Is carpet cleaning worth it? When and how often should you clean your carpet? Is it better to clean your carpet yourself or get a professional to do it?
Yes, carpet cleaning is worth it. Carpets act like a giant filter in your home, trapping dust, dirt, pet hairs, and even skin flakes and fibers. Add moisture to this mix, and you have a recipe for mold and mildew. Who needs that? So, yeah, carpet cleaning is worth it.
Should you do it yourself or hire a professional? The simple answer is “both.”
DIY is good for weekly or monthly maintenance. You can invest in a good quality home carpet cleaner to use on high traffic areas or for cleaning up spills. But those little cleaners are not great for doing a whole house.
You need a professional carpet cleaning any time you clean all of your carpet. It helps keep your family healthy, is easier on your carpets, and is a lot less hassle. How often carpet cleaning is needed depends on your home and the people in it.
Lightly used carpet: Perhaps once every eighteen months
Your home includes kids and pets – at least once yearly, perhaps every six months..
You have many guests, you have kids and pets, and you are the local gathering place. If this is you, a professional cleaning might be needed every three to six months.
What is Carpet Cleaning?
Carpet cleaning is the process of applying hot water or steam and a cleaning solution to the carpet. The moisture and cleaning solution are then vacuumed out of the carpet.
When properly done, it removes dust, dirt, odors, and most stains.
Carpet cleaning is not vacuuming or spot cleaning. Those are maintenance tasks you are likely to do often.
- Vacuuming is using a vacuum sweeper over the carpet to remove loose particles.
- Spot cleaning is taking care of a spill, pet “mistake” or dirt from recent heavy foot traffic. It is reasonable to DIY spot cleaning.
At Home Vs Professional Carpet Cleaning
DIY Carpet Cleaning: It is possible, with good equipment, to do a good DIY carpet cleaning. But there are some things you should think about before trying it.
- Less money spent in the short term
- Time consuming
- Heavy work
- Moving furniture
- Good DIY carpet cleaners tend to be heavy and noisy. Be sure to wear your noise canceling ear protectors.
- Risk of getting carpet too wet
- Damage to carpet or floor or both
- Potential for health threatening mold or mildew
- Lengthy drying time
Reliable Professional Cleaners Save Time and Help Preserve Your Home
- A good professional cleaner can be expensive, but might be worth the cost.
- A good professional carpet cleaner will give a reasonable estimate by the square foot.
- Reputable professionals will discuss potential problems before beginning work
- They will have a reasonable satisfaction warranty that will at least include a re-do if you are not happy
Professionals will get the job done quickly and efficiently.
- You might need to prep your home by putting away valuable or delicate items.
- You might need to board your pets for the day.
- You can do something else while the professional carpet cleaner does the job.
- Your carpet should receive the appropriate cleaning for its fabric and style.
- Professionals are likely to use less water, and will get your carpet dry more quickly.
- Less risk of mildew from damp carpeting
- Less risk of injury to you or your family members from moving furniture or using heavy equipment.
Benefits of Cleaning your Carpets
All carpets should be cleaned at least once every eighteen months, even if they are rarely used during that time. Just being on a floor allows dust and spores to collect in the fibers. Here are a few benefits:
- Refresh the fibers, keeping them soft and comfortable
- Remove grime – dust, dirt, pet dander, and spores that could become mold or mildew
- Improve appearance
- Prolong the life of your carpet. Most carpets are warrantied for ten years. Lack of cleaning could make it essential to replace a high traffic carpet at the end of five years or less
- Increase household health. Remember we talked about carpets acting as a filter? Imagine not changing the filter on your air conditioner or furnace, and think of all the crud that would re-circulate in your home. Carpets work much the same way.
- Cut down on allergens for sensitive individuals.
Risks of DIY Carpet Cleaning
There is a saying that the workman is worthy of his hire. It is frequently teamed up with adding that you get what you pay for. So, let’s think about what happens when you clean your carpet yourself.
You are placing responsibility for maintaining a large investment (your carpet) in the hands of an amateur. Here are a few things that can happen when you clean your carpet yourself:
- You pay out quite a lot of money to rent or buy a carpet cleaner. Even after reading the reviews, it doesn’t quite work as expected.
- The cleaning device leaves your carpet too wet to move back onto it the same day. You spend the night at the home of a friend or family member, or rent a hotel while waiting for it to dry.
- You damage your carpet by using the wrong temperature or cleaner.
- Your carpet shrinks or wrinkles.
- Stains you had hoped to remove don’t come out. (Some might not with a professional cleaner, either, but that person will at least know why.)
Is it Worth Hiring a Professional?
Yes, it is definitely work hiring a professional to clean your carpets. While doing it yourself might seem like it will save money, that is usually a short-term solution. You can learn more about carpets and carpet cleaning by visiting the Carpet and Rug Institute online. You might say they wrote the book on everything about carpets and rugs.
Hiring a professional helps protect your carpet investment. Doing it yourself is good for small immediate cleanups, but can cause damage to your carpet and your floors when shampooing large areas if it is not done correctly. You might need to have your carpet replaced or have extensive floor repairs from your DIY cleaning. Instead of saving money, it can end up costing you.