Nothing can ruin the look of a room quite like a dirty, stained, or frayed carpet. A freshly-laid carpet in a newly-built home can age quickly, especially if you have kids and pets. But proper maintenance will extend the life of your carpet and keep your LGI Homes interior looking showroom new.
The first line of defense for a carpet is at the entrances from the outside. Door mats are designed to remove dirt, debris, and moisture from shoe bottoms. Teach your family to actually wipe their shoes on the mat a couple of times. Wash the mat every week or two to remove buildup.
If possible, minimize the amount of direct sunlight that gets on your carpet, because the color of the carpet can fade if exposed to constant, strong light. If the room is unusually humid, consider a dehumidifier, because excess moisture can be a breeding ground for mildew over a period of time.
Vacuum regularly, to prevent dust buildup. This is possibly the most important maintenance tool for your carpet. Experts have reported that nearly 80 percent of carpet dirt is removed by a vacuum. Vacuum at least twice a week to prevent soil particulates from working below the carpet surface. It’s not only important to vacuum regularly, but to do it thoroughly. Use slow, steady passes of the vacuum in the direction of the fiber. Also, after spending the money on a new house, don’t skimp on cleaning tools. Invest in a good vacuum with optimal suction. The extra couple of hundred dollars you spend will be easily recouped by the extended life of your carpet.
To protect the fibers themselves, use carpet protectors—those round protectors that look like wooden drink coasters—so that couch and chair legs don’t dig into the fibers and distort them permanently.
Finally, nearly all new carpets are treated with some brand of stain resistor. In most cases, all you will need is a clean cloth and some warm water to remove stains. If that doesn’t work, use the spot cleaner recommended by your carpet manufacturer or by a carpet professional. Not all carpet cleaners are created equal, and some over-the-counter brands can actually make the stain worse. When using a spot cleaner, it is important to apply the product properly, to avoid telltale rings. Moisten a dry white cloth with some cleaner and gently work it into the stain. Do not pour spot remover directly on the carpet and do not scrub. If the stain still doesn’t come out, call a cleaning professional. Use home remedies at your peril!
With regular care and cleaning, your carpet should stay looking new for years to come.