How to Restore Your Carpet

Kids home all day, barbeque parties, and family get-togethers have probably taken a toll on your carpet this past summer. But you can get that just-installed look back (which helps if you're selling soon).

Of course, the best way to keep your carpet fresh is preventative maintenance. Regular vacuuming and placing of entry floor mats directly in front of and outside your doors will dramatically cut down on the wear of household carpets. If you own pets, bathe and brush them regularly.

When one of those household accidents occurs, and you spill something on your carpet. Try to blot out as much of the liquid as soon as possible. To avoid stains, you'll need a gadget that can pull excess moisture out of the carpet. Carpet stains are best removed by dilution—lessen the intensity of the stain with the appropriate liquid and dry it up quickly. Only use your vacuum cleaner if it's made to handle moisture.

If red wine has been spilled on the carpet, apply a mixture of 1 part baking soda to 2 parts water on the affected area. Scrub it into the carpet; blot out the excess moisture, then vacuum up the stain. If the stain remains, repeat the steps until the wine is gone.

For coffee spills, add cold water to the spot to dilute the stain, and then blot up the excess moisture. Next pour a little white vinegar on the stain, and blot. This should return the spot to its original color.

To clean regular traffic stains, apply a pre-treatment made for high traffic areas to your carpet. Then, steam the areas and let dry.