There’s no denying it – we’re in the deep of winter, and that means lots of snow and ice around the Boulder area. And snow and ice means salt and mud, which is a nightmare for your carpets.There’s no denying it – we’re in the deep of winter, and that means lots of snow and ice around the Boulder area. And snow and ice means salt and mud, which is a nightmare for your carpets.
Kids, pets, and party guests can track these carpet-killers into your home all season. And if you’re a business owner, you can count on employees and clients dragging in the seasonal sludge to your office or business.
No homeowner wants stained carpets in their house. But did you know that a dirty carpet is a great place for mold to live, too?
Coming in contact with mold or the bacteria that can thrive in dirty carpet can lead to breathing problems, infections, and other health problems for you and your family.
Plus, if you’re diligent in keeping your carpets clean throughout the snow season, you can save money by avoiding a deep professional cleaning to scrub out the damage.
Luckily, there are many ways you can protect your carpet (and your home’s air quality) during the messy winter months. Beyond keeping everyone’s shoes outside and wiping off muddy paws, here are 5 ways you can keep your home or office carpets clean all winter long.
1. Entrance Matting:
Entrance matting is your first line of defense against the seasonal muck. Entrance mats prevent slipping, soak up moisture from snow and sleet, and are great for scrubbing mud, salt, and extra snow off your and your family’s shoes.
But don’t let your mat do its job dirty – entrance matting should be cleaned regularly throughout the season. A clean mat is much more effective at doing its job than one that’s full of dirt and moisture.
For extra protection from the weather, you can look for mats with special heavy-duty built-in scrubbers. You can also consider area rugs and carpet runners for particularly high-traffic areas of your home.
2. Steam Cleaning and Regular Vacuuming
One key method for protecting your carpets year-round is giving them a regular cleaning. Frequent vacuuming can remove dust, dirt, and dander from carpet that could otherwise turn into stains and foster the growth of mold.
If the weather (or your pets and kids) give your carpet a particularly rough week, give your carpets a steam cleaning to help prevent permanent damage. Your local hardware store should provide rentable steam cleaners for a cheap daily fee, and they are quite portable and easy to use.
3. Consider a Plastic Carpet Cover
This option may seem a bit tacky – after all, what’s the point of having a lush, cozy carpet if you just keep it covered with a layer of plastic?
A plastic carpet cover is more of an extreme measure for notable weather events or big parties. If there’s a big snow or ice storm, plastic covers can be easily and cheaply applied to the carpets of your business or home, and then removed after the worst is over.
So if your next big Christmas party, office party or your child’s slumber party falls on a particularly slushy night, it’s not a bad idea to give your carpet an extra line of defense from nasty weather.
You can always line the living room and hallway to the bathroom just for the night, and enjoy pulling up the cover up to reveal pristine, clean carpet once everyone is gone!
4. Take Care of Messes Fast
No matter how hard you try, some mud and salt is going to get tracked onto your carpets.
The key to preventing further damage and permanent stains is effectively and quickly treating the affected areas:
- Let the spot dry entirely before treating it
- Vacuum up as much dirt as you can
- Mix some dishwashing liquid with warm water, and use a clean cloth to sponge the spot with the solution
- Soak up as much of the mud or snowmelt as you can, and repeat until the spot is clean
5. Maintenance the Areas Around Your Property
Snow and mud that gets tracked onto your carpets is more than likely coming in from the immediate area around your home or business. So shoveling your driveway, sidewalks, and parking areas will help keep your carpets free from seasonal sludge.
To minimize the mess from coming inside, be sure to remove as much snow as possible from around your property before it melts and turns into mud. Apply salt in advance of expected ice and snow (rather than sprinkling it on top), and always sweep up any extra ice melt whenever you can.
Get a Professional Carpet Cleaning
No matter how hard you try to stave off stains, your carpet can fall victim to the season. A professional carpet cleaning will keep your carpets looking like new by the time spring rolls around.
A professional carpet cleaning at least once a year gets rid of damaging dirt and other particles that your vacuum leaves behind. As friends, family and pets tread the threads of your carpet, this abrasive dirt can wear down the fibers and lead to an early replacement.