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Carpet Education

Planning Ahead

Before you begin shopping, make sure you're fully prepared. Consider everything that will affect your carpet choice.

What type of room will you be carpeting? Will it be used often or not? Will people be eating or drinking there? Nylon and Acrylic are good choices for rooms subject to food and beverage spills.

Do you have a color scheme in mind? Do you want to coordinate the carpet with any other furnishings? Bring upholstery and drapery samples along while you shop to insure your carpet choice achieves your desired look.

As you choose your new carpet, you may be tempted to buy on the basis of color alone. But remember, quality determines the overall look and life of your carpet.

While you're shopping, don't overlook the value of carpet padding. A good pad will increase the lifespan of any carpet.

And Always Remember to:

  1. Vacuum frequently.
  2. Clean spills promptly.
  3. Have periodic professional carpet cleanings.

Cleaning Your Carpet

While vacuuming removes most dry soil, the oily soil of cooking vapors, air pollution and grime tracked in from the street present a decidedly different type of problem. These particles of oily soil deposited on carpet fibers can cause gradual - but significant - dulling of delicate pastel colors. The color isn't actually lost. It's hidden under a dirty film.

If this type of soil is allowed to accumulate, it literally glues the pile fiber together, resulting in matting, packing or ridges. Equally worrisome, it begins to attract and hold dry soil. That's why cleaning is so important when dulling of the fiber is first noticed. If allowed to remain too long, it becomes gummy and difficult to remove.

Practice extreme care in vacuuming your area rugs – particularly the fringe. It's best not to use a vacuum cleaner with a beater bar in this area of the rug to avoid the possibility of catching the fringe in the cleaner. This can cause separation of the weaving behind the fringe or even damage the rug.

Carpet and Rug Stain Removal

No carpet is stain proof. However many are treated to be stain resistant which gives you time to act. Remember, with spot and stain removal, speed is of essence. Immediately after a stain or spill occurs, solids should be scooped up and liquids blotted as quickly as possible. Absorb as much liquid as possible with a paper towel, etc., replacing as they become saturated. Never use a scrubbing motion. Blot instead to prevent the carpet surface from fuzzing.

Carpet and Rug Stain Treatment

For effective spot cleaning, you'll need the following items. The item numbers are keyed to the stain - and all should be used in the recommended sequence. Some stains may require professional cleaning, depending on the age of the stain.

  1. Cold Water
  2. Detergent Solution. Mix one teaspoon of clear dishwashing liquid with a cup of warm (not hot) water.
  3. Ammonia Solution. Mix one tablespoon of clear household ammonia (3% solution) with 1/2 cup of water.
  4. Solvent. A dry cleaning solvent (available at grocery, drug and hardware stores).
  5. Ice. Chill with ice cubes in a plastic bag. Shatter residue, pick or scrape off and vacuum.
  6. Vinegar Solution. Mix 1/3 cup of white vinegar with 2/3 cup of water.
  7. Warm Water (not hot)
  8. Clear nail polish remover (preferably acetone)
  9. Alcohol or Methylated Spirits Mineral Turpentine
  10. Rust Remover
  11. Absorbent Powder (e.g., salt, talc or proprietary absorbent powders)
  12. Absorbent Cleaners (e.g., Host)

 

Step 1 Step 2 Step 3
Alcoholic Beverages
1
2
-
Bleach
1
3
-
Blood
1
2
-
Butter
4
2
-
Candle Wax
5
4
-
Chewing Gum
5
4
-
Chocolate
2
3
6
Coffee
1
2
4
Colas and soft drinks
7
2
-
Cooking Oils
4
2
-
Cream
2
4
-
Egg
2
-
-
Felt tip pen
7
2
8
Floor wax
4
-
-
Fruit Juice
1
2
-
Furniture polish
4
2
3
Gravy and sauces
7
2
-
Ink (fountain pen)
1
2
-
Ink (ball point)
4
9
2
Ketchup
7
2
-
Lipstick
4
2
-
Mercurochrome
2
3
6
Milk
7
4
2
Mustard
2
-
-
Nail Polish
8
4
-
Oil and Grease
4
2
-
Paint (latex)
2
3
4
Paint (oil)
9
4
2
Rust
4
2
10
Salad Dressing
2
4
-
Shoe Polish&
4
2
-
Soot
4
2
3
Tar
4
-
-
Tea
1
2
4
Urine (fresh)
1
2
-
Urine (old)
2
3
6
Vomit
2
-
-
Wine
11
1
2
Unknown material
4
12
2

 

Cleaning carpet or rugs after a spill

Immediately scoop up as much of the spill as possible. Then blot, do not rub, area with clean white cloths to remove excess moisture. Use a wet/dry vac if spill is large.

Apply warm, not hot, water to stained area and blot with white cloths. Repeat until no stain is evident on towels. If stain remains on carpet, then make a solution of 1/4 teaspoon liquid dishwashing detergent to 1 cup warm water. Using a clean white cloth, apply the solution to the stained area, and let soak about 5 minutes. Rinse with clear warm water and blot to remove excess moisture. Repeat until all detergent is removed to avoid re-soiling.

Absorb any remaining moisture with layers of white paper towels weighted with a non-staining glass or ceramic object. When carpet is dry, vacuum or brush the pile to restore texture.

Why Professional Cleaning is so Important

When vacuuming no longer removes all of the soil, or you have not been able to remove stains following the recommended carpet care and cleaning procedures above, it is time to have your carpet cleaned by a trained and qualified professional cleaner. A reputable professional cleaner knows the latest information on carpet construction, carpet care products, and safe, effective cleaning methods to help maintain carpet beauty. For this reason, we recommend, and some warranties require, periodic professional cleaning.