Tips on Choosing The Best Carpet Cleaner
Choosing the right carpet steam cleaner for your home can be a daunting task. There are a wide variety of carpet cleaning machines on the market, each claiming to be best, most economical, etc. The truth is, that the type of carpet cleaner you use will depend greatly on where you plan to use it. Carpet cleaning is usually best done by professional carpet cleaners. However, if you have never cleaned carpets or do not know what to look for, hiring a local professional may be your best option. Here are some things to consider when choosing a carpet steam cleaner:
Carpet Steam Cleaner Type: Carpet steam cleaners come in two basic types: commercial and residential. The difference between these two options is the size of the machine. A larger commercial machine would be able to extract a larger volume of dirt from a smaller area. This means more dirt removed per cycle, resulting in less time for the fibers to soak. On the other hand, a residential carpet steam cleaner is designed to clean a much smaller area.
Carpet Cleaning Solution: Different cleaning solutions work better for different rooms. Commercial cleaners usually use a strong, chemical-free chemical cleaning solution. In contrast, a residential carpet steam cleaner would probably use a mild, environmentally-friendly cleansing solution. The best solution depends on the type of dirt and dust you are trying to remove. Some fibers are more sensitive to harsh chemicals than others, so always read up on the cleaning method used by the specific machine you plan to buy.
Types of Wheels and Motors: Commercial carpet steam cleaners come in different sizes and types of wheels and motors. Before you choose your machine, check out its wheels and motor size. Make sure it has a smooth, non-slip surface and that it doesn't have a sharp edge. You may also want to opt for a cleaner with rubber wheels for extra grip.
Chemical Agents: There are literally hundreds of different chemical agents which power carpet steam cleaners. Find out what you'll be using the most - is it vinegar or ammonia? Are you looking for a strong vacuum cleaner, or one with minimal suction? Is it best to use a machine with an automatic or a manual switch? Do you need odorless, tasteless, bacteria-killing cleaners?
Folds and Shapes: Each type of machine can only do certain types of stains. Determine what you are cleaning and which fibers are suitable for your cleaning method. You may need a mild cleaning detergent. A steam cleaner with specialized fibers is necessary for cleaning heavily soiled, deep-seated, and tough dirt and stains.
Accessories: One essential accessory for steam cleaning carpet is a cleaning solution, specifically either carpet shampoo or hot water. Hot water will produce a more powerful suction, but may leave a soap residue behind. Carpet shampoos remove dust and lint while leaving the natural fibers of the carpet untouched. So, if you would like to give your cleaner a foot massage while cleaning, a lint remover is highly recommended.
Cost: As mentioned above, all machines perform at different speeds. Determine how much time and effort you're willing to put into your machine before you shop. This will help you narrow down your choices between brands and models. Always make sure you know exactly what you'll be using the machine for. Carpet steam cleaners have so many different tasks they're often a great buy no matter what the function!
Maintenance: The main advantage of carpet steam cleaners is their no-fuss operation. The cleaning solution doesn't need to be changed frequently as often as other machines do. But they can be damaged by heavy soiling or if not properly maintained. Follow these simple guidelines to extend the life of your cleaner and to get the most out of your investment.
Area Rugs: Many carpet cleaners come with specific attachments to tackle hard-to-reach areas, such as high-traffic seating areas. If your machine doesn't come with area rugs, ask about them when you're shopping. Some machines double as steam mops, which can be useful for areas with thick carpet. And steam mops can be used in place of shampooing if your carpet is too dirty to clean with a shampoo machine.
Carpet Shampooers: Although highly recommended by professionals, many homeowners report having trouble getting good results from shampooing their carpets. The residue from shampoo can be harsh on delicate carpet fibers, making them look dull and faded faster than they should. To get the best carpet cleaner value for your money, make sure you scrub the carpet with the attachment included with your machine. A good carpet shampooer will loosen dirt that's deeply embedded in the fibres.