Keeping a carpet clean is difficult enough without having some serious misconceptions making the process even more challenging. 7 Carpet cleaning myths that every DIY carpet cleaner should be aware of include:
1. Cleaning A Carpet Will Make It Get Dirtier Faster
This is a very common misconception and stems from the days when cheap carpet shampoos left a residue that would attract dirt resulting in carpets getting dirty much faster after being cleaned. Using a quality carpet cleaning solution will however not attract dirt and will in fact keep it clean for longer. Encapsulation detergents are designed to form a capsule around dirt particles so that they don’t become trapped in the carpet fibers. These detergents can continue working long after the carpet has been cleaned and dried meaning that dirt is more effectively removed every time you vacuum.
2. Effective Natural Remedies
There are many natural home remedies that claim to effectively clean and remove stains. The most popular of these is vinegar. However, studies have shown that vinegar is the least effective of all natural or chemical detergents tested to clean carpets. If you really don’t want to use any chemical detergents on your carpet, opt for steam cleaning which is very effective at removing dirt and stains. Alternatively, use a bio-enzyme detergent that has been specifically designed for carpets to break-down biological matter. These types of detergents are normally chemical-free and environmentally friendly.
3. Regular Vacuuming Is Bad
Vacuuming your carpet on a regular basis will not destroy the fibers and lead to faster wear and tear. Neither will it force dirt into the fibers resulting in stubborn dirt and stains. The opposite is in fact true and vacuuming regularly will remove loose dirt and particles from the carpet preventing them from being trampled into the pile. It is recommended to vacuum at least once a week and more often for busy households or in high traffic areas. Vacuuming should be performed as often as necessary.
4. A Carpet That Looks Clean Is Clean
Just because your carpets are not showing dirt or stains does not necessarily mean that they are clean. Microorganisms like bacteria, dust mites and even mold could be hiding in your carpet making it an unhygienic health hazard. Darker shades or colors may also help hide dirt from view. New carpets may also be hiding a dirty secret and are in fact designed to reduce the appearance of dirt and stains. It is recommended to have your carpets professionally cleaned at least once a year whether stains are visible or not.
5. A Carpet Needs To Be Soaked To Be Cleaned
Water can be very damaging to your carpets causing it to stretch or shrink depending on the type of material it is made from. Even cold water can fade colors or cause dyes to run. Water should never be poured onto stains as this can cause these to spread or run deeper into the fibers of the carpet. It is always recommended to dab stains with a damp cloth rather than use water. Carpet cleaning techniques that reduce the amount of water used on the carpet or extract excess water from the carpet are recommended. It is also important to note that the faster a carpet dries, the better. Carpets that stay wet after cleaning for an extended period of time are more likely to get damaged and could result in unseen mold growth.
6. Household Detergents Will Clean Your Carpet
Each type of household detergent is designed to do a specific job and is not suitable for cleaning your carpet. For example, dish washing detergent may be recommended to remove grease or oil stains from a carpet as it is designed to break down these types of materials. Bleach will effectively remove stains but will also remove the dye and damage the fibers of your carpet. Ammonia is abrasive and will damage the carpet fibers or release dangerous fumes.
7. DIY Carpet Cleaning Is As Good As Professional Cleaning
There simply is not substitute or having your carpets cleaned professionally. The detergents, equipment and expertise from expert carpet cleaners cannot compare to DIY solutions and will get rid of dirty carpet stains as well as dirt that is trapped deep beneath the pile. Rest assured that your carpets are hygienic and free of dust mites and other harmful microorganisms after a deep clean by the professionals in the industry. Their knowledge is also indispensable when it comes to preventing damage from occurring to your carpets. It is highly recommended to only use professional carpet cleaning services if you have invested in quality, expensive carpets such as silk or wool. Always make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and care of your carpets if you are going to go the DIY route.