How to care for your carpets

I remember when my brother and I were little – we would often receive earfuls from our baba aka ‘Safaiman’ because you know, we didn’t quite share the same vehement passion for cleanliness as he did.

The weekends especially, used to be enervating. Boy, things used to get really action-packed as baba would get in his cleaning mojo, summoning the two of us delicate darlings and drafting us into what we thought were the most unglamorous tasks. These tasks ranged from swabbing the terrace floor to knocking down cobwebs and more unglamorous in between (I’d never invited my friends over the weekends because, yes this). While baba never shied away from charging us with new tasks, he however, reserved the job of carpet cleaning to himself. Strange, both of us thought but we never asked the reason behind it for the fear of getting drafted into it.

The other day while baba was getting himself all primed for home-cleaning, I finally asked him what was frothing inside me for years. He told me that carpet cleaning, unlike other furniture and furnishings, requires patience and a method. Well, I got the patience part but method? So I quizzed him further, to which I got a detailed caring guide for carpets that I’m sharing here –

A newly installed carpet needs to be vacuumed 2-3 times a week


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( image Source : pinterest )

Yes. But why does a newly installed carpet (wall-to-wall) need any vacuuming in the first place? Whether tufted or woven, carpets carry clumps of loose fibers that begin to appear after installation, putting wind up most of us. But that’s absolutely fine, my father assured me. Those loose fibers amount to just a tiny part of the total fiber composition of your carpet; so don’t start cursing your stars or retailer when you see a largish clod of fibers sucked by your vacuum. Not only vacuuming it will keep your carpet clean but it will also help straighten compressed tufts.

Likewise, you need to be a probing Peter and know what kind of pile your carpet is made from – if it is loop pile or cut pile as your cleaning method will depend on it. But just so you know – loop piles are prone to snag, so avoid the beater bar and brushes as it may cause fuzzing. So I’d suggest you to go for a regular suction head. You can very much use a turbo or power brush to for your cut pile carpet; a little caveat – avoid brushes with coarse bristles as it can damage the fibers.

Not all the dark patches of cut pile carpets go forever with vacuuming


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( image Source : pinterest )

Though vacuuming will help you set the fibers straight, it will, however, not be able to prevent the odd interplay of light and shadows forming on it. The chic shaggy-ish appearance of the carpet is a result of legions of piles sitting closely together in different directions giving it a patchy look. It’s just something unique to cut pile carpets, which even your vacuum cleaner can’t totally fix.

Deal with the spillage, pronto!


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( image Source : pinterest )

Yes, even if it means you becoming that irritating waiter who swabs away drops of coffee from the table the second someone spills on it. Let people call you all they want, but spills need you to act with utmost dispatch, dear one. One thing to remember always – never rub your carpet but wet the affected area with a cleaner first and then blot it up with good absorbents like tissues or a napkin. Just make sure that you don’t over wet the carpet and allow the carpet to dry completely before putting it back to its place.

When you spot a loose end, you don’t play with it but cut it


Broken fiber in carpet texture close-up

( image Source : pinterest )

 I know it’s quite tempting – pulling loose fibers of the carpet and wrapping it around your finger but however satisfying it might feel, you should totally avoid doing it. Yanking fibers from the carpet can ruffle its perfect pattern, crimp it or worst – make it look frayed. When you spot a loose fiber just cut it with your scissors; that’s it.

Fading isn’t much of a problem if you are using an area rug since you can move it away from the sunlight. However, when it comes to wall-to-wall carpets, you need to install interlined curtains and blinds for protection against direct sunlight.

I hope my baba’s carpet cleaning guide serves you well; though in my heart I know it will because he has been doing it for years and our carpets do really look shipshape and shiny!

Happy Cleaning!

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