LAST UPDATED: 7th January 2023 by The Editorial Team
Summary: Step by step guide and video showing how to remove a carpet stain using a carpet cleaning machine and cleaning a carpet by hand.
Cleaning a carpet
There are two possible ways to remove stains and stubborn dirt from a carpet. The first involves hiring/using a carpet cleaning machine, the second method is cheaper and easier as it requires you to use a mix of laundry detergent and water. However the second method may not attain the same results as using a carpet cleaning machine.
Using a carpet cleaning machine
Rent a carpet cleaning machine. These can be obtained from most equipment hire stores. Choose the machine carefully by deciding which machine is most suitable for the job in hand. Some may be better for larger or smaller stains. Read instructions or ask advice from the hire store. Also purchase the cleaning solution required by the machine.
- Having sufficiently cleared space to properly clean the carpet, vacuum the area in need of cleaning using a fresh vacuum bag. It is recommended that you clean in two different directions to help remove any excess dirt.
- It is possible to use a treatment spray to pre-treat the carpet prior to using the machine. The stain remover should help loosen up the stain, enabling for easier removal.
- Make sure you understand how to prepare and use the machine before you use it on your carpet. Follow the directions for adding cleaner and water.
- When using the machine, run it in a similar way to a vacuum cleaner, by moving it forwards and backwards over the entire carpet. It is important to clean the whole carpet, as you don’t want the clean patch to stand out when it dries. You may want to run it multiple times over stained areas to ensure removal. Depending on the size of the carpet area you are cleaning, you may have to empty the dirty water and cleaner and replace it. Make sure you are fully aware of when to replace the water and cleaner.
- Once the cleaning is completed, stay out of the room until the carpet is completely dry. Opening windows in or near the room will help dry the carpet quicker.
- Look over the carpet once it is dry and decide whether you want to re-run the machine. It can take more than one time to clean a carpet if it is really dirty.
Cleaning a carpet by hand
To create a solution to put on the dirty patch of carpet, we recommend you mix some powder laundry detergent with water. The amount you use is up to you, however you should use common sense and not add too little or too much.
- Vacuum the carpet thoroughly in different directions using a fresh vacuum cleaner bag.
- Pre-treat the tougher stains by letting the solution soak in for 5 minutes prior to scrubbing. Use a carpet brush, scrub the stains gently but thoroughly. As with vacuuming, best results are gained by scrumming in different directions.
- Once this part of the process is complete, lay old newspapers or cloths down to soak up excess liquid.
- Replace the old soapy water with just fresh water (no cleaning detergent required). Brush the cleaned areas with just water to remove any excess soap. Leave the carpet to dry. Open windows to speed up drying time.
- Try to make sure all detergent is removed from the carpet, as the excess detergent will pick up dirt very quickly, and will be strong smelling.
- Vacuum the carpet once it is dry to pick up any excess dirt or fluff left behind.
- A possible option is to apply carpet protector. This will prevent future stains penetrating deep into the carpet.
Carpet and upholstery cleaning video
Summary: DIY video showing you how to clean carpet, sofa and upholstery.
If an accident happens and there is a spillage on your carpet, sofa or upholstery it is important to remove the spillage as quickly as possible. A carpet, sofa or upholstery will get dirty gradually over time and the dirt cannot be removed instantly. If this is the case, when using a treatment to clean the dirt it is recommended that you first try the solution on a small area to test it.
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