Understanding the right way to clean carpet will help you save time by doing it correctly the first time with products that do the job right from the start. Carpet cleaning is just like exercise! If you get into a routine and keep it up, you will see great results and feel better for it and can save a penny in the long run. |
Preventing dirt and grime from getting on the carpet in the first place is a great way to start keeping it clean. The following helpful hints can stop dirt in its tracks.
Use mats — Outdoor and indoor mats or runners can reduce the amount of dirt that enters the house. Take off your shoes — You can save wear and tear on carpet by asking everyone to take off his or her shoes before entering your home. Change your air filters — Change air filters in your heating and air-conditioning systems as recommended by the manufacturer's directions. The more dust and particles removed by the filter, the less that fall on the carpet. Muddy shoes, pet stains, household spills...no matter how diligent you are about cleaning up stains on your carpet when they happen, they eventually build up. If your carpets are starting to look stained, dingy, and old it's time for a good deep carpet cleaning. Cleaning the carpets in your entire house doesn't have to be expensive.
Tips on looking after the carpet
1. Don't use shake'n'vac type products; they leave a filmy residue on carpet that actually attracts dirt.
2. Instead, freshen carpet before vacuuming by sprinkling half a cup of bicarbonate soda on each room before bed and vacuum first thing in the morning.
3. For virtually any spill, apply carbonated water straight away, especially when it comes to animal wees or vomit. The water will neutralise the acid in the liquid and avoid nasty staining.
4. Use good quality absorbing mats at all entrances to the house.
5. Use mats in high-traffic areas of the carpet to extend its life.
Washing-up liquid will clean carpet stains more effectively than specialist products costing more than eight times as much, researchers claim. 'There's a huge array of carpet stain removers in the shops but ordinary washing-up liquid outperforms many of them" according to research. Soda water, often suggested as a useful alternative to specialist preparations, did not score well across the range of stains.
If you are going to DIY, it's easy to deep clean the carpets cheaply. You just need to rent a machine. A steam cleaning machine blasts jets of hot water and solvent into your carpet, and then vacuums the water (along with the dirt) back out. If you aren't cleaning your carpets often, it's very cost efficient to rent a steam cleaning machine. You can usually find these machines available for rent at most big box stores.
If you want to deep clean your carpets every month or two, buying a machine makes sense. Steam cleaning machines vary in price, so shop around. You can find a reasonably priced model on sale that will last you several years. If you buy your own machine, the only cost after the initial price of the unit will be for solvent. Look for kid- and pet-friendly carpet cleaners that are biodegradable. You can also use the machine to deep clean some furniture and draperies as well as carpeting.
You may decide to hire a professional to deep clean your carpet, or you can do the cleaning yourself. Either way it needs to get done every three months in highly-trafficked areas of your home, and once or twice a year for low traffic areas. Regular cleaning will help increase the lifespan of your carpet and save you money in the long run.
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