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Carpet Cleaning: Doing it Yourself vs. Hiring a Professional

It has to happen eventually. Dirt, dust, and dog hair eventually takes a toll and, at one point or another, you’ll need to have your carpets cleaned. The question then becomes – do you rent a machine and do it yourself or do you hire a professional? There are a few different factors to take into consideration before you make a decision. Here are some tips to help you decide. 


When factoring in the cost of having your carpets cleaned, you have a few options. If you go the professional route, the cost will obviously depend on the amount of carpeting being cleaned, the level of soil, and the company being used. However, Celeste Stewartsays on average you should expect to spend approximately $300 to have a professional carpet cleaner clean 1,000 square feet of carpet. This may be a great option for you if you don’t have the time to clean your carpets yourself, or if you have some flexibility in your budget and would prefer to have your carpets cleaned by someone who knows the in-and-outs of carpet cleaning.

Another option is to purchase your own carpet cleaner. This is different than a vacuum, as you’re looking for something that can steam and remove any stains or soiled areas. Some vacuums include special canisters that allow for upholstery and carpet cleaning. Stewart says these carpet cleaners can be purchased for $150-200, and are a great option for those desiring something at-home and for more frequent cleanings. “Upright cleaners look much like a standard upright vacuum cleaner,” she says. “A canister filled with carpet cleaner solution, a reservoir of fresh water, and a reservoir for collecting the dirty water are part of the system. In addition, a heating system may be incorporated into the design. If not, simply fill the fresh water container with hot water.”

Some stores also allow you to rent carpet cleaners for a 24-hour period, charging on average 30 to 50 cents per square foot. This is another great option for someone not wanting to invest a lot up front, but who still wants to ensure a good cleaning of their carpet. 


If you don’t have the time to dedicate to a deep, DIY carpet cleaning, perhaps hiring a professional is the way to go. You can get by with weekly vacuuming, and then every 12-18 months (depending on the level of traffic on the carpeted areas), arrange to find room in your budget for a good, professional cleaning. If you’re thinking about cleaning your own carpets, don’t forget to factor in the time it takes to move the furniture out of the room before cleaning. When you clean your carpets yourself, you have to move the furniture, vacuum all of the carpets, spot treat your carpet to remove stains, apply pre-treatment solution to your carpet, fill and empty the tanks, and carry and cleaning the equipment when you are done. If you use a professional service, an experienced technician takes care of all of those tasks for you, saving you time and a trip to the chiropractor.


When you hire a professional carpet cleaner, you hire someone that is specifically trained and certified to clean your carpets to a certain standard. Although you may keep up with your weekly vacuuming and carpet spills, it may still be necessary to occasionally bring in the troops to clean out soil trapped deep within the fibers of your carpets. A professional carpet cleaning involves a skilled and trained technician who evaluates your carpet and uses hot-water extraction to extract dirt or soil that’s deep within your carpet. Professional equipment not only gets the water hotter, but it can also suck up more water during the cleaning process. In most cases, this top-notch cleaning is much greater than you could do on your own with store-bought products.

It is possible to clean your carpets yourself, but keep in mind that outsourcing to a professional is going to guarantee a deeper and more thorough carpet cleaning. If you do decide to clean your carpets yourself, make sure you have a quality carpet cleaner, the necessary tools to get the job done, and a good amount of patience.

These are just a few of the factors you’ll need to consider when trying deciding between a professional carpet cleaning and a DIY job. After weighing these factors, you can be on your way to having cleaner and healthier carpets.

Author: lacarpet

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