Carpets are a great way to bring some warmth and comfort to your home. They can be very stylish, and they can work as a kind of floor insulation as well, which means saving money on heating.
Even though there are many benefits to carpets, they have an obvious flaw – they’re more difficult to clean than hardwood floors. However, we must clean them not only because they look and smell better when they are clean, but also because dirty carpets can be detrimental to people’s health. They can be a wonderful hiding place for all the bacteria and viruses to lurk and wait for their moment, so it’s imperative to keep your carpets in a good order. So, here are some tips and tricks to help you with this tedious task.
1. Prevent the dirt from getting in
First of all, if you prevent the dirt from getting in, your carpets will be clean longer and you’ll have less cleaning to do. Use mats to reduce the amount of dirt entering your home to a minimum. Go all out with those, and place in front of every entrance to your house. Insist that everyone wipes their feet before entering. During rainy or snowy weather, when there is a lot of mud or slush outside, you can even place two mats at each door – one outside and one inside, for extra protection. It may sound like overkill, but it beats having to remove muddy stains from your beautiful carpet.
2. Deal with foot traffic
Foot traffic is what actually wears down your carpets, so it poses as big of a problem as stains. There are some ways you can avoid it. First, you can place pads underneath the high-traffic areas, so they absorb some of the footprints. Carpets usually wear down from the bottom, since they constantly rub with the floor, so pads can solve this problem. Another solution is rotating your carpet or moving your furniture around. This way, the high-traffic zones will not affect a single carpet area, which means that the carpet will look good for a longer time.
3. Avoid problems when possible
Obviously, you cannot avoid problems all the time; they’re bound to happen at some point. However, if you know that a situation will pose a greater-than-normal risk of ruining your carpets, you should take some necessary precautions. Find a good carpet protector for all those home office areas where an office chair is going to roll around, for example. If you’re having a party in your house, either remove the carpets completely from the space or cover them with some kind of carpet protection film. Make sure your pets know where it is okay to lie down, and where it’s not. Those small preventive measures may save you a lot of headache later.
4. Remove stains ASAP
When something spills, try to remove it as soon as possible. It’s of crucial importance because that way you prevent the stain from setting in. Once the stain sets in, it can be really difficult to remove it, depending on the type of material that is spilled. Luckily, there are many DIY remedies that can be made from the things you probably have in your home at all times, so you’ll always have something at hand. However, if you miss an incident and you notice the stain later, don’t despair, it’s nothing a little vinegar and baking soda can’t fix - it just won’t be as easy as with fresh ones.
5. Invest in a good vacuum cleaner
A good vacuum cleaner is half of all carpet maintenance since it removes dust, skin particles, pet hair, human hair, and everything else from your carpets. By vacuuming, you are removing most of the allergens from your carpet, which makes it safer for the health of your family. But be careful – some vacuum cleaners don’t really do the job well. Of course, they'll pick up the dirt from the floors and carpets, but they'll blow it right back out in the air you breathe. Therefore, it's important to clean your vacuum cleaner regularly and to make sure you have a high-quality one.
6. Really clean your carpets
Over time, dirt and bacteria accumulate in your carpets, causing odors and health risks, so just vacuuming is not enough. Therefore, from time to time you need to really clean your carpets. There are many carpet cleaners on the market, and they usually come in the form of powder or shampoo. However, they can be quite aggressive, so make sure to use them exactly as instructed on the package. Alternatively, you can use some of the DIY versions, like vinegar and baking soda solutions.
7. Have your carpets cleaned professionally
You don’t have to do it more than once a year, but make sure your carpets ‘visit’ professionals regularly. Whatever you do at home, you won’t be able to achieve the same results as deep cleaning. Not only is it a hygiene-wise choice, but it also prolongs the life of your carpets, which means that they will be as pretty as possible for as long as possible.
8. Don’t wear your shoes inside
In many cultures, people don't wear shoes at home. It makes perfect sense when you think about it – you don't need them when you walk on carpets and wooden floors, and there are many health benefits of going around barefoot – it helps regulate your blood pressure, helps with insomnia, and even improves your posture. It's also a much cleaner option since it doesn't allow the spread of outdoor bacteria and toxins inside your home. So, it may be a good idea to ditch the shoes at home and get some comfy slippers if you can't stand being barefoot. Your carpets will thank you for it, and so will your feet!
Even though they require a little work, carpets are well worth it. They make your home seem warmer and more comfortable, and they provide you with a sense of coziness that no wooden floor can achieve. So treat them right, and they’ll last you for a long time.
Guest post by Neil White
About the Author
Neil is a student of web design who enjoys writing a great content. His home is the whole world because he travels a lot. While you are reading this he is probably somewhere other than where he was yesterday.
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