Carpet fibers can easily hide soiling from everyday life, and some carpets are made with special materials to reflect light and hide soil. While hiding small amounts of soil is a positive attribute of carpet (especially if you have guests coming over and little time to prepare), it doesn’t mean that regular vacuuming should not be done. Dirt is the number one enemy of any carpet, and vacuuming is the best thing you can do to care for your carpet and prolong its useful lifespan.
Why Vacuuming is So Important
As mentioned above dirt is the number one enemy of your carpet. It may not seem like a few tiny specs of dirt can cause any damage to an entire floor, but it is possible. Since dirt is so tiny we don’t see it with the naked eye and we don’t think that our floors are dirty, but it doesn’t take long for millions of tiny dirt particles to build up in carpet. These tiny particles act like fine-grit sandpaper slowly grating away at carpet fibers. These tiny specs do a lot of damage especially when proper routine vacuuming is not done. Floors that are not vacuumed on a regular basis tend to last 5 to 10 years less than floors that are well cared for.
How to Properly Vacuum
Even though you vacuum not all vacuuming efforts are thoroughly cleaning your carpets. Believe it or not, there is a right way and a wrong way to vacuum your carpet. When most people vacuum they just plug in the machine and unmethodically run it over the carpet as quickly as they can, not realizing that this is not fully cleaning the carpet.
The proper way to vacuum requires a routine and a more methodic approach. First you want to ensure that the vacuum canister is completely empty (if you have a vacuum with a bag it should be no more than half full). An empty canister allows the vacuum to work with its highest level of suction power. Once you have made sure the vacuum is not stuffed with old debris, turn it on and vacuum in overlapping rows just like you would if you were mowing the lawn. This way you don’t miss any part of the floor. You also want to make sure to go slow enough so that the vacuum has enough time to effectively suck out as much dirt as possible from the floor. The slowest motion should be taken when pulling the vacuum backward toward your body as that is when the vacuum uses its strongest suction. Vacuum in all one direction and then again in the opposite direction for the best cleaning results. Ideally, you should be vacuuming low traffic areas once a week and high traffic areas like stairs and hallways twice a week.