Restoring Your Hardwoods – Carpet Removal

old-carpetCarpet has its place, but if you’re like a lot of people, you’d really rather have the hardwood flooring underneath. Taking out carpet can give your home a whole new look and feel, add a lot of aesthetic appeal and even increase its resale value – and in many cases, it’s a relatively quick and easy project which you can do yourself.

Assuming that your carpet isn’t attached with an adhesive, this is very simple. Start by cutting the carpet into strips using a utility knife (don’t go too deep or you’ll cut through the padding and damage the floor). This will make it easier to pull up and make getting it out much more manageable. Next, you’ll need to pull the carpet loose from the tack strip (start from a corner for this); pliers or a very thick pair of work gloves will make this easier. Keep pulling along the walls to remove each section of carpet.

Getting the padding out is easy enough. It’s usually attached with staples; just pull them out with pliers and remove the padding as you go. Once it’s out, you can take on the tack strips. With the right tools (pry bar, a hammer and pliers), this can be a very easy job. Slip the end of the pry bar under the tack strip, giving it a tap with the hammer if needed. Once you have enough leverage, pry the strip away from the floor and slide the pry bar along. If your tack strip is fairly new, this should go smoothly. Otherwise, you may have to pry out nails individually if the strip breaks into pieces.

After the tack strips are out, just go over the room carefully and pry up any remaining tacks or nails and clean up any residue from the padding. The next step will be to refinish the floors, but chances are that your home is starting to look better already – and all it took was a few hours work taking out the carpeting!

Natural Carpet Cleaning Can Prolong Your Carpet Life

Carpets are not a small expense. The truth is that it may be one of the biggest expenditures that you make. Keeping your carpets clean can be the single biggest factor in providing for the longevity of your rugs.

Dirt–believe it or not–is sharp and may actually cut the fibers of your rug. Vacuuming regularly can help to remove a good portion of the built up dust and dirt, but it cannot prevent the fibers of the carpet from tearing due to the ground in or excessive dust or dirt.

If you clean the carpets before they become too badly soiled, not only will the cleaning task be more easily accomplished but the carpets may also be saved from excessive wear and tear. You can prolong the life of your carpet simply be cleaning it regularly or by having it professionally cleaned regularly.

The prevalent myth seems to be that cleaning your carpets too frequently will actually wear them out more rapidly. In reality the reverse is true. In most cases, unless you are using heavy brushes that are damaging to the rug, the carpet can only benefit from being cleaned. The dust and dirt that is introduced into the carpets, as mentioned, can cut the fibers. In addition, pollutants that are carried into the house from outside are not only damaging to the occupants of the home in that they may be toxic, but they are damaging to the fibers of the carpet. In some cases, pollutants that are carried into the home on the soles of shoes can cause carpet fibers to break down dramatically, damaging the carpet extensively.

The best method of making sure that your carpet gets clean and stays clean is a steam cleaner with a more natural cleaning solution. These might include things such as lavender oil added to plain water, which breaks down dust and can actually kill some types of bacteria.

White vinegar can also be a very effective cleansing agent that will remove tough dirt, break down chemicals and can also kill germs that cause illness.

Using a mild vegetable soap in your cleaning along with an anti foaming agent will be another way to naturally clean carpets, kill germs and remove odors from the carpet without introducing chemicals that may also be toxic to children and pets.

Regardless of what you use to cleanse the carpet, making sure that the greatest amount of water possible is removed from the carpet is a necessity. Keeping the rug damp over a long span of time will serve to multiple bacteria, may introduce mold or mildew growth and other allergens into your home.

Remove as much water as possible from the rug and then run a fan over the surface of the rug until it is completely dry.