Knowing how to properly care for a carpet is a great way to increase its lifespan. A properly cleaned and maintained carpet can easily last twice as long as one that is neglected and poorly maintained. You can find any number of carpet cleaning tips online, but here are some of the basic strategies that we recommend you use day-to-day.
- Vacuum carpet as least once a week, and even more if you have an area of heavy traffic. Vacuuming frequently prevents the buildup of particles that cut into your carpet fibers, prolonging the lifespan of your carpet. Once a month or so, take some time to use the specialty tools on your vacuum and get into the nooks, crannies, and corners of the spaces you’re vacuuming.
- Note: making a single pass over the area with the vacuum is rarely enough to get the job done. Yes, you’ll pick up the surface layer of grime and will see your bag start to fill up, but it will take a couple more passes before you get all the way down to the particles that have been worked down into your fibers.
- Take your time when vacuuming and don’t try to go too quickly. Make long, slow passes over the areas you are tackling, especially ones with high traffic. High-traffic areas should be vacuumed over a couple of times from different angles.
If you intend to steam clean your carpet, consider using a pro. They have the experience and training necessary to do a good job and will almost certainly know more than you. If you intend to do it yourself, however, consider the following tips:
- Clean the carpet before you feel like you absolutely have to. It’s better to catch it with a little bit of debris at a time or it becomes more difficult and takes much more time.
- Before and after the steam cleaning, vacuum the whole area.
- If there are stains that you intend to clean up, make sure that you pretreat them before going in with the steam cleaner.
- Don’t over-wet the carpet, and once you are through, make sure you let it dry completely before putting it to use. Wet carpet can easily form mildew, so turn on any fans that you can, crank the AC, and use a dehumidifier if you have one.