Anyone with a house pet, be it a cat, dog or hamster, will be used to cleaning up after them. This is part and parcel of pet ownership but can be a difficult job. Hair, mud or debris brought in from outside, toilet accidents and vomiting can all result in hard to shift dirt in your carpets and upholstery. Keeping a clean home doesn’t mean you have to call in the professional cleaners every month though. Knowing how to properly remove each of the substances will put an end to yellow matches on the carpet and all-pervading pet hair.
Effectively managing pet hair is all about buying a good vacuum cleaner. Preemptive measures such as regular brushing and trimming can reduce the amount of free shedding from animals but cannot stop it altogether. Several brands of vacuum cleaner have social pet hair varieties that promise to tackle hair in carpet fibers and soft furnishings. Dyson, Bissel and Hoover are all giants in the vacuum cleaner world and all offer machines specifically designed to deal with pet hairs. "Bagless" styles have better suction and so can pick up the small hairs very well. However to get deep down into the carpet fiber you’ll need a steam cleaner. Steam will loosen the hair, dirt and dust embedded in the fibers after which vacuuming will be more effective. You’ll either need to combine a steam cleaner with your current vacuum or buy a model that fulfills both functions. Your carpets will be cleaner than you ever could have imagined was possible with DIY cleaning.
Not only are pet associated stains difficult to remove but they tend to be smelly too. Young, old and small pets are all prone to toilet related accidents while cats and dogs sometimes vomit as a result of eating grass. The first thing to do obviously is to pick up any solids then soak up moisture by blotting, not rubbing.
Next tackle any staining from urine or fecal deposits. There are plenty of commercial solutions you can try but if you don’t have any in the house then a homemade fix is better than delaying treatment. Mix warm water with any of these common items: household soap, bicarbonate soda, white vinegar or white wine. Then saturate a clean cloth with the homemade cleaning formula and lay it over the stained area for around 5 minutes. Blot with fresh cloths and clean water.
If you don’t discover the mess until after it has dried then you need to wet the surface again before you begin treatment using with warm water, never hot water which may cause the stain to set in further. Due to the prolonged staining time you’ll also need to prolong the treatment time to around 15 minutes, repeating as necessary until all discolouration is gone. Removing stains thoroughly will also combat associated odours.
Even with these tips you will eventually need to call in the professionals. Guidelines from carpet manufacturers are that your carpets should be cleaned professionally every 12 to 18 months. By learning to deep clean your own carpets you can leave the period between professional cleans to the upper end of this guideline and enjoy cleaner carpets in the intermediary. However it is important to bring in professional cleaners every 18 months as unless you are prepared to invest in industrial strength cleaning products and machines then you’ll need the professionals to refresh and prolong the life of your carpets. Some warranties are also dependent on the appropriate care and maintenance of your carpet.
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