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Keep your carpet clean. longer.

Vacuuming is KEY.

Dirt is like thousands of little blades that cut carpet fibers. When you walk across a dirty carpet, you grind sharp dirt particles against the yarn, making tiny nicks in the fibers. All that fuzz mixed in with the dirt in your vacuum cleaner bags is your beautiful carpet headed out the door one bag at a time. When dirt scratches the fibers, it dulls the sheen, which is why high-traffic areas appear duller than the rest of the carpet. Over time, grinding dirt wears away the fibers too, which mats them down and makes them stain more easily. Follow these tips to keep your carpet as dirt-free as possible.

Vacuum often

To protect your carpet, vacuum entrance areas and high-traffic areas twice a week and the rest of the carpeting at least weekly. Oily soils attract oily soils, and frequent vacuuming will reduce soil buildup.

Start with a clean bag or filter

A dirty bag, dirt cup or filter can cut a vacuum’s suction power in half. The main reason bagless vacuums stop working is that the filters aren’t changed often enough. Replace or wash (if possible) the filters on bagless vacuums every three months. Replace vacuum bags when they’re three-quarters full.

Vacuum at the right speed

Vacuum slowly enough to get out as much dirt as possible. Make one quick pass over low-traffic areas and two slow passes over high-traffic areas. Two slow passes removes ground-in dirt more effectively than several fast passes.

Use walk-off mats

Use walk-off mats inside and out to keep dirt off the carpeting. Coarse-textured mats outside your doors remove soil. Water-absorbent mats inside prevent wet shoes on the carpeting.

Clean stains right — right away

Act quickly.

If you get to a stain immediately, there’s a 99 percent chance you can remove it. The longer a stain reacts chemically with the carpeting, the harder it is to remove.

Try water first

Eighty percent of stains can be removed using plain tap water. To remove a stain, press a clean, dry, white cloth over the stain to absorb the spill. Repeat until the spill is absorbed. Then gently work water into the stain with a damp white towel and blot until the stain is gone. Change cloths when necessary. If you have a shop-vac handy, apply the same amount of water onto the spill itself and vacuum out.
(repeat as needed)
Use a fan to dry the area if it’s very wet.

Blot — don’t rub or scrub

Scrubbing a stain will damage the fibers and create a fuzzy area. Always blot from the outer edge toward the center of the stain to avoid spreading the spot and creating a larger problem.

Be patient

Work water gently into the spill and then blot with a dry cloth. Repeat until the stain is gone and all the water has been absorbed. If you’re patient, you’ll almost always be able to remove the stain.

On tough spots, try vinegar or club soda

If water alone doesn’t remove a stain, try a white vinegar and water solution (equal amounts) or club soda before trying stronger commercial cleaning products.

Test commercial products first

Some products can cause carpet to get dirty faster or damage the carpet’s color and texture. Test carpet-cleaning products on an inconspicuous area before using.