Learn what makes Chem-Dry carpet cleaning a better choice than steam cleaners

Chem-Dry VS. Steam Cleaners

If you could choose between having your carpets clean and dry in 1-2 hours or in 1-2 days, which would you choose? If you’ve ever smelled musty, moist carpets or stepped on wet carpets, then the answer is obvious. Steam cleaning machines work by pumping buckets full of hot, soapy water into your carpet. They claim that water is sucked back up by the machine. However, that’s not usually the case, and instead, steam cleaning leaves behind a lot of water and sticky residue that can attract dirt.

Carpets dry in 1-2 hours

Steam cleaning does make your carpets look clean for a short time period, but the soap residue that gets left behind will cause them to get dirty quickly. Then you’ll have to call them again to get out dirt that they caused! And with all that extra water, carpets take much longer to dry, often up to 1-2 days. While you’re waiting for your carpet to dry, harmful mold and bacteria have a perfect damp climate to grow in. All in all, steam cleaners take longer and actually cause your carpets to get dirtier quicker.

The much better option for carpet cleaning in San Francisco is North American Chem-Dry. Our unique, effective carpet cleaning dries quickly and doesn’t leave behind any soapy residue. We use a patented Carbonating Cleaner that is applied using a low-pressure spray machine, covering your carpet with millions of microscopic carbonated bubbles (instead of tons of water). These tiny bubbles lift dirt and grime from the fibers of your carpet and raise them to the surface where they’re easily cleaned away. With our carbonated cleaning method, we’re able to use far less water than most steam cleaners. That’s why carpets cleaned by Chem-Dry are dry in only 1-2 hours, not days.

Overall, North American Chem-Dry offers a healthier, more thorough carpet cleaning than the competitors in San Francisco.


The Difference Between Chem-Dry and Steam Cleaning

Chem-Dry (Hot Carbonation)

  • Carbonating, active cleaning solution
  • Neutral pH cleaning solution
  • Resists resoiling – stains don’t reappear
  • Low water quantity
  • Low-pressure application
  • Short drying time – 1-2 hours
  • Green solutions and cleaning method, minimal water

Steam Cleaning (Hot Water Extraction)

  • Flat, inactive cleaning solution
  • High pH cleaning solution
  • Encourages resoiling – reappearing stains
  • High water quantity
  • High-pressure application
  • Long drying times – 1-2 days
  • Harsh chemicals, excessive water


We provide superior residential and commercial carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, pet odor removal, rug cleaning, and tile cleaning services throughout San Francisco, California.

North American

San Francisco Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning

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*Based on results of studies conducted by independent laboratories of Chem-Dry’s Hot Carbonating Extraction process. Allergens tested were dog and cat dander and dust mite allergen. All bacteria results include use of sanitizer. Figures are an average across multiple homes. Hard surface bacteria tests were based on independent lab testing associated with EPA registration #s 84683-3-74771 and 70385-6; sealed stone and VCT surfaces were evaluated and bacteria tested include salmonella, influenza and E. coli.