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How Clean Is Your Carpet: What Lurks Below

Of all the different flooring materials you have to choose from, carpet is the most inviting. It feels soft and warm under foot compared to tile, wood or vinyl flooring. Unfortunately, the woven nature of carpet makes it a hot spot for microorganisms, dust and chemicals.

If you don’t give much thought to having your carpet professionally cleaned, consider this: even when your carpet appears spotless, it’s still about 20 times dirtier than the average city sidewalk, a surface you probably don’t consider very clean. Find out what’s lurking below and the benefits of professional carpet cleaning.

What Lurks in Your Carpet?

Is your carpet really all that dirty? Here are some of the pollutants commonly found in wall-to-wall carpeting:

Dust mites: These microscopic insects are not parasitic and they don’t bite, but their shed skins, fecal matter and secretions are the most allergy-causing components of household dust.

Bed bugs: Growing to about the size of an apple seed, bed bugs are most active at night. While they traditionally live in the creases of your mattress, bed bugs love carpet, too.

Fleas and ticks: It’s not hard to guess why you don’t want these biting insects living in your carpet.

Carpet beetles: These tiny critters are often confused with bed bugs and fleas. Routine vacuuming and carpet cleaning is the best way to get rid of them.

Cockroaches: Among the most undesirable intruders in the home, cockroaches are associated with filthy conditions, but they occasionally invade even the best-kept homes.

Dander: Pet allergies are common, and dander is the primary reason why.

Mold: Microscopic spores exist in all indoor and outdoor environments. It’s when the spores settle down onto a moist, organic surface and start to grow that you have a problem.

Pollen: Outdoor allergies are often triggered by pollen, but an open window can blow it inside where it lands on the carpet and aggravates your allergies.

Chemicals: Pesticides, herbicides, asbestos and other chemicals can be tracked onto the carpet from outside. This makes the habit of removing your shoes before coming inside a good idea.

Best Carpet Cleaning Methods

With all these nasty things probably lurking in your carpet, it’s vital to uphold a strict cleaning regimen. The best cleaning methods include the following:

Vacuum twice a week to get rid of surface dirt before it has a chance to become embedded. A vacuum cleaner with strong suction and a HEPA filter removes the most dirt and prevents blowing it back into the room.

Sprinkle baking soda on the carpet to remove odors. Unlike commercial carpet fresheners, baking soda removes the smell instead of just masking it. Let it sit for 15 to 30 minutes, and then vacuum it up.

Have your carpets professionally cleaned a minimum of once per year, every three months if possible. Regular carpet cleaning removes stains and helps make your carpet look like new again, increasing the life of your investment. Professional steam cleaning reaches deep within carpet fibers to remove the most embedded debris.

Health Benefits of Carpet Cleaning

Vacuuming is important to maintain your carpet week by week, but nothing matches the health benefits of professional cleanings. For example, carpet cleaning:

•Clears out dust mites.

•Extracts chemicals, soil, pollen, grass clippings and traces of animal feces tracked in from outside.

•Removes dead skin cells, lint, hair and dead insects, thus eliminating the food source for carpet beetles and dust mites.

•Eradicates pollutants left behind by your pet, including fleas, ticks and dander.

•Helps prevent mold and mildew growth.

•Kills bacteria and viruses breeding in the carpet.

To capitalize on the health benefits of professional carpet cleaning, contact Rainbow International®.