Homeowners often wonder if they should shampoo carpets regularly or if consistent cleaning somehow ruins a home’s carpeting. There are also many other methods of cleaning your home’s rugs, including steam extraction, foam encapsulation, and forms of powder or dry cleaning. Which is the best carpet cleaning method for your home and are these somehow damaging to a home’s rugs?
It’s typically recommended that homeowners shampoo carpets or otherwise have them cleaned professionally every year, if not even more often. While improper cleaning methods might damage a rug’s fibers and nap, you can never have your home’s carpets cleaned too often!
Regular, professional carpet cleaning removes dirt and debris that cannot be extracted with a household vacuum cleaner while also removing pet stains, food stains, odors, and even mold and mildew growing under the carpet. To ensure you’re keeping your home’s flooring in its best condition, note a few carpet shampooing tips as well as some vital information about other rug cleaning methods and how to keep those floors as spotless as possible between professional cleanings!
Does Shampooing Ruin Carpets?
Professional carpet cleaning doesn’t ruin carpets but extends the life of your home’s rugs. Consider some benefits of having a professional company shampoo carpets in your home on a regular basis:
- Carpet shampooing and steam cleaning kills mold spores as well as mildew, algae, and other contaminants before they spread and become a health hazard.
- Steam cleaning loosens ground-in dirt and debris and reaches residues at the base of carpet fibers that a vacuum cleaner is too weak to extract.
- Steam and carpet shampooing removes air pollution residues, preserving the air quality of your home.
- Hot water and high-powered extraction restores matted carpet fibers, restoring its nap and creating a softer feeling underfoot. Restored nap is also easier to clean with your home’s vacuum so that daily cleaning is more effective overall!
- Hot water, steam, and shampoo kill bedbugs, dust mites, ants, and other insects burrowed in your home’s carpets.
- Some new carpet warranties require a homeowner to have those carpets shampooed at least annually. Consistent, professional cleaning protects that warranty so you can have carpets replaced if they become damaged or worn as needed.
- Steam and high-powered extraction pulls up carpet dents left behind by heavy furniture as well as worn areas created by doors and heavy foot traffic.
- High-quality carpet cleaning restores the overall color of carpeting. A homeowner might not even realize how dull and gray their carpeting has become over the years until they have those rugs shampooed and cleaned by a professional.
- Steam cleaning kills mold, mildew, algae, and other harmful irritants and organisms from carpeting and its underlying padding as well.
How Do I Shampoo My Carpets?
A homeowner should avoid trying to shampoo carpets on their own! Consider the difference between DIY carpet cleaning and a professional rug cleaning:
- Homeowners often fail to extract all detergent and shampoo from carpet fibers when they clean carpets on their own. Carpet shampoo residue is sticky, attracting and locking in more dirt and debris so that improperly shampooed carpets get dirtier faster than before! A carpet cleaning company trains its technicians on proper extraction techniques, ensuring no shampoo residues are left behind.
- While carpet shampoo needs thorough extraction, using too much water during carpet shampooing might result in damp carpets that allow mold and mildew to grow and spread. Professional carpet cleaners will typically use the extraction wand as often as needed to remove rinse water and ensure carpets are as dry as possible after cleaning.
- Carpet shampoos and harsh scrubbing won’t always treat and remove stubborn pet stains, food spills, and the like. Before he or she shampoos carpets, a cleaning professional will often use a number of stain cleaners or pretreatments, allowing a stain to be lifted and removed gently yet effectively.
- Certain delicate carpet fabrics might fade, shred, or otherwise suffer damage with the use of harsh detergents and shampoos and heavy, rotating scrub brushes. An experienced carpet cleaning professional knows the best products and techniques for various carpeting materials, fibers, nap, and so on.
- Hot water and steam can also damage delicate carpet fibers and materials. A professional carpet shampooer might recommend dry cleaning, foam encapsulation, or other methods of cleaning a home’s rugs without harsh shampoos or damaging steam.
