My new carpet cleaning service soon had a strong cheering section of both homeowners and business owners and managers as well as strong support from my local media. For example, in one of its annual “Best of Boston” editions, BOSTON Magazine proclaimed Drysdale’s as the Boston metropolitan area’s best carpet cleaning service. The BOSTON GLOBE, New England’s largest and most respected newspaper, twice featured my company as a service company it felt its many readers should know about. We have for years maintained a Straight “A” rating on AngiesList, the nation’s largest and most reliable consumer products and services ratings website. And frequently customers tell me that they found Drysdale’s on a Listserv in their own community, in which users share information on locally available services which they found to stand out from the ordinary.

1997 Best Carpet Cleaning

awarded to Drysdale’s All-Natural Carpet Care

Owner Mark Dullea is to dirty carpets and sofas what Mr. Clean is to the rest of your house. And unlike other companies, Dullea uses non-toxic cleaning agents that won’t harm the kids or upset the pets.

“A” Rating on Angie’s List

For several years in a row Drysdale’s All-Natural Carpet Care – the business model for Nature’s Quick-Dry – has been designated an “A”-rated, Super Service Award Winner by AngiesList.

Boston Sunday Globe Magazine

Mark’s green carpet cleaning business has been featured twice in the Globe Magazine.

Build A Green Small Business

Mark Dullea is cited by the author as a notable example of an Ecopreneur in Action. His Carpet Cleaning Business Start-Up Package is featured as an excellent way for people to start a green small business.

Green America

Certified for over a decade as a legitimate green business by GreenAmerica.


Many who have purchased one of my Challenger Business Start-up Packages have contacted me to comment on how they have been doing, and to suggest improvements to my system. What follows are some but by no means all of these comments. Many of them are posted on my Nature’s Quick-Dry Forum, which can be entered via this website. None of these comments were in any way solicited or otherwise prompted by me. Unlike companies which use paid endorsements, I have never paid for an endorsement or testimonial. Many who have posted comments on my Forum have also left their contact information, allowing their words to be verified if you choose to do so.

With regard to the testimonials below: most are from my Challenger/Nature’s Quick-Dry Forum. Others appeared on other Forums which serve the carpet cleaning industry. In some cases I have performed a minor level of editing. This was done only to result in a clearer narrative, and to correct misspellings without altering the intent of the poster’s words. You should be able to find most of these, often including the poster’s email address at the time of the posting, via an online search. Just use as your keyword search term a string of four or five words that appear anywhere in the testimonial, remembering to insert quotation marks at both the beginning and the end of your selected string of words.

Contact info was current at the time comments were posted. Readers of the testimonials will find some use of jargon which they may not understand. Examples: OP stands for Orbital Pad. That is the type of carpet cleaning performed by the Challenger and other random orbital floor machines. VLM: refers to Very Low Moisture, another way of identifying this kind of carpet cleaning. HWE: refers to hot water extraction, or so-called “steam” cleaning. Some HWE work is performed with truck-mounted equipment, and hoses that run from the truck into the premises where carpet is to be cleaned. Other HWE is performed with the use of portable extractors (porties), which are rolled into the house or business premises. The word padding means cleaning carpets with the OP system.

Nature’s Quick-Dry chooses to take the marketing High Road in situations where a Challenger fan’s post might disparage a competitor’s product, such as by posting how much better he or she believes the Challenger is compared to a competitor’s machine.  So when this has occurred in a post on our or any other carpet cleaning forum, in presenting it below as a Testimonial we remove that company’s business name or machine name and substitute “Brand X.”

“I have found that this business is more word of mouth than I thought. Today I got a call from a large gym that wanted a price to do four areas. They said they got my name from someone I did a job for. This person must have been impressed with the work I did to be willing to give a referral. I also got a call from another customer wanting to have his home done, one month after I did his jewelry store. It is true that if you do a good job, other jobs will follow. Referrals and repeat business. I love it!”

“I have not found a carpet I couldn’t clean with the Challenger. I wouldn’t hesitate to buy the Challenger if I had to do it over.”

“I just did a job at a daycare center in a church. The carpet was a mess but it came out looking great.”

“The Challenger offers a unique selling point that HWE does not: low moisture. I have been cleaning carpets for under a year and my customers are very happy that they can walk on their carpets in under two hours. I can charge more for this benefit, and they don’t mind paying for the convenience.”

“I want to say ‘Thank You, Mark’ for all your help this past year. Your help was critical for the health of my business. I really appreciate your effort and support.”

“You can not go wrong with the Challenger. It is very easy to use and does the job for me.”

“Easy as could be. The machine does an excellent job. Both areas of my carpet came up very nice.”

“I got my Challenger Friday. Tried it out.  Very smooth machine. It is a lot smoother than the other OP machine I used. Thanks, Mark.”

“You get a lot with this package. Good deal!”

“Love my Challenger, Mark. Wow, is it easy to use. Cleaned my own carpet with it today, and it looks great. Took half the time of using my portable.”

“I cleaned my first frieze (a type of low-pile shag carpet) with my Challenger last week, and the results were excellent.”

“As regards berber type carpeting, my Challenger does a great job.”

“The Challenger system is one step away from magic! I used it on a 20-year old worn down, high traffic carpet, and it restored it to near new condition.”

“So glad I followed your and everyone else’s advice about a Challenger. Great machine!”

“I highly recommend the Challenger. I’ve tried the portable route, and I don’t recommend it. OP cleaning with a Challenger gives better cleaning results.”

“One thing I admire about Challenger is the steadfast reliability of the machine. My Challenger keeps churning out great jobs for me.”

“The results I am getting are awesome, and the machine is running smooth.”

“I have a Challenger and a Brand X. They are both good machines. But if I could only keep one of them, it would be the Challenger.”

“I am glad to announce that I am taking my family on a much-deserved vacation to Disney World in a couple of weeks. Without my carpet cleaning business I would not have afforded this. Thanks so much, Mark.”

