9 Expert Tips To Keep Your Carpet Clean

Read time: 8 mins

For homeowners and businesses alike, a clean carpet goes a long way in contributing to a fresh, healthy environment. Unlike other surfaces, a carpet’s fibers easily trap dust, dander, and dirt. While we love them because they make for cozy and comfortable living spaces, they do require a bit of routine carpet maintenance to promote freshness and longevity. 

Here are nine expert residential and commercial carpet care tips to keep floors clean and sparkling:

1. Understand Your Carpet’s Needs

Not all carpets are the same and should be treated accordingly. A carpet’s fiber, pile, durability, and density all play a role in determining the best cleaning approach.  Let’s dive into two of the most common carpet fiber types and how to clean them.

Synthetic Fiber

Most modern carpets are made of synthetic fibers such as nylon because they are more cost-efficient and are hypoallergenic. When it comes to caring for nylon carpets, it’s recommended to vacuum weekly with a soft bristle beater bar as opposed to a hard bristle, which can be too aggressive. When choosing a cleaning solution, be sure to be mindful of alkaline levels as anything too high can cause a nylon carpet to lose its stain-resistant qualities. 

Natural Fiber

Natural fiber carpets are often made of materials such as jute, sisal, and seagrass. Because natural fibers tend to be less durable than synthetic ones, we recommend using a vacuum with a high suction and not using a beater bar which can cause damage over time. Shampooing and steam cleaning a natural fiber carpet can cause it to shrink or discolor, so we advise using a dry shampoo instead, which can be sprinkled onto the carpet to absorb odors and stains and be vacuumed up once dry. 

2. Establish Weekly Carpet Cleaning Habits

To prevent the accumulation of dirt, regular vacuuming is recommended among the best carpet cleaning practices. Incorporating vacuuming into your weekly routine is a great way to set your carpets up for long-term success. Foot traffic, pets, and other factors contribute to a general buildup of dirt, dander, and dust that hide on carpets and collect over time.  Although we may not always be able to see this grime with our own eyes, it is there and can have a negative impact on air quality and allergies. Consistent weekly vacuuming is a great way to curb this and get ahead of the grime. 

Beyond vacuuming, small things like using a doormat or taking your shoes off before entering will help limit the amount of dirt tracked into your home. 

COIT Pro Tip

While frequency matters, so does technique. A common vacuuming mistake people make is that they only move in one direction. For optimal results, we suggest vacuuming in a criss-cross pattern to cover more surface area. 

3. Tend to Spills and Spots Immediately

Accidents happen. A dog tracks in mud, a toddler uses the carpet as their personal paint canvas, a glass of wine gets tipped over. While we all do our best to avoid them, spills and spots are inevitable. When it comes to carpet stain removal, the sooner you tend to it, the less time it has to soak into the fibers and become stubborn. 

That said, not all spills should be treated the same, and it’s best to know how to treat specific stains to avoid making them worse. For example, when it comes to removing nail polish from a carpet, it’s recommended to spray 15 to 20 pumps of hairspray followed by three to five splashes of rubbing alcohol. From there, simply scrub with a small brush until the stain is removed. 

To ensure you can act fast when accidents do happen, consider bookmarking COIT’s expert Spot Removal Guide

Contact COIT for a professional cleaning!

4. Deep Clean Carpets Every Eight to Twelve Months

Over time, allergens, pet dander, dirt, and debris settle between carpet fibers and can be difficult to remove with surface-level cleaning and vacuuming. Not to mention, sometimes unattended or unnoticed stains are too deep set and require a bit more effort to remove. To fully penetrate and extract these particles from your carpet, you will want to deep clean your carpet every eight to twelve months. Although this timeframe is the general rule of thumb, you may want to consider the time of year and implement more regular seasonal carpet maintenance regimens to address when pollen and other allergens are more prevalent. 

DIY Carpet Solutions Vs Professional Cleaning Services

If your carpets only have a surface-level amount of dirt, you can likely get away with deep cleaning your carpet yourself. There are a few places that will allow you to rent, pick up, and return the equipment required to perform a deep cleaning. If you’re willing to take the time to do this and learn how to operate the machinery, then DIY carpet cleaning is a viable option. 

