8 Best DIY Carpet Cleaning Tips

A Comprehensive Guide with Tools, Steps, and Helpful Tips

Do you dread having to pay for professional carpet cleaning solutions?

If so, why not consider taking on the job yourself and saving money in the process?

Carpet cleaning can seem daunting but it doesn’t have to be.

In this article, we will discuss DIY carpet cleaning tips approved by our professional carpet cleaners, discuss what tools you’ll need, and detail 8 steps to get your carpets looking spick-and-span again.

We’ll also provide helpful tips alongside FAQs to hopefully answer any questions that may arise along the way.

Prior to executing a more effective general cleaning procedure, for example steam cleaning, DIY cleaning is regularly done as a preliminary treatment.

What Tools You’ll Need

A. Bucket

The first step to getting your carpets clean is having all the tools and supplies. An all-purpose bucket is key. It’s a must for storing soapy solution and rinsing cleaner during the cleaning process. Make sure you have one plus two gallons of lukewarm clean water on hand to get started.

B. Detergent

Next, you’ll need a good detergent, carpet shampoo, or dish soap to deep clean the carpets. Look for specially-formulated carpet and upholstery cleaner that breaks down buildup on your carpets. Be sure to read the instructions on the package completely before using any Carpet Cleaning Machine Mix.

C. Cloth

Cloths for cleaning carpets are key. Whether you use some paper towels, sheets, or pieces of factory-made towel, you’ll want to have enough on hand. Make sure they’re clean and lint-free to prevent any residue from transferring onto the carpets.

D. Spray bottle

Next, you’ll want to take extra precautions and have a spray bottle filled with your detergent solution handy. Have it ready so that you can do spot cleaning and pre-treatment of carpet stains and spots before tackling your entire carpet. This will help the deep cleaning process go smoother.

E. Scrub brush with stiff nylon bristles

To really get deep into the pile without damaging the carpet, you’ll need a scrub brush with stiff nylon bristles. Don’t go too hard here. Remember that You’re scrubbing to loosen particles and not scouring or making your carpets look worn out.

F. Old towels or rags

Some old towels are essential to absorb liquid and pet stains, so have some on standby when deep cleaning your carpets. They should be absorbent though. So if they are too worn they won’t do much good. Make sure you change them out as needed and when they become saturated with dirty mixture. It may also be helpful to keep reusable cleaning towel. With this method, you can just toss them in the washing machine after use.

G. Luke warm water

Water isn’t just for drinking. For carpet washing, you’ll need to use lukewarm water mixed with white vinegar. This will help make sure the detergent is thoroughly mixed with the water for effective cleaning. Too much hot water can set in stubborn stains and too cold of a temperature won’t allow it to rinse properly, so be mindful.

H. Vacuum cleaner

Your friendly vacuum comes in handy here too. Be sure to give your carpets a brush-out before taking that soap solution straight on. This will loosen all important debris that may get stuck in those fibres and prevent marks or residue from showing after a good cleanse. And don’t forget to empty out your vacuum after each session.

I. Steam cleaner

If you’re a conscientious cleaner, you might even consider investing in a steam cleaner. This will allow for heavy-duty cleaning without having to manually scrub or break too much of a sweat. They can be found at major retailers or online stores and have adjustable settings to control the output of solution and strength of the detergent. Additionally, most come with attachments that make it easier to tackle small areas and corners that are hard to reach.

J. Mask

Last but not least, safety is always first. When handling detergents and chemicals, it’s best practice to wear some kind of towel face mask. This way you won’t be inhaling any excess debris that may become airborne during the process. You don’t want your lungs taking on any dirty work while your carpets get refreshed.

Steps to Clean Your Carpet

Ready to get those carpets looking good as new? Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to DIY your carpet cleaning project:

  • Vacuum the entire carpet surface to pick up loose dirt and debris before starting cleaning. Empty out canisters/bags of your vacuum after each pass.
  • Pre-treat any spots or stains with the pre-treatment solution like white vinegar in the spray bottle. Let it sit for no more than 15 minutes. So that it removes as much of the stain as possible. If needed, you can also use a scrub brush at this stage too but be ultra gentle.
  • Dilute carpet cleaner in lukewarm water and either immerse parts of your clean towel into the solution or pour directly onto areas needing attention. Really saturate before scrubbing too hard.
  • This will allow enough time for special chemicals to do their job effectively on tricky buildup or tough stains without compromising the fabric or coloration of carpet floor.
  • Working from one spot and outwards, scrub lightly but firmly using a brush. Do not over-scrub or it may harm the carpet fibres.
  • Soak up excess liquid and dirt by pressing repeatedly with your dry towels.
    For tougher stains, repeat steps 4 and 5 until the area is visibly clean to your satisfaction, and let air-dry completely before moving on to other sections.
  • Rinse the entire carpet with a fresh white towel to remove as much detergent residue as possible. Make sure you rinse sections thoroughly too.
  • Vacuum the carpet against the grain to fluff up the pile again and remove any remaining particles from deep crevices in carpets fibres. Be sure this is the last step before taking it all outside for the final drying process.

Helpful Quick Tips

Carpet cleaning doesn’t have to be a chore. Here are some helpful tips for making the most out of your DIY experience:

  • Sanitise carpets by using one part white vinegar to three parts lukewarm instead of cold water. This is a great way to instantly deodorise without having to use harsh chemicals.
  • Always read instructions and follow safe usage before getting started on anything pre-treatment or detergent-related.
  • Use shorter strokes when scrubbing. This helps you cover larger areas quicker without leaving any streaks or scruffs after it’s all said and done.
  • After completing the entire carpet focusing on heavy foot traffic areas, consider applying a good rug protectant or equivalent so that spilled liquid or wine stains don’t set in too quickly.
  • DIY carpet regular cleaning with baking soda and salt are an easy and affordable way to clean your carpets without the use of harsh toxic chemicals. Baking soda and salt have natural deodorizing properties that can help remove odors from your wall-to-wall carpets, while also being gentle enough to not damage fibers or colors.


How do I know what type of detergent/solution will work best on my carpets?

The answer depends on the type of fabrics and fibres of your clean carpets. Check labels or manufacturers recommendations before looking into more specialised solutions in order to ensure you are using the appropriate detergent for the job. Doing it wrong may result in irreversible damage.

What kind of cloth should I use when cleaning my carpets?

Damp cloths used for washing carpets should be non-abrasive and lint-free. We also recommend having plenty on hand so that they can be changed out when needed and anything that has any hint of dirt or dust on them definitely should not touch those fresh clean rugs later. This also applies on vacuuming wall-to-wall carpeting.

How long do I wait after carpet cleaning before using it again?

The drying duration depends on the type of carpet and how heavy the saturation was. Generally speaking, it takes between 4-6 hours to air-dry. Make sure you check once in a while and immediately dab any moisture before walking or allow more time to completely dry out.


Carpet cleaning doesn’t need to be a hassle.

It can be done quickly and professionally with the right tools and know-how.

With these DIY carpet cleaning tips, taking care of your own carpets at home is achievable in no time.

While there may be a learning curve that comes with it, practice makes perfect and these 8 steps along with 5 helpful hints will take your clean game up another level.

So go forth. Clean those carpets until they sparkle like new.