2 Simple Methods to Deep Clean Carpet

Gladys K. Connelly
As a HouseKeeping Technical Writer, Gladys actively enjoys writing guides and tips about housekeeping for Thehousewire's audience. She's a housekeeping specialist with just shy of 9 years' experience to boast. That, combined with seven years prior experience in teaching, helps her create content that is both captivating and insightful.
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Updated December 20, 2020

Discover these hacks to keep your carpet fresh and looking new

2 Simple Methods to Deep Clean Carpet

Looking for simple methods to deep clean your carpets yourself?

Through my guide, you’ll learn:

  • How to prepare your room for a deep carpet cleaning
  • 2 easy ways to deep clean area rugs
  • Tips and warnings

So, if you’re looking for easy, DIY ways to make your carpets look like new, you’ll love this guide.

Let’s get started.

Prepare The Area

1.Pick up Anything on the Ground

This may seem obvious, but it’s always good to have a reminder.

Don’t forget to pick up any toys, shoes, or laundry. Moreover, pick up or wipe away any visible dirt or debris on the carpet. For example, if you’ve spilled some food on the rug, wipe it away.

Other possible items include paper, candy wrappers, and even large dust bunnies.

2.Move Furniture out of the Way

You can leave your furniture for regular carpet cleaning. However, deep cleaning your carpet without moving furniture is a moot point.


Well, if you move furniture out of the way, you’ll find loads of trapped dirt, dust, and trash.

Additionally, if you have/had a bug problem, you need to remove all furniture. Insects like cockroaches tend to hide behind large furniture.

Consequently, remove all TV stands, sofas, tables, and chairs from the room.

If you’ve done this, it’s time to start cleaning.

In the following sections, you’ll learn two ways to deep clean your carpets yourself (instead of calling a professional carpet cleaner service).

Nice right?

Method 1: Using a Vacuum Cleaner

Using a Vacuum Cleaner

List of Ingredients and Material

Apart from a vacuum and extension, you may also need:

1.Purchase a Dry Carpet Cleaning Solution

Vacuum cleaners usually remove surface-level dirt. However, dry carpet cleaning solution cleans your carpet from deep within, making it an excellent companion to vacuum cleaners.

So first, buy a dry carpet cleaner.

If you don’t know what it is: a dry carpet cleaner is a powder-like substance. You can find it in any grocery store in the cleaning aisle.

2.Vacuum the Carpet a First Time

Vacuum the entire carpet once to remove dirt and dust. 

I suggest focusing on areas covered by furniture as these will have the most visible dust accumulation.

3.Pretreat Stains

Now, check for carpet stains. If you find some, you have to pretreat the stain with a cleaning solution.

The potency of the solution depends on how bad the stain is. Usually, you can just mix some white vinegar with a small amount of water.

However, this solution only works for light food stains. If you have badly soiled areas, you need spot cleaning.

For example, you can enhance this solution by adding:

  • *A ¼ cup of ammonia for more robust stains (such as wine or urine stains)
  • 15-20 drops of your favorite essential oils (for strong odors)
  • *A ¾ cup of hydrogen peroxide for stubborn stains (like grease marks)

*When handling these chemicals, make sure to wear gloves.

After you’re done mixing the solution, simply spray it on the stained areas and wait 15 minutes.

4.Sprinkle the Cleaning Solution Over the Carpet and Work It Into the Fibers

Next, you have to sprinkle the dry carpet cleaning solution over the carpet. It’s essential to get the amount right in this step.

However, each brand specifies a different amount of powder per square centimeter of the carpet. Therefore, I suggest looking at the instructions very carefully.

If you’re unsure, just sprinkle a little bit of solution over the carpet, working it into the fibers with a soft-bristled brush. Gradually, you can add more (if needed).

Leave the solution on the carpet for at least 30 minutes. You can also leave it overnight for more precise results.

5.Vacuum the Carpet a Second Time

Lastly, you must vacuum the carpet a second time. Go over every corner until the white powder is wholly gone.

