Carpet Cleaning

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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

How much does carpet cleaning cost per square foot?

In some cases, a quote from a carpet cleaning company will depend on the square footage of the room. The lower end of these prices will be between $0.15 and $0.20 per square foot, and they may rise as high as $0.40-$0.50 per square foot. Factors raising the price include the carpet’s condition (are there stains?) and whether they have to clean carpeted stairs, which take longer.

To find out how much it will cost clean your carpets, request cost estimates from pros near you.

How much does it cost to get your carpet cleaned professionally?

The cost of carpet cleaning is generally determined by the type of carpets, stains, square footage and number of rooms that you need cleaned. On average, a professional will charge $94 to clean one room. Two rooms cost an average of $120, and three rooms cost approximately $146. 

To find out how much it will cost to clean your carpets, contact the top-rated professional carpet cleaners near you and ask for free cost estimates.

Which is better: steam cleaning or shampooing carpet?

Both steam cleaning and shampooing are tried-and-true methods for getting dirt and stains out of your carpets. The methods are different, however.

Steam cleaning will remove dirt from your carpets via hot water extraction, while shampooing requires scrubbing. If you’re in a time crunch, or if you just have one or two small spots that need to be removed, shampooing may be a better option, as it allows you to spot-clean small areas. Both steam cleaning and shampooing make your carpets wet, so you will need to allow for time for the carpets to dry. 

Contact carpet cleaning pros near you, and discuss the best options for your carpets.

Is it worth getting carpets professionally cleaned?

Purchasing a steam cleaner yourself may help to remove stubborn stains, but it simply won’t match the deep clean and efficiency that comes from hiring a professional carpet cleaner. Pros have powerful tools that can quickly remove even the most stubborn stains. 

If you’re selling your home, clean carpets can make your home more appealing to prospective buyers. And the expense is offset when you consider that you only need to get your carpets cleaned about once a year. Plus, professional carpet cleaning can extend the life of your carpets, saving you money in the long run.

How do I find and hire a professional carpet cleaner?

First, take your search online to find the best carpet cleaners near you. Look at their ratings, photos of their past work and customer reviews. Having too many negative reviews can certainly be a bad sign, but you should also pay close attention to how they handle those reviews. 

Before you make your final decision on who to hire, ask yourself these questions:

  • What method of carpet cleaning do you prefer? Steam cleaning is an increasingly popular method because it’s thorough and safe, and dries quickly enough for you to return to your home the same day the carpets are cleaned.
  • Are the pros reputable? It's always a good idea to check their reviews and references. Look for references from people in your neighborhood with homes similar to yours.
  • What’s included in the base price? What other services does the carpet cleaning company offer? Some companies will move furniture for you, while others charge a fee for it. Some include stairs in the cost of the home’s cleaning, while others charge per step.

Ask a few carpet cleaners to provide you with an estimate for your home, and compare their quotes to decide on the best one for you. You should also check to make sure that the contractor holds the proper insurance and licenses. 

How long does carpet cleaning take?

Given the way it can transform the carpet, cleaning happens remarkably quickly. You can expect an average size room to require about 20 minutes to thoroughly clean.

The job could take longer for several reasons. If the stains are widespread or particularly deep, the professional cleaner might need to spend more time removing them. They may also need to take time to move furniture out of the way.

How long does it take for carpet to dry after cleaning?

After a cleaning, you can expect your carpet to remain slightly damp for between six and 12 hours. You can expect the lower end of this figure if the air is dry, there’s plenty of air circulation or the temperature isn’t too low in your house. However, for humid environments or lower temperatures, your carpet could stay damp for longer.

What is dry carpet cleaning?

Dry carpet cleaning uses very little moisture to clean carpets. Instead, this method uses compound cleaning agents to loosen dirt that might be trapped in the carpet’s fibers. It’s an effective way to remove stains from soiled carpets. 

To learn more about how to maintain your carpets, read our guide.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a professional carpet cleaner during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Set up a virtual appointment to discuss the scope of work. Conducting the consultation over video conference or phone call will ensure that you remain within the CDC's social distancing guidelines

Start by messaging a professional steam cleaner or carpet cleaner near you, and ask them if they would be willing to talk by phone or video call. Be sure to ask them how they handle payments and what precautions they have in place to keep you and your household safe. 

