It is estimated that 79 percent of all soil that accumulates on carpets consists of sand and dry particulate matter. This type of soil is often gritty and abrasive, and can contribute to the wearing of the carpet, and thus, produce a dull appearance. If it isn’t removed, loose soil works its way to the bottom of the pile. Then, as foot traffic occurs, the sharp edges cut against the fiber. If left untended, these soil particles can actually cut off fibers at the bottoms. This causes the pile to thin, contributing to obvious wear patterns in the carpet.
Perhaps one of the biggest misconceptions about carpet is that it’s bad for people with allergies. The dust that collects in carpets may contribute to health problems particularly asthma, the most common chronic disease among children but studies raised another issue on this.Keeping as much dirt and grime off the carpet as possible is ideal. Be proactive and put out a durable entrance mat for people to wipe off their feet before entering your home.
Cleaning residue in carpets is a major challenge to the wear-ability and appearance of all soft flooring. Cleaner residue can cause rapid re-soiling that will lower the appearance level of many carpets giving it a dingy, dirty look even if it is actually clean. The most difficult soils to remove are oils, tar, resin, and gum. Those items are sticky and tend to bond, cure or dry on the fiber which cannot be removed by dry vacuuming. These soils are the ones that require sufficient moisture, chemicals, and agitation to loosen and remove completely. Also difficult to remove are soils that are extremely small in size, or that contain dye or pigment that acts as a stain agent by actually sinking into the carpet fiber and can become permanent.
Think of your carpet like you would a sweater in your wardrobe. If you wear a sweater, it eventually gets dirty and needs to be washed. Your carpet is walked on by people and pets frequently, and much like a sweater, needs to get cleaned regularly to look its best and last a long time.
To keep your carpet in great shape, reduce allergens and retain good indoor air quality. Knowing the type soil and the correct cleaning product is essential is maintaining soft floor surfaces.
Frequent vacuuming is the only way to keep grit from becoming embedded. Having a vacuum that’s easy to use is crucial. Spend the bulk of cleaning time where dirt collects: a dozen passes of the vacuum within 4 feet of outside doors, eight passes in high-traffic areas, and four passes elsewhere. Where carpets have not been regularly and thoroughly cleaned, double the passes for three months.
Many vacuums worsen the problem by sending that dust shooting into the air, but a relatively new breed uses HEPA (high efficiency particle arresting) filters to trap essentially all of it in the machine.
How often do you really need to vacuum? High-traffic or pet areas should be vacuumed daily, medium-traffic areas need to be vacuumed about twice a week and light-traffic areas should be vacuumed weekly. Use a CRI-certified vacuum for optimum soil removal, dust containment and to avoid damage to your carpet.
Once a year your carpet should be cleaned by hot water extraction by a professional carpet cleaning service. This process extracts deeply embedded dirt that regular vacuuming can’t reach.
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