Most of the time, vacuuming your stair carpet every week (two at the most) is ideal for basic cleaning maintenance. However, it may surprise you to learn that there is an established 5-step process recommended for the deep cleaning of your stair carpet.
Now, it’s fair to say that you don’t have to go through the whole process each time, but if you want to maximize the useful life and beauty of your carpet it is recommended that you do follow the complete process every 6 months. If you have a bigger family and your stairs get more traffic you should do it every 3 months.
1. Brush your stair carpet
Sweeping and brushing your carpet is the first step anytime you want a deep clean. Dirt can often accumulate at the edges of your carpet or be trapped in the fittings which hold your carpet to each step. Ideally, you should use a handheld brush with strong bristles. You need to be able to sweep thoroughly and remove any deep-seated dirt from your stair treads. Brushing requires a ton of precision and accuracy to not cause any major damage to the carpet itself. Otherwise, you can very easily put that dirt and muck right back into the surface. Only this time? You’ll have even more trouble getting it out after. Think of it almost as reinforcing the surface to ensure it stays firm.
Always start at the top and work your way down! That way you can sweep the dirt down and you will get a much better overall result. Oh, a,s make sure you sweep into the corners of each step.
2. It’s time for the vacuum cleaner
Now all the dirt and dentist has been loosened from your carpet it’s time to get the vacuum cleaner. But, just as you swept the stair carpet thoroughly, you need to be just as thorough with step 2, Like with the brushing, always start at the top and work down – ideally with your vacuum cleaner plugged in on the landing. This greatly reduces the risk of accidentally tripping over the power cord.
In an ideal world, you would use a handheld vacuum cleaner that was specifically designed for cleaning the stairs. Another solution would be to use a 2-in-1 vacuum that converts easily for handheld use.
Either solution should come with a good crevice cleaning tool and a brush feature. Cordless is great for both efficient cleaning and the ultimate in safety. Remember to maximize suction by making sure the canister is not too full and that you go over each step several times. You would be amazed at the amount of dust that gets sucked upon the third go over.
3. Steam Cleaning your stair carpet
Steam cleaning involves the use of hot water to penetrate the carpet and dislodge any dirt particles. The steam forces the dirt out of the carpet and dries up any excess water. This leaves the carpet damp and you should try not to walk in it again until it dries. A great time to have your stair carpet steam cleaned is once everyone has gone to work and the kids have left for school.
Steam cleaning may not be the best at getting out hard-set stains but it is excellent when it comes to eliminating odors, mold, or mildew spores. Be careful with how you apply this one. Otherwise, you can put the rest of the home at risk. Moisture causes major damage to surfaces when left unattended to, and steam can expedite that. For example, steam can relieve moisture buildup in other surfaces, but then cause them to gather at a central point and cause water damage. Be sure to stay mindful of how your steam is affecting other surfaces as well.
4. Now it’s time for the shampoo
This is a great option especially after brushing your stair carpet. Remember the brushing loosens all the deep-seated dirt and is ideal prep for the shampoo process. If you shampoo regularly – say every three months you will enhance the appearance and longevity of your carpet.
If you are going to shampoo your carpet by hand remember to keep an extra cloth or even a towel to hand. There will always be an extra solution you need to remove. Leaving too much solution in your carpet will only result in moods and mildew – the last thing that you want. Once you have shampooed your carpet be prepared for it to take up to 12 hours for it to dry properly.
While it is drying try to avoid all foot traffic, or at least as much as possible. It will probably allow people your carpet to drier a lot quicker.
5. Now it’s time to vacuum your stair carpet again.
Whether your carpet had been steam cleaned or shampooed once dry it should be vacuumed again. The reason for this is to suck up any residual dirt that has been loosened by the steam or the shampoo. Vacuuming is usually fairly easy and should be applied within the day. However, you can also wait to allow everything to settle a bit before you pick it up. With moist surfaces, you want to make sure to avoid letting them set for too long and start to stick. Otherwise, it should be a simple clean afterward.
Another important thing to remember is to always empty the canister between cleanings. Leaving the canister un-emptied will reduce the power of the machine’s suction power and potentially allow some of the dirt particles to fall back onto your carpet.
Have any questions? Call your local Clean Pros today! We’re looking forward to speaking with you!