How can I find out if a professional carpet cleaner is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?

Local and federal governments are currently in the process of defining essential services guidelines, and it’s best to read them to see whether professional carpet cleaning or steam cleaning is considered essential. A good place to start is with your city or state’s government website.

The CISA's Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19 webpage identifies 16 critical infrastructure sectors on a federal level. Some, but not all, jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure.

Reviews for Ashburn carpet cleaners
Graciela O.
I was pleased with the carpet cleaning, I had really dark carpet stains thought they wouldn’t go away. Looks good as new after my carpet cleaning guy did the job!
My Carpet Cleaning GuyMy Carpet Cleaning Guy
Alyssa C.
The carpet cleaning service is amazing! They complete the job in an efficient manner and the carpets look amazing!
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Thumbtack Customer
Carpet cleaning. Excellent job!
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Andrea S.
I had a great experience! Thorough, efficient, and professional, they took care of my carpet cleaning needs and even exceeded my expectations. I would 1000% recommend to those looking for carpet cleaning services.
Geo's Carpet and Upholstery cleaningGeo's Carpet and Upholstery cleaning
Omair A.
They did a really good job in cleaning the carpets . They are very professional and responsive too.
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Denice A.
The Brown family did an amazing job on my carpets and stairs. They were courteous and professional. They were very thorough with the cleaning and my carpet smells like fresh citrus!
Brown Family Chem-DryBrown Family Chem-Dry
Shannon k.
Actually clean and deorderize the carpet. It's been about 50 hours since the guy finished the job. I told him the carpet still looked dirty and had a smell. He said it looked like that because it was wet and that the enzymes in the spray will continue to eat what is causing the odor for another 48 hours. Like I said, it's almost 50 hours and it still looks dirty and stinks. I would've done a better job with renting a carpet cleaner and doing it myself.
Blue Team Carpet CleaningBlue Team Carpet Cleaning
Sandy P.
Great service and value. Very happy with the carpet steam clean and deodorizing. They were on time, responsive, efficient yet thorough. Would not hesitate to hire again.
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Savanna P.
This company does a great job of cleaning the carpets but what I really liked was that they had no hidden fees and were very professional. They had my house cleaned in about 25 minutes and even took the time to inform me what I could do to keep my carpets in better condition. Definitely will use them again. They are also much cheaper than any other place I inquired with.
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Karla Z.
I placed my appointment about a month ago but when the due day came around no one showed up. I called and found out that there was an error in the schedule. He was able to get someone out the very next day and they did the work for free. I was very impressed with the attention and detail the guy had with my carpet. I love my very clean carpet. I will be using this company for all future cleanings.
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Thumbtack Customer
I needed my carpet cleaned before our busy birthday/prom weekend and Blue Team was available and had great pricing! Bill showed up on time and went over my carpets twice! He did more than expected and charged me less than what was quoted! I will use Blue Team again!!
Blue Team Carpet CleaningBlue Team Carpet Cleaning
Thumbtack Customer
Arrived exactly on time and called 30 minutes ahead. Great price and a super easy payment system. Great customer service and the carpets look much cleaner. Would definitely recommend Blue Team!
Blue Team Carpet CleaningBlue Team Carpet Cleaning
Thumbtack Customer
Had my carpet cleaned and they were very kind and fast. Two very nice gentlemen. Great service. Thank you again. Will be calling back in the future for some more business and recommending their service to everyone.
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Thumbtack Customer
Imperial cleaned my carpets for a home I was purchasing. They worked well with us in contacting our agent while they were on there way so she could let them In the property. Job was done right and they were very respectful and punctual!!
Imperial Carpet CareImperial Carpet Care
Judith S.
Daniel did a wonderful job! He was friendly, professional, responsive, and knowledgeable. He did a fabulous cleaning, removing stains that other carpet cleaners were not able to. This included pet stains and odors. The price was very reasonable. We would highly recommend him. He is a very nice man and a pleasure to have in our home.
My Carpet Cleaning GuyMy Carpet Cleaning Guy
Brandy M.
I ended up cancelling the service because they pushed the arrival time back 4 hours total. I understand that a previously unexpected cleaning was taking longer than expected, however, I took time off just to prep my house for cleaning. They were supposed to arrive between 4-5 on a Friday evening and after not arriving at 5, they pushed back until 7 and then again until 8:30pm. I have two young kids and couldn't have my carpets cleaned this late so I cancelled.
Blue Team Carpet CleaningBlue Team Carpet Cleaning
Nell K.
I have an apartment in Oceanside, CA and Eddie Macias came from Greenside in Mission Viejo and did a very professional cleaning service, including enzyme. They were very courteous and thorough and the carpet smelled so fresh after it dried. I would definitely call them again and recommend them to any of my friends. "Top notch!"
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Hilda S.
I don’t have words for how AMAZING this company is. Our stairs are carpet and they looked horrible, I cringed walking into our home and having to walk up those stairs. When I got home after the team cleaned the stairs I was SHOCKED. They look like new stairs. Thank you all so much for your work and for being so kind and attentive.
Brown Family Chem-DryBrown Family Chem-Dry
Emily G.
Would highly recommend the Brown family Chem-Dry business. From the very responsive mom on the emails and setting up the work, to the father coming out to survey the job, to the sons coming out to do the job we couldn't have been happier. So friendly, well-priced and so very clean! The carpets have never looked better. Very happy on every front!
Brown Family Chem-DryBrown Family Chem-Dry
Adriana M.
Eddie was so helpful!! We needed a last minute sofa and carpet cleaning for one of our vacation rentals. We had someone checking in the next day and I was scrambling trying to reach someone who could do the cleaning in time. He even tried to contact other vendors he knew as he would be tied up for the rest of the day. He happened to be near the area and even drove by to see if they could make it work with a truck mount machine BEFORE his next appointment! All in all, we were so thankful for the last minute work and the way he went out of his way to help us. We will definitely us Greenside for future cleanings.
Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...Greenside Carpet and Dryer Vent Cleaning Servic...
Alixandra H.
I have a hurt shoulder and was not able to move any furniture off the floor. The gentlemen didn't mind and moved everything away to clean. He even put most of it back or put sliders on the furniture so I could slide it back into place once it was dry. The whole process was quick and painless. Within 24 hours of requesting quotes they were here cleaning the carpets. Called 20 minutes before arrival and showed up right on time. Did a quick walk through, and then began. Work was finished quickly and done right. I will definitely use them again and recommend them to everyone.
Blue Team Carpet CleaningBlue Team Carpet Cleaning
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What you need to know about professional carpet cleaning services.

