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When your carpet needs a deep cleaning, consider renting a carpet steam cleaner.

Heavy foot traffic can make carpets especially dirty. When considering whether to clean the carpet on your own, try renting a steam carpet cleaner, which uses detergent and hot water to loosen dirt from the carpet and then extracts it.

Angie’s List members reported paying an average of about $51 per room in 2014 for professional carpet cleaning, while average rates for carpets cleaned by the size instead of the room ranged between 30 and 50 cents per square foot. It’s possible to rent a steam carpet cleaner for an average of $35 per day, plus cleaning solution.

In addition to cost, keep the following factors in mind before proceeding with a carpet steam cleaner rental.

1. How long do I need to rent a carpet steam cleaner?

Most people rent a carpet steamer for a day.

Consider how many rooms you’ll be cleaning to determine whether 24 hours is long enough, or whether you need a carpet cleaner rental for a longer period of time.

Check with the rental company to see whether they will give you a better daily rate for multi-day rental. Be generous with your projection for how long cleaning might take.

2. Do I need to buy carpet cleaning detergent?

Rental companies recommend that you use a specific type of cleaning solution with their steam cleaners. For example, a company might make one type of cleaning agent for upholstery and another one with a stronger concentration for carpets.

Verify in advance that you are using the right cleaning detergent. If you want more options, ask the rental company whether the machine is compatible with other detergent brands.

3. Is my carpet steam cleaner certified?

The Carpet and Rug Institute represents carpet manufacturers nationwide, and tests steam cleaners to determine whether they effectively clean carpets. If the steam cleaner passes the CRI testing procedure, it receives a bronze, silver or gold certification. Before renting, make sure the steam cleaner is CRI-certified for a specific level of cleaning power and effectiveness.

4. How portable is the steam carpet cleaner?

Keep in mind the weight of the machine you plan to rent. Not only will you have to load and unload it into your vehicle when transporting it, but you’ll also have to push it around the house as you clean.

Don’t forget that the machine’s weight will increase as you add water and cleaning solution to the tank.

5. How long will it take my carpet to dry?

If this is your first carpet cleaner rental, consider drying time can range from a couple of hours to more than 10 hours.

Drying time increases for carpets with heavy stains, which require more cleaning solution to clean. Make sure no one walks on them until they’re dry; otherwise, they will get dirty again rather easily.

Have you rented a carpet steam cleaner? Tell us about the results in the comments section below.


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