Fur-Free Floors – Local Experts Share Wisdom

As a pet owner, you know that keeping your carpets clean can be a challenge. From accidents to mud tracked in from outside, pet messes can take a toll on your floors. To help keep your carpets looking their best, regular cleaning is a must. But how often should you be getting your carpets professionally cleaned? We asked local carpet cleaning services to weigh in.

Vacuuming – The First Defense

“The most important thing pet owners can do between professional cleanings is vacuum, vacuum, vacuum!” says John Smith, owner of Local Cleaning Company. He recommends vacuuming high traffic areas daily, and all carpeted rooms two to three times per week. This frequent vacuuming keeps dirt from getting ground into the carpet fibers, making professional cleanings more effective. Using a vacuum with a pet hair attachment can help remove more fur and dander.

Professional Cleanings Every 6-12 Months

The experts we spoke with agree – with pets in the home, carpets should be professionally cleaned at least every 6 to 12 months. “Pet urine and waste can damage carpet fibers and lead to stains and odors over time,” cautions Jane Doe of Clean Carpets Inc, a local carpet cleaning service. Annual cleanings ensure your carpets stay healthy and look their best.

Some pets and households may need cleaning more often. “For multi-pet homes, cleaning every 6 months is ideal,” advises Smith. “This prevents excess buildup of dirt, allergens and bacteria from accidents.” Homes with elderly, ill or young pets should also consider bi-annual professional steam cleanings.

What to Expect From a Professional Carpet Cleaning

When you hire local carpet cleaning services, you can expect a thorough, deep cleaning. The process typically involves:

  • Pre-treatment of soiled areas
  • Steam cleaning with truck mounted equipment that uses hot water and cleaning agents
  • Agitation with a grooming brush to lift embedded dirt
  • Rinsing away cleaning solutions and loosened debris
  • Allowing carpets to fully dry

Reputable cleaners will also check carpet fibers for urine spots using a blacklight, treating any they find with pet enzyme solutions. This prevents stubborn stains and odors from recurring.

Look for Green Cleaning Options

Many local carpet cleaning services now offer green cleaning options. Instead of harsh detergents, these methods rely on plant-based solutions or simple water. “Green carpet cleaning is just as effective, and better for pets and kids,” explains Sam Wilson, owner of Green Clean Carpets. “The milder solutions won’t irritate noses or paws either.”

While green cleaning is gaining popularity, be sure to ask carpet cleaners about their specific methods. Look for safe, non-toxic solutions certified under guidelines like Green Seal. Steam cleaning should still be used to sanitize carpets.

Protecting Carpets Between Cleanings

To help keep floors cleaner longer, the pros recommend taking a few simple steps:

  • Use mats and runners at entrances to trap dirt and absorb moisture
  • Blot urine accidents immediately with an absorbent cloth
  • Clean any pet messes right away with an enzymatic pet cleaner
  • Regularly vacuum and groom pets outdoors to reduce shedding and allergens inside

By taking extra day-to-day care and getting carpets cleaned at least yearly, you can keep your home looking tidy and extension the life of your flooring. Your pets will appreciate the clean, fresh floors too!

Key Takeaways:

  1. Vacuum high-traffic areas daily and all carpets 2-3 times per week to prevent dirt buildup between professional cleanings.
  2. With pets at home, carpets should be professionally deep cleaned every 6-12 months using steam cleaning.
  3. Multi-pet and some special needs households may require professional cleaning every 6 months.
  4. Reputable carpet cleaners use steam cleaning with hot water extraction to deep clean carpets and treat pet stains.
  5. Green carpet cleaning uses plant-based solutions instead of detergents and is a safe, effective option.
  6. Use mats, blot messes quickly, and clean accidents with an enzymatic pet cleaner to protect carpets between professional services.
  7. Regular professional cleaning and frequent vacuuming keeps carpets looking fresh and extends their lifespan in pet homes.

The Impact of Pets on Carpet Lifespan

While regular cleaning helps maintain their appearance, the truth is that pets can be tough on carpets. The accidents, shedding, vomit stains, and constant paw traffic means carpets in pet homes tend to show wear and need replacing sooner. On average, carpets last 5-7 years with pets compared to 10-15 years in homes without animals.

To maximize lifespan, clean carpets at the first signs of dining or traffic patterns rather than waiting until visible staining occurs. High quality padding when installing new carpets also helps them better withstand pet wear and tear over time. And prompt cleaning of any solids or vomit prevents excessive bacteria and enzymes from breaking down carpet fibers beyond repair.