“I was speaking with another Challenger owner the other day. He has owned his Challenger for about a month. He also has a truckmount which he bought new about a year ago.  Before that he cleaned with a portable. He told me his Challenger gives him the same results as his truckmount, at a savings of tens of thousands of dollars.”

“Used the tile brush attachment with my Challenger in a mens room situation. Job took 8 minutes. The results looked as good as when I used a truckmount with the turbo-type tool. And took less than half the time.”

“The Challenger seems to do a better job on grout than the truckmounts and turbos. The bristles of the Challenger tile brush pick the grout lines clean.”

“I have to say that I love my Challenger. I use it every day.”

“Aside from liking the product, I was impressed with Mark. Seems like a straight shooter.”

(A Forum poster summarizing the results of a test between his truckmount and his just-received Challenger): “I must say, I seriously had my doubts.  But this orbital Challenger process may just become my ‘new ticket’. It’s an easy machine to operate,relatively light weight, but most importantly are my positive findings on its strong cleaning ability and short dry times. So that’s what I’ll sell: ‘Clean & Dry'”

“The dry times and cleaning ability are what sold me on this system. I get far better results than with my portie.”

“I am getting better results with OP than I got with HWE.”

“The results with the Challenger are fantastic. The folks that own this monster home – about 7000 s.f. of carpeting in a 12,000 s.f. house – were ecstatic. They gave my name to all their filthy rich friends who own a lot of businesses. Cha cha ching Baby!”

“The Challenger is a one-of-a-kind OP machine.”

“You will not be disappointed with what I call my Green Machine, my Challenger. I spent about 6 months cleaning carpet with a rotary machine before getting my Challenger, and I have not looked back since. Mark and the people at Challenger are class acts.”

“I tell prospective customers who ask what system I use, that while I used to use hot water extraction, I have found I am getting better results with VLM cleaning.”

“You’ve got to see it (results of cleaning carpet with a Challenger) to believe it. The test for me was to clean my own 20-year old trashed rug. The Challenger didn’t just clean it. It restored it. And it’s been doing that for everyone I have used it to clean for so far.”

“I can honestly and highly recommend the Challenger.”

“I was very pleased with the results. Customer was more than pleased. She is an interior decorator and is going to recommend us to all her friends and customers. Great job, Challenger!”

“Cleaned my first carpet with my new Challenger. My living room. I was impressed with the results. Mark, thank you.”

“If you need a positive endorsement of your Challenger Package, let me know. Best money I’ve ever spent.”

“The job went well. Customer works for a big law firm in town. After I did her carpet, the next day her lawyer boss  calls me to have the carpet in his offices cleaned. In my town, it’s who you know.”

“Cleaned my first carpet today. My living room. I was impressed with the results. It turned out great.”

“Go for it! I bought Mark’s start-up Package about two years ago. While there may be discussions as to which method is the best, I have never had a customer question my system. Once you show the customer a very dirty pad, they are sold.”

“I’ve researched all the OP and VLM machines and methods out there, and the Challenger was the right one for me. I love this machine.”

“I started my business about a year ago. I used to be a steam cleaner, but I would not go back to steam cleaning.  I did $1500 last week and 3 of my 6 customers were referrals. Mark is a great person to do business with. A+++ guy.”

“I just received my Challenger Package. I cleaned my own carpets and was pleased with the results. More importantly, my wife was pleased with the results.”

“Best customer service hands down!! Challenger Pad Systems claims 100% satisfaction. They truly stand by their word. This is one product that I recommend highly.”

“I did a $1395 job yesterday with my Challenger. Yippee!!”

“I’ve done 3 jobs now with the Challenger, and all have turned out well.”

“This is one smooth machine. Very well made. My compliments to the engineers.”

“As I was finishing a job, the owner’s property manager showed up for an inspection. She had  apparently seen the carpet before it was cleaned, and had recommended to her superior that it be torn out and replaced with new carpeting. When she saw the results of my work, she said ‘Holy Cow. I have to tell you this is really impressive.’ She then asked me for a bunch of my business cards.”

“Everyone I have dealt with has been a pleasure to do business with. I feel I’ve found good honest folks as business associates. Everyone has been superb in their customer treatment, and I believe it is because they are good people offering a good deal. I’ve done 3 jobs so far. Two were superb as far as the results. The other was OK.”

“This has been my busiest week yet, with jobs scheduled 7 days in a row. Now at about one month with my new Challenger, and I love it!”

“Cleaned my own carpets today. They were filthy. The bedrooms in particular are badly worn to the point of replacement. My honest critique is that the Challenger system exceeded my expectations. Carpets look fantastic. Overall – WOW!”

“Thank you for the info, Mark. Knowledgeable professionals like yourself who are willing to share their experiences make the transition into this business much more painless for newbies like me.”

“I have cleaned berber carpeting in several residences using the Challenger system and have had excellent results.”

“Mark runs a really good business, and so far I have no complaints about the people at Challenger. Only good things to say about both of them.”

“I have used HWE for 30+ years.  With regard to the question of which method ‘deep cleans’ the best, I happen to favor the OP method over all the others.”

“Cleaning carpets is pretty easy with the Challenger system. You may have some stains here and there that will be hard to get out, but the more you do the more you learn.”

“The cleaning ability of the Challenger will amaze you.”

“Customers ask me “Do you do low-moisture type of cleaning?’ When I say Yes, they ask when can I come. They don’t ask ‘how much?’ It’s great. I have not met a carpet I cannot clean.”

“I’m just starting out with the Challenger system. Did a couple of friends’ carpets for training. I am amazed at how clean they look.”

“I recently added a customer in an ultra high end condo who now considers me a GENIUS and a MIRACLE WORKER when it comes to removing upholstery stains. Her cleaning lady spilled some amount of a liquid containing blue dye on my customer’s window seat. Using my own unique method of cleaning upholstery, with the tool that comes with the Challenger Package, I went to work. It seemed to all come out, but I wasn’t able to be totally sure, since the fabric was still fairly wet (I was working alone in the condo; the customer was out)  But my customer, when she arrived home later, left me a message with my answering service saying how happy she was that all of the blue stain was gone. She also sent me a gushing Thank You note thru the mail. I charged her my minimum of $100. I was there for a total of 15 minutes.”

