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175 floor machine vs Op machine, new Encap guy
First of all let me say hello to all and thank you for allowing me to post hear.

I am very new to the Encap game, I have chatted with Encapman a few times and just became even more interested, so I hope you guys will accept me as I am trying to educate myself.

I have been HWE guy for the past several years but now I am very interested in Encap.

So it would be greatly appreciated if you guys could help educate me on Encap.

I would like to start with what is the better machine to go with 175 or OP machine?

I keep hearing that you can get the same results with the 175, that is hard for me to believe, I will leave it up to you PROS to tell me right from wrong, but if I can get the same results for under $700 bucks then WOW!

I know price plays a big roll, I'm not worried about that I want the best equipment for this new add on for my company, (I like the Oreck Low Boy) I plan on switching rolls with HWE and Encaping, I only want to use HWE when it is absolutely nessasary.

I will try to find post about most of my questions but if I can not find answers I hope you guys will bare with me if it sounds like I am repeating a bunch of questions that may have been asked hear already.

I would like to Thank every one ahead of time for any education that you guys provide to me!

Jump in the water's fine! If u search past posts you will find I was in the same boat 7 or so months ago...changed from hwe and the whole bit....i now own a low boy w/bigboy wheels, crb,cimex,175 & small porty and lots of fans...if your doing more residential I recommend the low boy then a crb.. I like to scrub with the crb it gets down deep and pulls up stuff hwe leaves behind also scrubs the heck out of the dirt then follow up with the low boy to absorb extra soil into pads. Many jobs that are light soil I straight encap with crb run fan and post vacuum 45 minutes later...most jobs I complete are dry bone dry when I leave.as far as commercial to me cimex is king but the low boy can get the same results just may take little more time...the 175 comes out on the real nasty commercial carpets to padcap after using the cimex..i will soon replace the 175 for another lowboy so I have a commercial unit and a residential because I don't like to mix the 2 restaurants really ugly a machine imho....the porty only come out for pee and poop period....
Don't let the initial price of the 175 make your decision. I started one year ago with a 175. By April, I dumped it for an Orbot. The 175 was not designed for carpet cleaning, although they can be utilized as such. They are not mobile (heavy, small wheels), you must carry them up and down stairs, you must constantly deal with the rotational torque, and you have to have a separate sprayer (another piece of equipment to carry). Most importantly, they are not productive, either in commercial or residential settings. In commercial work, if you can get 800SF an hour bonnet cleaning with a 175, you are doing well. Compare that to 2-3,000 SF an hour with other tools (OP or Cimex). With price competition in the marketplace, you have to be productive in your work effort, and the cost of your supplies. The 175 just does not stand up in any respect, in my experience.

If I had stuck with the 175, I would likely be out of business now. Instead, the Sprayborg and Cimex I have turned around my labor efficiency. Switching to the Releasit products have cut my chemistry costs in half, and have also contributed to my labor productivity. As such, I can now drive market pricing that still makes me money, but my local competitors now have to scramble to meet.
Ed Elliott

Wow Ed, I guess after all these years of using my 175, I have been running my business all wrong.

I stated "in my experience", and supplied details of my experience. I am glad your experience is different, and would be pleased to hear how so.
Ed Elliott

I have had a good run with my 175. The newer machines are much lighter then the older ones. I have a Nobles with a tank and for my commercial jobs it works just fine. Hydrox or DS and some FP Pads and I am making money.

As for residential work I have had no problems, I do bring in a sprayer as I don't use a tank on resi work and yes going up stairs can be a problem, but that's why I have a 16 yr old that comes with me. He has to earn his keep somehow. And I do understand that some of you work solo.

Shampoo brush drivers have been around for years when carpet shampooing was carpet shampooing. You know when you shampooed a carpet and in a week due to poor quality chemicals the carpet was soiled again.

And I have owned and used my share of machines in the past. I have had 3 Cimex (2 19 inch, 1 15 inch), 2 Challengers, 1 Vento (worst purchase ever).

Now since I will be going more resi in the next year I will be getting either a Low Boy or a Challenger once again. As home owners don't want to see old wax and stripper on your machines. So this machine will be for resi work only.
Thanks guys, I just wanted to be sure I was going down the right path, I own a Cimex and I love it for commercial, I wanted to make the right choice for residential OP or 175, That being said I will buy the low boy.

I have another question does it make a big difference with wheels down or up?

I think wheels down would be a lot easier on life but I could be wrong considering I have never used a OP machine before.

Wheels down makes life much easier. There's no side to side pull (torque). It makes the machine track in a straight line. Overall the machine handles smoother with practically no effort at all. And the large wheels make it easier to transport and to climb steps. The difference is that a day of working with a standard machine will wear against your body, whereas with wheels down you can work all day with minimal fatigue. And all of the scrubbing energy gets transferred to the carpet instead of up the handle of the machine, so the argument is that there's a scrubbing advantage too.
Thank you jtmellon for your response. I apologize if my enthusiasm for my other two machines offended you. It was certainly not my intent.

Two examples:

I worked 4-8 vacant apartments 5 or 6 days a week for three months this summer. Every single one I worked involved at least one, and as many as six flights of stairs. Since the Sprayborg has big wheels, it kept me from carrying a machine up and down the stairs. Not having a spray cart kept me from an additional 4-8 round trips from the van to the unit (I do use a bug sprayer for pre-spray...). By the end of the summer, I had it down to three round trips for each unit. I am now working on a custom dolly that will reduce my round trips to two per unit, with nothing to carry. I would have never been able to do this work, physically, with my 175.

I worked a 3500SF church sanctuary early this year with the 175, and it took me all day. It wasn't really a great finished job either. Fortunately, they had me back after I bought the Sprayborg. This time, I did 4500 SF in half the time, and did a much better job. I was able to cut the price in half for them, and got two more commercial referrals from the church. I am anxious to return there with my Cimex this fall, as I anticipate cutting the time and price again. For me, this represents big productivity, and a competitive advantage.

cannon100, again, based on my experience, the wheels down is simply a physically easier and more productive process. I use my Sprayborg for all my resi work, and for some smaller commercial. I think the LowBoy that ES offers is a much better value proposition than the orbot. I anticipate buying at least one before next summer.
Ed Elliott

Cannon, I have never used a 175 machine so I have no first hand experience but have used an OP for over ten years and added wheels down recently. A wheels down OP is very easy to use and transport up stairs.
Very easy on the body! Logic alone tells me that an OP is scrubbing the fibers from all sides rather than swiping over it. The motion and agitation also brings hair and junk to the surface in a way that is still hard for me to believe after all this time.
I can vac with my commercial vac and still see hair balls forming and being tossed aside with the OP machine.
Post vac is required in those cases but not always.
Right now the best deal out there in my opinion is excellent supply's low boy with wheel kit. That's what id be purchasing if I were starting out.
Good luck to you.

Sent from my iPhone
Mike Becker
All-Dry Cleaning Services
Carpet Cleaning Mendota, IL

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