Your carpet is looking dingy and dirty. Or maybe your home or office has suffered from water damage. Or perhaps you just have a few stubborn stains that you need to remove. Regardless, your carpet needs to be cleaned, but you aren’t sure what cleaning option is your best bet – and there are a lot of options.
You can go it alone and clean it with DIY solutions, or you can rent a carpet cleaner. Alternatively, you can call in the professionals. We don’t need to do all three, but sometimes, in an attempt to find the most effective and most affordable solution, we end up trying more than one cleaning solution before we find the one that works.
Save yourself the time and trouble. Here’s how to determine what carpet cleaning option you need.
1) You have a recent spill.
Carpet cleaning solution: DIY
And by recent, we don’t mean in the last week or even in the last day or two. We mean in the last couple of minutes. If this is the case, a DIY clean is not only the most affordable option, it’s the best option. Grab some club soda and apply it to the spill immediately, dabbing the area until it’s clean. DON’T RUB! Rubbing will grind the spill into your carpet, causing the pile to absorb the color of the substance.
For grease stains, use baking soda to absorb the spill and dab until it’s gone.
2) You have a set stain.
Carpet cleaning solution: DIY/Hire a Pro
If you have a stain that’s really set in, you can DIY or hire a pro. The choice for you will depend on the nature of your stain. If you are treating stains on your everyday carpet, then you can probably handle it on your own. Simply grab some shaving cream, apply it to the stain, let it sit 20-30 minutes, and dab it until the stain disappears. You can also try mixing equal parts hydrogen peroxide, baking soda and Dawn dish soap and applying this powerful solution to the stain.
However, if these solutions don’t work, you’re going to want to call in a professional carpet cleaner. This is particularly important if you are trying to remove a stain from a delicate area, in which case you may want to forgo trying anything on your own and go straight to the pros. Reason being that fragile or sensitive rugs or carpets may need specialised care, and if you don’t know how to do it, you could do more harm than good.
Exception to the rule: PET STAINS.
If you have stains caused by pet urine or feces, call in professionals who have the equipment and technology to deal with this issue. They use a special system that detects all traces of pet mess, and has been shown to remove over 99% of the related bacteria.
3) Your carpet needs a general clean.
Carpet cleaning solution: Rent/Hire a Pro
If your carpets have general traffic dirt and grime, then you can either rent a carpet cleaner, or hire professionals. Which you choose will depend on how much time you have, as well as the nature of your carpet. If your carpeted area needs specific cleaning requirements, then pro is the way to go. If your carpet has more liberal care instructions, then you can use a rental cleaning unit.
Likewise, cleaning your carpet properly takes time, so if you can’t commit to that time, then hire experts to do the job right.
4) You have flood damage.
Carpet cleaning solution: Pro.
There’s no effective DIY solution for carpet cleaning flood damage. You need to call the pros to deal with the problem. Renting a unit to do it yourself is an expensive way to learn you should have hired experts in the first place. Professional companies have the tools and technology to remedy flood damage and help restore your carpet.
Wet or Dry?
Next up, which method of cleaning is best for your situation: wet or dry? If you choose wet (aka. steam) cleaning, then you can most likely do the job yourself with a rental unit, since these are the units most often rented out. Wet cleaning works by shooting a hot solution of cleaning mixture into the pile of your rug, and then almost immediately sucking it back up. Post-cleaning, you will usually have to wait 24-48 hours to walk on your carpet again.
Dry cleaning, on the other hand, works by applying a dry cleaning powder all over the carpet, and then using a special vacuum to remove the powder – and the dirt and stains. You can usually walk on your carpet again within a couple hours, but you will most likely not be able to rent a dry cleaning unit. You’ll need to call the pros.
In most cases, dry cleaning is the most effective and realistic, since it generally leaves your carpet cleaner than wet cleaning, and you can walk on it soon after. A notable exception to this rule is when you are dealing with flood damage, which necessitates wet carpet cleaning.
There you have it! Never wonder or worry about the best carpet cleaning solution again. All you have to do is identify the problem, and pick the solution that works best for your space and your budget.