“In my opinion this cleaning method works great. I have not yet had an unsatisfied customer. I think 80% of my customers tip me because they are so impressed with the results.”

“This is an excellent Forum. I’ve learned so much about the business and know this is something I’ll continue to enjoy doing. Thanks for all the great advice.”

“Today I cleaned a customer’s three 40-year old oriental rugs. I used the method you posted. The rugs came out great. She was so impressed she gave me $20 more than my price, AND a bottle of Bailey’s Irish Cream.”

“Did a job yesterday for a new intown hotel customer. Used my big Orbitec CX-20 machine, which is kind of like my Challenger on steroids, plus my Challenger. Over 7200 s.f. of carpeting. With one helper, we finished the job in 2.5 hours. I charged .20/s.f.  Earned $1584, or $633 per hour. When the big jobs beckon, you definitely want to have a big machine like the CX-20 in your arsenal. This website sells the Orbitec as well as the Challenger. Be prepared.”

“I can only speak for the results from the Challenger system because I have not used another system. I get great results and I always guarantee my work, and I have never had to refund a customer’s money. The Challenger gives great results, even on the worst of carpets.”

“A big Thank You to Mark for your willingness to offer help every time we have sought it. I have called Mark a few times, and within a few minutes he has been able to give us information that might have taken hours to find by sifting through Forum entries.”

“For anyone new to this and who is curious about whether or not Mark’s system is good or not, our recent contract for over $30,000 worth of work with a hotel company is proof that this system cleans very well. You will get great results.”

“Marketing ‘green’ or all-natural cleaning works. Three recent customers contacted me – not the other way around. All were looking for odorless, chem-free solutions and were frustrated with those they had tried in the past.”

“I operate a window cleaning business and also use the Challenger/OP method of carpet cleaning as an add-on. I regret not getting involved sooner with this method. I am blown away by the results and so are my clients. I make twice as much cleaning carpets as doing windows.”

“Did a 29,000 s.f. furniture store today. About 60% covered by furniture, leaving about 12,000 s.f. of carpet to clean. Took about 9 hours. I charged just under $1200 – earning myself around $135 per hour.”

“I used my Challenger to clean oriental rugs. I flipped them over and vacuumed both sides. They came out awesome.”

“In my first week in this business, I have cleaned a furniture store, lobby, and a community center in a seniors’ building. I grossed $1925.”

“I did my first commercial job today at my wife’s hair salon. My wife was impressed with the end result. She said it looked almost brand new! It was a fun experience.”

“Love the Challenger.”

“I love the Challenger.”

“I found your Training Manual very helpful in a lot of ways. If I had to do it all over again, I would still buy your package.”

“The Challenger system works, and works very well. In fact, it is better IMO than any other method out there. I am the best carpet cleaner in my market BECAUSE I use this system.”

“In my opinion, do business with Mark. Here is why.  His system is low-cost. It works. And your customers will be very impressed. Mark continues to help us and to offer his knowledge free of charge. The people who make the Challenger stand behind their product. I had a small technical problem and the people at Challenger were hassle-free. They delivered the part that I needed. It is a good product sold by good business people.”

“I didn’t buy my Challenger Package from Mark. I thought I was being smart and saving money. That was a mistake. I now realize I should have spent the small amount of extra money for the stair & upholstery tool, and Mark’s training and marketing materials.”

“I love my Challenger. It is definitely a tool that can make you a professional, and it is the basis for a great business. You can look through this entire Forum, and you probably will not find one complaint about the Challenger. Mark, the owner/moderator of the Forum, is probably the most knowledgeable person on the Forum, and can answer all of anyone’s questions.”

“Yesterday I cleaned a customer’s solid peach-color area rug, and got it to look what I thought was pretty good. When my customer saw it, I was about to tell her that in order to get it any cleaner, she would have to send it out to a rug cleaning plant, and pay 3 or 4 times what I was charging her. But before I could open my mouth, she said ‘Omigod, that looks so much better than when I had it cleaned by sending it out 5 years ago.”

“If you want to clean carpets for a long career (the Forum poster says he is 64 years old) the OP/Challenger method is the way to go.”

“I am having success with my new Challenger system that I bought from Mark. It is an incredible machine.”

“I purchased a complete Challenger system from Mark over a year ago and am having great success. I made over $900 last weekend and there is no end in sight. This business is great.”

“Mark, thank you for the help you provide to all of us with this board.”

“Did a publishing company’s offices yesterday. Job measured out to 4135 s.f. Billed the first 2000 s.f. at .25/s.f. and the additional 2135 s.f. at .18/s.f. Grand total: $884.30. About $160 per hour, including vacuuming and moving some boxes and tables around. A 5.5. hour job.”

“Mark, you are so informative. That is why I am happy I did business with you. You are very knowledgeable about your own product, as well as the industry itself. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.”

“I used to clean carpets using hot water extraction. Then I found lower moisture methods, the Challenger in particular. I get better results, faster, easier, and it is an easier sell. If I had to do it over again, I’d start by getting low moisture equipment first.”

“Hi. I started out in the carpet cleaning business with a portable HWE extractor. Got less than average results. Then I discovered VLM methods. Bought a Cimex and a Challenger. Now I’m a full-time carpet cleaner because I am able to get the results I’ve always wanted.”

“This is Jerry H from Livermore California. I wanted to thank you, Mark, for calling me back and answering my questions. The job we spoke about turned out great. This Forum is awesome.  Mark is a wealth of information and the support is ongoing. Three thumbs up!”

“I recently started cleaning carpets with the Challenger and am impressed with the results.”

“I would buy another Challenger if I needed another machine.”

“An OP machine like the Challenger, with a grout brush, is an excellent way of providing the necessary agitation for cleaning tile and grout.”

“You have one happy customer here.  Not just because of the superior carpet cleaning ability of the Challenger, but also how the owners of the Challenger company stand behind their products.”

