Cleaning your carpet does not have to cost a lot of money nor does it have to entail using harsh, toxic chemicals in your home. In fact, it does not have to mean using any
special store bought rug cleaning products at all! I have been using basic, homemade environmentally safe solutions to clean my home for years now because I am against animal testing for household products and deeply connected to the environment. Over the years, I learned how to safely and inexpensively clean my home. Because of this, I know my family, pets, and the Earth are all the better for it!
Clean Your Carpet the Simple, Cheap, and Environmentally Safe Way!
1. Vacuum. This is the first step to take in cleaning any carpet. Vacuuming picks up dirt traces and dust mites that “wet cleaning” can not do. Consider vacuuming at least twice a week.
2. Freshen Your Carpet. This will help eliminate most carpet odors and help keep your home smelling fresh and clean.
Carpet Freshener: Pour baking soda on your carpet. Let stand for at least ten minutes before vacuuming. (If you have the time, leave it on for an hour. You will notice more of a dramatic difference this way.) What some fragrance with it? Try mixing baking soda with ground cinnamon and cloves and sprinkle the mixture on your carpet. You can also try adding a few drops of lavender oil to the baking soda before sprinkling it onto your carpet. Again, let stand at least ten minutes before vacuuming.
3. Spot Clean. If you have problem areas such as a spill, stain, or smear, spot clean them with a damp cloth/paper towel. Use a spoon to scoop up any sticky debris. Then, using this mixture below, apply it to a damp cloth and soak the area/areas. Allow to soak for at least ten minutes. After time has elapsed, continue to wipe with a damp cloth/paper towels until the stain is gone.
A Money Saving Tip for Wipe Ups: In my home, instead of over doing it with paper towels, we try to use clean old garments that have been cut into rags and/or clean old socks that we can wash and reuse for household cleaning. I store them in a handy place under the kitchen sink and keep some by the sink in the cellar. This saves money and lessons our negative impact on the environment. (Yes, we still use paper towels when the need calls for it; but, have significantly reduced our dependence on them.)
Homemade Spot Cleaning Mixture: This is the one that almost always does the trick! Mix 1 Ã?Â½ cups of hot water and 1 teaspoon of liquid dish detergent together in a small bucket or container and apply as instructed above.
Other Homemade Environmentally Safe Carpet Stain Removers I Recommend:
White Vinegar. Mix two tablespoons of white vinegar with one cup of hot water in a container and apply to the carpet stain. Wipe the stain clean with cloth/paper towels.
Club Soda. Pouring club soda onto a wine stain can quickly remove it. Pour at least Ã?Â½ cup directly onto the stained area. Use a cloth/paper towels to wipe clean and help dry the spot.
Rubbing Alcohol. Pour Ã?Â¼ cup of rubbing alcohol onto the stain. Wipe the area clean with a damp cloth/paper towels.
Baking Soda. This one I use for grease stains. Try pouring baking soda directly covering the grease stain and let it stay there for at least five hours. After the time has elapsed, vacuum the mixture. If it still remains, and it shouldn’t, wipe the area with the vinegar mixture above. Add baking soda again and let it remain on the area for an additional two hours. Once again, vacuum the mixture.
4. Steam Clean without Toxic Chemical Solutions. There are times that you will need to steam clean your carpet. (You can easily rent a machine if you do not have one.) Skip the chemical solution and try this safer one instead. (If desired, you can steam clean without any cleaning solution except the hot water. This will still achieve your goal of eliminating the dirt.)
Steam Cleaner Solution:Lightly mix 3 tablespoons of liquid dish soap, (mixing too heavily might cause too many soap bubbles in the machine) 1 Ã?Â½ cups of white vinegar, and 1 1/2 gallons of warm water. To add a hint of fragrance, drop a few droplets of lavender oil into the mixture and stir.
After steam cleaning your carpet, remember it is important to keep the room well ventilated to reduce the risk of mold and musty odors. Simply keep a fan on and open the windows to aid in the drying process.
5. Invest in Floor Mats to Keep by Your Doors. This will help trap dirt and keep a good portion of it from spreading throughout your home. When cleaning your room rugs, do not forget to clean your floor mats, too! I found basic, well made and affordable floor mats at Wal-Mart, A.C. Moore, and Lowes.
I hope that these homemade environmentally safe carpet cleaning tips prove to be useful to you. (Feel free to print this article out as a handy reference guide.) I can tell you from firsthand experience, they have worked wonders for me!