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Homeowner Resources: Carpet

Care and Cleaning for Your Carpeted Floor
The performance and quality of a carpet is directly related to the amount and quality of fiber that goes into the pile. The better the fiber and the denser it is packed, the better the carpet will perform. Thin, less dense carpet will lose its surface appearance faster. It is best to buy the highest quality you can afford.

Light colored carpets will show more soil and require more maintenance than dark colors. Darker colors of carpeting are more effective in high traffic areas. Multi-colors and patterned carpets are especially effective in hiding soil.

Spot Removal
Remove spots and spills immediately. Spots turn into stains when left to sit on the carpet fibers too long. For fast, simple and effective removal of both wet and dry spills, Carpet & Flooring Network recommends Shaw's FloorCare Essentials.

Treatment of the affected area should begin immediately upon discovery. The more time that elapses before treatment, the more difficult a stain will be to remove. First scrape food spills gently removing as much as possible.

Apply the Shaw FloorCare Essentials Carpet Spot Remover to the stain, working from outer edge toward the center to avoid spreading. Blot with a clean cloth, do not rub or scrub, as the carpet may fuzz. Continue to spray and blot until the stain is gone. Do not over saturate carpet - use small amounts of solution and blot frequently. For any stain removal, it is important to use clean cloth for cleanup.

Find further advice on stain emergencies:
• Stainmaster 1-800-438-7668
• Anso SmartCare 1-800-441-8185
• Wear Dated 1-800-633-3208
• Scotchgard 1-800-433-3296

Vacuum Regularly
Most dirt, and even dust, takes the form of hard particles. When left in the carpet these gritty, sharp particles abrade the pile of the carpet. Regular vacuuming not only prolongs the life of the carpet, but will enhance its appearance as well. Most soiling in carpet is of the dry, particle type, which can be removed with a vacuum cleaner.

Vacuum high traffic lanes daily, medium to high traffic areas twice weekly, and the entire house at least once a week.

Use a vacuum with a rotating brush or beater bar. Change the bags often and check the beater bars for burs and gouges so as not to damage the surface of the carpet. Some thick loop pile and some heavy shag style carpets will fuzz if a rotating brush vacuum is used. In this case we recommend a suction vacuum only.

Preventative Maintenance
The use of mats or runners at all home entrances and on uncarpeted areas adjacent to carpet will reduce soil and moisture in traffic areas. Clean mats and any other rugs placed over carpet regularly.

The use of furniture coasters to distribute the weight of heavy items is also recommended, especially for furniture with wheels. Take care when moving furniture with wheels by putting a protective barrier between the wheels and the carpet.

To extend the beauty of your carpeting, close drapes or blinds during hours of direct sunlight.

Exercise extreme caution with all bleaches, tile cleaners, mildew removers, oven cleaners, drain openers and plant food. They are strong chemicals that can permanently discolor or dissolve carpet fibers.

Cleaning Recommendations
Even with regular vacuuming, soil particles and oily dirt will cling to the carpet fibers. With foot traffic these particles and oily dirt are driven deep into the carpet. We recommend professional hot water extraction every 12 to 18 months. Periodic cleaning, using the hot water extraction method performed by a professional cleaner, will refresh carpet appearance.

The most used areas, such as entrances, doorways, traffic lanes, and in front of chairs will collect dirt faster than other areas. Clean these areas as they begin to show soil. This will stop dirt from spreading, and will extend the time between professional cleaning.

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