“Just did a house with 1890 s.f. of carpet. Total time involved, including driving to and from the house, was 7.5 hours. Made $1106, or just under $150 an hour.”

“I started my carpet cleaning business with no experience and actually had booked paying jobs before my equipment arrived. I am doing what I want to do, and making what I want to earn, with very little marketing. It’s worked out great for me.”

“My Challenger runs day after day and continues to amaze me and anyone who happens to watch.”

“What I have appreciated about Mark Dullea’s comments and responses on the Forum over the years is that he is unfailingly knowledgeable, honest and gentlemanly. The board is his design. His wit and professionalism shine forth in every thread. The great thing about the Challenger Forum (renamed in 2015 The Nature’s Quick-Dry Forum) is that it is about business. It is about sharing the power of knowledge and experience so everyone can be lifted up and successful in their business. I am proud and grateful to be associated with Mark because he stands for that empowerment.”

“I’m so happy with my business, and I want to thank you for all your assistance. I work a full-time job and operate my carpet cleaning business on the side. 90% of my business comes from word-of-mouth referrals. This week I took in $480, and I am happy with that. I’m fully confident that if I should become laid off I could do very well with this business. For now it’s great to have a second income which is fun and profitable.”

“I am listing my jobs and how much each paid during this past week.1. Sunday night:  big box store – $900.  2. MondayTuesday: hotel – $1185.  3. Wednesday: funeral home – $1140.  4. Thursday: private home – $220.  5. Friday: condo building common areas – $1170. Week’s total: $4615. My labor costs for a helper on some of these jobs, paid for on an hourly basis, came to between $500 and $600.”

“One of my regular customers recently called to schedule an appointment. She has all-white carpet throughout the house AND she runs a doggie day care business in the house as well.  BAD COMBINATION, especially as the dogs frequently run around the house. (What is she thinking?) I have been there several times previously, always gently suggesting that she ought to replace all the carpet with a more appropriate floor covering, possibly ceramic tile. She always nods and says ‘I know, I know’, but never does anything. Somehow I always manage to get the mess cleaned up. The last time when she called, I was scheduled to be away for the next several days. Her daughter had just visited and urged her to get someone in to clean, so she admitted to me that she called the local Stanley Steemer franchisee. She then told me what an awful job they did. Nearly all the stains came back, and the carpet felt wet for a long time, as much as 3 days after they did the job. She then promised to never ‘stray’ again.”

“Yesterday I achieved a one-day PB – a Personal Best, income-wise: just over $3400. On the morning job, from 8AM until around 1:45 PM, condo building common areas. 1260 s.f. of hallways plus 104 carpeted stairs, for a job total of $753. Then in the evening, cleaning the carpets in the national HQ of OXFAM America, the international famine relief agency. 12,615 s.f. at .17/s.f., plus some extras beyond what we usually do there (quarterly job) for a job total $2680. Combined gross from both jobs: $3433. Labor costs of around $350.”

“I want to say thanks to Mark. I am brand new to this business, and am impressed with the way you market. I use a lot of your marketing suggestions and have gotten a good response so far.”

“This green machine (Challenger) is a money maker. I bought it about 10 months ago and it is a work horse.”

“The Challenger Pad System is a money making machine. Since I have added this service to my business, many of my customers have used it.”

“I do mostly residential jobs and I have been using the Challenger machine with great success.”

“Today I went back to look at a traffic lane on white carpeting on a job that I didn’t quite finish a couple of days ago. When I got there the customer told me how thrilled she was that all of the carpet that I had cleaned earlier, including the traffic lane, came out looking nice and white and clean.”

“I just wanted to drop a quick Thank You to Mark D for spending some time with me on the phone to answer some questions about the Challenger and the carpet cleaning industry in general.”

“Yesterday brought in just over $1700. A day care center, working alone (800 s.f. at .25/s.f.) and a funeral home, working with one helper (4700 s.f. at .32/s.f.)”

“I have been using the Challenger for about 4 months, and my customers have all been very pleased with the results. The service I have received from the manufacturer has been awesome.”

“I recently did a job for a customer who found me by reading my glowing reviews on AngiesList. Some of the bedrooms in particular were really badly stained, resulting in a fair amount of tedious work trying to remove or diminish them. As a result of this attention to detail on my part, I took in somewhat less than usual on this job – around $80 per hour. As I was leaving, my customer said ‘I’ve never seen anybody work so hard to clean my carpets’. Her husband added ‘They really look awesome.’  This job should result in my getting another A-level AngiesList review.”

“I’m happy with my Challenger and so are many people I know.”

“I have found where I live (I live in Oklahoma) that 100% of the customers I have met, who have used steam cleaning in the past, prefer OP cleaning. So go out and get a Challenger.”

“I just put my brand new Challenger to the test in my own home. All I can say is WOW. What clean carpet we have now. My wife was thrilled with the results. My son walked barefoot into the living room and said ‘Wow. This carpet feels so soft!’ It really does have a new feel to it underfoot. I couldn’t believe it myself.”

“We have used the Challenger on several wood floor refinishing projects. We have had terrific results, so we know the Challenger is up to the task. You can have confidence in using yours.”

“I am in the final decision mode. Actually, I have made my decision to go with Mark’s Challenger Package. Mark is a great guy, and very personable. I liked him from the moment I met him.”

“I’m a newbie. I just bought a Challenger Package from Mark a month or so ago. It’s a great package, and Mark is very helpful and always there to help you get up and running. The package was shipped promptly, and the Challenger is a great machine.”

“Thanks, Mark, for developing a great carpet cleaning system and business model. I’ve recently taken delivery of my Challenger and the associated products in your package. I cleaned my first carpet yesterday and the Challenger process did a fantastic job. My wife couldn’t believe how great the carpet looked and felt. I’m looking forward to introducing your process to my entire community. For me, this represents a life free from the corporate rat race.”

“I think you will find the Challenger to be an extremely reliable piece of equipment.”

