ITHACA/ELMIRA carpet cleaners

History of ABC


The history of ABC (originally called Adams Building Cleaners) began in 1971 when Kenneth W. Adams started his business of pressure washing  the exteriors of homes, mobile homes, and businesses throughout the Ithaca area.

From this small beginning, the Custodial division, ABC Cleaning Co., grew as it accumulated weekly and monthly contracts with local business owners for the cleaning maintenance of the interiors of their buildings as well.          


Ken’s second vision became a reality in 1982 when ABC Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning Co. came into being with the purchase of our first truck-mounted steam-cleaning unit.

This updated method of carpet cleaning gave ABC the opportunity to share its knowledge of cleaning with local residents and business owners, using an environmentally healthy method.

ABC was also the first cleaning business in central New York to introduce professionally schooled and certified carpet and upholstery cleaning technicians.      


Eventually, Ken was credentialed as a Senior Mill Inspector and he performed inspections of carpet-related problems for the carpet mills throughout New York State.

He also used his vast knowledge of the cleaning industry to hold instructional classes for each technician, developing a standard of excellence throughout ABC.

His firm belief in education and the completion of tasks the right way the first time led him to the opportunity of teaching his skills of proper cleaning techniques to students at Ithaca College, Cornell University, and BOCES.         


On July 1, 1988, ABC officially became a privately-held corporation under the name ABC Services of Ithaca, Inc. 

1993-NEW HOME!

After 22 years of nurturing the Custodial, Carpet & Upholstery, and Area Rug Cleaning divisions of ABC at 1754 Danby Road, ABC Services moved to downtown Ithaca to 720 West Green Street. This move presented an opportunity to expand our rug cleaning plant and cater to walk-in traffic for customers wishing to bring in their area rugs for cleaning.


Ken has spent years pursuing his passion for the care and cleaning of hand-woven textiles and oriental rugs. Our employees attend rug cleaning and rug repair schools and seminars throughout the country.

He has published an article on how to start an in-plant rug washing business for novice cleaners. He has the distinction of being the 18th person in the world to become a Certified Rug Specialist through the National Institute of Rug Cleaners.

Certified Rug Specialist CertificateCertified Rug Specialist Certificate


On September 30, 2003, a lifelong dream was realized with the purchase of the new home for ABC at 130 Cecil Malone Drive in downtown Ithaca. Offices, conference room, meeting rooms, and a large welcoming front reception were long-awaited improvements to the former physical space.

The acquisition of a specialty rug washing machine and an automated temperature controlled drying room enable our new and larger plant to more than double daily production. This large building, which now houses the most up-to-date carpet, upholstery, and rug cleaning equipment, has ensured our continued growth in our industry and in our area.

ABC OfficeABC Office
In Plant Rug WashingIn Plant Rug Washing


During the late 1990s through the mid-2000s, Ken was very active in ASCR International (Association of Specialists in Cleaning and Restoration) and, in 2004, he was elected President of the Association. After serving as President, he spent several years on the Board of Directors.

ASCR International - President - 2004ASCR International - President - 2004


In 2005, as part of our plan for the continued growth of our business, ABC closed the Custodial cleaning division as well as the Mold Remediation and Fire and Water Damage Restoration divisions to concentrate services in the Residential and Commercial Carpet, Area Rug, Upholstery, and Tile and Grout Cleaning divisions.             


ASCR International eventually morphed into the RIA (Restoration Industry Association) and it moved away from rug and carpet cleaning to a concentration on restoration services such as fire, flood, and mold instead.

Since the RIA no longer fit our business needs, in 2010 Ken helped to found ARCS, (Association of Rug Care Specialists). This professional organization now serves the specific needs of area and oriental rug cleaners and rug repair specialists throughout the world. Members include owners and managers of some of the oldest and most prestigious rug cleaning companies in the world.         

ARCS Founding MembersARCS Founding Members


The history of ABC continues with our latest service, selling rugs on consignment, which has filled the void in this area of good quality 2nd hand rugs at reasonable prices.

Our policies concerning selling or buying a rug left in our office to be sold on consignment can be found here.

The walls of our offices are adorned with the consignment rugs and you are welcome to visit any time we are open.

Consignment Rugs HangingConsignment Rugs Hanging

2016-KEN and Harriet Retire!

In 2016, Ken and his wife, Harriet, retired to spend the winter months in Tucson, Arizona. Their daughter, Vanessa, has continued the family tradition as the General Manager of the business.

Vanessa continues to follow the tenets and aspirations of her parents by providing the best possible customer service not only to the Ithaca area and the rest of Tompkins County, but to the many surrounding areas of the Finger Lakes Region and beyond.


2022 is our 51st year in business. We are proud to have served our community for all these years. As of May 2022, the torch has been passed to our daughter, Vanessa. She is now the sole owner of ABC. She has been instrumental in running our family business since 2016 and is another one of the reasons why ABC is a well-known and well-respected leader in the textile cleaning field.

The tremendous growth of our area rug cleaning and repair services is a reflection of our company-wide passion for rugs. Our rug cleaning plant is the only one of its kind in this area and a large part of our building is now dedicated to the repair and restoration of fine oriental and area rugs as well.

3 Generations of Rug Repair!3 Generations of Rug Repair!
Fringe before RepairFringe before Repair
Fringe after RepairFringe after Repair

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"The Cleanest Clean You've Ever Seen."


ABC Oriental Rug & Carpet Cleaning Co.
130 Cecil Malone Drive Ithaca, NY 14850


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ABC Repair RoomABC Repair Room

ABC Rug ClassABC Rug Class

Rug WringerRug Wringer

Front Office DoorFront Office Door

ABC Oriental Rug & Carpet Cleaning Co.
of Rug Care Specialists.

"To Teach, Cultivate and Advance the Art and Science
of Rug Care"


Carpet & Rug
Spotting Guide

Learn how to remove spots with ordinary household solutions.

Sign up below to gain access to your complementary Spotting Guide from ABC.

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Carpet & Rug
Spotting Guide

Learn how to remove spots with ordinary household solutions

Sign up below to gain access to your complementary Spotting Guide from ABC.

Registering your email address guarantees you will be notified whenever discount savings coupons become available.

Did you know that our ABC Responsible Care Spotter can get those pesky spots out of your carpet and rugs and will work equally as well on your clothes and upholstery?

Stop by our office and pick one up.  They are $5.00 + Tax but if you have carpets or upholstery cleaned in your home or business, just request a free one from your Technician.

And don't forget to fill out the form above to download your free ABC Spotting Guide!  

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