Afterward, if you keep finding traces of powder, you need to vacuum the carpet a third time.

Method 2: Using a Carpet Cleaner

Using a Carpet Cleaner

Secondly, you can use carpet cleaners (AKA steam cleaners) to deep clean your carpet.

But how is a carpet cleaner different from a vacuum? Well, there are two main differences.

  • Firstly, vacuums remove dust, dirt, allergens, whereas carpet cleaners extract stains.
  • Secondly, carpet cleaners use water while vacuums don’t.

In essence, you need both to do deep cleans. However, professional carpet cleaning services prefer the latter.

Don’t worry, though. Carpet cleaners are easy to use.

List of Ingredients and Material

For this method, you’ll need:

1.Rent or Buy a Carpet Cleaner

Carpet cleaners are readily available for purchase at your local home department stores.

However, they’re quite expensive, so only buy one if you foresee frequent use.

I recommend buying one if:

  • You have floor-to-floor carpeting
  • There are pets/children in your home
  • Your home is prone to dust/mold accumulation (depending on where you live)

If you don’t want to buy one, you can rent one from professional carpet cleaning services.

2.Fill the Machine

To begin, take some water and carpet cleaning solutions. The exact measurements are on the carpet cleaner label.

Most steam cleaners come with their own brand of solution. If that’s the case, your carpet cleaning solution should preferably be from the same brand.

If you have the ingredients, fill the machine. The machine should be off at this point.

3.Clean a Test Spot

Once finished, plug in the machine and gently turn it on. In this step, you have to perform a cleaning test on a patch of carpet.

This tells you whether the cleaning solution is compatible with your carpet or not. If you don’t do this, you risk damage and discoloration to your carpet.

Therefore, it’s essential to do it properly. Pick a patch of carpet that’s usually covered by furniture to do the test.

If the carpet shows no sign of damage, move on to the actual cleaning.

4.Begin Away From the Door

Now, you need to start cleaning. How will you do this?

Well, using the carpet cleaner is not hard. You just need to move the machine in swift backward-forward motions.

However, be mindful that you start cleaning at the far end of the room, away from the door. You want to end the cleaning at your doorstep to avoid walking over your newly clean carpet.

5.Open Doors and Windows to Let the Room Dry

Once finished, leave the room with the doors, windows, and fans open. You need to create as much air circulation as possible.

Ideally, it’s better to leave the room overnight. In this way, the carpet is completely dry before you step onto it.

6.Dispose of the Water

Lastly, you must dispose of the water. However, don’t toss the leftover water down the drain unless specified by the company.


Because after cleaning, the water becomes toxic with chemicals, meaning you can’t safely dispose of it.

You can take your wastewater to a professional carpet cleaning service. If you’re renting a carpet cleaner, the service will most likely ask you to return the cleaner with its water intact.

Afterward, they’ll proceed to dispose of the water more responsibly.

Tips and Warnings


  • Using Baking Soda: This is an excellent tip for ridding the carpet of both stains and odors. You can add baking soda to any of the above DIY carpet cleaning recipes for extra potency.
  • Using Ice To Get Rid of Gum: Secondly, this is a helpful tip if you’ve got a piece of gum stuck on your carpet. The gum will toughen as you press the ice to it and eventually fall out.
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  • Rubbing Stains: This is an emphatic don’t. Rubbing stains ruins the texture and quality of the carpet. Instead, dab the stain with a soft cloth, paper towels, or a brush.
  • Over-wetting the Carpet: Don’t do this. While you should spray the cleaning solution generously, overdoing it can cause discoloration. The carpet should be damp, not wet.


Now I’d Like to Hear From You

I hope you found my guide on how to deep clean your carpets yourself helpful.

Now, I’d like to hear what you have to say:

  • Did you find these methods useful?
  • Are you going to try some of these tips?
  • Did you succeed in deep cleaning your carpet?

Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.

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