(re. car detailing) “I used Mark’s stair tool last week on the carpet in my heavily used Ford Expedition. Not only did it clean it, it stood the carpet fibers up nicely.”

“Hi. I am new around here, and I love this fantastic Forum.”

“I did a job yesterday for someone just moving into a home with several rooms of white, dingy, 1980s-style deep pile carpeting. Cleaning it took me more time and effort than with more normal carpet. But when it was all done, the customer looked out across the now substantially brightened living room carpet and said he was really impressed with the results. It’s very gratifying to hear people praise your work in this way.”

“While I have several times exceeded $1400 on one-day commercial carpet cleaning jobs, I just finished my first $1400 one-day HOUSE job, working alone. 800+ s.f. of area rugs; plus upholstery: a sectional sofa; a couple of chairs; a loveseat; and two ottomans. Just under 8 hours work.  About $175 per hour.”

“My Challenger has paid itself off and then some, doing only a few jobs in the 4 months since I bought my Package from Mark.” (Note from Mark: this person has a full-time job in sales). “I got a call from a lady last weekend because she said she had heard about how great of a job I had done. If you work hard, people will treat you right. They will beat your door down. You can’t lose. Thanks, Mark.”

“I just purchased the 3/4 hp Challenger and am absolutely impressed.”

“I did my first job with my new Challenger today. It was a very dirty bike shop carpet. I was amazed at what I was able to get up.”

“I just did 3 rooms in a house using my Challenger. This was only a very short time after my customer had hired a Chem-Dry franchisee to do the same work. She didn’t like their results and called me. My pads came up black. NOW she’s happy.”

“I just did a humongous job, with one helper, on a house, The job was tied in with a real estate closing. I couldn’t even enter the house until 10 AM, and the movers were scheduled to arrive at 2PM with all the customers’ furniture. Had to work faster than I am comfortable with. Fortunately the soil level was light.  I think the house was only 3 years old.  Job summary: 2515 s.f. at .40 per s.f. = $1006. 38 carpeted stairs at $3.60 per stair = $136.80. Total: 1142.80. $285.70 per hour worked. I pay my helper $25 per hour, so my labor costs were right around $100.”

“I did a demo today to try and get a tile & grout cleaning job. The previous year my customer used steam cleaners, with their so-called turbo disc attached to their wand. These guys weren’t able to get the grout lines clean. I used my Challenger and tile & grout brush. The customer was impressed. We got the job!”

“I had a great morning with a tile and grout job and an ugly 8 x 12 rug. Disgusting! The people had dogs and had never had it (the rug) cleaned. We got the rug shining and the grout to the real color.”

“The Challenger is great stuff. We just got awarded a $6000 per year job, and are working on a $16,000 bid. We have an incredible niche in our market.”

“The Challenger is an awesome machine.”

“I cleaned my first white berber today. My customer was impressed and loved the results.”

“Several months ago I reached out to the local autism society touting the organic/bio products, low-noise equipment, and fast dry times. The response has been nothing short of spectacular. As an example, I did a job the other day for a family with an autistic daughter. The parents told me their past experience with steam cleaners left their daughter sick and withdrawn. After I was done, the customers were amazed, first, with the thoroughness of the cleaning process, and, second, with the lack of smell and the fact their daughter did not regress as she had done previously. The word has gone out to this community and I regularly get their business.”

“We all need to realize our green approach to cleaning carpets has a number of unique features we can use to our advantage in the marketplace. At my company I am building a service that is truly ‘organic/green’ and effective. My motivation was born through my contact with several veteran carpet cleaners and jan/san guys whose long and systemic exposure to traditional cleaning chemicals has had a visible and pronounced negative effect on their health. I figured if I and my co-workers were going to work with cleaning products, we, as well as our customers wouldn’t have to experience the same ill effects as those guys.”

“Green carpet cleaning is an excellent opportunity for you to earn cash, whether on a part-time or full-time basis. The Challenger in my opinion is the best machine for low-moisture, earth-friendly cleaning. If you are looking for a system like this, and you would like the best support, then contact Mark Dullea. He sells these products and machines, and he provides excellent support. His website has awesome information on how to start your own business, and what equipment and supplies you will need.”

“Mark is great to deal with.”

“My Challenger and its tile & grout brush work great for cleaning tile and grout. I have restaurants that I do every 2 to 4 weeks. It’s a lot of tile and they love the results. In their kitchens it’s not black anymore. I have even cleaned some concrete floors for them.”

“I just finished doing our condo with my new Challenger. I have to say that it exceeded my expectations and then some. My wife was really impressed with how the spots and stains were removed without even using the spotter samples. She is really anti-chem, and was amazed that it took less than an hour to dry. When we moved into our new  place 3 months ago the carpets had just been cleaned by a steam cleaner, and they resoiled really quick. The carpets in our house are not new but they look ten times better after being done with the Challenger and the Orbit Natural products.”

“Just like you I get calls from young families with babies who want organically cleaned carpet. They find me on the web or via social media, and I believe over time they will be the rule. I’ve also done well with doctors’ offices.”

“In addition to our Challenger, we have extensively used the Oreck Orbiter (now sold as the Bissell Orbiter), and it has been extremely valuable. It’s easy for stairs and is very durable. It’s good for pre-scrubbing traffic lanes and getting into hard to reach places like under tables in restaurants.  I cannot stress enough how much this machine will benefit your cleaning process.”

“I showed up at an apartment filled with really ratty looking indoor/outdoor carpet. It looked awful. I was thinking ‘This will never come clean’. But I started, with the customers watching me  -a newbie – the whole time. When I was finished, the customers (both of them) told me they were amazed at what I got out of their carpet. I was also. They were so happy with the job that they gave me a tip.”

“It was only my second job. A log house with one huge area of carpet. Things were going what I thought to be normal until I started getting near their big wood-burning fireplace. Now my pads were turning black almost as soon as I started to clean with them. When it was done, the owners stood there with their eyes wide and their jaws agape. They said they were astonished at how good it looked and how much dirt I had gotten out of it.”

