Carpet Maintenance

 

Maintaining carpet through regular vacuuming, deep cleaning, and stain removal has many benefits:

 

1.  Extends the life of the carpet

2.  Provides a clean, new and fresh look to the room

3.  Makes the room smell better

4.  Helps with allergy issues by removing the dirt and elements

 

 

Vacuuming

The number one rule of carpet care is to vacuum regularly. Most dirt and even dust takes the form of hard particles. When left in the carpet, these gritty, sharp particles abrade the pile of the carpet. Regular vacuuming not only prolongs the life of the carpet, but also enhances its appearance. It is best to use a vacuum with a beater bar and a brush, and be sure it’s set to the correct height for your carpet pile. If the setting is too high, you may not be cleaning your carpet effectively. If it’s too low, your carpet will get unnecessary wear and tear from the vacuum cleaner. Changing the direction of the cleaner frequently will make vacuuming more effective. Change the bag often to maximize the effectiveness of your vacuum cleaner.  A standard rule is to vacuum once per week for every person living in the household including pets.

For periodic maintenance, your carpet should be deep cleaned every two years. With today’s advanced fibers, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning. You can choose professional or do-it-yourself steam or dry cleaning. If you choose professional cleaning, be sure to use a reputable service and get them to perform a visual inspection of the carpet before giving you a quote. High-traffic areas will need to be cleaned more frequently by spot cleaning or with a steam cleaner. If you choose a self-cleaning method, be sure to follow the instructions provided with the steamer or self-cleaning product.

 

 

Deep Cleaning

 Carpet should be deep cleaned with hot water extraction (steam cleaning) every 12 to 24 months. Steam cleaning involves spraying a high-pressure solution of water and detergent and vacuuming the dirty solution. Refer to the manufacturer's warranty for the recommended deep cleaning method.

Many grocery stores and rental stores, rent steam cleaning equipment. You may also purchase deep cleaning equipment. If you choose to have a professional clean your carpet, do your homework:

Determine what services you want (i.e. stair cleaning, furniture moving, special treatments such as stain proofing, etc.)

 

 

 Stain Removal

 It’s inevitable, and everyone faces it sooner or later. A stain mysteriously (or not so mysteriously) appears on your carpeting, and it seems as if the entire room is focused on the spot. But with prompt action and some simple steps, most spots can be removed, and your carpeting returned to its original beauty.

 

If a stain occurs, quick action is essential. No carpeting is completely stain proof, although many are stain resistant. The stain resistant carpets allow more time for you to act, but the sooner you address the stain problem, the better your results will be.

 

First, remove as much of the staining material (food, wine, oil, etc.) as possible by very gently scraping the spill with a teaspoon or a dull knife. Do not rub hard as you may damage the fibers, or force more of the stain deeper into the carpet. If the spill is wet, absorb as much of it as possible by blotting the wet spot with clean white paper or cloth towels

When blotting, work from the outside of the edge in toward the center. This will prevent the stain from spreading. And be careful not to rub, scour or scrape with the cloth; blotting will collect more moisture than scrubbing, and the vigorous action of rubbing may result in a fuzzy or worn looking surface.

When as much as possible of the stain has been lifted or blotted away, you can remove the rest of the stain with simple household solutions. A mild solution of a liquid detergent (no more than one half tablespoon to one gallon of water) is recommended by most carpet manufacturers. Always test any cleaning solution on a discreet section of the carpet before treating the stain to make sure it will not discolor the fibers. Clear detergents are preferred over creamy or oily appearing ones, as they leave less residue. Using a clean white cloth again, dab the stain with the detergent solution, penetrating the stained carpet, and again blot the wet area with a clean dry cloth. Repeat this process until all the stain is removed. A solution of one tablespoon of ammonia in one cup of water can also be used, but should never be used on wool or wool blend carpets. Do not use any other household cleaners on the stain, especially ones containing bleach, since many contain chemicals that may permanently damage your carpet.

After the stain is removed, clean the spot area again with clear water. This will remove any of the detergent residue that may remain on the carpet. If it is not removed, the residue may become sticky and cause a new spot in the same place.

When all that is left of the stain is a wet spot, place several layers of white paper or cloth towels over the spot, and weight the towels with something heavy that will not transfer color, such as a plastic water jug. This will help absorb all the moisture left in the fibers. Wool fibers will hold more moisture (and hold it longer) than synthetic fibers, so be patient with the process to get all the moisture out.

If the stain does not respond to the mild detergent, you can use any number of commercial spot removers.  We suggest a First Aid product by Protective Services for water-based stains and Afta for oil-based stains.  If the stain persists, check with your carpeting retailer, who can advise you on professional cleaners who may be able to rescue your carpet.