8 Carpet Cleaning Tips So Easy It Feels Like Cheating

barefeet on carpet

There is nothing like the feeling of walking barefoot on beautiful, clean carpet!  The way carpet cushions your feet is both luxurious and comforting. 

However, keeping your carpets in great condition requires a bit of maintenance.  That includes regular vacuuming, stain removal and professional cleaning. 

But did you know there are a few shortcuts which can help you enjoy gorgeous carpets with less work?  Here are some great carpet cleaning tips that are so easy it feels like cheating!

Tip #1 — Use Essential Oils To Keep Your Carpets Smelling Fantastic!

essential oils

One of the best ways to keep a space smelling fresh is by deodorizing your carpet on a regular basis.  This can be done with a combination of baking powder and essential oils.

Kara Carrero shares a fantastic recipe for a non-toxic, pet-safe and kid-safe deodorizer.  Simply place 2 cups of baking soda, 1-2 tablespoons of borax and 10 drops of your favorite essential oil into a shaker container.  You could use a large salt shaker if you like. Simply sprinkle it onto your carpet and vacuum off 30 minutes later.

The baking soda will remove unwanted smells while the borax is a non-toxic way to kill fleas and other insects.  You can also sprinkle the powder over your cloth furniture and use it in dog beds.

Tip #2 — Try Using Shaving Cream to Remove Stains

shaving cream

Instead of using a commercial cleaning product for carpet stains, try shaving cream.  Simply squirt some shaving cream onto the stain, then let it sit for 15 minutes before wiping off with a paper towel. 

The shaving cream needs to be the traditional white, foamy cream — avoid gels, colored or menthol creams.  Make sure to test the cream on an inconspicuous part of you carpet before using it in on a stain.  This technique is particularly effective for getting rid of water soluble stains like milk, mud, most foods, soda, ice cream, gravy and most other foods.

Tip #3 — Carpet Fluffing Techniques
Carpet can become compressed from being in a high traffic area.  Fortunately, there are a couple of simple fixes!  The first technique involves spraying compressed sections with a mixture of 50% white vinegar to 50% water. 

After spraying, blot the section dry then use a spoon to push the carpet back into standing position.  The vinegar solution cleans the fibers and restores their “fluffiness”.

If your carpet has become compressed from heavy furniture, you can try the “ice cube technique”.  Place ice cubes on the locations of the dents and allow them to melt.  Once they have melted, gently blot the carpet dry with a clean towel. 

Next, use an iron (on the cotton setting) to dry the towel by lightly moving it backwards and forwards.  Allow the carpet to air dry and it will have some of its fluffiness return! 

Tip #4 — Remove Pet Hair with a Squeegee

dog on carpet

If you have a dog or cat that sheds a great deal of hair, you know how difficult it can be to deal with.  One clever solution is to use a window squeegee.  Simply run the squeegee over the top of your carpet and cloth furniture.  It is incredibly effective at picking up the hair and you can avoid clogging up your vacuum cleaner.

Tip #5 — Remove Spots With a DIY Carpet Cleaner
The best carpet cleaning recipes are the ones which are simple.  They don’t get much simpler that this recipe (via Cleanmama.net) — it only uses two ingredients!  The key with this recipe is to use the ingredients in the correct order. 

Find your the stubborn stains and pour a small amount of vinegar on each one.  To keep track of the spots you have treated, use sticky tape or post-it notes.  After using the vinegar, sprinkle some baking soda on top. 

The vinegar will loosen the stain while the baking powder absorbs it.  After 30 minutes, vacuum up the powder.

Tip #6 — Blast Those Stubborn Stains with an Iron
You may have discovered a few strange little spots on your carpet that have an unknown origin.  All that you know is they are responsive to the normal treatments!  Well, now is the time to bring out the big guns.

For this stain removal technique you will need:

  1. An iron
  2. A clean white cloth
  3. White vinegar (or Ammonia)
  4. Water
  5. Dishwashing liquid

Mix 1/4 cup of white vinegar with 3/4 cup of water and a few drops of detergent. Alternatively, you can use try 50% ammonia and 50% water on synthetic carpets (note: do NOT use ammonia on wool carpets). 

Soak your clean white cloth in your vinegar or ammonia solution.  Wearing gloves, wring the cloth out so it is damp.  Lay the cloth over your stain and iron it for a few seconds.  Take a look at the condition of your stain and iron again if necessary.  This technique has the added bonus of revitalizing your carpet and fluffing it up!   

Tip #7 — Dealing with Piddly Pets and Infants
If you have young children or pets you have probably dealt with urine before!  This tip makes it easier than ever to clean up urine.  If you spot a pet of child have an accident on your carpet, immediately pour a liberal amount of baking soda on top of it. 

The baking soda will absorb the moisture from the urine and eliminate the smell.  This tip only works with fresh urine, so it is important to take action straight away.  If accidents are a regular occurrence around your home, leave a few boxes of baking soda in strategic locations.

Leave the baking soda in place for 24 hours, then vacuum it off.  This technique can also be useful for vomit.  Simply scrape off the excess vomit, then apply your baking soda. 

Tip #8 — Use Club Soda for Wine and Beer Stains

mineral water

One of the best techniques for removing wine and beer stains uses club soda.  Start by gently blotting the stain with a white paper towel to remove fluid laying on top of the carpet.  Then apply some club soda to a cloth and blot that on the stain.  The club soda will help free the stain from the carpet fibers. 

Once the stain disappears, rinse the spot with a small amount of warm water then place some paper towels on the spot.  You can weigh the towels down with a heavy object to help them absorb the water.  This technique is usually very effective for removing alcohol stains and there is no scrubbing involved!