Things you can do to keep your carpets clean
Most carpeting today is engineered to provide long and useful life and to enhance the indoor environment. Carpet offers advantages over other flooring systems, such as reduced fatigue for persons walking over it, sound absorbtion, keeps a room warmer and is more comfortable for children to play on. Also, carpet acts as a huge air filter by trapping dust and other particulate matter within the pile for easy vacuuming.
Regular maintenance is an important part of the life cycle of carpeting and furniture for that matter. If proper maintenance is neglected, the carpet's appearance will suffer, shortening the carpet's useful life and raising long term costs.
Perhaps the most important aspect of carpet cleaning is reducing the amount of soiling entering the home in the first place. This can be a difficult task or an easy one depending upon the family structure and mode of living. Children, pets and sometimes husbands, (haha) make it more difficult to keep carpet clean, but there are certain steps you can take to reduce overall soiling.
Most people enter their homes through the garage, so it is important to keep the floor clean by sweeping and washing the garage floor down every few months or so (a great job for kids) then utilize remnant pieces of carpet or scrap pieces of any old carpet, cut them into 2 to 3 foot wide strips from 4 to 8 feet long and place them either side of the car, so when you park and get out of the vehicle, your stepping directly onto them and walking on them all the way into the house. This is the first line of defense.
Once inside the house, your going to want to have an area rug at the door and long runners in the hallway and into the house.
The objective is to have rugs and runners at every entry point to capture dirt and moisture before it gets into the homes intimate living areas. These runners and rugs are easier to clean more frequently than the whole house.
Another simple idea is to make it more inviting and easier for people to remove their shoes by placing a small bench, stool or chair at the entry point so people can sit without having to bend over or balance on one leg as they try to take off shoes or have a supply of shoe cover footies at the door. We supply these as a courtesy after every carpet cleaning.
The choice of mats can be daunting, but in our experience it is better to have even a piece of carpet remnant rather than nothing. There are professional mats available that capture soil and water from entering the building. The better mats will have a slightly coarse texture and are able to brush soil from shoes and can hold large amounts of soil within their pile.
These mats can be frequently cleaned by taking outside, beaten and hosed off using a mild laundry detergent such as woolite in most cases and hung over a fence to drip dry or call us to come and clean them for you.
Even regular carpet runners or remnant pieces of carpet will greatly reduce the amount of soiling from entering the house.
Vacuuming is the most significant element in the maintenance and the overall appearance of carpeting. 80% of soil tracked into a home is dry and the other 20% is oily and or wet. Vacuum cleaners are designed to remove dry soil. Walking on soiled carpet permits dry soil to travel further in the pile and backing of carpeting.
Frequent vacuuming will remove this soiling before it goes deeper into the pile. Heavily trafficked areas should be vacuumed daily and other areas every 2-3 days for the best results, not once a week or every 2 weeks as we often hear.
Food and drink should be avoided or kept at a minimum on carpeting. Spills and spots should be addressed immediately.
Ideally, outside shoes should never come into contact with indoor carpeting.
Training husbands and children to remove shoes as they come into the home can be a chore, but with sweet talk and kindness ought to be achievable, if not, crack the whip once in a while.
The last and best thing to do to keep your carpets clean is to use the services of a carpet cleaner on a regular basis.
High traffic areas such as entrys, hallways, family rooms etc. should be cleaned every 4 to 6 months while other areas such as bedrooms and basements need to be cleaned every 6 to 12 months.
People make the mistake of waiting until the carpet is visibly soiled & they can't stand it any longer before they call to clean. This is a mistake because it takes longer and more effort and energy and therefore costs more to clean a visibly soiled carpet as opposed to a light maintenance cleaning performed every few months or so.
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What's in your carpet?
Our truck mount cleaning machine removes the following from carpets and soft furnishings (if present)
Food & spills
Snot and Drool
Spiders & Flies
Hair, animal & human
Microscopic dust mites
and their feces.
Silverfish & their feces.
Carpet beatles & their feces
Sand & Grit
Other particulate matter