How To Clean a Carpet?

Lenard Nagy
Oct 11, 2023

Carpets—oh, the joy and challenge they bring! We know all too well how grubby carpets can damage your cosy room decor. In fact, research reveals that regularly cleaned carpets last longer and look significantly better than those left to accumulate dust and stains.

So, stick with us as we guide you through the maze of carpet cleaning methods, from basic upkeep to deep-cleaning techniques for those stubborn smudges. Ready to give your carpet a new lease on life? Let's dive in!

Basic Carpet Cleaning Routine

We get it; dirt has no place on your carpet! Vacuuming is the first step in thoroughly vacuuming the carpet to remove any loose dirt or debris. Moreover, vacuuming is the best way to keep a rug clean. It's easy, but it must be done right. First off, don't rush! Slow and steady sweeps will suck up more dirt.

Do this at least twice a week, or daily if you have pets or children. And don't skip edges and corners where dust loves to hide. Pulling out the vacuum may not seem fun, but nothing beats the look and feel of a fresh carpet!

Spot-Cleaning Stains

To keep your carpet looking fresh and clean, it's important to know how to spot-clean stains. When a spill or stain happens, quickly grab a clean cloth or paper towel. Gently blot the stained area, starting from the outside and working your way inward.

Avoid rubbing the stain, as this can make it spread and go deeper into the carpet fibres.

A carpet cleaner designed for that specific purpose is usually effective for most common stains, like food spills or pet accidents. Apply a small amount of cleaner to the stain and let it sit for a few minutes to break down the stain particles.

Then, gently blot with a clean cloth until the stain is lifted.

If you don't have access to a specialised carpet cleaner, use natural solutions like white vinegar diluted in water or baking soda mixed with salt. Apply these solutions to the stained area and let them sit for 15–30 minutes before blotting again.

Deep Cleaning Methods

To deeply clean carpets, we can use the following methods: cleaning with distilled white vinegar, cleaning with baking soda and salt, and steam cleaning.

Cleaning with Distilled White Vinegar

Distilled white vinegar is a great natural cleaner for carpets. It's cheap and safe to use, especially if you have kids or pets in the house. Mix equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle when using vinegar to clean your carpet.

Spray the solution on the stained area and let it sit for a few minutes. Then, use a clean cloth or sponge to blot the stain gently. Vinegar helps break down stains and odours, making them easier to remove.

Afterwards, rinse the area with plain water and blot dry with a towel. Remember not to saturate the carpet too much with vinegar, as excessive moisture can lead to mould growth in carpets!

Cleaning With Baking Soda and Salt

Mix equal parts of both ingredients in a bowl to clean your carpet using baking soda and salt. Sprinkle the mixture liberally over the carpet, focusing on areas with stains or odours.

Let it sit for about 30 minutes to allow the baking soda and salt to absorb odours and moisture from the carpet fibres. Afterwards, vacuum the entire area thoroughly to remove the residue.

Baking soda and salt are natural deodorizers that can help freshen up your carpet without harsh chemicals. Regularly using this method can keep your carpets smelling clean and looking fresh.

Steam Cleaning

Steam cleaning is a highly effective method for deep cleaning carpets. It uses hot water vapour to remove dirt, stains, and bacteria from the fibres of your carpet. Deep into the fabric, the steam is able to loosen dirt and grime that regular vacuuming can't vapour.

This method is particularly helpful in removing tough stains like pet urine or stubborn food spills. Steam cleaning not only cleans your carpet thoroughly but also helps eliminate odours.

It's important to note that with steam cleaning, you should allow enough time for your carpet to dry completely before walking on it again. This ensures that no moisture remains trapped in the fibres, which can lead to mould growth or damage to your carpet.

Removing Odours From Carpets

To eliminate odours from carpets, tackle the specific type of odour head-on. For smoke odours, sprinkle baking soda on the carpet and let it sit overnight before vacuuming. Mix vinegar and water in a spray bottle to combat mildew smells and lightly mist the affected area.

For bacteria and mould odours, use a combination of hydrogen peroxide and water to thoroughly clean the carpet. Pet urine, neutralised soda, or a white vinegar and water mixture

Finally, sweat odours can be eliminated by sprinkling baking soda directly on the carpet fibres and vacuuming after letting it sit for some time.


