Caring for your carpet
Once carpet is laid it should be lightly and frequently vacuumed for the first week. This will remove lint, dust and fluff.
Vacuuming should continue at least weekly after that to remove soil and dirt. Quickly removing soil will reduce abrasive forces on the pile fibre. For heavy traffic areas, slow repeated vacuum strokes over the same area of carpet may be necessary. Always vacuum against the natural direction of the pile to help remove dirt. When finishing, vacuum in the direction of the pile to achieve a uniform finish.
There are two major types of vacuum cleaners: barrel cleaners and upright cleaners. Upright cleaners are particularly good as they incorporate a pile agitator such as a beater bar or revolving bristle strip that lifts the pile and facilitates the removal of dirt and grit. However, be careful with the agitator as over-use can damage the pile surface.
Barrel cleaners rely on suction removal only and most perform the task quite well. Some barrel cleaners now have power head attachments to agitate the pile in the same manner as upright cleaners.
Ensure the vacuum cleaner is kept in a sound mechanical condition, and that brushes are cleaned and replaced when worn out. Empty the dust collection bag frequently as the suction efficiency of the vacuum cleaner is reduced considerably even when the bag is half full.
Most cleaners now come with micro filter systems to ensure the fine particles are removed from the carpet and stay in the collection bag.
It is important to remove any spillage as soon as possible before it penetrates the carpet fibre and pile.
In the case of spills, remove the excess spillage immediately by first scraping any solids and blotting liquids with an absorbent material. Use a spoon or blunt knife to remove the bulk of semi-solids or greasy substances and follow this by blotting.
Always begin at the outer edge and work towards the centre of the stained area using a blotting or dabbing motion. After most of the spill has been absorbed, place a fresh pile of paper towels over the area and place a flat weight on them. Never rub a stain.
For difficult stains, or for expert assistance, contact the Specialised Cleaning & Restoration Industry Association on 1800 621 872 or visit SCRIA Inc.
More information on stain removal is available from fibre marketing organisations, carpet retailers and manufacturers. For detailed information refer to Australian and New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 3733 'Textile Floor Coverings - Cleaning Maintenance of Residential and Commercial Carpeting'.
It is advisable to have carpet cleaned approximately every 12-18 months. Periodic 'deep' cleaning will re-vitalize the carpet and remove soil and other matter that has settled beyond the reach of routine cleaning methods. Use experienced carpet cleaners preferably a member of a recognised industry group such as Specialised Cleaning & Restoration Industry Association ( 1800 621 872 or visit SCRIA Inc.) and the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) on 1300 307 751 or visit www.iicrc.org.au.