Carpet Cleaning: DIY Or Hire a Pro?

baby vacuuming

It’s that time of the year again.

No, not back to school. Not even end of summer.

It’s the time of the year when every single thing the kids have spilled on their bedroom carpets (drinks they aren’t supposed to have in their rooms, melted crayons ground into the fibers, something pink that I still haven’t determined the origin) and every single time the dog has puked on mine shows up again. Just pops right out of the floor like it’s playing a game of hide and seek. It’s gone and then, the next day, BAM! There it is again.

I hate carpet. The rest of the house has hardwoods and if I could I’d rip these carpets out and replace them with something that doesn’t hold stains, too. It’s not that I don’t like that they are cushiony on my feet when I wake in the morning, or that I can rest on them without feeling like my hip bone is going to explode through my skin. But they seem to hold every single little thing that was ever spilled on them.

And as you know, when you have kids, you have many, many spills!

I used to hire someone to come out and do the carpets. I’m not sure why I didn’t do it myself. For some reason I overlooked that big red carpet cleaning machine each and every time I went into Winn Dixie.

Until last year, when I called about having someone carpet clean three rooms and found out it would cost about two weeks’ worth of my grocery budget.

“I can do this myself!” I told my husband, and, coupons in hand (yes, I actually had coupons that first time, so the rental turned out to be about $7 plus the cost of the cleaner!) I lugged the big red machine home, up the garage stairs (and there are a LOT of them!) and into the bedrooms. I carpet cleaned. I stopped every few minutes to empty out the water holder, shuddering at the filthy water that emerged. And I returned. Over, and over, and over again, until our carpets gleamed and shined.

And now, as I mentioned before, it is that time again.

I’ve made a habit of doing the carpet every six months or so. It’s an easy, one hour job (or so) and if I do it in the morning when the girls leave for school the carpets are dry by the time they get home. I purchase carpet cleaner near the machine, opting for the non-toxic kind.

I haven’t found coupons since that first time, but the machine rental is less than $30 and the cleaner holds out for at least two rounds. I’ve found I really like the job, because, much like mowing, I can stop in the middle and see that my hard work is really paying off.

While I complain about the job immensely to my husband, don’t tell him this: it’s really not THAT hard of a job.


Sometimes I wonder if I’m getting the same kind of deep cleaning I would from a professional. But, with the money I’m saving, and the fact that we will, soon, need to replace these carpets, I figure it’s good enough.

What about you? Do you do it yourself when it comes to cleaning carpets in your home, or do you let the professionals do the job?

What do you think?

Carpet Cleaning: DIY Or Hire a Pro?

Kathy Murdock works as a full time writer and web designer. Recently planted in the middle of the deep south from the busy streets of Los Angeles, when she's not coding Wordpress websites or writing about women in business and thrifty motherhood, Kathy spends time photographing alligators, playing with her family, and running. ... More

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  1. shane says:

    There is actually a much more effective way to cleaning a carpet. Admittedly, it requires a bit of extra work, but your results are more than tripled.
    The method is pre-spray and brush agitation. You use an extraction machine but only for rinsing. The machine should never be used for cleaning, for best results, the machine is for rinsing only.

  2. Cleaning carpet with steam cleaner could be prove vital and best method. As article shows the problem of cleaning carpet, so its better to keep care that your carpet don’t dirty very often.

  3. emi285 says:

    My exhusband and I bought a place that had light oatmeal colored carpets…I will NEVER own light carpeting again if I can help it. We had a deep cleaner that was similar to a vaccume cleaner. It was a two hour job to do the living room and the three bedrooms because of emptying the water hold and refilling the cleaner and clean water a lot, but it was worth it. I never looked at getting it done professionally due to a tight budget, and I figured since we owned the cleaner, why bother?

  4. Danielle says:

    We just bought our first house. I have turned on the water, fixed a burst pipe, painted, reprogrammed the garage door opener, and cleaned almost everything. However, I opted for a professional to clean my carpets. The previous owners obviously had dogs and kids (both of which are messy folks). I just didn’t want to have to clean other peoples’ dirt. I have my own and will clean my own filth out of my carpets in the future. And my kid is a walking mess bucket. I’m sure I’ll work on the "every six months" rotation in the future!

  5. jessica says:

    I clean my own carpet it’s so much cheaper to buy a steam cleaner and just do it yourself

  6. atothedbly says:

    we bought a steam cleaner a long time ago and I wouldnt have it any other way! We had puppies that we were potty training so we definitely needed weekly, or sometimes daily, steam cleaning. Its definitely worth the investment to buy your own… I absolutely recommend it!

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