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The Way to Steam Clean Carpeting
Many homeowners wonder how to steam clean carpeting to reduce dust or remove stains and odors before the holidays bring company and guests to their houses.
As you can certainly hire an expert to clean your carpets, it’s not a tricky task to do yourself. You need to know how to do it properly, so you remove stains without making them set in permanently. Once you’ve properly vacuumed and prepared your room, you’ll find the actual cleaning goes.
Plus, the results are so impressive that it’s a really rewarding chore!
What does it mean to steam clean carpeting?
The term”steam cleaning” distinguishes a water-based process of cleaning carpets from dry chemical compound methods used by some professional companies.
It’s not the steam which cleans the carpet, though: it’s the detergents which the steam (or hot water) activates. That is true any time you hire steam cleaners to do it for you, or once you purchase or rent a machine. Even dry cleaning companies that are chemical use a small amount of water!
Steam cleaning — or carpet shampooing — does not require expert equipment. It also does not have the concerns associated with chemical carpet cleaning.
But since water is involved, it will take longer until your carpets to dry. For most people, the wait is well worth the worries saved.
Get the Carpet for Cleaning
Carpet steamers (also called carpet shampooers) are not vacuums. They are specially designed to wash and partially dry rugs, as they move extracting grime.
If you want them to get the ground-in dirt out of your carpet, you must vacuum thoroughly before steam cleaning. That does not mean your usual quick back-and-forth over the rug.
1. Pick up all toys, books and other items on the ground.
2. Move smaller furnishings to another room. Place aluminum foil squares beneath the legs of tables or couches that you’re leaving in the room — the legs are protected by the foil from moisture. Until the carpet is dry, leave the squares in place.
3. Dust your baseboards, so on your carpet and back you’re not knocking stuff from them.
4. Use your attachment around the bottom of some furniture that is remaining and the walls.
5. Vacuum carpeting in two directions, first gradually again from a 90-degree angle. Although this seems like overkill, carpet fibers are twisted, so vacuuming from different directions ensures each”side” of the ribbon gets cleaned. (Here’s more on how to vacuum properly.)
While the carpet cleaning system will remove a lot of grime and dust, the heat involved can also make stains more difficult to remove. You’ve probably experienced this yourself, having cleaned your carpet only to find the stains come back a couple of days later.
Why do carpet stains return after shampooing? Process forced the grime and the carpet fibers wicked it and back to the surface.
Here is how to remove carpet stains to prevent them from coming back. It’s the exact same way I used to get even, and paint, puppy messes that are old mystery stains out of carpeting in my dwelling.
It’s always a great idea to spot-test any cleaning product that you intend to use on your carpeting. A good place to do so is in a closet or other location that is not visible.
In this way, you do not risk damaging or fading your entire carpet or making it fade. Such dangers are a concern with carpeting that is the majority of modern, but if yours has been re-dyed or is older, it’s better to check.
Use These Two Non-Toxic Cleaners
If you are worried about your carpet cleaning machine’s warranty, use the manufacturer’s recommended products and follow the instructions on the bottle.
I have discovered the bottled carpet shampoos irritate our allergies because of their heavy perfumes, and they do not seem to clean and the DIY carpet shampooing process below.
For the first step, find out how much water your machine’s tank stays. Fill the tank almost to the top with VERY hot (but not boiling) water and then add one tablespoon of Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap (unscented) for each quart of water used.
Why use Castile soap to clean your carpet? Because it’s oil-based. Those spots in high traffic areas on your carpeting are, usually. Chemically,”like dissolves like,” making Castile soap excellent at powering through carpet stains.
Nevertheless, it is a soap, so it has to be rinsed out of the carpet to complete the cleaning. That’s where the next step comes in.
On the next go-through, use a 50-50 mix of distilled white vinegar and very hot water. (Do not use apple cider vinegar, which contains sections that may attract household pests.)
In addition to neutralizing and removing the soap, vinegar also helps power through stains because of its acetic acid. So, this will lift away dirt and grime whilst deodorizing your carpeting.
No second rinse required. It is not necessary to follow it. Your carpeting may be oversaturated by doing this. Wait until the carpeting has dried — about a day — then go over it again if you do want to carry out a rinse.
Let it dry. After cleaning to put furniture back wait 8-12 hours. Has finished drying just because the carpet feels tender once you touch it does not mean that the pad below. Be patient and give it your furnishings as well as most of a day for the sake of your carpet.
Run the Carpet Cleaner Properly
Most carpet steam cleaners are designed to lay down water when you’re pushing the machine forward then extract it while you pull it back.
Make certain to pull the cleaner VERY slowly so that you can remove as much water as possible. Too much water will make your carpet padding to get soaked and can result in mold, mildew, and horrible scents.
For this reason, it’s also best to steam clean carpeting once the weather is warm enough to open the windows because that will accelerate drying. If you can’t open the windowsrun fans to assist your carpets dry before mildew can install.
How Frequently Should You Steam Clean Carpet?
At a minimum, you ought to steam clean your carpeting annually. Because the weather is warm enough that you can open the drying process to accelerate late Spring is an excellent time.
If you have pets or suffer from allergies, then you’ll want to steam clean your carpet every four weeks. Any more will make your carpet wear out too fast and fade.
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