Avoid These Common Carpet Cleaning Mistakes!
There’s so much guidance available online on how to clean your carpets that it’s impossible to know which source to trust. Much of this info is conradictory, authored by amateurs and likely to do more harm than good to your carpet.
We’re here to set the record straight and steer you away from some common carpet cleaning mistakes that could leave you out of pocket. NEVER do any of the following to your carpet.
The 5 Worst Carpet Cleaning Mistakes you can make
Reacting to a spill without thinking
As many online guides on carpet cleaning will point out, carpets tend to soak stains up very quickly – you need to act quickly too, if you want to minimise the damage.
This may be true, but you should also bear in mind that by acting fast without any knowledge of the proper treatment for the stain, you can do far more harm than good. You can’t just apply whichever kind of cleaning product is closest to hand when you spill something on your carpet.
The best way to get ready to act quickly in the event of a spillage is to arm yourself with the knowledge and products required to deal with a variety of common household spills.
Read our guide to cleaning common stains
Too much aggressive cleaning!
It feels like a great achievement when you’ve scrubbed something till it looks immaculate – but please bear in mind that scrubbing and similar actions are essentially destructive acts. Every time you scrub your carpet, you are breaking down its fibres and dulling its colours, ever so slightly.
If you wish to clean your carpet on a very regular basis (anything up to fortnightly), try to be as gentle as possible, to minimise the damage caused. Carpets for business premises are built extra tough to accommodate heavier use and very regular cleaning, but we’re afraid to say this probably won’t be the case where the carpets in your home are concerned. We advise vacuuming your carpets frequently, cleaning gently on a monthly basis, and commissioning a professional clean when required.
Failing to test your cleaning techniques
Believe it or not, your carpet is a complex beast. The unique combination of materials, dyes and techniques used in its manufacture – plus the environment it lives in – will define the way it reacts to different cleaning products. What works for one carpet can ruin another.
This is why it can be a terrible mistake to use a new cleaning product or technique on your carpet without trying it out first.
You can test the effects of a certain product on your carpet by creating a test patch – a piece of the same carpet that you don’t mind risking. Ideally, you will have kept by some off-cuts from when your carpet was fitted, but failing that you can use an area that’s normally hidden by a large piece of furniture – more specifically a piece of furniture which you have no plans to move in the near future.
Try out your new cleaning product or technique on this test patch of carpet and observe the results. If everything looks and smells right once the test patch is dry, go ahead and clean your carpet.
Never scrub a spill
This seems to be fairly common knowledge now, but we think it’s worth emphasising anyway:
You should never scrub a spill. Blot instead.
When you blot a stain, the fibres of the tissue, cloth or sponge you’re using will suck up moisture from the stain, as a result of the phenomenon known as capillary action. This is the same effect that allows a plant’s roots to take up moisture from the soil, and it is by far and away the best way to minimise damage immediately after a spill.
Scrubbing, on the other hand, may actually spread a stain deeper into the fibres of the carpet, causing additional abrasion damage in the process.
Using carpet deodorant instead of a carpet cleaner
You’d be amazed at how many people use a carpet deodorant in place of a carpet cleaning product! Using carpet deodorant is a great way to freshen your carpet up every now and then (especially if you’re a pet owner), but it will have little or no effect on dirt and stains. Invest in a dedicated carpet cleaning product or give Smart Cleaning a call instead!