The Benefits of Daily Vacuuming
Along with shampooing carpets, homeowners often wonder if it’s safe to vacuum carpets every day or if daily cleaning somehow ruins carpet fibers. In truth, daily vacuuming can actually protect carpets and extend their lifespan! Note the benefits of daily vacuuming your home’s carpeting:
- Dirt, dust, pet hair and dander, sand, silt, and other debris act as a sandpaper on carpet fibers, degrading the material and wearing down a rug’s nap. The more you walk on dirt and debris in the carpeting, the faster and more pronounced this damage.
- Along with dirt and dust, carpets often harbor germs, bacteria, and other harmful organisms as well as irritants like pollen, cigarette smoke and residual ash, air pollution residue, mold, and mildew. If left unchecked, this debris can affect your home’s air quality and, in turn, your own health!
- Dirty carpets tend to have an unpleasant odor but many homeowners go “nose blind” so that they don’t notice bothersome smells in their home. Regular vacuuming ensures that your carpets are clean and welcoming for visitors and guests.
- Vacuuming pulls up the fibers and strands of carpets, creating a fuller, fluffier feeling underfoot.
- Regular vacuuming exposes overly worn areas of a carpet as well as ground-in dirt, mud, food stains, and the like. You’ll know when it’s time to have carpets shampooed the more often you run the vacuum cleaner!
How to Keep Carpets Clean Between Shampooing
Having a professional shampoo carpets in your home is the most effective option for ensuring a home’s rugs are clean and in good condition. To keep your home’s carpets clean between shampooing, be sure you vacuum daily or as often as possible. Never wear your shoes inside the home; if you must wear shoes inside, opt for shoes that you keep inside just for walking on the carpets and avoid wearing them outdoors!
Invest in a carpet rake for your home’s rugs. A carpet rake is like a push broom with thick rubber bristles that you pull or rake across the surface of a carpet. A carpet rake pulls up hair, lint, dirt, and other debris missed by a vacuum. The rake also pulls up a carpet’s fibers, making it look fuller and fluffier!
It’s vital that spills and stains be addressed immediately so that they don’t get set into the carpet fibers. Have some carpet stain cleaner on hand and especially if you’re planning on having company over or have children and pets in the home. A high-quality air filter or air purifier in the home will trap dirt and dust before it settles onto carpets; it’s also good to change the home’s furnace filter often so it also traps dust before it can circulate around the house.
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Is It Better to Shampoo or Steam Clean Carpets?
Whether you should shampoo carpets or have them steam cleaned often depends on the level and type of dirt ground into the carpets as well as your own sensitivities. Note a few differences between the two processes so you can discuss your options with a carpet cleaning professional:
- Carpet shampooing often removes thick dirt, mud, and other such grime more effectively than steam.
- Shampoos and detergents are an excellent option for pet stain and odor removal, food stains, and musty smells.
- Carpet detergents are most effective for restoring the color of a home’s rugs.
- A dry carpet shampoo is often used in tropical areas or during summertime when humidity levels are excessively high and a steamed carpet might not dry out efficiently.
- Steam cleaning is recommended if you have someone in the home with breathing disorders or sensitivities to the chemicals in shampoos and detergents.
- Hot water extraction is often most effective at killing mold and mildew from carpet backing and its underlying padding.
- A steam clean helps to restore matted fibers more so than a carpet shampoo. If your home’s rugs are severely matted and worn or you need several dented areas restored, a steam clean might be your best option.
How Can You Shampoo a Carpet Without a Machine?
For a quick spot clean, use lots of warm water and a carpet shampoo meant for your home’s rug fibers in particular. Blot the water and shampoo over the stain and then use clean rags and fresh water to extract the cleanser and stain itself. Once dry, vacuum the area to restore the carpet fibers.
How Often Should You Replace Carpeting?
Even if you shampoo carpets regularly, the nap will eventually wear down or stains become so set-in that they are not treatable. Most home carpets last five to fifteen years, although you might replace carpeting in hallways and high-trafficked areas more frequently than other rooms in the home.