However, if you’re in a pinch or your carpets are deeply soiled, it might be in your best interest to seek professional carpet cleaning services. Professionals know how to assess the type of carpet you have, form the best plan of action to deep clean them, and have immediate access to the right equipment needed to get the job done efficiently. 

Cost-wise, you may find there isn’t a significant difference in price between the DIY and professional options once labor, time, and equipment costs are factored into the equation. 

COIT Pro Tip

If you decide to DIY, be sure to rinse your carpets with water after deep cleaning.  Rinsing your carpet after shampoos and other detergents are applied ensures all solutions are removed and aren’t attracting more dirt. 

5. Use Furniture Coasters

Heavy furniture items can cause unwanted indentations on carpets over time. To avoid damage, consider using furniture coasters, which sit between furniture legs and flooring and evenly distribute the weight. Additionally, furniture coasters come in handy when rearranging furniture as they allow the larger pieces to glide over the carpet as opposed to pulling and potentially ripping carpet fibers. 

6. Consider Eco-Friendly Carpet Care

If you’re opting for a DIY carpet cleaning method but you’re also looking to keep things environmentally friendly, you’ll want to be considerate of the products you’re using to get the job done. Many modern cleaning products contain harsh chemicals that are harmful to breathe in. In place of these store-bought options, some of the best homemade cleaning solutions to remove spots and stains are simply made of water, baking soda, and vinegar.

Similarly, if you’re looking for a way to make your carpets smell good, baking soda is considered a natural deodorizer.  If you’re looking to take it a step further, consider a combination of baking soda and essential oils to take your freshness to the next level.

If you’re opting out of the DIY method and instead are looking to hire professional carpet cleaning services, rest assured COIT offers CoitGard™ stain protector, which is non-toxic, environmentally friendly, and safe for children and pets. 

7. Use Carpet Protectants

Carpet protectant techniques can be implemented and sprayed onto freshly cleaned carpets to prevent the absorption of future stains. These protectants provide temporary water resistance, which makes it difficult for spills to penetrate the carpet fibers and become stubborn. Deep cleaning a carpet takes time, money, and labor. To ensure your carpets remain fresh after a cleaning, consider asking your service provider to spray on carpet protectants to promote the longevity of your deep clean. 

8. Let Your Carpet Dry Completely After a Cleaning

If you’re wondering what not to do after a carpet cleaning, consider the fact that your floors will be wet. COIT recommends avoiding the freshly cleaned area for at least 24 hours so that it can dry fully. While it can be difficult to avoid the area, consider blocking it off from pets and children until it is completely dried.

Similarly, you will want to refrain from moving any furniture items onto the wet carpeted area to avoid varnish stains and prevent trapping any moisture underneath the furniture, which has the potential to turn into mold. 

9. Know When It’s Time to Replace Your Carpet

At COIT, we strongly believe in doing everything we can to preserve and restore before tossing anything out of the window. That said, even we know when a carpet is too far gone. 

In general, high-quality carpets can last an average of 10 to 15 years if cared for properly. Carpet replacement signs vary, and if you’ve tried everything under the sun to revive your carpets and rid them of stains, odors, and imperfections, then it might be time to swap out your carpet. If you decide it is time, treat it as a fresh start! This is a great opportunity to establish best practices for carpet cleaning and keep up with regular maintenance to ensure the longevity of your beloved floors. 

Carpet Cleaning Recap

  • Know which type of carpet you own to determine the best approach to cleaning
  • Perform weekly vacuuming to get ahead of the grime
  • Address spills and spots immediately before they become stubborn stains
  • Deep clean your carpet every eight to twelve months
  • Furniture coasters protect carpets from unwanted dents and tears
  • Some of the best homemade cleaning solutions to remove spots and stains are simply made of water, baking soda, and vinegar
  • Carpet protectants such as CoitGard™ help to prevent stain absorption 
  • Let your carpet dry completely before stepping on it or rearranging furniture
  • If you’ve tried it all, replace your old carpet with a new, fresh one!

Contact COIT today to schedule your routine carpet cleaning

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