If you have carpeting in any area of your home or business, chances are at some point you will be unhappy with its appearance. A basic all-over deep cleaning can get rid of most stains and make it look like new. For deep power cleaning you generally have two options. You can either choose the do-it-yourself route with an at-home carpet cleaning kit that you either buy or rent, or you can choose to hire a professional who will come to your home or office and take care of all the details. Yet many professionals agree that the best thing you can do for the life and look of your carpet is to perform regular maintenance.
Vacuum Your Carpet Regularly
An essential part of carpet maintenance is vacuuming. Regular vacuuming of your carpets will remove the dust and dirt that can otherwise be ground in with traffic and settle, causing permanent staining. Carpet cleaning professionals suggest vacuuming your carpets twice a week. If you cannot vacuum your entire house that often, it is important to vacuum the high traffic areas at least once a week.
For more information on vacuum cleaners see the following article from HomeDoctor.net: Vacuum Cleaners.
Treating Carpet Spots and Stains
Another important part of regular maintenance is to spot clean any stains or spills that occur as soon as possible. Many stains can be completely removed if treated right away and with the right solution. Stain removers can contain harsh chemicals and although they are relatively safe, they should be used with caution, in limited amounts and, if possible, with ventilation. Some basic solutions can be made with household items.
When treating stains it is important to blot the area and not rub, which can cause the stain to be rubbed in, making removal more difficult. Always use a white absorbent cloth and start with as little solution as possible, adding more as needed. In addition to regular maintenance, it may be necessary at some point to have the carpets professionally deep cleaned. It is always best to follow the manufacturer's instructions, yet there are a few things you should consider when choosing a professional cleaning.
Professional Carpet Cleaners
There are a few ways in which you can achieve the effect of professionally cleaned carpets. Carpet cleaning devices are available for purchase or rent from many furniture or hardware stores. Purchase price can range from $200 to $1,000, depending on what kind you want and for what purpose. Another option is to call a carpet cleaning service, where professionals come to your home and power clean your carpets, removing ground-in dirt and grime that is not removed by vacuuming. Most will do all the furniture moving and leave your home the way it was when they first came.
Some Tips for Hiring Carpet Cleaners
Beware deals and specials. It is important to agree to a written quote before signing anything or letting any services be provided. Some businesses will come up with "hidden charges" after your carpets are cleaned or services billed. Standard pricing is generally done per square foot of carpet. It is best to do a little research before selecting a company.
Talk with friends and neighbors to see if there is a service that someone else has used and recommends or would not use again. It is also worth a phone call to a local Better Business Bureau to make sure there have been no reports filed against the service you intend to use. Companies will also usually have a list of satisfied customers that you could consult. Finding the right carpet cleaning company will ensure that you are satisfied with the results.
Carpet Cleaning: Things to Think About
Whether you decided to hire a professional or do it yourself, there are a few other things to remember. Check with the carpet manufacturer regarding which solvents to use: dry, wet, chemical, plain water or steam. Remember that if using wet solvents 95% of the water should be removed during cleaning, and the carpet should be dry within 24 hours. Many find that steam cleaning does not remove enough water, and runs the risk of mold developing in the carpet fibers. It is also a good idea to keep children and pets off newly cleaned carpet for at least one day.