BISSELL PowerLifter PowerBrush Upright Carpet Cleaner and Shampooer, 1622
2 used from $ 89.10
- Full-Size Carpet Cleaner with 4-row dual rotating Dirt Lifter Power Brushes
- The rotating brush scrubs and lifts away dirt and stains that a vacuum can't get
- 2-in-1 water tank for easy filling and easy emptying;Cleaning Path Width: 11inches
- Removes deep-down dirt and stains using hot tap water and carpet formula
- Includes a removable nozzle, lint screen, built in measuring cup, 8 oz. trial sized formula and a 1-Year Warranty
BISSELL Professional Power Shot Oxy Carpet Spot and Stain Remover, 14 ounces, 95C9
- Patented odor removal technology removes tough odors like smoke, mold, mildew, pet, and kitchen
- Protects carpet from future stains
- Non-aerosol continuous spray works in any direction
- Uses oxygen technology to remove tough set-in stains all the way to the backing
Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer FH50150
6 used from $ 122.09
- Lightweight weighs less than 19 pounds. 8-Feet Ready-To-Use Hose and Upholstery Tool to deep clean stairs and hard-to-reach areas
- Easy to Fill, Empty & Clean with Smart Tank system making emptying and filling easy with no mess, no tools and no waste of time. The recovery tank comes with a quick pour spout
- SpinScrub Technology - 360 degree cleaning surrounding carpet fibers. Counter rotating brushes spin, not roll, for constant carpet contact. Brushes are removable for easy cleaning
- DualV Nozzle provides equal suction to clean surfaces quickly and evenly. Fast Dry Time with forced heated air
- 4 Easy To Access Handles allows for easy transport with 4 different choices of handles located on the unit
Bissell 3624 SpotClean Professional Portable Carpet Cleaner - Corded
4 used from $ 116.10
- Professional Spot Cleaner removes tough spots and stains from carpet, stairs, upholstery and more
- 5 flex hose helps to clean spots and stains in hard to reach areas including stairs, upholstery, and area rugs
- Includes 6 stair tool, 3 tough stain tool and 8oz Professional Deep Cleaning formula
- Long reach 22 power cord
- 2 year limited warranty.Weight:13.2 lbs
Carbona 2-In-1 Upholstery And Carpet Cleaner, 27.5 Fl Oz
- It has an oxy-powered formula and built-in brush applicator that gets right in to get stains right out
- Product Size - 27.5 Fl Oz (813.2 mL)
Bissell Turboclean Powerbrush Pet Full Size Upright Carpet Cleaner
1 used from $ 87.49
- Bissell lightest upright carpet cleaner, at 12 lb., is easy to maneuver and carry
- Great for removing tracked-in dirt and stains from Area rugs and entryways
- 4-Row rotating dirt lifter power brush combined with powerful suction to loosen and remove dirt
- Powerful Bissell oxy-based Formula removes stains like coffee, wine, grape juice, and pet stains
- Convenient, collapsible handle for easy storing
Folex Carpet Spot Remover, 32 oz
- Folex Carpet Spot Remover, 32 oz
Bissell Pet Stain Eraser Cordless Portable Carpet Cleaner
7 used from $ 48.99
- Remove pet stains anywhere, anytime
- Spray, scrub, and suction to remove pet stains and messes from carpet, upholstery, stairs, Area rugs, auto interiors, and more
- Grab-and-go cordless convenience; enjoy the freedom of a lithium-powered, handheld carpet cleaner that lifts away stains using Formula and powerful suction
- Ready-to-use formula-no mixing with water. Formula conveniently stores in the machine so it's always ready for use
- Instantly and permanently removes stains like urine, feces, vomit, dirt, mud, Blood, grass, tomato sauce, red wine, makeup, food grease, Vegetable oil, coffee, Cola, motor oil, and more
Hoover FH50251PC Power Scrub Elite Pet Carpet Cleaner
5 used from $ 132.99
- Deep Clean Mode powerfully removes embedded dirt and stains for whole home cleaning
- Quick Clean Mode with HeatForce speeds up drying to allow carpets to dry in less than 45 minutes getting you back on your floors faster
- Antimicrobial SpinScrub Brush System helps prevent odors and bacteria from forming in the tool while tackling the toughest pet messes
- Rinse Mode allows you to wash your carpets with soap and water and then rinse with water only to remove soap residue with the flip of a switch
- 25 percent larger tank capacity so you don't have to refill and empty tanks as often
Carbona Oxy-Powered 2-in-1 Carpet Cleaner, 27.5 Ounces - Pack of 2
- 27.5 Oz - Pack of 2
- Eliminates odors and leaves treated sanitary which will discourage repeated pet accidents
- Dual purpose carpet and upholstery cleaner featuring a built-in brush head