Proper Carpet Care Can Add Several Years To Its Life 

And Extend That Wonderful “Like-New” Look.

photo of many different colors of carpet

The Entire Article Provides Comprehensive Information on Carpet, Pad / Cushion & Carpet Care

Part 4-B 

This is Part 4 of a 4-Part Article On Carpet & Carpet Pad / Cushion:

This section describes the different types of carpet pads and discussed the merit of anti-microbial (mold) treated carpet pad when installing carpet over concrete floors. Lastly, it describes suggested prep-work of concrete floors in slab-foundation homes when visible mold, or mold-odor is present.

Hot Water Extraction Cleaning

It’s Almost Always Required By The Carpet’s Warranty

Proper carpet care can add years to your carpet’s life, while keeping it looking newer.  The second most important thing you can do for carpet is Hot Water Extraction Cleaning.  Carpet warranties require professional Hot Water Extraction Cleaning at least as often as stated in their warranty.   This is maintenance carpet care, just like changing your car’s oil.

Some households wet-cleaning only frequently enough to keep the carpet’s warranty valid.  A household that: Removes shoes upon entering, Has 1 or 2 people and No pets, and Vacuums thoroughly at least weekly is an example of a home that needs infrequent wet-cleanings.

Even this type of home still needs wet-cleaning because it cleans better than vacuuming alone.  It’s no different that sweeping versus mopping a hard-surface floor.  It’s easy to see that more dirt is removed with wet-cleaning of hard-surface flooring.   It’s equally easy to see it with the discharge-water from Hot Water Extraction cleaning.

graphic showing results from vacuuming versus steam cleaning

Other homes need frequent wet-cleaning.  This type of household: Has more people living there, has pets, does not remove shoes at the door, and especially if vacuuming is not being done frequently enough.

A huge benefit is that the heat from Hot Water Extraction Wet-Cleaning resets the carpet-pile upward.  Carpet-pile is designed for the tops of the carpet-tufts being what it walked upon.  Crushed pile causes you to walk on the side of the carpet-pile, which causes faster wear of the carpet.  Resetting the carpet-pile upward is part of why carpet wear-warranties dictate hot water extraction cleaning.

On The 1st Page Of Mohawk Carpets Warranty Brochure, It States You Must Have The Following (to file a warranty-claim):

  • Original Purchase Invoice
  • Copy Of Sample Label (from the retailer)
  • Cleaning Receipts

The warranty also states: “Entanglement of yarn tips (the tufts) usually is due to improper maintenance. Residue from a spill that was not cleaned up thoroughly, or cleaning residue that was not rinsed completely will lead to matting”.

“Mohawk requires professional hot water extraction cleaning every 18 months.  Periodic cleaning by a Certified Carpet Care Professional, using hot water extraction  method, refreshes carpet appearance.”

Click here to see MoHawk Carpet’s warranty:  Mohawk Carpet Warranty Brochure


carpet stained to the backing  diagram of pet urine soaking into carpet pad

Carpet Stains Can Go Through The Backing And Into The Pad

Proper carpet care requires immediate removal of carpet stains.  The longer the stain sits, the more likely it is to become permanent,  Plus, depending on the quantity of the liquid, carpet stains can reach through the carpet’s backing and into the pad below.  If this occurs, there is no way to remove it all.  This is why some carpet-pads have a moisture-barrier on their top side.

Carpeting is a delicate fabric — Proper Carpet Care requires you to never rub or scrub it.  Scrubbing pushes the carpet-tufts on the side — creating very rapid wear of the carpet-fibers.  Aggressive scrubbing can leave a non-removable mark in the carpet pile.   Mist spot-cleaning solution and gently blot.  Repeat this process if necessary.

If your home is prone to frequent carpet-stains, invest in a carpet spot-cleaning machine.  This type of cleaner provides best way to remove stains.   It provides Hot Water Extraction cleaning on a quite small scale.   Because it suctions up the stain & cleaning-agent, the carpet is not left overly wet (which can cause water-marking / pile-reversal).

bissell spot clean pro carpet stain cleaning machine


To learn more about, or purchase, this item Click Here: Bissell 3624 SpotClean Professional



High-traffic areas often look dirty before the rest of the carpet needs cleaned.  Proper Carpet Care can require occasional cleaning of only those areas.  A best way to do this is with a “home” hot-water extraction cleaner.  We discuss them in detail later in this article.

bissell proheat 2x pet carpet cleaner

TIP:  This model is sold at several retailers, each with a version that looks different.  The difference is only cosmetic, the working components are the same.


NOTE: Proper Carpet Care requires never over-wetting carpet (or leave it too wet when done).  Over-wetting can cause “pile reversal” (also known as water-marking) — and typically happens when the carpet was left too wet during hot-water extraction cleaning.  Pile-reversal is when a cut-pile carpet “shades” — making some areas look lighter & others look darker than surrounding pile.

pile reversal or water marking in carpeting

Pile Reversal — Also Known As Water-Marking

Hot-Water Extraction Cleaning Intervals

To keep the warranty valid, Carpet Manufacturers spell out Proper Carpet Care with regard to wet-cleaning.

