons:

 

a) DEFECTIVE DYE OR DYEING METHOD - In such a case, the dye is either poorly selected or not properly handled during manufacture. The result is excess, unsecured, weak, and/or unstable dye. When a dye with poor stability or washfastness is used, it may bleed during or after the first few cleanings. Likewise, when too much dye is used during manufacture, the excess adheres near the outside of the fiber where it may readily wash away. Such defects in dye or dyeing method, at the time of manufacture, produce a textile product which is defective. Unfortunately for the consumer, these defects are not visible at the time of purchase.

 

b) EXCESS DYE or OVER-DYED APPLICATIONS – if the rug has never been cleaned before, there might be a bit of “excess” dye in the fibers that may wash out on the 1st cleaning, just as with a new colorful shirt in the laundry. Or, if additional color has been ADDED after the rug was woven to make it brighter (or to make it look older, such as with a tea-wash antiquing application) this additional dye or ink could bleed during a cleaning.

 

c) PAST IN-HOME CLEANING OF RUGS – the biggest problem with having a rug cleaned in your home using wall-to-wall carpet cleaning equipment and solutions (or a home-owner Bissell or Rug Doctor) is the amount of residue left behind in the fibers after the cleaning. This chemical residue buildup tends to be on the alkaline side, and over time can affect the acid dyes of especially wool rugs and can create a bleeder out of these rugs. It might clean up fine one or two times in the home, and on the third the dyes may bleed all over and you have no idea why. It's because of the extended build-up of all of the residue NOT removed in the past. If you have a rug of any value at all – never clean it in the home. Natural fiber rugs are meant to be washed.

 

d) REPEAT PET STAINS - pet urine starts off as an acidic stain, and then turns alkaline over weeks and months. If it is not cleaned up right away off of a rug this will create long term permanent dye damage that devalues your rug. A rug may have colorfast dyes, but all of the areas with urine exposure will bleed no matter what steps are taken to stop that. This is why pet urine is the most dangerous spill on rugs, and why you need to jump on cleaning it up as soon as you see the puddles, especially if you have valuable rugs.

 

Our Dye-Lock treatment locks fugitive dye-stuffs at the molecular level, without affecting the light fastnest of the dye. Unfortunately, whatever bleed damage that might have already occured, has occured, but now that you know you have a rug that bleeds, the dye-lock treatment should prevent further dye migration,

 

 

9) Smoke-Out Deodorizing: If your rug has been in a place where a fire occurred, it can often be salvaged, even after being trampled on by firemen, massive amounts of water put on it, ceiling collapses, smoke and soot odors etc. If the rug is unfortunately deemed a total loss, we can provide appraisals for your insurance claims. Each situation here is different, but treatment for "fire rugs" starts at $8.50 per square foot. A written, photo appraisal, 2 copies, is $75.


Pricing Table:
Please use this table as a guideline.

 

 

We treat your rugs like they were our own.

lror@nnhrugs.com
10 N Main St, Concord, NH 03301
(right in the heart of downtown, on the block between Pleasant and Depot)