The 6 Best Carpet Cleaners (2022): Budget, Spot Cleaners, Hardwood Floors

There is a lot to think about when shopping for or using a carpet cleaner, such as how much space you will need for storage and whether you should rent or buy. Here are some tips to keep in mind.

Heavy and bulky carpet cleanersEspecially when filled with water. It can be more difficult to maneuver than regular brooms. They will also need a lot of storage space.

Treat stain-causing spills right away. Most households only need to wash their carpets every six months to a year, but spot cleaners are ideal for treating instant spills, as well as being easy to store and use.

You probably don’t use the carpet cleaner oftenSo it’s okay to consider hiring professionals to do your entire home, especially if you have limited storage space. (It can also depend on how dirty and stained your carpet is.) Look at machine rental options from local businesses or retail stores like The Home Depot. You will be able to get the benefits of a commercial grade cleaner without paying a fortune.

Clean your carpet before using the carpet cleaner. This may seem counterintuitive, but you don’t want dirt and hair to form wet clumps that block the cleaner. And if you haven’t washed your carpet in a while (or at all), be prepared for an embarrassing amount of hairy tampons to fill your dirty water tank.

It is important to use shampoo or carpet cleaners. Manufacturers often insist on using their brand, and while other types may work just fine, you can void your warranty (although I don’t know how they would know). Most carpet cleaners come with some detergent, but I had a good experience with Rug Doctor’s Commercial Carpet Cleaner ($20). It works well and doesn’t have a strong smell, and you can buy a large jug for cheap.

Try, try, and try again. It can be disappointing to fire up a carpet cleaner and find that it is unable to remove the old red wine or ground toothpaste stain. Don’t lose your heart. Multiple cleaning sessions can sometimes get rid of persistent stains, and at least reduce, if not eliminate them.

Carpets can take a long time to dry. Most carpet cleaners have different settings, and they will absorb some of the water, but they all leave the carpet a bit damp. Deeper cleanings tend to leave the carpet wet, so think about how to speed up the drying time. Use fans, turn on the heater, or clean the carpets in the spring and summer months when you can leave the windows open.

Protect your hearing. Of all the ways it can damage your hearing, carpet cleaner might be the least fun, so protect your ears. Some of these are very loud, so wear earplugs while you work.

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