You’d be hard-pressed to find a house that doesn’t have carpeting at least on the stairs and in the bedrooms. It is a cozy floor covering that helps with warmth and tends to hide the telltale signs of foot traffic. But how do you maintain your carpet in a manner that will extend its life and appearance?
Let’s Start With Everyday Steps To Preserve Your Carpet!
This isn’t for everyone, but we promise that making your home a No Shoe Zone will help with the dirt, grime, and general wear and tear on your carpeting.
Water absorbent mats at every entrance and coarse doormats outside will help tremendously with tracking water and dirt onto your carpets. Also, consider rugs and runners in high-traffic and hard-to-clean areas. These will help to minimize the damage and abrasion, especially if it is difficult to regularly vacuum and steam the area, as well as protect against divots caused by furniture. Make sure to care for your rugs as well—cleaning underneath them and quickly removing excess liquid so they don’t harm the carpet below.
In addition to using rugs underneath your furniture, consider using furniture coasters under couch and table legs to avoid dents and snags. And move your furniture occasionally, even just a few inches, to help ward off divots.
Clip, Don’t Pull
From time to time, snags will appear on your carpet, it is unavoidable. When you find one, whatever you do, DO NOT pull on it. Simply grab a pair of scissors and clip the snag. This will save you from creating an even larger run that will be harder to repair.
Regular Cleaning Keeps Your Carpet Looking Brand New!
Regular vacuuming helps to keep dust and grime from accumulating in the carpet fibers, weighing them down and giving them a dingy hue. Plan on vacuuming at least once a week for most of your carpeted areas and twice a week for higher traffic areas. Go over the same spot several times and from different angles in order to remove as much dirt from the fibers as possible.
Tip: If you have pets, consider sprinkling some carpet powder about five minutes before your vacuuming session to help eliminate odor!
Get a Good Vacuum…or Two
It is important to have a good vacuum and if possible, a separate vacuum for areas with differing needs. A small, handheld vacuum is ideal for stairs and quick clean-ups due to children and pets. Whereas a stand-up vacuum is best for larger carpeted spaces. Make sure to keep the filters clean and empty the dust bag or chamber whenever it is half full. This allows the suction to be at full power, resulting in a more thorough clean.
Clean Up Quick!
Water and spills should be dealt with ASAP! This is so important. The longer water is sitting, the greater the danger for mold and mildew, and if a spill isn’t blotted immediately, it will set into the fibers and backing.
How to Properly Clean-Up a Spill
- As soon as you possibly can, blot the spill with a clean, white cloth or paper towels. (Avoid any towels with a printed pattern as that could bleed onto your carpet, making the stain worse)
- Blot from the outside of the stain inward to avoid the stain spreading out.
- If there are still remnants of the spill, add a little water, or ideally Club Soda, to the spot. Do not over-saturate the carpet. If you are unable to soak up the excess water, mold and mildew could become a problem.
- Continue to blot, and repeat this process, until the stain is gone.
- To absorb any excess liquid, place several clean, white cloths or paper towels over the spot and top with a heavy book. Regularly freshen the towels until there is no more moisture to be absorbed.
- Only use stain remover as a last-ditch effort. Make sure that it is the appropriate product for the type of carpeting you have and follow the directions to a tee.
- For great information on how to remove different types of stains and some DIY stain removers, check out this article from Better Homes & Gardens.
Professional Steam Cleaning
Steam cleaning your carpet is vital because the process penetrates into the fibers of the carpeting, lifting build-up, scents, hidden dirt, mold, mildew, etc. It is also important to get this done professionally at least once a year. Professional carpet cleaners have the knowledge, experience, and equipment to get that deep clean. Not to mention, many carpet warranties require that you get a cleaning using truck-mounted, hot water extraction every 12–18 months.
DIY Carpet Cleaning
Supplementing your professional treatment with a do-it-yourself carpet cleaning from time to time can help, but there are a few things to be aware of-
- You don’t know where rented machines have been, if they’ve been cleaned properly or what exactly they were cleaning before. Do your own due diligence to try and get a sanitary machine.
- People often put too much soap in the rented machines. If you are unable to get all of the soap out of the carpet, it will dry into the fibers and attract dirt and dust making your carpets appear dingier faster. Make sure to use as little soap as possible and to rinse the soap out thoroughly.
- You can overuse a carpet cleaning machine and end up delaminating the carpet backing. Do not overclean your carpet!
Know When to Let Go
These steps will surely help you to preserve your carpets for years to come. However, one day, it may be time to say goodbye to old, matted carpet. On that day, Graham’s Flooring & Design would be ecstatic to help you choose your new carpet!
We are your Northern Colorado carpet experts, ready to give you a Free Flooring Design Consultation! And if you’re looking for any additional information on other Loveland or Fort Collins flooring topics we’d be happy to help. Contact us today!
While you’re here, learn more about How to Determine What Flooring Covering Is Best For You and 4 Types of Carpet Pads.