Domestic Steam Carpet Cleaning
Most home owners rely on their vacuum to keep their floor in a healthy state, which may seem like a good enough solution to most. Indeed, a freshly vacuumed carpet will look substantially better than one that has not been vacuumed for a week or two, and there is no questioning the importance of regular vacuuming in terms of keeping your carpet in good nick. However, vacuuming will only remove superficial dirt located in the top third or so of your carpet, but unfortunately even the most powerful hoover can’t touch the dirt that festers deeper inside your carpets. Steam cleaning is a great way to reach deeper into your carpet and remove dirt that you can’t otherwise get rid of.
Steam Cleaning Your Own Carpets
Is it possible? Absolutely. Steam cleaning your own carpets isn’t too different from vacuuming them, in fact the machine even looks quite similar to a conventional hoover. The process involves:
- Removing superficial dirt with the hoover;
- Pre-treating the carpet with an alkaline based agent, which is worked in using a grooming brush;
- Leaving the agent to dwell for 15-20 minutes, or according to the instructions on the bottle;
- Cleaning the carpet with the steamer, or ‘high pressure water extraction’ machine as they are sometimes referred to (and which better explains the process); and
- Leaving to dry.
The whole process should take no more than 6-12 hours including drying time, and the cleaning itself will likely take in the area of 1-2 hours for an average-sized sitting room – it is plain, then, that domestic steam carpet cleaning isn’t half as daunting as it may first appear. It is recommended by most professional steam carpet cleaners and carpet manufacturers that you deep clean your domestic carpets once every 12-18 months.
Choosing a Domestic Steam Carpet Cleaning Machine
The most difficult part of the domestic steam carpet cleaning process is probably choosing a machine; for very understandable reasons. There are a host of machines available to choose from and they vary wildly in price, with cheaper machines going at some 50 pounds sterling while those with rather more cash in their pocket can opt for machines that cost up to £1,500. How much you ought to spend depends on how dirty your carpets are as well as their size, but for the average household a machine around the £3-500 mark should do the job very well indeed.
When choosing your machine, you should look for:
- Power consumption – the wattage of the machine will reveal not only how much it costs to run, but is a good indicator of how quickly it heats up.
- Bar pressure – this number will tell you how powerful the machine is, for very dirty and/or thick carpets you will want a higher bar pressure. This will generally vary between 3 to 6 bar for domestic steam cleaners, and a value around 4-5 will be ideal for most home users.
- Cable length
- Steam time per tank – to ensure that you don’t have to refill every 5 minutes
With that in mind, you should be able to find a domestic steam cleaning machine that suits your needs perfectly, and your carpets in mint condition.