Carpet Cleaning Methods
The appearance and life of your carpet depends on the care it receives. Proper cleaning helps safeguard your carpet investment by keeping you from having to replace it before its time. The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) recommends the following ingredients that are necessary for a successful carpet care program.
5 Ingredients for Successful Carpet Care from CRI
Spot / Spill Removal
Cleaning your carpet the right way does not have to be difficult. It is important to use the right methods, equipment and cleaning products. Using improper methods, equipment or products can result in faster re-soiling, the reappearance of stains, or more serious damage to your carpet.
Maintaining your carpets starts with prevention. Use good quality matting at entries to prevent moisture and dirt from getting on the carpet. Then clean and maintain your carpets following these 4 simple steps:
- Dry Soil Removal: Regular vacuuming is the simplest and most important maintenance activity you can do to keep your carpet in the best possible condition. Ever wonder why worn carpet gets matted down and show visible traffic lanes? It is the abrasive nature of dirt and foot traffic that actually causes permanent damage / fraying of the carpet fibers causing them to loose their resiliency. Remember, vacuum, vacuum, vacuum!!!!
- Clean Up Spills Fast: The faster you clean up a spill, the less likely it will turn into a permanent stain. When a spill occurs, blot up as much as possible with a white towel. Then, spray plain water through a spray bottle onto the area and blot again. Repeat the process until the towel comes up clean. If you own a wet dry vacuum, use it to pull as much moisture out of the carpet as possible or if possible, rent a good quality carpet extractor.
- Interim Carpet Cleaning: When vacuuming or spot cleaning isn’t enough, interim cleaning methods can be considered if the carpet is not heavily soiled. The most well known interim method is old fashioned bonnet cleaning. This method can be modestly effective, but too heavy reliance can result in the simple spreading of dirt across a carpet to make it look uniformly dirty. A new type of system called Encapsulation Cleaning is a more effective interim cleaning method that leaves carpets free of residues and actually removes the dirt. The method uses a special polymer based cleaner combined with agitation to loosen soil and surround the soil particles and detergent residues with a brittle polymer. Upon drying, the polymer easily fractures from the beat bar of a vacuum cleaner. Besides leaving carpets residue free, the carpet can be returned to service in as little as 1 hour. Multi-Clean ECO2-Encapsulating Cleaner with Oxygen.
- Extraction Deep Cleaning: Extraction Cleaning is still recognized as the only deep cleaning method for carpets. Use a good quality extractor that applies a cleaning solution and then picks up the soiled solution. Use a cleaning chemical that is safe for stain resistant carpet and is designed for extraction cleaning. Avoid cleaning products that can leave a sticky residue that can attract dirt and cause carpets to get dirty faster after cleaning.Multi-Clean Extraction Cleaner.
Extraction Cleaning Tips:
Pre-Spray Traffic Lanes: Areas that are heavily trafficked and visibly dirty should be pre-sprayed prior to extracting to give cleaning chemicals more time to loosen up dirt. When extracting these areas, make one pass dispensing the cleaning solution followed by a pass with just the vacuum.
Use proper dilutions: Read the label and follow dilution recommendations. Using more than necessary won’t make your carpets any cleaner.
Use warm-hot tap water in the extractor: Using warm or hot tap water improves cleaning performance.
Allow Carpets Ample Time to Dry: Don’t allow people to walk on carpets until completely dry. To speed drying, promote air flow with a fan.
Following these steps will make your carpets look good and make them last for many years to come.