There’s nothing nicer than a sparkling clean carpet, but in no time, that carpet is starting to show the dirt again. How can you get your carpets really clean? Here are some tips from cleaning experts to make this chore easier, quicker and more complete.
Don’t get your carpets dirty.
Seriously! The easiest way to keep your carpets looking good is to not get them dirty in the first place. Here’s how you can do this.
Leave shoes at the door: Don’t wear shoes inside that you’ve worn outside. Leave all that dirt and grime on a mat near the door, and grab a comfy pair of socks or slippers to wear indoors only.
Speaking of floor mats, get some: You should have a floor mat at each entrance to your house to catch all that hitchhiking dirt and debris.
No eating in carpeted rooms: Confine eating to the kitchen and dining area and you’ll avoid carpet stains and crumbs. Besides, turning off the TV and practicing mindful eating is better for you anyway.
Make sure Fido and Fluffy are potty trained: If you haven’t trained pets before, try asking your vet to recommend trainers who can help you teach them to use the litter box or go outside. If you’re using a litter box, however, keep it in an uncarpeted area with a mat placed underneath. This will help to prevent litter from spilling or sticking to your pet’s feet and tracking into carpeted areas.
Clean your carpet quickly
Vacuuming spruces up the look of carpeting while it quickly picks up pet hair, lint, dust and dirt. How often should you vacuum? That will depend on the number of people and pets in your household. A good rule of thumb is once a week in bedrooms, playrooms and offices, and twice a week in higher-traffic areas like the kitchen, living room and entry ways.
Attack carpet stains ASAP
Professional cleaners recommend keeping a clean, white towel and a spot remover spray or foam handy at all times. When the inevitable spill happens, remove visible debris like crumbs, food or mud so they don’t get mashed into the carpet. Then, using the clean white cloth, blot (don’t rub!) to remove wetness. Spray the area with spot remover, and allow it to do its thing for a couple of minutes. Then blot the area again with another clean cloth until the stain disappears. Repeat if necessary.
Pet stains can be cleaned in the same way, but with more emphasis on blotting the wetness out of the carpet. Using a clean, folded towel place it on the area, then step on it, applying pressure to the entire area. This will soak up the bulk of the moisture. Use spot remover as above, and then finish with an enzyme spray with a neutral pH to eliminate odors. Good choices are OdoBan and POOPH!
Prefer natural cleaning methods?
Your best friends when it comes to cleaning carpets naturally are baking soda and club soda. Club soda and a clean white towel are great stain eliminators. Baking soda, sprinkled on your carpet and allowed to sit for up to an hour, can help break down grease and will absorb odors. Vacuum after an hour, then remove your vacuum’s filter and rinse it well. Allow to air dry.
Time to call in a pro?
If you have a big mess, a history of pet stains, or have recently moved, it’s time to call in a pro to deep clean your carpet. In fact, many professional carpet cleaners recommend a deep cleaning at least yearly, twice yearly if you have pets. Regular deep cleaning can help your carpets look good and last longer.