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How to clean an Area Rug on Hardwood Floors?

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Area rugs are must-have accessories in our homes. They will enhance and warmth your space with its patterns and contrast colors. At the same time they raise the overall value of your home so if you how to clean an Area Rug can be great asset.

How do we clean and Area Rug on Hardwood Floors? Cleaning Area Rug with a washing machine is not advisable. Instead, try to remove the stains, dust mites, and smell with the help of quality vacuum cleaner, sodium bicarbonate, carpet shampoo, or steam cleaner. 

Some handmade area rugs can be very pricey, so we need to know how to clean them properly.

If you have hardwood floors, you would be for sure interested in two bestselling hardwood cleaning products. Read my article called Bona VS Bruce hardwood floor cleaners and learn more. Did you know that Ammonia free Windex cleaner is becoming more and more popular hardwood floor cleaning solution s well?

How do we clean Area Rug on Hardwood floors? 

Vacuum cleaner

Most popular and most often way of cleaning your rug is with vacuum cleaner. We start by vacuuming the top front side of our rug and removing debris, pet hairs, and other dirt accumulated from our last cleaning. 

When we finished the front side, we turn our rug and vacuum backside where all dust is hidden. We vacuum also hardwood floors, so no additional dust would appear. Repeat this process two times.

The third and final step would be taking it outside and beat it with broom, stick, or some tennis racket. If nothing is coming out from your rug, you can place it back to the desired spot in your house.

Using a Carpet and Rug Dry Cleaning solution

There are many rug cleaning solutions available on the market. What I found best is using a Capture dry cleaning kit. It is handy for removing all sorts of stains, smells, and moisture. You can use it on almost all rug types, fabrics, and even silk. 

I use powder every two months, so more significant stains don’t appear and extending the Life of my wool carpet. I am not a fan of wet shampoo cleaning solutions because, in my opinion, they add moisture. Where moisture is present, there are bacteria as well.

A short step by step guide on below video 

My TIP is to try it on some small corner of your carpet and see how it reacts on chemicals.

You can CLICK HERE and read all actual reviews written on Amazon about this product.

Anyway, this is a fantastic cleaning solution but you need to know that for deep stains you would probably need steamer. In Capture cleaning kit you get also Pre-mist for heavy stains. You can try with this first. If not, read below more about how to stain your rug.

Sodium bicarbonate

Sodium bicarbonate is an excellent cleaning solution for your rug. You will get rid of the smell as well. Still, it needs damp cloth, so it is not a dry method but compared to carpet shampoo’s much better alternative. It’s inexpensive as well, so if you are on a tight budget,  I would use for regular cleanings and have Capture for those more “hard to remove” stains.

Follow these steps when using sodium bicarbonate:

  • Pour it on a stain spot or complete carpet. 
  • With harder stains, mix it with water and create a paste. Apply this paste directly to your stain.
  • If you did not create a paste and just pour to your carpet, take a damp rag and clean your rug. If you applied a mixture of sodium bicarbonate and water already to your carpet, just wait till it dries out and vacuum it off. 

Carpet shampoo

I will be short here. Carpet shampoos are effective cleaners for removing stains and dirt out of the rug, but I don’t recommend them because you can use better cleaning solutions such as Capture and dry clean your carpet. This way, no bacteria could ever appear.

Steam cleaner

A steam cleaner is probably the fastest rug cleaning method from the ways mentioned above.  It is not expensive, so a lot of people tend to decide on this solution. With hot moisture you kill all microorganisms and bacteria and also disinfects your carpet as well. Only method proved to kill impressive 97% of all bacterias and dirt on your rug.

Follow this 5 steps before steaming your rug:

  1. Roll your rug and remove it from the spot
  2. Protect your wooden flooring with waterproof barrier – any kind of plastic sheet will do just fine. 
  3. Roll your carpet back on and start steaming
  4. Steam according to producers guidelines 
  5. After you finish steaming your carpet, leave it rest for 24 hours even your producer say it is dry in 1 hour. This way your hardwood floors will stay in perfect condition. 

CLICK HERE to see what do other people have to say in reviews about one of most popular steam cleaners on Amazon.

How much does it cost to clean an Area Rug professionally?

Almost all rug cleaning proffesionals will charge you by cleaning foot. Average cost is around 5$ but it can vary from 2$ up to 7$. It mostly depends how do you want them to clean it and from what material is your rug made.

Synthetic rugs are very durable and cheapest to clean compared to wool, silk and more delicate materials. For such natural type of carpets you would need to pay probably 20-30% more costs compared to regular price. In addition, if you have animals, and you want to remove their excretions, decontamination bath is probably something you want to consider ordering in addition. Another feature is protective sealant. Adding this layer will protect your rug from damages and stains even more.

Traditional professional cleaning proces to clean an area rug is not much different compared to our home version. They start by vacuuming rug on both sides. After they steam it with professional steamers and dry it completely 2-3 days. Chemical version is done with less water and more chemicals. Similar to Capture mentioned above. Either way is effective.

At the end it all depends what you need and what kind of carpet do you have. If you ask me, buy yourself a good quality 100-200$ steamer or carpet shampooer and maybe capture dry cleaner for backup. You will safe a tone of money for more or less same final success.

How do you clean a Large Area Rug at your home?

Large area Rug can sometimes be hard or impossible to move. In this case we have two options:

Dry clean your Area Rug

First option I would choose is dry cleaning with cleaner such as Capture. It can cover large are, it doesn’t damage our hardwood floors and you don’t need to protect place waterproof barrier underneath when cleaning.

Before applying Capture just vacuum your carpet and remove as much dirt and dust as possible.

Use Carpet Shampooer

Second option would be using so called carpet shampooer. This is similar to carpet steamer but it doesn’t use that much water and doesn’t clean so deep. It still does very good job removing pet hairs, dirt odor and stains of your rug. Overall drying process is much faster and can be used without waterproof protection underneath as well. I recommend Bissell carpet cleaner. It is affordable and very powerful at the same time. Great value for money.

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CLICK HERE and read real costumer reviews on Amazon. Their pros and cons and real life experience.

How to Protect your Hardwood Floors when cleaning Area Rug?

When cleaning only one spot of your rug, you can place rag underneath to protect your floors. Be careful not to pour to much water over.If you are planning to steam your rug, waterproof barrier must be placed underneath to protect your hardwood floors. Some plastic sheet will do just fine. Leave your carpet on this barrier at least 24 hours after steaming.

Related topics you might be interested

Are polypropylene rugs safe for my floors

Read as well about 10 best door mats for hardwood floors and find one which best suits your needs.

If you have mold in your home, read about how to clean mold from wood floors

You might be interested in best hardwood floor polish | best safe polisher as well.

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