As clean as you get the rest of your home, a dirty old carpet’s going to make the place look filthy. There’s nothing more unsightly than a big red wine spill on an otherwise pristine cream carpet, or a rug that’s matted with filth. So to keep your carpets clean and your place looking fresh, here are a few tips on cleaning your carpets.
Carpet cleaning the simple way
If your beige carpet is looking a little on the grey side, the primary weapon in your arsenal is the humble vacuum cleaner. There are certainly more carpet specific cleaning tools, but before you crack out the carpet shampoo, you should give the place a little vacuum first.
You probably don’t need a detailed how-to on using a vacuum cleaner, but here are a few things to bear in mind – Make sure you pick up any small items that could get trapped in the vacuum cleaner and try to clear the general area. It’s also worth dusting blinds and surfaces before you start, so that you vacuum up all the fallen dust, rather than messing up your hard work later.
Use a nozzle attachment for hard to reach areas, and when doing the main vacuuming work, try to go both vertically and horizontally. Carpet fibres are usually twisted – by vacuuming in several directions, you can ensure that all the fibres are reached.
It’s also important to remember to vacuum your carpet regularly. Dust and dirt attract more dust and dirt, so by reducing build up, you can save yourself hard scrubbing work in the long run.
Make sure that you vacuum high traffic areas more frequently, and the other thing to remember is – go slow. A couple of slow passes with the vacuum cleaner will pick up much more dirt than swiping madly with your machine.
How to clean with a steam cleaner
A steam cleaner will do a more effective job of cleaning your carpets than a regular old vacuum cleaner. You can hire a professional to steam clean your carpets, or you can rent a heavy duty cleaner from a local home centre.
Professionally cleaning your carpets once in a while to remove deeply cached from dirt and allergens is a good idea, but you should also consider a personal steam cleaner for more regular cleaning.
It’s worth noting that steam cleaning isn’t an alternative to vacuuming your carpet. In fact, to steam clean, you’ll need to vacuum first. Vacuuming will deal with the big problem dirt so that your steam cleaner can get to work on removing more deeply ingrained dirt particles.
Steam dislodges dirt by dissolving it, but it also removes mildew and mould spores. For a semi-regular clean, you should certainly invest in a lightweight steam cleaner to deal with the dirt that your vacuum can’t cope with alone.
Using a carpet shampooer
When you really want to go deep and scrub out old stains, then you’ll need to turn to carpet shampoo. Shampooing is an age-old carpet cleaning method and it’s really effective at sorting out heavily soiled and deeply stained carpets. If you need to make your carpet look like new again, you’ll have to spend a few hours with the carpet shampoo.
You can rent a carpet shampooer from a store, which is the easiest option, or you can shampoo your carpets by hand. You can choose a dry shampoo, which often comes in environmentally friendly forms, or you can opt for a wet shampoo.
There’s a constant debate in the carpet cleaning industry over whether wet or dry cleaning your carpet is better in general, but the best way to decide is to try both to see for yourself!
Act fast using carpet stain remover
The best way to keep your carpet clean is by dealing with stains as soon as they happen. Cached on grime is going to take heavy duty equipment to get rid of, but most stains can be coped with, as long as they’re caught in time.
The first rule of spot cleaning is to use a clean cloth! Soiled cloths or patterned cloths can make the situation worse, so make sure you keep a clean cloth handy. You should also make sure your rag isn’t bristled or too rough, as this might damage your carpet fibres.
There are a great many carpet cleaners to choose from on the market, and the type of cleaner you should use often depends on the stain in question. For instance, for blood, you need water or hydrogen peroxide, but for pet urine, you’re best off with an enzyme-based cleaner.
Make sure your arsenal is fully stocked to cope with all eventualities. Test these cleaners on a small portion of your carpet first to see they work well with the fabric.
Next, remember to dab and blot, and not to rub the stain further into the carpet!
When it comes to carpets, prevention is the best cure
Of course, as with most things in life, prevention is the best cure. To keep your carpet clean, you not only need to have a regular cleaning schedule – you need to look after it in the first place.
Try keeping to shoes off policy, as this will massively reduce the amount of dirt trodden into your carpet. It’s also best to keep eating relegated to non-carpeted areas, and certainly don’t think about carpeting your kitchen!
We hope you found this article helpful.
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