How Often You Should Shampoo The Carpet?

A carpet plays a vital role in making your home feel complete and gives an aesthetic effect to your living space.

Yes, we totally agree cleaning your carpet is a lethargic task but a significant one. Now the question arises “How often you should shampoo the carpet?”

Especially, when your kids eat and spill everything from nachos to Kool-aid or even when your furry friend unfurls its hair everywhere on the carpet then cleaning it becomes important.

How often you should shampoo the carpet?

Let’s not forget about the potential of your carpet to hold dust and bacteria.

Now, one of the options to clean your carpet is through regular cleaning, like vacuuming, but when you have rigid stains of sauces or, say red wine, your carpet needs a deep cleaning.

“Frequency varies from home to home and the number of mess makers in your household, but once a quarter is a good rule of thumb to keep carpets fresh,” says Hogan Johnson, Hoover’s assistant product manager. 

If you are reading this article, you are at the right place, as this article will give you an insight into everything you need to know about carpet cleaning. 

How Often You Should Shampoo The Carpet?

According to the professionals in the business, deep cleaning your carpet at least every 12 months will keep it clean from all the allergens, but this depends on a plethora of factors; like when you have kids or a pet, you might have to clean it more often. 

Household FactorsShampooing Frequency
Light traffic12 months
High traffic6-12 months
Pets3-6 months
Children6-12 months
Light colored6 months
Family with allergies2-3 months
Smokers3-6 months

Here’s how you can deep clean using shampoo:

  1. Always read the instructions on the carpet cleaning machine.
  2. Be clear about the water temperature, amount, and soap concentration.
  3. Know about the texture of your carpet. E.g.- If your carpet is made from wool fibers, you might consider using cold water to prevent it from shrinking. 
  4. Before filling the collection tank of your machine with anything, know how to empty it.
  5. Now for the next step, fill the water tank- some machines have a removable or fixed water tank. Make sure to check it in your machine and do not fill it beyond the max water level line.
  6. Fill in the carpet shampoo or cleaner in the separate tank given and use little shampoo. 

Pro Tip: Start from one corner and clean in parallel lines. Get as close to the wall as possible. This method will ensure that you clean your carpet thoroughly.

How often should you clean your carpet with a vacuum?

If you are a family that is rarely at home, vacuuming your carpets at least once a week will do the job and keep it fresh looking.

However, this may vary if you have a busy family with kids and pets who loves to sleep, eat and play around your fluffy carpet, then you should prefer cleaning it at least twice a week

Household FactorsVacuuming Frequency
Light trafficWeekly or less
High traffic2 times a week
PetsDaily; at least twice a week
ChildrenDaily; at least twice a week

When you have Kids?

When you have kids, everything goes to the carpet, from eateries to juices to toys, which increases the probability of accidental spills.

If you have younger or even older kids, consider getting your carpet cleaned at least once every six months and professionally cleaned every 12-18 months. 

With Pets?

How Often You Should Shampoo The Carpet when you live with pets

When it comes to your four-legged friend, they not only shed their hair, and bring muddy paws but also shake off the pet danders all the time. Pet danders are tiny flecks of skin that your furry- friend shed along with its hair. 

Apart from dander, your fur animal also has the potential to flake off dried saliva, urine, and even dried feces. According to Forbes Advisor, 66% of U.S. households (86.9 million homes) own a pet in 2023.

Now imagine the amount of danders you are surrounded with (of course, only if you haven’t cleaned your carpet yet).

So if you have pets like guinea pigs, rabbits, dogs, cats, hamsters, etc., ensure to deep clean your carpet with a carpet cleaner or a steam cleaner every 3-6 months.

Cleaning it twice a week will also do the job; however, with furry friends, you should get your carpet cleaned by professionals every 6 months, as just vacuuming is not enough, as walking on the carpet or simply vacuuming it can make the pet dander airborne again.

And the potential fleas your carpet holds will also get killed by shampooing the carpet.

If you have Allergies?

Pet danders can be a significant problem if you have a member with allergies. Keep your cleaning game ahead of allergens and pet danders by using a HEPA filter while vacuuming.

However, pet danders and other bacteria may linger on your carpet due to their microscopic properties, for this, consider getting your carpet professionally cleaned every 2 months.

When you have smokers at home?

How often you should shampoo the carpet when you have a smoker at home is a serious question as heavy or light smokers consuming tobacco release harmful gasses that ultimately end up getting sinked into your carpet.

Even a guest smoking can leave that nicotine and tar on your carpet making it injurious for your family.