No matter how clean you keep your home, your carpet withstands wear and tear from dirt, dust and debris. If you have pets or kids, you’ll probably have to take care of additional stains and smells. Nothing beats the convenience of hiring a professional carpet cleaning service. Even if you’re willing to handle it on your own, you'll have difficulty getting the same results as professional cleaners. 

Common carpet cleaning services.

Most professional carpet cleaning services provide the following services:

  • Wet, steam or chemical cleaning method
  • Stain removal including water damage, fabric damage, food stains and pet stains
  • UV light stain identification
  • Odor removal
  • Stair cleaning
  • Upholstery and area rug cleaning 
  • Furniture moving

How professional carpet cleaning works.

When you hire a professional carpet cleaning service, they'll look closely at the carpets in your home to identify the type of carpet, stains and areas that may need special treatment (like embedded dirt). Professional carpet cleaners often use separate tanks for cleaning solutions and hot water to speed up the cleaning process. 

After the room is cleared, they'll begin by applying a spot treatment. Then, they’ll use industrial-grade equipment to get deep into the fibers of your carpet. They’ll also apply stain and soil protectants to help keep things fresh for a long time. 

What kind of carpet cleaning is best?

There are three main carpet cleaning methods you should be aware of when you hire professional carpet cleaning services. These include carpet shampooing, steam cleaning and dry carpet cleaning.

Carpet shampooing is a very common treatment. You can hire a pro or rent a carpet shampooing machine from your local home improvement store. It’s quick and easy, but excess use with a poor machine can result in moisture issues in your carpet padding.