Smoke can leave a lingering odour on your carpets. To remove smoke smells, sprinkle baking soda generously over the carpet and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. After that, vacuum up the baking soda thoroughly.

You can also use a mixture of equal parts water and vinegar to dab onto the affected areas of the carpet with a cloth or sponge. This will help neutralise and eliminate the smoky smell from your carpets.

Remember to open windows or turn on fans to promote ventilation while treating smoke odours in your home.


Mildew is a common problem affecting carpets, especially in areas with high humidity. It thrives in damp and dark environments, which makes carpets an ideal breeding ground. Mildew causes unpleasant odours and poses health risks, such as triggering allergies and respiratory problems.

It's important to address the issue promptly to combat mildew growth on your carpet. One effective method is to create a solution using equal parts water and distilled white vinegar.

Apply the solution to the affected area and let it sit for about 15 minutes before blotting it dry with a clean cloth or paper towel. This will help kill the mildew and prevent its further growth.

Bacteria And Mould

Bacteria and mould are common problems that can affect the cleanliness of carpets. Dirty carpets provide a breeding ground for bacteria, leading to unpleasant odours and potential health issues.

Mould can also grow in damp or moist areas, such as carpets exposed to spills or excessive moisture.

It's important to keep your carpet clean and dry to prevent bacteria and mould growth. Regular vacuuming is a simple but effective way to remove dirt, dust, and debris that could contribute to bacterial growth.

Additionally, treating stains promptly with a suitable carpet cleaner can help prevent the development of bacteria or mould in those areas.

If you suspect that your carpet has already developed bacteria or mould problems, it may be necessary to deep clean the carpet using appropriate methods. Steam cleaning is an effective method for killing bacteria and removing any mould spores that may be present.

It's also important to ensure thorough drying after cleaning to prevent further moisture accumulation.

Pet Urine

Dealing with pet urine on your carpets is a common challenge if you have pets. Pet urine can leave behind stains and odours if not properly cleaned. Start by blotting up as much urine as possible with paper towels or a clean cloth to tackle this issue.

Then, mix a solution of water and white vinegar in equal parts and apply it to the affected area. Let it sit for a few minutes before blotting again to remove any remaining moisture.

If the odour persists, sprinkle baking soda over the spot and let it sit overnight before vacuuming it up the next day. Remember to avoid using steam cleaners or excessive moisture when cleaning pet urine stains, as these methods can actually set the stain instead of removing it.


Sweat can also leave unpleasant odours and stains on your carpets. To tackle sweat stains, you can start by blotting the area with a clean cloth to absorb as much moisture as possible.

Then, mix a solution of one part white vinegar and three parts water in a spray bottle. Spray this mixture onto the stained area and gently blot it with a cloth or sponge. Repeat this process until the stain fades away.

To remove any lingering odour from sweat, sprinkle baking soda generously over the affected area and let it sit for at least 15 minutes before vacuuming it. Baking soda absorbs odours effectively.

Tips For Maintaining Clean Carpets

Regularly vacuum your carpets to remove dirt and debris, promptly treat any stains or spills using appropriate cleaning solutions, consider professional cleaning services as needed for deeper cleaning, use carpet fresheners to keep them smelling fresh, and avoid excessive moisture that can lead to mould and mildew growth.

Regular Vacuuming

We know that keeping your carpet clean is important to you as a homeowner. Regular vacuuming is a simple and effective way to maintain the cleanliness of your carpet. It helps remove dirt, dust, pet hair, and other debris accumulating on the surface.

By vacuuming regularly, you can prevent these particles from settling deep into the fibres of your carpet.

Not only does regular vacuuming make your carpet look cleaner, but it also helps prolong its life. When dirt and debris are left in the carpet for an extended period, they can cause wear and tear on the fibres.

This can lead to premature ageing and the deterioration of your carpet. To get the best results from your vacuuming routine, make sure to use a high-quality vacuum cleaner with strong suction power. Vacuum slowly over each area several times to ensure a thorough cleaning. Don't forget to empty or replace the vacuum bag regularly so it doesn't become too full and lose suction power.