In this scenario, get your carpets cleaned at least every 3-6 months. This depends on the type of smokers, as with heavy smokers, you might have to clean your carpet every 3 months, and with moderate to light smokers, cleaning your carpet every 6 months can help you eliminate any severe problems. 

Mistakes to avoid when cleaning your carpet

How Often You Should Shampoo The Carpet but avoid using too many chemicals

The smooth and velvety texture of carpets makes it significant to consider some factors while cleaning them.

Here are some mistakes to avoid:

1. Applying the wrong cleaning products

There are various products available in the market, but not every product is meant to clean your carpet. The first step in any carpet cleaning is to know what material it is made of.

Using the wrong product can lead to damaging your carpet. Make sure to purchase the right solution.

2. Putting too much pressure on your carpet

Believe it or not, it’s human behavior to start vigorously scrubbing anything with stains to remove it. Well, this tendency can result in ruining your carpet immensely.

Carpets are made of soft material, and you just need to use the correct pressure to thoroughly clean them. Scrubbing your carpet will only make the substance settle deeper into the carpet.

3. Avoiding Professional Cleaning

As mentioned in the above paragraphs, Carpets can absorb everything in your home, from tobacco smoke to pet danders, and things like these need professional care. 

4. Being too slow or waiting

When you have a stain on your precious carpet, you need to act fast. Stains take no time to absorb into the carpet and make them its forever home. Waiting for your spill stains to dry can sometimes result in mold growth. 

5. Using too many chemicals

More isn’t always better. Overloading your carpet with too many chemicals will only make it suck up those chemicals and sometimes may result in discoloration. 

4 ways how to boost your carpet’s life? 

How Often You Should Shampoo The Carpet even after Regularly vacuuming

Carpets are a significant part of your home decor, but it’s not every day that you buy a new carpet. This makes it extremely important to take good care of it and boost its life by following these few steps:

1. Regularly vacuuming

According to microbiologist Dr. Philip Tierno, the average carpet contains about 200,000 bacteria per square inch. That’s 4,000 times worse than a toilet seat!

By vacuuming regularly, you can ensure that your carpet is free from those 200,000 bacteria, dirt, or mold growth. 

2. Reposition your furniture

Rearranging your furniture ensures less foot- traffic in the same areas, preventing your carpet from looking worn out.

It also prevents your furniture from leaving marks on the carpets due to the weight and pressure it compresses. 

3. Follow the Asian rule

There’s no lying in how much dirt and unwanted substances your shoes bring to your carpet. Follow the Asian rule of avoiding shoes in the house or on your carpet.

For instance, you can set rules forbidding yourself or your family members to enter wearing shoes. 

4. Using Mats and Rugs

A good quality rug acts as an extra layer of protection on your carpet. Although you still need to clean these rugs and mats, but they’re a lot easier to clean as compared to carpets.

Secondly, it’s painless to replace them, and you can do it more frequently, unlike carpets. 

How and When to Clean light colored carpets

Another enraging factor is to treat light-colored carpets. There’s no doubt that white or light-colored carpets bring life to your home, but it also makes the dirt and any stain glow like a firefly in the dark sky.

These carpets need extensive care, so you need to vacuum them at least twice a week, and in the case of shampoo, once every 6 months can clean them thoroughly. 

Bottom Line

In general, how often you should shampoo the carpets depend on the factors you live in and no doubt it can be a daunting process, but regularly cleaning your carpets can make them look fresh and keep unwanted or harmful substances away.

However, if you have kids or pets, then cleaning your carpets professionally is paramount to uplift their life. 


How do I know if my carpet needs cleaning?

Odor, Discoloration, visible staining, and allergies in your family are all signs that your carpet needs cleaning.

A worn-out carpet is also a sign to restore it by cleaning it professionally. Generally, if your carpet is not cleaned for over a year, it’s a solid sign to get it cleaned. 

Should you vacuum after shampooing carpet?

Yes, you can. It’s usually considered a good idea to vacuum your carpet after shampooing it but make sure that your carpet is completely dry.

How can I shampoo my carpet without a machine?

In this case, make sure to dilute the solution and do not drench your carpet; it’ll result in wasting your detergent, plus increasing the drying time. Use a brush to scrub the solution onto the stained area gently.

What can I use instead of carpet shampoo?

Basic kitchen products can be handy when it comes to cleaning stains on anything.

The best alternative to carpet shampoos can be vinegar, baking soda, and salt. Baking soda, in general, can refresh the appearance of your carpet as well as the smell.  

How Often You Should Shampoo The Carpet even after regular vacuum?

Sometimes even after regularly vacuuming your carpets the dust particles or allergens settle deep into the carpet and this makes it important to shampoo your carpet professionally every 2 months. 

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