D.A. Burns & Sons, Seattle's Oldest Rug & Upholstery Cleaning Service
The story of D.A. Burns & Sons, which was founded in Seattle in 1935, and today remains Seattle’s leading carpet, rug and upholstery cleaning specialist is both amusing and historic.
The Burns family’s interest in professional cleaning came purely by accident. While managing a Seattle apartment building, a pail of wall cleaning solution was spilled on a wool area rug by Mr. and Mrs. Burns, Sr. They quickly absorbed as much of the soapy spill as they could. A next day inspection of the rug revealed a clean spot where the cleaning solution had been spilled. Both Dave Sr. and Dave Jr., who was employed as a janitor in a downtown office building, decided to apply their experience on a full-time business basis.
D. A. Burns & Sons
As their rug cleaning expertise and capabilities grew, D. A. Burns & Sons tackled Oriental rugs and added Seattle carpet repair and Seattle upholstery cleaning to their growing family of services. Recognizing the need for carpet edge finishing treatments, the Burns family responded by offering carpet binding, serging and fringing services. With the advent of wall-to-wall carpeting, the firm followed with the on-location cleaning of carpet.
Dave Burns, Sr. retired in 1954, and Dave Jr. continued the family service tradition, serving as the company’s president. The late 60’s brought a merger and a move. D. A. Burns & Sons merged with another long-time cleaning service firm, Emmanuel’s Inc., moved into the facility on Leary Way and the “new” company operated as Burns & Emmanuel. In 1971, Dave Burns purchased the interest of his retiring partner, Bob Emmanuel, and the firm was once again known as D. A. Burns & Sons. (Some years later Bob Emmanuel stepped out of retirement to assist his daughter and son-in-law re-enter the industry in Seattle under the name Emmanuel’s Inc., which is still in operation today.)
The company continued to grow during the 1970’s through the acquisition of two other cleaning service companies, and the enhancement of its carpet workroom services. In 1976, as the first step in succession planning, Dave invited a non-family partner, Richard Dix, into the business. Richard has served as the company’s president since 1977. Dave and Richard developed a very rewarding personal and lasting relationship. Although Dave passed away in 2006, at age 91, the service tradition continues.
In the late 80’s, the company launched a program to extend its services to a greater commercial market, building upon its primary residential client base. As the trend in commercial furnishings has become more home-like, with the use of a wide variety of textiles, D. A. Burns has experienced growth serving commercial clients.
As the greater Seattle area has grown, D. A. Burns & Sons has grown with it. To meet the challenges of increased traffic congestion, two income families, and higher service expectations on the part of the consumer, D. A. Burns opened a satellite office in suburban Bellevue in 1988. The satellite strategy is to make their in-plant cleaning services more accessible with a second location and offer savings to their customers through a “cash & carry” pricing program. As leather became a more popular choice for upholstered furniture, D. A. Burns responded by adding leather cleaning, conditioning and color restoration to its family of services in 2004.
D. A. Burns & Sons has grown to become a leading Northwest carpet, specialty rug and upholstery cleaning firm, as well as a specialist in custom carpet fabrication, accent edge treatments and expert rug repair and reweaving. They have long been trusted to service highly valued, care-sensitive textiles, including the expert repair of Oriental and specialty rugs.
With their two locations - Seattle and Bellevue – D. A. Burns offers both on-location and in-plant cleaning capabilities. Their unique cleaning plant in Seattle specializes in expert Oriental and specialty rug cleaning, meticulous fabric and leather upholstery cleaning including pick-up and delivery service.
For the cleaning of wall-to-wall carpet and selected upholstery, D. A. Burns is equipped to bring the cleaning plant to their customers with a fleet of mobile, truck-mounted cleaning plants operated by friendly, experienced cleaning technicians.
To offer greater convenience to carpet fabrication clients, both the Seattle and Bellevue locations are equipped to offer custom carpet workroom services. Serving primarily the carpet and interior design communities, D. A. Burns has built another dimension to their business through their custom carpet services … binding, serging, fringing, accent edge treatments, Oriental rug repair and the fabrication of custom designed carpet. Whatever the carpet … woven, tufted or hand-made … D. A. Burns can craft design ideas into reality.
Accent edge treatments, carved insets, pattern matching, size alterations and intricate hand-sewing and reweaving are only a few of the talents offered that add value to the finished carpet package. Whether it be sewing six Missoni’s into one, down-sizing a V’Soske to fit a new room, or in-setting a fabric border to match the client’s upholstery, design professionals have been trusting their materials (and clients) to D. A. Burns for decades.
Understanding that any service is only as good as the persons performing it, D. A. Burns team members are valued and trusted, and they repay the company in kind. Training and individual responsibility are high priorities in all they do.
People like to associate with success, and D. A. Burns & Sons is no different. That’s why they have been long-time members and officers of the Association of Specialists in Cleaning and Restoration and the Carpet Cleaners Institute of the Northwest, Washington State Floorcovering Association, American Society of Interior Designers – Industry Foundation Member, Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce, and Association of Washington Business.
Surrounding themselves with proven professionals through their involvement in these industry associations has been an investment that continues to pay significant dividends. D. A. Burns has made life-long friends, found business mentors quick to offer kudos for success and sound feedback for failure, and kept up-to-date on the latest industry trends and technical procedures.