How To Clean Rugs

Whether on tile or hardwood floors, area rugs can be useful and attractive. Yet, it doesn't take long for an area rug to get dirty, especially if it's receiving heavy traffic daily. There are several options when it comes to cleaning area rugs, including manually cleaning them or renting or purchasing a carpet cleaner to clean them. You should, however, clean area rugs at least monthly. Remember to always clean spots when they happen.

What You'll Need

  • Cleaning Solution

  • Vacuum

  • Soft Brush, Rags

  • Pan

  • Carpet Cleaner

Preparing the Rug

Step 1. Begin by removing any objects like furniture or toys. You may need the help of a family member or friend to assist you with moving larger furniture pieces.

Step 2. Start rolling up the rug. You may need to move your rug into an area with less traffic. Doing this will allow your rug a chance to dry without being walked on. Ensure the area is clean and unroll your rug.

Step 3. Use a vacuum to remove pet hair and loose debris. Make sure that any debris or specks are gone.

Cleaning Area Rugs Manually

Step 4. Buy a cleaning solution made for manually cleaning a carpet. There are a wide variety of these solutions available that can be found in department stores and supermarkets.

Step 5. Gather up all your supplies and move to your area rug. Your supplies should include cleaning solution, a rag, a brush and a pan filled with hot water.

Step 6. Spray the solution in rows over the rug, making sure to use a fairly fine mist and that you are covering the area evenly. A couple of squirts should be sufficient since these solutions normally are quite effective.

Step 7. Use the bristle brush and rub your solution into the carpet. Use a circular motion as you work the cleaner into the rug, this will result in a deeper cleaning. Make sure to clean the entire area, working in all the spray you've put down.

Step 8. Dip your rag into your hot water and then completely wring it out. Wipe each area, maintaining as straight a line as possible as you clean each section. Squeeze out the dirt and soap frequently.

Using a Carpet Cleaner

Step 9. Rent or purchase a carpet or rug cleaner. Usually you can rent one of these cleaners for about $20–30 daily from a supermarket or department store. You will also need to purchase cleaning solution to go with the machine. To purchase a rug or carpet cleaner, expect to pay between $50 and $400 dollars.

Step 10. Remove the soap and water holder from the cleaner. Usually, this easily lifts off. Read the instructions on the holder. There is normally a soap line and a water line. Fill water up to the line, and then add the soap.

Step11. Place the holder back onto the cleaner. The holder will normally snap back into place.

Step 12. Take the cleaner to your area rug. After plugging the cleaner in, hit the "On" switch.

Step 13. Run the cleaner over your rug, doing one row at a time. Normally, there is a button or trigger that releases the soapy water solution. Hold the trigger while pushing the cleaner forward. Release the trigger and the pull back on the machine. Do this twice per row until you've cleaned the entire rug.  

Check with a professional like Discount Carpet to learn more about your specific carpet's needs.