Promptly Treating Stains

When it comes to keeping your carpets clean, treating any stains that occur promptly is essential. Stains can set in quickly and become more difficult to remove if not addressed immediately.

You'll want to act fast, whether it's a spill from food or drink, pet accidents, or any other type of stain. Using a carpet cleaner specifically designed for stain removal can help break down the stain and make it easier to lift from the carpet fibres.

By treating stains promptly, you can avoid permanent damage and keep your carpets looking fresh and clean for longer. Remember, regular cleaning is key to maintaining the overall cleanliness of your carpets and preventing germs from building up.

Professional Cleaning is Needed

If your carpet is heavily soiled or you have stubborn stains that won't come out, it might be time to call the professionals for a thorough cleaning. Professional carpet cleaners have the knowledge and equipment to clean your carpets and remove dirt, allergens, and bacteria.

They can also treat tough stains with specialised products that are safe for your carpet. By getting professional cleaning as needed, you can ensure your carpets stay fresh and look their best.

Plus, regular professional cleaning can extend the lifespan of your carpets by removing deeply embedded dirt and debris that regular vacuuming may miss. So don't hesitate to seek professional help when your carpets need a deeper cleaning!

Using Carpet Fresheners

Using carpet fresheners is an effective way to keep your carpets smelling clean and fresh. Carpet fresheners come in different forms, such as powders or sprays, and they help to eliminate odours that may be trapped in the fibres of your carpet.

These products can also leave a pleasant scent behind, making your home smell inviting. When using carpet fresheners, it's important to follow the instructions on the packaging and evenly distribute the product across your carpet.

Leave it on for the recommended amount of time before vacuuming it up. This will help to remove any lingering odours and leave your carpets looking and smelling their best.

Avoiding Excessive Moisture

Excessive moisture can be harmful to your carpets. When carpets stay wet for too long, they can develop mould and mildew, which damages the carpet and poses health risks.

Additionally, excessive moisture can weaken the carpet fibres and cause them to break down faster. To avoid this, make sure to dry your carpets thoroughly after cleaning or if they get wet.

Open windows and use fans or dehumidifiers to circulate air and speed up drying. Remember that a well-ventilated space prevents excessive moisture in your carpets.

To Sum Up

Keeping your carpets clean is important for their longevity and appearance. Regular vacuuming and spot-cleaning stains are essential steps in maintaining clean carpets.

Deep cleaning methods like distilled white vinegar or baking soda can help remove stubborn stains and odours. Additionally, professional carpet cleaners can provide thorough and effective cleaning when needed.

So, following these tips and techniques allows you to enjoy fresh, clean carpets in your home for longer periods of time.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I clean my carpet with just water?

No, cleaning your carpet with just water is not recommended, as it may not effectively remove dirt and stains. Using a carpet cleaning solution or hiring a professional cleaner is best.

How often should I clean my carpet?

It is recommended to clean your carpet at least once every 6–12 months, depending on the amount of foot traffic and any specific spills or stains.

What should I do if there is a stain on my carpet?

If there is a stain on your carpet, blot the area immediately with a clean cloth or paper towel to absorb as much liquid as possible. Then, use a mild cleaning solution specifically designed for carpets and follow the instructions for spot cleaning.

Can I use a vacuum cleaner to clean my carpet thoroughly?

While vacuuming can remove surface dirt and debris from your carpet, it may not be enough for deep cleaning. For thorough cleaning, using a steam cleaner or hiring professional services that offer deep extraction methods for better results is recommended.

What is the best method to deep clean carpets at home?

Consider using a steam cleaner or a carpet shampooer for a thorough, deep clean. These machines can lift dirt and stains more effectively than regular vacuuming. Make sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions and use the recommended cleaning solution for optimal results.

Are DIY carpet cleaning solutions effective?

Some DIY solutions, like a mix of white vinegar, water, or baking soda, can be effective for spot cleaning. However, commercial carpet cleaners or professional services might offer better results for deeper stains or overall carpet cleaning.

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*FYI, parts of this blog post were drafted by artificial technlogy. But rest assured, it's been thoroughly researched, edited, reviewed and me & my team.