Five Things You Can Do To Extend The Beauty Of Your Carpet.by David Buck on 06/08/12
- Vacuum your carpet sloooooooooooowly. I exaggerate the word slowly because it feels weird and takes longer to write but there is a noticable difference between the two. It's the exact same way with vacuuming your carpet; going slow feels weird but the difference between the two approaches is unmistakable. Most people see vacuuming as a chore that can be done faster by simply speeding up the tool but removing soil from deep down in the carpet, definitely requires a deliberately slow pace.
- Vacuum more often. This goes hand in hand with #1. If you only vacuum once a week then soil that gets tracked in your house or blown through your windows has four, five even six days of foot traffic to work its way down to the base of the carpet fiber where it is much, much harder to remove.
- Make sure your vacuum cleaner is working properly. Belts should be replaced every 12-18 months and since they only cost a few dollars it's a good idea to get 3 or 4 at a time. When vacuum cleaner belts start to stretch out (and it becomes noticable within a few months), the vacuum cleaner becomes much less effective at removing deep down soil. The same is true of the vacuum cleaners air path. If you have a bagged vacuum cleaner, change out the bag when it is no more than half way full otherwise the air flow slows down so much that you are simply not picking up the dirt that you are working so hard to remove. likewise if you have a vacuum with a dirt cup, make sure you know where all the filters are (some eureka vacuums have four) and clean them out regularly to maximize the air flow.
- Spot cleaning. Alway begin by blotting the spill unless the dog threw up, then gently scrape off the residue first and then blot gently with an old cotton towel. Or if that is just too gross then you can spot clean the way I do at my house. I keep a small wet and dry vac in the front clost of my home so that it is very handy to use. Each time there is a spill I just grab the vac and a pitcher of warm water. I start first by sucking up as much of the spill as I can while being careful not to scrub the carpet aggressively with the hose. Then I pour a little warm water from my pitcher into the carpet and gently extract the moisture and the residue; repeating these two steps until I am satisfied with the results. Then I fold up a clean, old, white towel, place it over the spill and stand on the towel until it is saturated. I will usually repeat that a few times with several towels. I have found that this simple spot cleaning technique using just warm water, will remove 90% of the things that get spilled on my carpet. The best part is that if you follow these instructions you wont be applying any chemicals that might set the stain permenently. (DONT FORGET TO HOSE OUT YOUR WET AND DRY VAC AND LET IT DRY BEFORE YOU PUT IT AWAY)
- Regular professional cleaning. All of the above are important to the maintenance of your carpet but they will not take the place of a regular professional restorative carpet cleaning. I have seen so many people lose the warranty on their carpet because they did not not understand that regular professional HWE (Hot Water Extraction) carpet cleaning is a requirement of their warranty and usually required every 18 - 24 months to keep the warranty valid. Most of the time makers of stain resistant fiber will not recognize any warranty claims against their product with out proof of this professional service by way of a receipt. So make sure that you have a regular schedule for your professional carpet cleaner, a solid spot cleaning procedure and slow deliberate vacuum strokes with a well tuned vacuum cleaner and you can add years of beauty to your carpet right now.