Helpful Tips 8 min read

How does carpet cleaning work – a brief guide for cleaning carpet with carpet cleaners

Carpets are an is an irreplaceable comfort for any household, but it could also be extremely intimidating to clean: One step wrong and you can easily have an overwetted, detergent-trapped, damaged carpet, the smell of which will haunt you for the rest of your life. The task is difficult to nail even for the pros. […]

Published 05 Jun 2022
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Carpets are an is an irreplaceable comfort for any household, but it could also be extremely intimidating to clean: One step wrong and you can easily have an overwetted, detergent-trapped, damaged carpet, the smell of which will haunt you for the rest of your life. The task is difficult to nail even for the pros.

But no worries, cleaning a carpet would be both effective and decently manageable when you get a hang of how it works. In this article we will discuss on how the carpet cleaning process works, and how you should use some of the common carpet cleaning tools that could be found in most households.

1. How to use carpet cleaning spray

So we will start with the (seemingly) most straightforward and DIY way to clean the carpet: Using carpet cleaning sprays, also so known as carpet spot cleaners. In order to use these products safely and effectively, this is the general procedure that you should follow.

Step 1: Check to see if the cleaning spray is safe for your carpet

Most commercial cleaning products contain strong chemical components, so it is always safer to check the product’s label and the manufacturer’s guide to see whether or not it is safe to use on the materials your carpet is made of. 

Step 2: Do the patch test

This is yet another step to make sure the product is safe to use on your carpet. To do the patch test, first, choose an out-of-the-way corner of the carpet, Then spray a small amount of cleaner spray on that area, and wait for a few minutes to see whether any problem surfaces.

Step 3: Apply the spray cleaner

Carpet spray cleaner is an option to remove spot stains (Source: Internet)

For this step, you should adhere strictly to the manufacturer’s instructions. Carpet spray cleaner are typically carpet spot cleaners used to remove stains on carpet. Most user guide would instruct you to do the follows:

  • Use a paper towel and rub on the stains to remove any dirt and debris on the stain, and also to see if any part of the stain would get loosen out,
  • Spray the product on the stain. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes to break down the stain.
  • Once the wait time’s over, rub and dab gently on the sprayed spot using a sponge until the stain disappear.
  • Use a paper towel and dab gently on the spot to dry it up.

As a note, you may not want to overspray the product on a stain, because the cleaning product residual would then penetrate into the carpet and become very hard to remove.

Step 4: Neutralize adverse reactions

If you skipped the precaution measures mentioned in step 1 and step 2, or have taken those measures but a cleaning product unsafe for your carpet still get through the filter anyway, it would be good to know how to handle the situation when adverse chemical reaction begins to damage your carpet. The most common adverse chemical reactions often seen with carpet cleaning spray are bleach reaction and alkaline reaction.

When the spot on the carpets where you spray the cleaner gets brightened or discolored, it is bleach reaction. To neutralize the bleach, do the follows.

  • Immediately spray the bleached area with clean water.
  • Dab the area with a paper towel
  • Stop any use of the spray cleaner, Call for professional help.

When the spot on the carpets where you spray the cleaner turns brown in color, it is alkaline reaction. To neutralize the alkaline, do the follows.

  • Mix several splashes of white vinegar in bowl of warm water.
  • Dab the solution onto the stain
  • Stop any use of the spray cleaner, Call for professional help.

By following these guide, your using carpet spray cleaner would be effective and safe

2. How to use a carpet cleaner

A carpet cleaner takes its heavy-duty cleaning power from a combination of powerful cleaning solutions, powerful scrubbing brushes and powerful suction. The mixture of cleaning solution and water gets injected deep into the fibre; the brushes scrub the carpet and cause the stains to get physically loosen up; and the cleaner’s suction sucks away the broken down debris.

A frequently asked question is whether or not a carpet cleaner heats up water. The answer is yes. Most manufacturers would recommend you to use hot tap water in the water tank of the cleaner, and have heating function with their machine in order to keep the water hot.

One of the most popular carpet shampooers, beloved for its effectiveness, is the Hoover Power Scrub Elite carpet cleaner. Since most carpet cleaners have relatively similar design when it comes to using, we thought it would be a good ideal to show you how to use the Hoover Power Scrub carpet cleaner as an example.

A carpet cleaner provides heavy-duty cleaning power with powerful detergent, scrubbers and vacuum (Source: Internet)

To use a carpet cleaner, in this case, the Hoover Power Scrub Elite, you should follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Vacuum the carpet in advance to remove any debris.
  • Step 2: Pretreat any tough stains with a commercial pretreat spray or a mixture of water and vinegar. Spray the pretreat solution on the stain, wait for 5-10 minutes, then blot the stain with a paper towel to dry.
  • Step 3: Prepare the water tank. Filling up the water tank with warm water up to the water line, then fill in cleaning solution up to the solution line, and seal the tank with the cap. Then return the water tank to its designated place on the machine’s base. 
  • Step 4: Select the desired cleaning mode, select “Wash” on the Rinse-Wash dial. Step on the Power button to turn on the machine, and step on the handle release so the handle could lean back and you can start pushing the machine.
  • Step 5: On a straight section of the carpet, push the machine back and forth slowly a few times. First, when you push the machine forward, squeeze the trigger so the water and cleaning solution would be released and infused into the fabric. And then when you move the machine backward, release the trigger, so the machine would suck in the dirty water. 

Each turn of back and forward move is a stroke. As a note, a carpet shampooer’s stroke must be a lot slower than a vacuum cleaner’s, so make sure to keep that in mind. And, as warned by the manufacturer, you should not do more than 4 wet runs on a single section (when squeezing the trigger) to avoid overwetting the carpet.

  • Step 6: Change the machine’s mode to ‘Rinse’ and repeat the process. Follow this with several dry strokes to remove all excessive water.
  • Step 7: When the motor sound changes, it is the signal that the dirty water tank has been filled and the clean water tank has run out. Empty the dirty water tank, and refill the clean water tank like in step 3, then continue with cleaning.
  • Step 8: Once you have finished with the cleaning, empty the water tanks and clean them before storage. Remove the brush so you can clean out any stuck debris.
  • Step 9: Leave the carpet to dry. Use measures to help the carpet dry faster, and make sure to have it clear of any traffic.

3. Carpet maintenance:

On top of the heavy-duty carpet cleaning, you should also take good care of your carpet in everyday activities as well, in order to lessen the deep clean burden, and also to not cause any unfixable problems. Here are some measures that could help you better protect your carpet:

  • Vacuum your carpet at least once a week, especially in areas where traffic is high,
  • Try to avoid spillage and stains, and clean the spillage or stains immediately when they happen,
  • Use a doormat, and require people to remove their shoes when entering your home,
  • Clean your air filter frequently so less dust would accumulate inside the house,
  • Employ moisture control and air circulation measures for the carpet to keep your carpet as dry as possible.
  • Have professional deep clean service for your carpet once every 12-18 months.
Vacuum your carpet once a week to remove dust (Source: Internet)

More cleaning tips and professional cleaning services

Love these cleaning guide for carpet? Sparkling and Beyond have even more cleaning tips and guides in our cleaning tips library. We also provide professional and affordable cleaning services for any other part of your living room, as well as any other part of the house, for any degree of need. We’re on the mission to keep your home sparkling clean and healthy.


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Rachel Frampton
Rachel Frampton
9 months ago

My carpet has wine stains, and that is why I’ve decided to start looking for a cleaning service that may address the matter. I also agree with you that it will be wiser to use a spray. Thank you for suggesting the perks of dabbing the towel on the stained area instead of rubbing it.