Carpeting in your home gives your home a warm feeling and can minimize noise, but can become worn and dirty-looking if you don't take care of it. Here are some tips to help you keep your carpeting clean and new-looking, and remove mold and mildew growth and pet stains and their odors.
Keep Carpets Clean and New-Looking
One of the easiest things you can do to keep your carpets clean and new-looking is to vacuum them regularly. Vacuuming your carpets pulls up tiny particles of dirt that will make your carpets look dull. When you don't vacuum up dirt from your carpets, the dirt's sharp edges scratch your carpet fibers when you walk across it, making the carpet dull in appearance.
Depending on the amount of traffic in your home, you may need to vacuum less or more frequently. For example, you can choose to vacuum your entire carpets once a week, then vacuum heavy traffic areas as often as every day to keep them clean and prevent damage. Be sure your vacuum's roller bar is not set too low, as this can cause additional damage to the carpet. The bar's brushes should just touch the surface of your carpet.
Remove Moisture Damage and Mold and Mildew Growth
After a water leak that has gone undiscovered for long enough, mold and mildew can begin to grow in your carpeting. Whether the mold and mildew growth is in a small spot or over a large area, you can clean it from the carpeting. Be sure to remove and replace the padding, as carpet padding cannot be fully cleaned to reuse it.
If your carpeting is removable, take it outside your home for the cleaning. During cleaning, it is possible that mold spores can become airborne and you don't want they spreading through your home any further, as inhalation of mold spores can cause health problems. Once outside, use a broom to sweep as much mold from the carpeting as possible. If you cannot remove your carpeting outside, vacuum the carpet inside to pull up the mold spores, then discard the vacuum bag in an outside trash can when you have finished the mold removal.
Mix up a cleaning solution to clean your carpets. Vinegar is a safe alternative to kill mold spores without discoloring your carpets, amd vinegar kills 82 percent of mold species. Use your carpet cleaner to spray the vinegar from the carpet cleaner's basin onto the carpet. Use the nozzle end of your carpet cleaner to scrub the mixture into the carpeting to loosen the mold growth, then leave the solution to sit on the moldy carpet for approximately one-half hour.
Suck up the vinegar and mold from your carpeting. Once the vinegar dries in the carpets its smell will dissipate. Use fans to help dry the carpeting. Once your carpets are dry, any remaining mold spores that survived the vinegar will not grow further as long as your carpets are kept dry. Keep in mind mold spores exist all around us in the air and on surfaces all the time, but when they don't have the right humid conditions, they don't grow to become a problem.
Clean Up Pet Stains
When you discover a wet and recent pet stain, blot up as much of the stain as possible with a towel or cloth, applying your entire body weight onto the cloth to soak up the moisture. If the stain is old and has already dried, soak the area with water from a spray bottle, then use a towel to absorb the moisture with as much of the spot as possible. Next, use your stain cleaner to treat the carpet.
There are many methods and recipes to remove pet stains and odors from your carpets, but one of the best, easiest to use, and most efficient is a pet spray containing enzymes. You can find this type of cleaning solution at most grocery and home improvement stores in their pet department. Apply the solution on the stain, saturating it. Be sure the carpet stays wet while the enzymes do their job. The enzymes in the solution break down the protein in the pet stain that causes the odor to remove it from your carpets.