If Carpet Cleaning Isn't Done Right, Here's What Can Happen

Assorted bottles of cleaning supplies on kitchen countertop beside tiled backsplash

People tend to think of carpet cleaning as something that can be done by just about anyone with a wet vac. If only it were that simple. Carpets today may be fashioned from any one of more than a half dozen materials each of which needs to be understood before applying any type of cleaning system to them. Choose the wrong cleaning system, or apply a particular cleaning method in the wrong way and you are likely to have a big, and expensive, problem on your hands. Below we’re going to look at the different methods homeowners and carpet cleaning services use to clean carpets and what can happen when those methods go wrong.

What Can Happen When Carpet Cleaning Goes Wrong

Carpets may last for years, but like anything else, if they are not treated properly their life expectancy will be dramatically reduced. Here are some rug cleaning mistakes that can have expensive consequences.

Odors from excess water

The cardinal sin of carpet cleaning is renting a wet vac and dousing the carpet with too much water. This may seem like a harmless mistake but it can undermine the integrity of the carpet, promote the growth of potentially dangerous mold, and lead to a musty, foul odor hanging over your house. In some cases using too much water can result in the homeowner actually having to replace their carpeting.

Ripping the carpeting

We can understand why homeowners would want to clean their own carpets. But unless you have a lot of experience doing so you run the risk of causing severe damage. Besides the damage caused by applying too much water with a wet vac, improper technique with the wet vac could also result in the carpet being torn. If the tear is big enough and in a visible place carpet repair may be ineffective and the rug might have to be replaced.

Damaging the floor under the carpet

Above we mentioned how too much water can cause permanent damage to carpets and even necessitate their replacement. But the dangers of too much water don’t stop at the base of the pile. If you have hardwood floors under your carpeting the excess water can seep into the wood causing it to warp and crack. The ultimate cost of repairing the damage could dwarf the cost of replacing the carpets.

Rapid re-soiling

If you just cleaned the carpets or had someone clean them for you but discover that they seem to be getting dirty again abnormally fast it may have to do with the cleaning process used. If you or someone else used an off-the-shelf carpet shampoo and did not thoroughly remove every bit of it during the rinsing process it may have left behind a sticky film that will actually attract and hold dirt better than clean carpet fibers will. This is the type of mistake Steve's truck-mounted steam cleaning machine will avoid.


New carpets tend to shed. It's part of the breaking-in process. The worst of the carpet shedding typically stops a few months after installation, although minor shedding may continue for the life of the carpet. If you have the carpets cleaned before the major shedding has stopped you may wind up with a sloppy mess as balls of fiber soak up water and detergent and are ground into the carpet during the cleaning process. An experienced carpet cleaner will know what to do to ensure this doesn't happen. They may even advise putting off a deep cleaning until the worst of the shedding has ended.

Making seams worse

As carpets age, they tend to develop seams in high-traffic areas. That's because the repeated pressure from so many feet pushing this way and that has stretched the fibers in the carpet. Someone with little experience cleaning carpets may simply bull forward and cause the seams and creases to fray or even rip. A company experienced in area rug cleaning or wall-to-wall carpet care will know how to deal with this type of problem so that the situation is not exacerbated, and your carpets emerge unscathed.

Using too much heat

Both homeowners and carpet cleaning companies with little experience have been known to apply too much hot water to carpeting causing it to shrink once it dries out. Shrinkage can ruin wall-to-wall carpets, necessitating their replacement. And just so that you know, if you hire an unproven carpet cleaner and it turns out they're not insured, you will be the one footing the bill to replace the carpet.

Color fading

Using the wrong machinery or the wrong type of shampoo or other cleaners can cause the color in a carpet to fade before its time. It may even cause patches of faded color to appear where more pressure was exerted by the cleaner or more shampoo was used. Color fading caused by using the wrong cleaning products or techniques is all too common. But you can ensure that does not happen by calling Steve’s Carpet Care when it’s time to clean your carpets or rugs.

The Bottom Line

If you are looking for a company with a spotless reputation for outstanding work at competitive prices there’s no need to search for “carpet cleaning services near me." Instead, just give Steve’s a call at (303) 530-4900, or write to us at contact@stevescarpetcare.net. We have more than 45 years of experience cleaning carpets for Colorado home and business owners.

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