Steam cleaning is a popular deep cleaning method that removes dirt, bacteria stains, mold, allergens and grime from the floor. It’s also known to leave your carpeting feeling softer. Keep in mind it usually costs more than carpet shampooing and can also result in issues from moisture left by the steaming process. 

Dry carpet cleaning is a very low-moisture (VLM) method that uses a powder and motorized brush to clean carpet fibers. It’s often recommended to clean high-traffic areas like hallways. This method reduces drying time and is often cheaper than steam cleaning. The best option for you will depend on how deep of a clean you’re looking for and how much time you can spare for the cleaning (and drying) process. 

Is it worth having your carpets cleaned?

Dirt, debris, dust and allergens can invade your carpets. From time to time, a professional deep clean is required. 

There are many benefits to professional carpet cleaning services that make it worth the cost. For example, professional carpet cleaning:

  1. Removes dirt and bacteria
  2. Removes carpet stains
  3. Removes funky smells
  4. Leaves little to no residue
  5. Can help extend your carpet’s lifespan

Will professional carpet cleaning remove pet odors?

Professional carpet cleaning has many benefits and is often able to remove pet odors. The biggest problem is that the bacteria creating bad odors can seep down into the carpet padding. 

Surface-level cleaning like vacuuming and cheap professional services just won’t do the trick and can sometimes make the smell worse. The Carpet and Rug Institute recommends having your carpet professionally cleaned every 12 – 18 months to help resist pet stains and odors. For best results, make sure you let the professional know that you’re hiring them to help remove those pesky pet odors. 

How much does it cost to clean one carpet?

The average cost to clean the carpet typically ranges between $145 – $178. The pricing for carpet cleaning services will vary from company to company and the type of treatment you require. Some companies charge by room and others charge area (per square foot). Companies may charge extra for tough stains or stairs — or they may have a minimum fee. 

Contact several carpet cleaning services near you for quotes.

How do you clean residential carpet?

Professional carpet cleaning companies offer different methods for cleaning residential carpet. The method (shampooing, dry carpet cleaning or steam cleaning) used will depend on your home’s carpet material. 

The most common carpet cleaning methods use a rotating brush and shampoo or detergent to clean the carpet. The machine pushes water or steam into the carpet to loosen debris and then the shampoo, water and dirt are extracted from the carpeting. Machines used by professionals often do a better job of extracting moisture from the carpet. 

How can I clean my carpet without a machine?

If you aren’t ready to hire a pro and don’t have access to a cleaning machine, you can use alternative methods to clean your residential carpeting. For example, you can use a vacuum and a stiff-bristled broom to remove loose dirt, dust and hairs from the carpet. You can also disinfect your carpet with a cleaning solution and brush.

Benefits of hiring a carpet cleaning service.

Even if you vacuum frequently, it may be impossible to get your carpet looking new without help from a carpet cleaning service. And if you buy an industrial steam cleaner, keep in mind these high-end steam cleaners require careful maintenance between uses.

When you hire local carpet cleaners, your rug will be cleaned using meticulously maintained equipment. 

Questions to ask carpet cleaning companies.

If you've never hired a carpet cleaning service, it can be tough to know what questions to ask. Here are some questions that local carpet cleaners should be able to answer for you:

  • Are you licensed, bonded and insured?
  • Could you provide me with local references from past jobs?
  • What other services do you offer? (air duct cleaning, tile cleaning, upholstery cleaning, etc.)
  • What method do you use to clean carpets like mine?
  • Do you use a soil and stain protectant as part of the cleaning process?
  • How do you treat stains?
  • Are your cleaners safe for pets and small children?
  • What guarantee do you provide?
  • Does your company conduct background checks to screen employees? 

How to choose the best carpet cleaners near you.

Even after your carpets have been restored, it's crucial to have them professionally cleaned at least a year. When you choose a carpet cleaning company, remember that you'll likely need their services again in the future, so take your time deciding who to hire. Look at their online profiles and read the customer reviews and ratings. And get cost estimates from a few local cleaners to ensure you get the best price.

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