5 Tips For Helping Your Carpets Survive Winter

Winter can be tough on your carpet, what with the snow, moisture and mud that can get tracked indoors. A little bit of extra effort can go a long way towards keeping your carpet in good condition. The following tips can help your carpet survive the messy season.

Tip #1: Clean Outside

Clean carpet inside begins with proper maintenance outside. Keep your front porch swept and free of debris to minimize how much is tracked in. It's also a good idea to keep up with snow shoveling so less ice and moisture gets brought into the house. Finally, place boot scrapers and plenty of rugs outside the door to help clean feet. Make sure you brush these off and shake out the dirt regularly.

Tip #2: Create a Landing Area

It's best to insist upon a shoes off policy – at least with family and close friends – during winter. To pull this off successfully you will need a landing area just inside the door. Cover the carpet with a large rug and get a boot tray to hold wet, dirty shoes. These metal or plastic trays catch all the mud and snow as it melts off the shoes. It's also helpful to have a chair or bench in this area so people can sit down to lace or unlace. You can make it extra cozy by supplying slippers for family and guests to wear.

Tip #3: Vacuum More Often

If you normally vacuum once a week, up it to twice a week. If you are already a twice weekly vacuumer, up it to every other day. More frequent vacuuming serves two purposes. First, it gets the extra grit of winter, such as sand, mud, or ice melt products, out of the carpet. Second, it makes it more likely that you will catch stains early.

Tip #4: Spot Clean Weekly

You should go over the carpet carefully at least once a week and spot clean any stains. Fortunately, most winter stains are mud so you should be able to get them out if you act quickly. Moisten the stain with the spot remover of your choice or the one recommended by your carpet cleaner. Allow it to set a few moments and then blot the stain with a clean cloth, rubbing from the outside of the stain toward the center. Finally, flush it with clear water and blot up the excess until dry.

Tip #5: Go for the Pros

Plan for a professional carpet cleaning each spring. They will be able to get out the remaining winter grunge, along with any salt or ice melt products that were tracked in and forced deep into the carpet fibers.