“I recently cleaned a customer’s carpeted basement, a small office, and a flight of stairs. The carpet was plush and pink, and had a lot of stains. I did as much as I could, but there were still a few stains that I couldn’t remove. I offered to discount my bill by 25% because of this. He said I was crazy. He said ‘What’s a couple of stains. You did a great job.’ I have already gotten a referral from him and his wife.”

“Last week I did a job in a basement. The carpet had never been cleaned in 25 years, and was trashed. I decided to do a limited test area, and then called in my customers for a look. I had initially been inclined to pass on the job, and let them try someone else. But by using my most aggressive pads, my test area actually looked pretty good.  Both he and she were super-impressed with my test results, and said ‘Please continue.’  They tipped me $125 above what I billed them. Then they scheduled me to clean 3 sofas,which would bring in an additional $360.”

“I bought Mark’s Challenger Package several months ago. Great investment. I have recently completed several paying jobs and everything turned out great.”

“I am finally out of the restaurant business and into the carpet cleaning business. I’ve been on a few jobs already with great results and feedback so far.”

“We just acquired a casino account. They own two, and there’s a third one in our town with personal ties to the first two. The one we just acquired as a customer has about 18,000 s.f. of carpet. We also just acquired a restaurant customer that had 6 cleaners going after it. We did a demo at the front entrance area two days after their regular cleaner had done its regularly scheduled job. The owners were amazed by our Challenger’s ability and by the inadequacy of their current service. We are now in line to pick up seventeen of their restaurants.”

“I have a customer who paid me $325 for 3 hours worth of carpet cleaning because she wants safe (green) products used in the vicinity of her 10-year old dog.”

“It’s been three years now since I started my business with OP (Challenger-style) cleaning. Wow. It goes so fast. I love OP cleaning, and would never go back to work for someone. Thanks to you guys who post on this Forum, and Thank You Mark for selling me your Challenger Package. In three years I’ve had only 2 callbacks, and now have over 800 happy customers. I only do internet marketing and some other free stuff.”

“I got a job from a movie theater manager.  He owns his own hot water carpet extractor, but had become frustrated with so many spots all coming back. The carpet was really filthy so I had to experiment a little bit. Result? It came out fabulous! The manager said it looked great. He then arranged for us to do the rest of the lobby, two conference rooms, AND all seven of this company’s theaters. Plus they want the theater seats cleaned too. I would like to thank Mark for his knowledge and his time in guiding me into and through this little adventure.”

“There is a new kind of pad designed to allow anyone with a floor machine, whether rotary or orbital, to be able to hone and polish marble and many other natural stone floors. I just did a demo for the manager of a Four Points Sheraton Hotel near me. You only have to spray a little water onto the floor before starting in with a succession of pads. The pads take you from the lower numbers (200 grit) up thru the highest numbers (11,000 grit). When I was finished, the manager came over for a look, and was really impressed. Now I’m in the running for a job that a traditional marble refinishing expert might bid as high as $10,000. I think I’ll plan on coming in a little below this to improve my chances. A couple of days later, in a residential setting, I went thru the same process and got even better results. This time I spent a little more time with the polishing (11.000 grit) pads. I’ve read elsewhere that although this technique was developed with traditional 175-RPM floor buffers in mind, the results are better and faster when using random orbital (OP) machines, due to their much faster operating speeds.”

“Working alone, on short notice, I did a job for a Jewish community center west of me. It was larger than I thought it was going to be – over 4500 s.f. of carpeted area. It took about 4 and one-half hours to complete. I used the encapsulation cleaning method. I had proposed, and they had agreed, to a price of $775. That’s about $172 per hour. The Facility Manager was very pleased with the job, even though there were a couple of spots that I couldn’t remove completely.”

“I have been using the Oban odor neutralizer that came with Mark’s start-up kit. I used it recently on some pungent dog vomit stain smells, and also on some carpets and upholstery that had become saturated with smoke. The Oban product has cleared up all of the odor problems 100%. It leaves behind a pleasant scent, which then dissipates the same day. It’s like magic in a bottle.”

“I also have had great results with Oban. We used it at one of the local Hampton Inn Hotels that we service. They wanted to get rid of the smell of cigarette smoke in several rooms. It worked great. You can apply it to carpets, furniture, and even walls with no problem at all. And the company that makes it provides great service.”

“We have had great success with our Challengers. They do exactly what they are supposed to do, and are so smooth to run. We just cleaned carpets in a place where they had not been cleaned in ten years. It was beige cut pile carpet. The homeowner was completely blown away with the results. We were too!”

“The Challenger is a great machine and extremely durable. We have cleaned hundreds of homes with it and have never had to replace the pad driver. You will not go wrong purchasing this system from Mark. It gets the job done!”

“A couple of years ago I was considering investing around $11,000 in the equipment and supplies that I would need to start a lawn care business. But I couldn’t quite ‘pull the trigger’ and do this. A friend said I could make ‘a ton of money’ if I bought some kind of carpet cleaning machine he was selling. Instead, for about 90 days I spent reading everything I could about
carpet cleaning as a business, coming back over and over to Mark’s website here which sells the Challenger Package. One day I gave Mark a call.  He sold me on the concept. Turns out I live (in Texas) near to where they make the Challengers. I drove over there and arranged to rent one for a few days. Great results. So I bought Mark’s Package and went to work. Now I get lots of referrals. Mark is still the ‘Guru of Floor Care.’ I call him often for advice on spots, pricing, and business in general. Mark has done a great service to many, myself included, mentoring us in ways that many people charge good money for.”

“The Challenger lives up to the hype. I have cleaned carpet for several years, both in my own rental units and as a business. I had always done HWE (hot water extraction) as my main method. After speaking with Mark about the Challenger, I was still skeptical. However, I’m glad I took the risk of learning more about OP and VLM carpet cleaning, and then bought a Challenger. It cleans everything from the lightly soiled carpets all the way up to the nasties. But I’ve learned that when offered the choice, customers prefer that carpets be both clean and dry. And it just makes sense to offer this service at a premium price. Bottom line: I give it ‘Thumbs Up.’ “

(Challenger owner commenting on local newspaper article covering his recently opened business) “Mark, thought you might like to read this. One of your Challengers is a media star. Thank you for getting me going in this business. You were a big difference on me pursuing this, and I thank you for the time spent with me back in ’08. (To read the article, do a search which combines the keywords “” and “lance comfort”)

“Did a whole house today with the Challenger, and it came out great. Lots of carpet, plus 17 stairs. Made $495. Thanks again, Mark.”