  • Have a required (minimum) frequency for Cleanings.
  • Require documentation proving your carpet was cleaned by Carpet Care Professionals (most warranties required a Certified professional).
  • Require documentation proving Hot water extraction cleaning method was performed.

Carpet Manufactures’ Warranties Require Hot Water Extraction Cleaning because:

  • Hot water dissolves soil better.
  • Hot water removes stains better.
  • Hot water dissolves & helps remove carpet-cleaning solutions better.
  • Heat Resets The Carpet Fiber’s Heat-Set “Memory”.  This makes the pile stand up like it did when the carpet was new.

TIP:  Heat also sanitizes carpet.  Sanitizing occurs at 180 degrees — Carpet Care Professionals  water temperature is up to 200 degrees.

before and after hot water extraction method of carpet cleaning

Notice How The Carpet-Pile Stands Up In The Photo On Right.  Hot Water Extraction Cleaning “Reset” The Carpet Fibers “Heat-Set” Memory.

after hot water extraction carpet cleaning

Is It New, Or Has It Just Been Cleaned?  It’s Hard To Tell — That’s Why Hot-Water Extraction Is Required By Carpet Warranties.

Buying Carpet Care Machines

Is There A Benefit In Buying A $1600.00 Vacuum Cleaner?

The most important step in Proper Carpet Care is vacuuming.  Let’s start with a Vacuum Cleaner Basic: No vacuum-cleaner will be good enough if it seldom sees the light of day.  Like carpeting, vacuum-cleaners come in different price ranges, and provide different levels of cleaning ability.   Your lifestyle & housekeeping habits can help you determine the grade of vacuum that presents the best value for you, while also ensuring the carpet is getting vacuumed well enough.

Note: For those who fall between the two extremes below, this information can also help you align your vacuum’s cleaning ability to your needs.

If you:

  • Remove your shoes upon entering your home
  • Vacuuming as frequently & as well as described earlier
  • Have a small household of 1-2 people
  • Don’t have shedding pets
  • Have low to mid-grade carpet

You may be sufficiently served by a modestly-priced vacuum. 

If you:

  • Don’t remove shoes
  • Don’t vacuum as described earlier
  • Have a larger household
  • Have shedding pets
  • Have mid to high-grade carpet

You may be better served with a more expensive machine.

Ratings For Upright Vacuum Cleaners    

Proper Carpet Care requires a vacuum cleaner capable of cleaning your carpet deeply enough to align to your household’s needs.  Also, the longer the carpet-fibers (such as frieze or highly upgraded Plush) the more strength the vacuum cleaner must have.  To help you choose a vacuum cleaner from a dizzying array of machines on the market, we have provided the composite rating score for all machines Consumer Reports gave a “recommend” rating to.  If it’s not listed here, that does not necessarily mean a vacuum cleaner is not a viable option, rather only that it did not earn the CR “recommend” rating.

As you review the prices & performance scores below — it becomes obvious that price & performance frequently don’t align.   The most expensive machine costs $1600.00, and earned a rating of 69.  The least expensive machine is $109.00 – with a slightly lower rating of 63.  We do not make recommendations for vacuum cleaners, rather provide only the Consumer Reports overall rating score.

Price       C.R. Score         Brand                                              Model

(100 is the maximum score)

$     550.00      72                 MieleDynamic U1 Cat & Dog            U1
$     500.00      71                 Dyson Ball Animal 2
$    400.00       71                 Dyson Ball Multi Floor 2
$     250.00      71                 Sears Kenmore Pet Friendly             CrossOver
$     200.00      71                 Sears Kenmore Pet Friendly             31140
$     300.00      70                Shark Navigator Powered                  Lift-Away NV586
$    180.00       70                 HooverWindTunnel Max                   UH30600
$1,600.00       69                 Kirby                                                       Avalir
$   500.00       69                 Miele Dynamic                                     U1
$   350.00       67                 Sears Elite Pet Friendly Crossover   Ultra 31230
$   127.50        67                 Hoover WindTunnel Anniversary     U6485-900
$   700.00       66                Sebo Felix Premium
$   198.00       66                 Hoover React Pro. Pet Plus                 UH73220
$   160.00       66                 Hoover React QuickLift                       UH73301
$   300.00      65                 Shark DuoClean Lift-Away Speed      NV800
$   260.00      65                 SharkRotator Lift-Away Speed           NV680
$   102.50       65                 Hoover WindTunnel T-Series Pet      UH30310
$   149.00       65                 Shark Rotator Pro Lift-Away               NV501
$   138.50       65                 Hoover WindTunnel T-Series             UH30300
$   650.00      63                 Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal + Allergy
$   600.00      63                 Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal
$   300.00      63                 SharkRotator Powered Lift-Away      NV650
$   270.00      63                 HooverReact Powered Reach Lite      UH73400
$   170.00      63                 Shark Navigator Lift-Away                   NV351
$   109.00      63                 Shark Navigator Lift-Away                   NV352



  • Consumer Reports has been a very credible & reliable source of product reviews for decades.
  • In their full article, CR provides all the details about how they came up with the composite score, and where to buy each machine.
  • CR has similar reviews for other styles of machines (no scores for other styles are within this article).
  • Consumer Reports requires a subscription.  It may prove to be a resouce before you invest a large sum of money into a purchase.


