If you live your life like the average person your carpets probably aren’t the first thing on your mind every day. They also tend to take a lot more abuse than you realize until you’re frantically trying to clean up a spill or someone has tracked in mud all over them.
Carpet cleaning isn’t always a very exciting topic for a lot of homeowners. Still, when you need to get out a stain or you just want to keep your home looking as great as possible it’s a topic you’ll need to know at least a little bit about.
Tips about carpet cleaning are pretty universal especially when they come from the pros. So whether you’re in Littleton Colorado and carpet cleaning or clear across the world in Rome, these tips will still work for you. The good thing here is they’re all tried and true methods that will keep your carpets clean, just like the pros.
1. Blot (Don’t Scrub) From The Outside In
When it comes to cleaning up spills this is something you’ll always want to keep in mind. Pros say never scrub a spill. It pushes the liquid or dirt deeper down and can ruin your carpet’s fibers. Instead, it’s recommended that you blot at the spill with a dry towel. You’ll want to work your way from the outside of the spill towards the middle.
If you work from the middle outwards, you can risk pushing the liquid farther out creating a larger mess than what you’re already dealing with. So remember this simple yet essential tip when it comes time to clean up the next spill. Blot, from the outside in.
2. Grease Stains? Use Dish Soap
Grease stains on your carpet can be quite a beast to deal with unless you know about this tip. Dish soap is made for cutting grease, so thinking outside the box and using it in another greasy area will yield some pretty amazing results. Especially if you’ve all but given up hope of ever getting that grease stain out of your carpet at this point.
Use a spray bottle and a few drops of dish soap per cup of water. Mix the solution in your bottle and spray it directly on the stain. Allow it to sit for a few minutes (the more set in the stain is the more time the solution will need to cut through the grease) and then blot it up in the same manner as you just read about. Work from the outside in. You can repeat this tip as needed.
3. Use Area Rugs To Extend Your Carpet’s Life
Cleaning smaller area rugs is much easier than cleaning a carpet installed in your entire home. Think about area rugs as a way you can both decorate your home, and protect your carpet a little more. If area rugs are taking the brunt of day to day life abuses, your carpets are being protected and lasting a little longer than they otherwise might.
If you don’t like area rugs you can also consider carpet runners. It gives the same benefits as area rugs but might fit your design aesthetic a little more. Either way, the goal is to have something that’s more easily cleaned and offers a barrier to the more expensive carpeting you have in your home.
4. Don’t Skip The Steam Clean
Whether you own your own steam cleaner or rent one from the local grocery store you can’t skip this task. It does take some extra time but you’ll only need to do it every 2-3 months. Deep cleaning your carpets gets a lot of that deep down stuff you can’t see up and out of the carpet before it can cause too much damage.
Skipping steam cleaning can lead to dirt build-up and matted carpeting that needs to be replaced much sooner than you were planning on. Go ahead and make a plan to regularly steam clean your carpet. It’s a task that takes a while but you’ll only have to do it every few months, and it will save you a lot of headaches (and money.)
5. Have Pets? Use A Squeegee
As long as you don’t have a super long shag style carpeting installed in your hope this tip will be a great one for you. Not all vacuums can handle pet hair effectively, which sometimes leaves you with fur or hair coating your carpets. Fortunately, this is more easily solved than you might realize.
Use a squeegee and scrape it across your carpet. As you pull it across the carpeting, the friction created will scrape the pet hair up and you can easily pick it up and toss it away. It’s a very simple tip that will be so helpful you’ll wonder how you ever got by without it. A lot less hair in your carpet with minimal effort? Yes, please!
6. Freeze Gum And It Will Come Out
You can use a chemical spray to freeze the gum but that can be costly. It’s also unlikely that you have gum stuck in your carpet often enough to make that investment worth your money. Instead, freeze the stuck in gum with some ice cubes. After you’ve left the gum to harden into a solid mass as much as it can, use a spoon to lift out the solid lump.
If there are still some sticky fibers left over after you get the main clump out, you can carefully snip those away. If you do it just right, and only clip the very top layer of the carpet where there is residue, no one will be able to notice. This can be a real lifesaver when it comes to wondering how you’re going to get that sticky mess off your floor.
7. Baking Soda Is A Carpet’s Best Friend
You can mix baking soda and a few drops of essential oils in your favorite scent to make a homemade carpet freshener. Just sprinkle it over the carpets in your home and let it sit for about fifteen minutes. Once you vacuum it up your carpets should look a little brighter and the room should smell amazing.
You can also use baking soda and vinegar to get stains out of your carpet if you pair the mixture with some water and your iron. It’s a pretty simple trick but it works oh so well. Mix the baking soda with 1 part vinegar to three parts water. You can do this directly on the stain or in a spray bottle. Allow the mixture to bubble and soak into the stain.
Cover the stain with a towel and use a warm iron on the towel itself to lift the stain out of your carpet and up into the towel. You’ll want to make sure you’re using a towel that you’re okay with getting dirty, and repeat this as needed for darker stains that are very set in. You may have to do several rounds to see the full effect in those cases.
Although no one may ever need to know every single carpet cleaning tip or trick out there, these are some key ones to keep in mind. You don’t want to be left wondering what to do when a spill happens or you’re facing getting gum out for the first time. Keep these tips in mind and remember that the best thing you can do is care for your carpets regularly.
The more preventative care you give to your carpets the less you’ll need to know for emergency carpet situations. After you’ve taken care of your deep cleaning or regular care for the week, make sure you take a moment to enjoy how great your home looks with freshly cleaned carpets. You’ll be glad you put in the effort when you can get back to enjoying life a little more quickly.