“Merry Christmas to all, and thanks for all the help, Mark.”

“Buy Mark’s start-up package. I’ve been at it for year and a half and I’m going strong. Why work for someone else when you can do it yourself? I work hard but I am actually building something for me and my family. Life is Great.”

“Start small. Keep costs low. Look professional. Network, network, and then network some more. It takes a bit longer starting from scratch but it can be done in bits and pieces if needed. Some will still work a regular job until they can afford to quit or work part time. OP carpet cleaning is a great way to go.”

“My carpet cleaning company, which uses only Challengers, has for many years maintained an ‘A’ rating on AngiesList in our metro area. I have just been notified by people at the AngiesList national HQ in Indianapolis that we have just been awarded their ‘Super Service’ Award. This means that we are now in the  top 5% of all reviewed companies in our industry.”

“I have twice tackled water stains in carpeted basements which have experienced flooding. I had great success both times with my Challenger. Neither time was there any remaining trace of the water stains, which are well known in the industry to be very difficult to remove. My customers were thrilled.”

“I have been in business for three months now with the Challenger, and I love this system.”

“Tried my new Challenger last night on a bank-owned home that I just bought. It had the worst black filtration lines along all of the carpet edges, and was all dirty stained carpet. Using the various products I received with my Challenger Package, the black lines for the most part are gone, saving me some $2000 for new carpet. Great machine and great products! My wife was very pleased with the carpets. I even had my 9-year old son do some of the work with the Challenger. It is a simple to operate piece of money-making equipment. Thanks, Mark, for getting the Package to me in time.”

“I just did a job where the vibrations created by the Challenger kept bringing deeply embedded potting soil up to the surface. I kept alternating between vaccing and padding. The customer was awed because he thought all of the potting soil was gone a year before.”

“On a recent job my Challenger kept bringing a lot of cat hair up to the surface, and rolled it into little balls. After I finished cleaning, I then vacuumed up all the hair balls.”

“I use my Challenger as a buffer on vinyl tile floors. It strips finishes great and buffs OK too. It doesn’t sling stripper all over the walls and baseboard nearly as much as do my rotary machines, due to the oscillation. Scrubs better than my 2-speed rotary machine.”

“Real nasty job today. I had to use a FiberPlus scrubbing pad. Low-cut berber with nasty pet stains. Using my Vacaway Intensity Green cleaner boosted with Spot & Boost, the nasty stains just seemed to melt away. When I was finished, the carpet looked damn near new.”

“I did the rest of the berber. It took only 1.5 hours to dry, and it looks great. Used the stair tool, and my wife couldn’t be happier. Previous to this I had used the Bissell (store-bought) home cleaning machine, and figured I’d never get the berber clean. The Challenger rocks.”

“I got a call today from a prospect. They had little oil stains all over the office area. Dirt had then become mixed in and stuck to the oil spots. I was able to respond quickly and went in and did a demo for them with my Challenger. When I finished the demo the stains were gone and stayed gone. The two other companies that had earlier done demos had most of the stains reappear. I think my Challenger-based business is a great opportunity for a novice carpet cleaner like myself to come in and out-perform companies that have been in business for years.”

“I have recently gained two new customers who offer services in massage (not the ‘Happy Endings’ type of massage), accupuncture, and various skin treatments. Day spas, some call them. All of these businesses use a lot of oil, and many are carpeted to try and keep the premises quiet and soothing. Some of the oil involved drops onto the carpet. Oil spots look bad enough by themselves, and it only gets worse when soil from shoes starts to stick to the oily areas. In one of the massage places, I sprayed (with one of the good oil break-up products I learned about on this Forum) then with my Challenger I scrubbed with a Fiber type of pad, then finished with terrycloth pads. It didn’t look perfect, but the owner was delighted. Previously she had always used HWE cleaners, and the oil stains never really went away.  The other place had wool carpet, again with a lot of oil stains and soil. I used a similar process, ridding the carpeted areas of just about all of the offending oil stains, along with the much more easily removed everyday carpet soil. Both of these business are now my regular customers. Having the high levels of agitation available to you that the Challenger’s oscillation movement provides will enable you to succeed in many situations like this, where those still using carpet cleaning methods left over from last century are unable to achieve the customer satisfaction.”

“About 4 months ago I received my Challenger machine package from Mark. I wanted to start a business that had low overhead and also provided me with something different from what others were doing. I have quickly paid off my investment in the package, and the word is getting out. We are going into businesses that just had their carpets cleaned and then cleaning a small section in order to show them how much soil had been left in the carpet by their current company. They have been amazed. I also landed eight AT&T wireless stores and they were thrilled that we could clean their carpets  as they conducted business. I can’t say Thank You enough to Mark for all his help. He is always available and is very committed to my success.”

“I bought my Challenger from Mark about 2 years ago. Slow at first. Previous to that, I think I bought every type of equipment you can buy to clean carpets with. I have stayed steady, business volume-wise, for the past 2 years, but just landed my largest account ever last month – 15 commercial buildings cleaned twice a year at $1500 per cleaning. A total of $45,000 per year. Thanks again, Mark. I have made more money with the Challenger than I have with any other piece of equipment I own.”

“It’s January, and I am shocked at how busy I am. I am completely booked this week, and booking well into next week. I guess when you do good work the people will come.”

“Challenger has been my most trouble-free OP machine by far.”

“Man, I love my Challenger. And trust me, I’ve given this machine a beating and it continues to give me smooth, maintenance-free service. It’s like those Timex commercials I remember: it takes a licking and keeps on ticking.”

