Carpets provide a comfortable and attractive finish to your home’s interior décor. They need regular maintenance to remain looking their best, however, which can cost time and money. In this article, we’ve listed six easy carpet cleaning hacks that save you money.
- Freshen Your Carpet with Baking Soda
Is there a patch of carpet that doesn’t smell as fresh as it once did? If so, one of the cheapest techniques to remove an odour is a combination of baking soda and essential oils.
Start by mixing around 15 drops of your favourite essential oil with 16 ounces of baking soda. Any essential oil can work, but lavender is often a great choice.
Once it’s thoroughly mixed, shake a small amount of the baking soda on the offending patch of carpet. Leave it to absorb any odours for around 10 minutes and then use your vacuum to remove it. The odour should have disappeared.
This tip is also great if you own pets – especially ones that aren’t house trained. Baking soda is an easy way to absorb urine smells without needing to spend money on expensive cleaners.
Note: Baking soda is effective for absorbing odours, but baking powder doesn’t have the same effect. Make sure you use the correct type!
- Avoid Using Full Vacuum Suction on Shag Carpets
The shag carpet has come back into fashion, but it requires a different cleaning approach to most carpets. This is because a vacuum cleaner with strong suction is almost impossible to push on a shag carpet – and can even damage the fibres.
To avoid this problem, turn down the suction power on your vacuum (if it has this feature) or only use the hose attachment. This prevents the carpet’s fibres becoming loose and frizzy, but you can still get deep into the carpet to remove dust and dirt.
Another option is to buy a carpet sweeper (some of the best sweepers are reviewed at this link). These machines work in a similar way to vacuums but don’t have a motor for suction. This means they are safer to use on delicate carpets.
- Remove Nail Polish with Rubbing Alcohol
One of the most difficult stains to remove from a carpet is spilt nail polish. Fortunately, this problem is easy to tackle when you know how – and the secret is rubbing alcohol.
Start by removing as much of the nail polish as you can with a blunt knife. Then dab rubbing alcohol gently onto the stain until it dissolves.
This tip is usually safe because rubbing alcohol is heavily diluted. This means it’s unlikely to bleach your carpet fibres or cause additional stains. If you’re worried about this, test a small amount on an area of carpet that’s hidden before using it on the stain.
- Get Rid of Dents Using Ice
The weight of furniture can cause dents in carpets fibres. These become a problem when you move furniture and are left with an unsightly mark.
An easy way to remove these dents is to place an ice cube on them. Allow it to melt, before using a towel to gently get rid of the fluid. This process makes the carpet fibres easy to manipulate, so you can fluff them up and remove the dent.
Bonus Tip: Ice is also a great tool for getting rid of gum on carpets. Freeze the gum using the cube for around 30 seconds, before using a spoon to scrape it off.
- Use Shaving Cream to Remove Stubborn Dirt
If your carpet has a dirt or grease stain that your vacuum can’t deal with, shaving cream can be the answer. Simply rub a small amount of any shaving cream into the affected carpet fibres and allow it to sit for a while. Then use a cloth to gently remove any excessive moisture. The carpet should feel soft – and, most importantly, the dirt should have disappeared.
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- Protect Carpets with Rugs
If your carpets suffer from heavy foot traffic, it can be a good idea to protect them with runners and rugs. These absorb potential damage to carpets and are also easier to clean.
The downside to rugs is that they may not be as aesthetically pleasing as bare carpets. You can always remove them when you have guests over, however, and they’ll make your plush carpets last a lot longer.
You don’t need to spend money on expensive cleaning products to maintain your carpet. If you’re struggling to keep your carpets looking clean and attractive, the tips in this article can make a big difference. It’s still a good idea to get carpets professionally cleaned once every 12-18 months, but these hacks are great for maintaining carpets between more thorough cleans.