When was the last time you had your carpet cleaned? Since then, how often have people tracked dirt and bacteria from the outside? Or, do you have a pet that sheds hair or fur, and do you find your home embedded with a strong odor that vacuuming or air fresheners won't get rid of?
Having your carpet cleaned beyond vacuuming often requires the use of chemicals, which leaves many concerned homeowners with the singular question: are carpet cleaning chemicals dangerous?
In addition to answering the main question, we'll cover why carpet cleaning is important, how often you should get your carpets cleaned, and the professional cleaning process.
Why You Should Get Your Carpets Cleaned and How Often
Before we begin, you may be wondering if it's even worth it to have a professional carpet cleaning service if you vacuum weekly, and there aren't any stains. Vacuuming does an excellent job of getting rid of large pieces of dirt, crumbs, and fur; however, it doesn't remove deeply embedded dirt, bacterial, and allergen particles.
In addition, having your carpet cleaned can prolong the life of your carpet. It's recommended that you clean high-traffic areas every 12 to 18 months and whole carpet areas every two years, according to an article by Angie's List.
However, it's important to note that factors such as having kids, pets, light-colored carpets, allergies, or high traffic areas may require you to have them cleaned more.
Common Carpet Cleaning Methods
If you're looking to get your carpets cleaned, there are a few ways to go about it.
Hot Water Extraction
Machines that use this common method—commonly referred to as steam cleaning—spray a mixture of hot water and chemicals onto the carpet and then suck it back up, along with other dirt particles.
You can buy your own carpet cleaning machines, although it's important to do your research. This article by Consumer Reports highlights a few good tips when buying a carpet cleaner and even gives a few recommendations.
However, for the best, most thorough clean, finding a professional carpet cleaning service is your best option.
Professional Carpet Cleaners
Hiring carpet cleaning professionals can be faster, easier, and safer.
If you're living in the Lexington, KY area, Bluegrass Cleaning Company offers a superior carpet cleaning service that uses eco-friendly products and a three-way guarantee.
Before the carpet cleaning starts, an experienced staff member will come by your home to give you a free quote on the area you want to clean. If you're satisfied, you can schedule a carpet cleaning.
- Power vacuuming
- Pre-treatment of spots and stains
- Application of a citrus-based, low moisture encapsulation pre-treatment
- Application of organic microsponges that are then brushed through the carpet from the bottom up with special machines
We also follow current standards set by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) to ensure a safe environment for your children and pets. Our process will also leave your carpets dry in as little as 90 minutes, so you can get back to living in your house as soon as possible.
Are Carpet Cleaning Chemicals Dangerous?
The answer to this question is largely dependent on which chemicals you or your carpet cleaning service are using. In this section, we'll cover common carpet cleaning chemicals that contain ingredients you should avoid and others that will pose the least amount of health and ecological risks.
It's always important to understand what's in your household cleaners as they can introduce toxic fumes or particles into your home. Here's a list of some of the most common ingredients in carpet cleaning and their health risks, according to an article by HomeAdvisor.
- Acid Acetone: This chemical compound can be found in many carpet cleaners and can cause irritation in the eyes, nose, and throat; headache, dizziness, and central nervous depression, according to The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH.)
- Butoxyethanol: This is a colorless liquid that's used as a solvent in many household cleaners, such as carpet cleaners. Long exposure can lead to harm to the eyes, skin, kidneys, and blood, according to NIOSH.
- Formaldehyde: NIOSH said exposure to formaldehyde could lead to irritated skin, throat, lungs, and eyes, while extended exposure has been known to cause certain types of cancer.
- Naphthalene: According to the NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards, this chemical is also a common ingredient in non-organic carpet cleaners. This chemical's exposure routes are through inhalation, skin absorption, ingestion, skin, and eye contact with symptoms ranging from, but not limited to, headache, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, jaundice, renal shutdown, and an irritated bladder.
In her book "Green Goes with Everything," author Sloan Barnett also talks about the dangers of several household cleaners, including carpet cleaners. In addition to the symptoms above, the inhalation of certain fumes can also cause kidney and liver damage.
If you ever have any concerns about certain ingredients or chemicals, don't be afraid to contact Poison Control or look up chemicals on the NIOSH website, which is a part of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Buying or making sure your cleaning company uses all-natural, eco-friendly chemicals can ease any exposure-related fears while ensuring that your carpet receives the same caliber of deep cleaning you want and need.
Below, here are a few natural carpet cleaning products on Amazon that are both effective and affordable.
- Naturama Carpet Shampoo and Stain Remover can be found on Amazon for under $30. According to its product description, the formula it uses only consists of water and non-toxic and biodegradable botanical plant-based ingredients and minerals.
- Puracy Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine Detergent is another cleaner that is non-toxic, hypoallergenic, vegan, gluten-free, and biodegradable. Not only does it remove pet stains, soil, and odors, but it is completely safe for any children or pets as it doesn't use any harsh chemicals, such as sulfates, phosphates, chlorine, bleach, dyes, or perfumes.
- Biokleen Carpet & Rug Shampoo Concentrate is another highly rated carpet cleaner for deep cleaning. This all-natural, plant-based cleaner can be used on any type of carpet, so you don't have to worry about damaging your floors.
We hope this article provided you with a clear and precise answer to any worries you may have concerning carpet cleaners.
If you're living in the Lexington, KY area, we hope you look to Bluegrass Cleaning Company for any and all of your carpet cleaning needs.
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