“I love this machine. It’s been running great for eight years.”

“Seriously, this machine has been The Best. I use it for mostly residential and it always does a quality job. I will also use it on commercial if I need to follow up on some tough traffic lanes.”

“I started my business with the Challenger. Very well made, easy to run, smooth, and will do a great job.”

“The Challenger is a nice unit. It’s the perfect addition to a truckmount for pre-scrub, post-padding, or both. Or as a stand-alone method when dry times are a concern.”

“I’ve owned a Challenger and found it to be a great machine. Flawless operation for 4 years. Sold it to help a friend out. It gave him flawless service for years.”

“I have a Challenger OP machine. I was skeptical at first, but now I am very glad that I stuck with VLM. My business is now 90 – 95% VLM because of the Challenger. If I were starting all over from day #1 in carpet cleaning, this would be my choice.”

(HWE user posting about the Oreck/Bissell Orbiter on a Forum aimed mainly toward truck mount operators)

“I got mine solely for residential bathroom floor grout cleaning. Out of curiosity one day I used it on some moderately soiled carpets and was hooked. And for stairs, there’s simply nothing better.”

“The benefit of the Bissell Orbiter is in having a very effective and versatile tool to use primarily in the furnished residential setting, in smaller areas, and in its being lightweight enough to be able to be used several times daily without killing yourself.”

“The Bissell Orbiter is BAD ASS! It really boosted my results on traffic lanes and furniture lines. I wish I had not bought my Mytee Hot Turbo (portable HWE) extractor. The thing is useless.”

“Mechanical agitation is a portable’s best friend. It will make your day a lot easier.” The follow-up post, on a truckmount oriented Forum, was “You are not kidding, especially when you do 4 – 5 jobs a day. I use the Orbiter on every house and I swear my customers love that machine.”

“Takes me a little time with the Orbiter, but takes me less time with the wand, so it all balances out, and I get better results. Puts less stress on my portable since I do not have to use as much water. Also helps my pump, since I do not have to crank it up to 450 psi on the nasties.”

“Having used both Brand X and the Challenger, I much prefer working with the Challenger. Seems to be a lot smoother operation and a simpler design for the handle release. I found that the cable release on the Brand X was much more prone to breakage and stretching, whereas the Challenger’s simple foot release never gave a problem. Go with the Challenger and I think you will enjoy it more.”

“The Challenger is a smooth puppy that I abuse daily and it just keeps going.”

“My new Challenger arrived Friday. I took it out of the box and did a few carpets in the building where I supervise the cleaning crew at night. I did a section in front of the elevator, where it did a good job of lifting the pile which was very matted down from all of the foot traffic. Seven hundred people work in the building. Colors were more vibrant too. My first impression of this machine on commercial carpet is positive. Machine is very smooth. Quality is good. It was much easier than using HWE. I think the Challenger will work great for residential  and small commercial jobs.”

“Smooth is the word for the Challenger. I have tried all the OP machines on the market and the Challenger is like silk. Some cleaners have likened the other OP machines to running a jackhammer.”

“What I really like about the pad cleaning system is how easy it is! Much easier and faster than setting up an extractor.”

“I used my Challenger on a bad traffic path between a cafeteria and a fitness room last night…..After it dried it really stood out because it was cleaner than the rest of the carpet. I’m lovin’ this!”

“My Challenger is the smoothest machine in the industry.”

“If you are going to OP, Challenger is the name.”

“I’ve personally been in the business for 22 years. Until a few years ago you couldn’t GIVE me low moisture cleaning. If it wasn’t truck mounted, it wasn’t clean. Boy, did I ever have my eyes opened. Since getting our OP machines, I can say that in the past 2 years, I could probably count on my fingers the amount of times that our truck mount has moved. I have both the Challenger 3/4 hp and the Brand X 3/4 hp machines. All the guys prefer working with the Challenger. It’s smoother operating, has fewer finicky parts like cables, etc. And it’s considerably less expensive.”

“I like my Challenger a lot. It has given me confidence in my residential carpet cleaning skills like nothing else has to this point.”

“For homes I would use the Challenger. It is easy to get in and out of the house, and less bulky to use in the house. You can get into smaller areas, and up and down stairs much safer and easier.”

“Challenger has been my most trouble-free OP by far.”

“I just did a 3500 s.f. house. It was empty. I bid $980 and got the job. …… Carpet was white berber, even in the kitchen and bathrooms. Some rooms, the carpet was trashed.  Other rooms, not quite that bad. I think the people even slept with muddy boots on. In the master bedroom, next to where the bed had been, the carpet was black with dirt. The Challenger was up to the task. It was the most money I have ever made in one day.”

“I did a demo at a large retirement facility – a total of over 165,000 s.f. of carpeted area. I brought my Challenger in. The Facility Manager looked at me, then looked at my Challenger, then asked how what he called a floor buffer could clean carpets. He looked dumbfounded. I sprayed some cleaner down in a small hallway that looked well used. I looked for the biggest stains. I ran the Challenger over them and they vanished. He could not believe the stains were gone. He told me his steam guy could eliminate stains like that for a day or two, but they always come right back. I was told that I would have to wait a week so that they could look at the area I just did to see if the stains would come back. Then, a week later, he called me and said I passed the test and got the job. We agreed on a price of .20 a sq. ft., – or about $33,000 for the whole job. It will be done in various sections throughout the year.”

“A representative of Brand X likes to make the unsubstantiated claims that since his company’s machines have a slightly larger orbit (all of 1/4 inch, I believe) these machines are therefore “faster” and “clean better”. First of all, faster does not necessarily mean better. (Most women I know could explain why this is so.)   You could push an OP machine around a room with the speed of an Olympic sprinter without necessarily removing much soil.  And as regards the dubious “cleans better” claim, this is simply so much marketing ballyhoo and blather, and has never been in any way substantiated by any neutral testing lab – public, private, or university. So if you encounter this individual’s puffery of his products, try and use your God-given powers of critical thinking, and be skeptical of this kind of marketing hyperbole.”