Planning to clean those dirty carpets in your home? Carpet cleaning is one of the most important routines in homes that should not be ignored. Due to continuous use, dirt and debris seeps deep down into the fibres, and even harmful micro-organisms can make the material their home. This can significantly cut down on the lifespan of the rugs, pose serious health risks to the occupants of a home, affect indoor air quality and lead to mold growth among others. Thankfully, all these can be avoided by regularly and properly cleaning the material. Here’s a look at some of the top kept secrets about carpet cleaning.
1. Don’t rub stains
Rubbing stains can cause them to become deeply embedded into the material or else spread. Moreover, it can make the fibres to become weak, therefore cutting down on the lifespan of your carpets. Instead, you should carefully dab stains with a clean cloth, sponge or paper towel dipped in cleaning solution. Blotting puts a very small amount of pressure on stains to soak them up and get the spot clean. Make sure to do this to the stain inward rather than outward to avoid spreading the stain.
2. Deal with spills immediately
To keep your rugs clean, always work on spills as soon as they occur. This will prevent them from drying up and becoming much harder to remove. Use water for most of the spills, but you can also consider using white vinegar. Here’s how to rid spills with vinegar:
· Scoop all solid matter from the spill. For liquids, press a towel/washrag over the spill to soak all of it.
· Spray or lightly pour straight vinegar over the area.
· Carefully blot up the spot with a clean cloth.
· If necessary, reapply the vinegar and blot repeatedly until the spill is completely removed.
If these don’t work, you should consider getting a cleaning product. There are a range of products on the market for these cleaning tasks and all you need to do is to select one for the exact spill you’re cleaning up. However, you should only use mild solutions to avoid damage to the fibres. Only use strong products for very stubborn spills.
3. Vacuum frequently
Regularly vacuuming your carpets will help keep them dust and debris-free, ensuring a healthy indoor environment. Get a quality vacuum cleaner and make sure to follow the directions of the manufacturer. When done vacuuming, be sure to empty the filters as well as vacuum bags. Remember to go over the rug from different directions to make sure the machine picks up as much debris. Rugs in high-traffic areas should ideally be vacuumed about thrice a week.
4. Heat up wax
When a candle is burning, wax can drip onto the material and quickly dry, becoming firmly embedded. Try to heat it up before attempting to remove it ─ this will make the task a lot easier for you. Place a white, clean cloth over the iron and then carefully place the machine on top of the stain to heat it up. You can then scrape it off. Another way is to lay a white paper towel over the stained pot and then repeatedly iron on it. The wax will melt and bind to the paper, and should be gone in just a couple of applications. Be sure to avoid using the iron for a period longer than 30 seconds as you could burn the carpet. Further, only use white cloth & towels as colored material could transfer the colour to your carpet when heated.
5. Steam clean regularly
Another top secret for cleaning carpets at home is to deep clean them at least once or twice a year. This will keep them looking both fresh & new. Steam cleaning simply involves using a solution under pressure which is injected deep into the material through water-jet nozzles. When injected, the clean solution penetrates fibres and loosens any embedded soil, and removes oil & grease deposits, leaving your carpet clean. The machine then removes the solution as well as dirt & debris from the carpet.
Follow these tips to properly steam clean your carpet:
· Get a steam cleaner. You can rent or purchase one from a local store.
· Prepare the area to be cleaned. If necessary, remove furniture and other items that could get in the way.
· Thoroughly vacuum the dirty carpet.
· Prepare the cleaning solution. Some steam cleaners may come with shampoo, but you can also use a detergent.
· Allow the extractor to suck up as much solution as possible.
· Leave the carpet to completely dry. Open the windows to quicken the process.
6. Removing odours can be easy
Carpets seem to easily capture odours, but they can be eliminated. In general, the time & effort spent on such a task will depend on the type as well as intensity of odours. Baking soda is very effective. Simply sprinkle the spot liberally with soda. If the odour goes beyond the surface, you may need to brush the spot lightly in order to work the powder down the material. For best outcome, you should leave it to sit overnight or even 24 hours , if possible. You can then gently sweep the layer of baking soda with a broom. For strong odours, repeated applications may be needed. Persistence is key here and you can consider opening windows to allow fresh air in and in turn help expedite the process.
7. Hire the pros
Professional carpet cleaners not only have the expertise and experience but they will also have an array of equipment and tools. All these enable them to do a thorough and quick job, leaving your carpets looking fresh. You are able to save precious time and use it to attend to other important activities. Using their services can also help avoid damage to material that results from use of wrong cleaning solutions or machines. Be sure to hire a professional cleaner at least once a year.
Carpet cleaning can seem a complicated, tedious and time-consuming task. This, however, is never the case. By keeping in mind some of the key secrets for the process, you can be able to give back your carpets that original look and extend their life by a few more years.