Common Carpet Cleaning Problems and Mistakes

It’s certainly not uncommon for people to clean their carpets and make some real basic mistakes. Unfortunately for them these can cost big. The look and feel of the carpet can be changed forever and in the worse case the carpet can be damaged beyond repair. This also applies to some professional cleaners and carpet cleaners!

Some of the Most Common Carpet Cleaning Blunders

I rubbed a stain and now the carpet looks different and worn

What has happened here is that the carpet is now distorted because the fibres have been damaged by rubbing. Very common on wool or wool mix carpets. Don’t rub – just blot!

I used a shop bought stain remover and there is a pale patch

The stain remover has bleached out the colour of the carpet. Do not use these stain removers because they are harsh. If you do use then always try on an unseen area first. Rinse the product out. DO NOT LEAVE IN.

I cleaned my carpet and it has dried patchy

The carpet cleaning machine is probably low power and dirt has not been completely removed. See our carpet cleaning tips.

My carpet is wet and now smells after cleaning

The carpet has been over-wetted by going over it too many times. Do one wet pass and then one dry pass. Repeat up to 3 times only. Dry as quick as possible by adding heat to the room (If needed) and adequate ventilation.

I cannot remove the dirty high traffic areas

You may find that this is wear. If the carpet has wear then it cannot be removed as the colour has been worn out. We call this carpet greying. If you think it is not wear then spray the area with detergent and agitate. Allow it to dwell for 15 minutes before you extract with a carpet cleaning machine.

My carpet is filthy and I cannot get it clean

This is because carpet cleaning machines used at home are low power and cannot cope with very soiled carpets (in some cases). Even hire machines are not man enough to clean heavily soiled carpets. Time to call in the professionals.

I cannot remove a stain on my carpet

It may be that the stain is permanent. Use the correct stain removal treatment for the type of stain. Water based solutions for soluble stains and solvent based stain removers for stains such as oil, some makeup, paint, chewing gum, nail varnish, ink, etc. If unsure then call in the professionals.

My carpet stinks of cat or dog pee after cleaning

If the urine has contaminated the padding (underlay) then this will need to be replaced. Use an enzyme carpet cleaning detergent or solution. If unavailable then try a biological washing powder, which must be rinsed out. Pre-spray the area and allow a 20 minute contact time. Agitate gently with a soft brush. Rinse.

I cannot remove urine stains from my carpet

If the stain was NOT treated immediately then chances are it has bleached the carpet. This is common on wool and wool mix carpets. Always remove urine as soon as possible.

Someone has vomited on my carpet and I cannot remove the stain

Again, if not treated immediately then the stain can be permanent. Enzyme carpet cleaning solutions are good as is an oxy-boosted detergent.

I tried to remove ink and it has smudged in worse

Always use a dry solvent cleaner. Blot and repeat. Do not rub. Always rinse the cleaner out when finished. Allow to dry and repeat if necessary.

I cleaned my carpet and it has shrunk

Sorry but this is game over. Time for a new carpet. Never over-wet carpets when cleaning. Remember to always do a dry pass for every wet pass.

My sisal, coir, seagrass or similar carpet looks terrible after cleaning

Never, never, never – wet clean a sisal, coir or seagrass carpet. See this POST.

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