Optical (Fluorescent) Brighteners in Carpet Cleaning Chemicals and Detergents

Bluish glow of optical brightener on carpet under UV light.

Optical brighteners are highly specialized dyes which absorb invisible ultraviolet light and re-emit it as visible light, making the carpet appear brighter than it really is.

The image shows how optical brighteners in carpet cleaning compounds and spotters glow under ultraviolet light.

They are used by some carpet cleaning chemical manufacturers who don’t realize that their use will permanently cause the carpet to turn yellow. Unfortunately, once a carpet cleaning detergent or spotter that contains an optical brightener has been used to clean a carpet it is nearly impossible to remove, so the yellow color stays. Since these are dyes, there is no cure for this problem.

Optical brighteners are frequently found in carpet shampoos and bonnet cleaning compounds. Carpet manufacturers and the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) don’t approve of carpet cleaners containing optical brighteners.

Per the CRI Seal of Approval program Standard for Testing Cleaning Solutions, “Optical brighteners — None are allowed, as they can leave some patches of carpet lighter than the rest. … The presence of optical brighteners in carpet cleaning products has been known to adversely affect long-term appearance.”

Bane-Clene does not manufacture any carpet cleaning detergent or spotter that contain optical brighteners.

Optical Brightener Related Information:

 
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Copyright: Bane-Clene® Corp.

Date Modified: August 9, 2019

Date Originally Published: November 10, 2014


Free Bane-Clene Information Package

Bane-Clene Paper CatalogFree packet of information about Bane-Clene can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-428-9512 (U.S. ONLY!). Your information packet will include a full color catalog and price addendum. Packets will arrive in approximately 2 weeks through standard United States Mail.

You can also order the packet at the Catalog Request Form.


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