Carpets give a home a warm and comfortable feel, they also add colour and texture to your home. However, they soak up stains more than anything else. Carpets get quite a beating, as everyone walks over them throughout the day while often having food and drink splattered on them. Unlike hard laminate floors, carpets also trap lots of dust and allergens which can be harmful to asthma sufferers. Whether you want to learn how to clean your carpets by hand, or just clean a spot of spilt red wine from your carpet, here you’ll find the cleaning tips you need to get your carpet back to its former glory.
Routine Carpet Cleaning
For those who suffer from allergies or asthma, regular carpet cleaning is important. Even if you have a healthy immune system, you should still do routine cleaning. Also, if you spill something on your carpet, you should clean that stain right away.
Vacuum The Carpet
You should always start carpet cleaning by vacuuming the carpet a couple of times each month to remove dust and pet dander. If you’re prepping for a deep clean, you’ll also want to vacuum first. Dust stuck in the carpet fibres can make it harder to get through to stains.
If you have rugs, you’ll want to shake them out a few times a month. And every couple of months, flip the rug over and vacuum.
Spot-clean Your Carpet
Pet hair: can be a nightmare to get out of your carpet. To save you time – sprinkle baking soda onto the area, then after a few minutes, vacuum it. The baking soda will have lifted pet hair from your carpet.
Pet stains: look and smell bad, luckily they can be easily removed. Start by using a paper towel to dab as much urine as possible, then mix equal parts water and vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray the spot to get rid of the smell, then dab with a dry paper towel again.
Blood stains: use a mixture of 2 parts hydrogen peroxide and 1 part dish soap. Wet a cloth with the solution, then dab the stain with it. You can also remove blood stains by combining cold water and white vinegar, then soak the stain for a few minutes before dabbing the stain again with a paper towel or a dry cloth.
Red wine: for red wine stains, first dry up as much as possible, quickly. Then generously sprinkle salt or baking soda onto the stained area and allow it to settle for a few minutes before vacuuming it up. If the stain is still there, you should use a commercial carpet cleaner to get rid of the rest of the stain.
Paint: if your craft project went wrong and paint ends up staining your carpet, there is a way to remove it. Firstly, check if the paint is oil or water-based? Water-based paints will be the easiest to clean up as they are water-soluble.
- For water-based paints: use a paper towel to dab any remaining wet paint, then scrape the remaining paint with a blunt knife or razor blade. If there is still paint on the carpet, dampen a microfiber cloth with rubbing alcohol and pat the stain. If that doesn’t work, you can try using paint thinner instead.
- For oil paints: (for new stains), blot away the excess first. If the paint is dry, use a cloth dampened with paint thinner and perhaps equal parts dish soap and warm water.
Wax And Chewing Gum Stains
For these stains, apply a generous amount of ice or an ice pack to the stained area. Leave the ice on the area for about 30 minutes. After this the stain will be able to be scraped easily.
For chewing gum, use cotton wool dipped in ammonia to clean it from the carpet. Ammonia will make the chewing gum compress and lose its stickiness, thus making it simply come off.
How Often Should You Clean Your Carpet
Your carpet will collect dust naturally over time, therefore you need to vacuum it regularly. Depending on how often certain areas of the carpet are walked on, vacuuming once or even twice a month will be enough maintenance.
Deep cleaning should be done every couple of months. For rugs, you should first test if they can handle deep cleaning. If you have a delicate rug, you may need to take it to be cleaned every 3 to 5 years. Washable rugs are a simpler option. Also, avoid steam cleaning your carpets at all costs, as this will damage them.
Cleaning your carpets by hand can be a long process, but is the most cost-effective method. If your home has carpet or wall-to-wall carpeting, you should dedicate time to do this once a year. Once your carpet is clean, you may want to continue cleaning other areas of your home. Read here if you’d like to know how to clean a mattress. Or book a home clean with SweepSouth and we’ll restore cleanliness to your home.