Before You Clean Your Carpets and Rugs Before You Clean Your Carpets and Rugs

If You Plan to Shampoo Your Carpet, First Try Pre-Cleaning: Sweep the carpet, which will make the nap stand up and loosen the imbedded dirt. Next vacuum. With this work alone, the rug should show a noticeable improvement, so much in fact that you may decide to delay shampooing.

To Neutralize Odors: Use Borax and cornmeal. Sprinkle the carpet with a mixture of 1 cup Borax and 2 cups cornmeal. Let this mixture stand for an hour before vacuuming.

Carpet Freshener: Combine 3/4 cup baking soda, 2 tbs. corn starch, and 1/4 cup perfumed talcum powder. Sprinkle on dry carpet, let stand 5 to 15 minutes, then vacuum.

Stain Removal: Clean up spills as fast as you can. Blot or scrape up as much of the spill as possible, blotting from the outside toward the center.

Dents and Depressions (from furniture or heavy objects): Shift the location of furniture from time to time. Brush the dented area, or use a grooming tool to loosen and stand-up the mashed tufts. Using a steam iron, steam the dented area lightly and brush up the tufts with your fingertips. Do not let iron touch the carpet. Hold the iron 2-3 inches above the carpet. For carpets containing acrylic or mod-acrylic, use the warm setting on a hair dryer, as steam may melt the fibers. To avoid further crushing, use casters under furniture legs.


This article has been contributed in part by Michigan State University Extension.

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