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Deciding Whether to Deep Clean or Replace Dirty Filthy Carpet

Home Flooring Lifetime and Economic Considerations are Important

© 2012 by Sarah Harris; all rights reserved; content may not be copied, rewritten, or republished without written permission.

Red carpet and checkered shoes; photo courtesy Sarah Harris

Carpets, like many other things in life, unfortunately do not last forever. Your carpets require regular maintenance to keep looking good throughout their lifespan, and when that lifespan ends they will eventually need to be replaced.

Any number of things can soil a carpet nearly to the point of absolute destruction, but the number one culprit is simple wear and tear that will happen regardless of the care you take in protecting your carpets.

As long as your carpets are being walked upon, they are going to incur wear. There’s really nothing you can do about it.

Solutions for Badly-Soiled Carpeting

The good news is that there are a couple of solutions; you can decide whether your dirty carpets need a simple cleaning or a complete replacement. When it its time for an upgrade, many people install laminate flooring as an economical solution.

Remember first of all, that carpets can be very expensive to replace. Not only is the carpeting material itself very pricey in many cases, but you’ll also have to factor in the cost of underlay materials and labor costs for installation.

This can all amount to a few thousand dollars for average sized homes, so think carefully about whether or not it is smart for you to make that investment now.

Is a Deep Cleaning Your Best Choice?

If your carpets can be brought back to life after a relatively inexpensive professional deep cleaning, you may be able to save yourself a great deal of money by opting out of replacement.

You should also consider that carpet replacement is a long process that will essentially have you turning your house upside down for several days or even weeks depending on how quickly you and your flooring installation professionals can work.

The Carpet Replacement Process

Entire rooms will have to be emptied and cleaned before the old carpets and padding can be pulled up and the new ones laid down. Keep in mind that it can be a messy procedure because of all the fine dust that has sifted through over the years.

The simple inconvenience of this long process is enough to deter many potential buyers from investing in new carpets for the house. Are you ready to go through with this long and arduous process?

Is a Professional Cleaning Your Best Choice?

A professional deep cleaning for your carpets can be done at much less expense and in much less time—most carpet cleanings and treatments can be done in just a few hours.

However, be sure to consult with professionals about what kind of cleaning will be best for you. Different types of carpets react differently to certain cleaning agents and processes.

What will leave one carpet material colorful and fresh may have negative effects on others. If there aren’t professional grade cleaning products available for your type of carpet, then you might actually be better off replacing them if they are intolerably dirty.

At some point, you probably will need to replace your carpets, but now may not be the time. Economically, it makes more sense to clean on a regular schedule, avoiding reaching that breaking point.

If you are raising small children or pets, then you will be doing yourself a favor by holding off on replacement carpets until things in the home stabilize a bit.

When is the Best Time for Replacement?

Obviously, there comes a point of no turning back, even if you have been diligent about sticking to a deep cleaning schedule and regular vacuuming.

For example, even the best carpet wears in high traffic areas eventually. And pet damage can become so severe that no amount of cleaning will rid your home of the odor.

If you have pets in the house, make sure they are fully trained before you even think about replacing carpets, and if your children are moving away soon, wait until they’re gone.

Replacing carpets when there is less traffic in the house will ensure a longer lifespan. And if you have very small children, and want to install laminate, hardwood, or ceramic tile, wait until they are walking well.

Do you have any carpet maintenance and cleaning tips? Please pass them along to our readers in the comment section below.

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