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How to Shampoo Carpet

Imagine this scenario: you’re hosting a party with lots of friends and in the hustle and bustle, someone accidentally spills their glass of red wine onto your not-so-red carpet. Or this one, where you get a new puppy who is not potty-trained yet, and they accidentally don’t make it outside on time.

Either way, we’ve all been in a scenario where we need to clean the carpet or risk a permanent stain. Fortunately, shampooing carpets is not hard to do and can be done either with a machine or by hand. We’ll demonstrate and give you some tips and tricks, so you can clean up your carpet’s mess in no time.

how to shampoo carpet

How To Shampoo Carpet By Hand

If you don’t think a carpet cleaner is necessary for your task at hand (pun intended), you can absolutely address it. Just use some water, baking soda or dish soap, a toothbrush or rag, and a vacuum cleaner for proper spot cleaning

Spot Cleaning By Hand

  1. To start off, you’ll want to have your cleaning materials nearby and vacuum the area to remove any dirt and debris.
  2. If you are using baking soda or dish soap, you will need to determine how much you need. For baking soda, cover the entire stain with it. For dish soap, use one tablespoon for every six-to-eight inches of stain. 
  3. Scrub until bubbly before taking a brush, tooth brush, rag, or towel and warm water to it. There should be enough water to help scrub the stain away.
  4. After the stain has disappeared, let it dry before taking the vacuum to it again. 

Deep Cleaning by Hand

If you need something a little more abrasive, you don’t have to reach for the carpet cleaner just yet. Here’s some tips on how to deep clean your carpet.

  1. Reach for a combination of water and dish soap, some kitchen salt of any kind, baking soda, a stiff-bristled scrubbing brush, spray bottle, and a towel.
  2. Put the soapy water into the spray bottle, and sprinkle the baking soda and salt on the carpet you want to clean.
  3. Spray the soapy water on the spot and let it sit for a few minutes before brushing the carpet with your brush in the same direction. This will help pick up hair and other debris.
  4. If there is still a stain, turn ninety degrees before brushing again.
  5. Press towels into the carpet to help dry it. 
  6. After, use a spray bottle of regular water and spray the space you cleaned before pressing the towels back again. 

Alternatives To Cleaning a Carpet By Hand

If the carpet cleaning project you want to tackle is just too large for you to scrub away by hand, that’s totally fine. There are plenty of carpet cleaning machines that exist for whatever need you may have. With options like shampooing machines and steam cleaning machines, you can take on any project that may seem impossible with ease. 

how to shampoo carpet

Shampooing vs. Steam Cleaning

So what exactly are the differences between shampooing the carpet and steam cleaning the carpet? And why are there two options to begin with? We will answer these questions below so you can choose which is best for you:

Pros and Cons of Shampooing Your Carpet

  • Pro: Great for removing heavy dirt from carpets (especially older ones or ones in between tenants) 
  • Con: They can leave the carpet wet for 24-48 hours
  • Pro: Helps tackle large area issues
  • Con: They can cause damage to carpet backing if there is too much water
  • Pro: Kills off allergens and bacteria while extracting water and dirt
  • Con: They can be very heavy and expensive machines 

Pros and Cons of Steam Cleaning Your Carpet

  • Pro: Steam can kill about 99.9% of germs and bacteria and will kill dust mites and bed bugs
  • Con: Most do not vacuum
  • Pro: Steam vapor uses less water meaning your carpet will be mostly dry when complete
  • Con: Not great for heavily soiled carpets
  • Pro: Chemical-free
  • Con: Spot-treating might need to be done before attacking a heavily stained spot
  • Pro: Are small and lightweight
  • Con: May not be great for attacking a large room or house

Great Carpet Cleaning and Steam Cleaning Machines

Now that you know if you’d rather use a carpet cleaner or steam cleaner, what you need to address can easily be done by some of these machines. For carpet cleaners, give these portable ones a try. Looking for a steam cleaning machine? These few might be exactly what you are looking for. 

Questions on Carpet Cleaning, Answered:

How often should you shampoo your carpet?

You should shampoo your carpet every twelve months while spot cleaning when necessary in between. However, if you have pets or children, you may want to tackle the job more often to prevent allergies, germs, and more.

How long does it take to shampoo carpet?

How long it takes depends on different factors such as if you’re hand cleaning versus using a machine, or addressing a small spot versus a whole room. However, you can easily clean a space within an hour. It will just need some time to dry after.

Final Thoughts on Carpet Cleaning

Depending on your carpet cleaning needs, you can easily address it with scrubbing by hand or by grabbing a cleaning machine. If you really need to tackle a larger project, a cleaning machine might really be well worth the cost. You don’t want to save a few dollars by scrubbing it and potentially ruining the carpet when you really need something heavy duty. By understanding what your carpet needs are, you can make some solid decisions about how to go about cleaning it. 

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