Focusing on High Pet Traffic Areas

While the entire carpet should be professionally cleaned once or twice annually, you may need to spot clean certain high traffic areas in between. Entryways, hallways, and places the pets sleep or rest tend to get dirtiest fastest. Make sure to vacuum these zones more frequently.

You can also ask carpet technicians to give extra attention to high traffic zones during the cleaning appointment. Pretreating spots ahead of time helps too. Keep a stain remover designated just for pet issues on hand for immediate use whenever you notice isolated accidents or vomiting. Quick attention prevents excess moisture from seeping down to the carpet backing or subfloor over time.

Hiring the Right Carpet Cleaner

Don’t trust just any basic carpet cleaning company with your pet-stained floors! Seek out cleaners specially trained in handling animal issues inside homes. They’ll know the most effective methods and have the right gear, like powerful truck mounted steam cleaners. Reputable pet carpet cleaners do a thorough job removing embedded hair, dander and stains using high heat and specialty pet treatments.

When interviewing local carpet cleaning services, ask specifically about their pet cleaning background, methods and solutions. Find out if they use pet friendly green options. And be sure to show them high traffic areas or pet stain trouble spots at the start of a cleaning appointment. Hiring professional cleaners with specific expertise cleaning up after pets ensures you get the best results.

Why is vacuuming so important between having the carpets professionally cleaned?

Vacuuming is crucial because it prevents dirt, pet hair and dander from becoming embedded in the carpet fibers before your next professional cleaning. Pet messes can attract dirt like a magnet if not promptly removed. Frequent vacuuming – daily in high traffic areas and a few times per week everywhere – lifts away this debris so it doesn’t grind further down into the carpet backing over time. Vigorous vacuuming also stimulates carpet tufts to stand upright again, maintaining the plush uniform look of the floors in between steam cleanings.

How do carpet cleaners actually remove pet stains and odors during the professional cleaning process?

Reputable local carpet cleaning services use a thorough process containing several key steps to abolish pet stains and odors. First, they apply a specialty pre-treatment solution tailored for animal issues to break down the urine, feces or vomit residues bonding to carpet fibers. Next, they use hot water extraction equipment to simultaneously rinse away the loosened grime while sucking all traces of moisture back up. For especially troublesome spots, repeated applications may be needed. Lastly, cleaners use professional grade fans and air movers to facilitate rapid drying to prevent new mildew issues from taking hold after cleansing away the mess.

Why it is bad to let pet stains or marking spots remain on the carpet too long before having it cleaned?

When pet urine, feces or vomit are allowed to remain for longer periods before removal, the bacteria, enzymes and corrosive compounds have more time to penetrate and adhere to carpet fibers and backing. This causes faster breakdown of carpeting from the bottom up over time. Additionally, moisture stemming from the accident can seep through carpet padding to foster mold/mildew colonies. Extended direct wetness also leads to permanent color loss and contributes to lingering odors. For best results removing pet stains, immediate blotting followed by professional steam cleaning within 24-48 hours works best. After a few days, full elimination becomes less likely.

Are “green” carpet cleaners as effective as traditional methods on pet stains?

Yes, today’s leading green carpet cleaning solutions can be just as effective at removing set-in pet stains and odors from carpeting. Rather than harsh detergents, they utilize plant-based enzymes, citrus solvents, and sometimes simple hot water to lift organic material and break stain bonds through gentle yet potent means. Green methods also shorten drying times. And because they don’t contain toxic or irritating ingredients, they pose no hazards for contact with pets’ paws or noses. Green carpet cleaning delivers a deeper clean as well, because there is no detergent residue left behind. Always confirm any carpet cleaner uses effective solutions – whether traditional or green – that are designed for eliminating pet stains successfully.

What can I do between professional carpet cleanings to prolong the life of carpets with pets?

You can take a few proactive steps to preserve your carpets in a busy pet home. Use runners on high traffic pathways and doormats at entryways to minimize tracked-in dirt. Blot urine accidents the moment they occur with an absorbent towel to curtail moisture damage. Forward any observed pet vomit, diarrhea or unexplained staining to a professional cleaner’s attention promptly. Clean up food spills quickly to prevent staining. Regular vacuuming also does wonders to prolong carpet life with pets – work it into a daily habit for best results. Pets staying well groomed limit the amount of hair and dander that accumulates. And keeping your pets nails trimmed down will reduce snags and pulls to the carpet fibers from scratching or running.