Hot-Water Extraction Carpet Cleaner Ratings

Not every home has a frequently recurring need for Professional Carpet Cleaning to ensure proper carpet care.  Some homes have only infrequent need for wet-cleaning.   For household with frequent wet-cleaning needs, a home cleaner is great to touch up areas that get dirty sooner than the rest of the house.

TIP #1:  Move a hot water extraction carpet cleaner slowly (like when vacuuming).  This allows it to remove more water.

TIP #2:  With a home machine, make a 2nd pass (without dispensing water) to ensure maximum water removal.

TIP #3:  If you don’t want to invest in a home hot water extraction cleaner, leave all cleaning to the professionals.  Don’t use foam cleaners.

Hot Water Extraction Carpet Cleaners For The Home

Tip #4:  As with vacuum-cleaners, the price of a home Hot Water Extraction Cleaner does not necessarily align with its cleaning-ability & rating.  Unlike vacuum cleaners, the performance-scores for Hot Water Extraction Cleaners vary greatly.  While striving to provide proper carpet care,  you want the best results for your effort in all cases.  Buying a highly rated wet-cleaner doesn’t have to cost more..  The best rated wet-cleaner (below) is less expensive than the worst rated!

TIP #5:  If the Bissell Model Number is the same (except for the letter that follows) — it’s the same machine (with cosmetic differences).  The letter that follows the model number simply represents the retailer who sells it.

TIP#5: Why Does Bissell Rate So Well?  Nearly all Bissell models (perhaps all) have a Built-In Heater — “ProHeat”.  Most other brands do not have a heater.  The Bissell heater is rated at being able to add up to +25 degrees (in addition to the temperature of the water you put in it) — and hotter water yields better cleaning results.  Also worth noting: The temperature of the water you put in drops fairly fast.

Hot Water Extraction Carpet Cleaner Ratings

Price       C.R. Score        Brand                                                        Model

(100 is the maximum score)

$260.00    71                         Bissell ProHeat 2X Lift-Off Pet                   15651

$150.00     65                        HooverDural Power Max Pet                       FH51001

$250.00    62                        Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet             1986

$250.00    62                        Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro     1964

$250.00    62                        Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro     19862

$250.00    62                        Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro     19863

$280.00   61                         Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet            1548u

$200.00   61                         Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution                   15482

$200.00   61                         Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet            1548T

$190.00    61                         Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet            1548

$470.00   59                         Bissell Big Green Machine                           86T3

$260.00   51                         Rug Doctor Deep Carpet Cleaner

$180.00   45                         Hoover Carpet Basics Power Scrub Deluxe  FH50150

$  79.00    43                        Bissell PowerLifter PowerBrush                 1622

$170.00    42                        Bissell ProHeat Essential                             1887

$150.00    42                        Bissell ProHeat Essential Complete          1887T

$150.00    42                        Bissell ProHeat Essential                             18872

$190.00     41                       Hoover Power Scrub Elite Pet                     FH50251

$300.00     39                      Bissell DeepClean Deluxe Pet                     36Z9



  • Consumer Reports has been a very credible & reliable source of product reviews for decades.
  • In their full article, CR provides the full details considered when generating the rating, and where to buy each machine.
  • CR has similar reviews for other styles of machines (no scores for other styles are within this article).
  • Consumer Reports requires a subscription.  It may prove to be a resouce before you invest a large sum of money into a purcha

footer-logoThis is Carpet Care Part 4-B:

It this section, you can learn the details about proper carpet care.  We went into detail regarding why carpet needs, and benefits from wet-cleaning.  We also provide performance-ratings for both Vacuum Cleaners & Home-Use Hot Water Extraction Carpet Cleaners.

Although Al’s is a Plumbing, Heating & A/C Company, this is one of many Home Improvement Articles found at this website.  In addition to Plumbing & HVAC articles, others include: Home Decor & Decorating, Home Staging (when selling), Replacement Windows, Renovations, Opening Up Homes into an “open floorplan” layout, Roof Shingles, Energy-Saving Upgrades & Updates, and general-interest home related articles.

Al’s Plumbing, Heating & A/C provides Plumbing & HVAC Repairs, Replacements, & Maintenance.  We service all brands of HVAC Systems, and sell new & installed HVAC from American Standard (same company as Trane), Ameristar (owned by American Standard) and Coleman HVAC (same company as York HVAC).

We also repair and replace every plumbing component in your home.  Call Al’s today to discuss any concerns or problems you may have.  We set appointments arranged for your convenience and also have 24/7 Emergency Service.