All hail the carpet cleaner! Behold it's majesty! Be in awe of it's level of coolness. I know that I certainly am!!!
I've never owned one of these before despite the fact that we've lived in a number of places that actually had wall to wall carpet in at least some of the rooms. I guess I thought that it was not an essential piece of household equipment. I had a perfectly good vacuum cleaner - which IS essential if you have any sort of floors - and used a modicum of common sense regarding where it was wise to eat or not eat, removing ones shoes before coming into the house on muddy, snowy, rainy days and dictating firmly where messy projects were allowed to be done. Should there accidentally be some not-vacuum-up-able dirt on the carpet, I would use a spot cleaner.
And then once in a Very Great While, we would rent a carpet cleaner from a local hardware store and go through that rigamarole. It all seemed to be enough. Sufficient to the cause so to speak.
I suppose we are rather clean people in general because it's not as if anyone coming into our house ever cringed at the idea of walking on our carpets even barefoot and there was no disgusting mystery odor wafting through the indoor air. So I guess I just didn't give it much thought.
When we first married, we lived in a teensy two bed/1 bath apartment that had linoleum floors in the miniscule bath and kitchen. Every other room had wall to wall crayon red carpeting. I did not choose it obviously. We vacuumed and spot cleaned and, I think maybe once a year, did the rental carpet cleaner thing......maybe.
The first house Tim and I bought together on the other hand had beautiful wide board wood floors in most rooms and, once again linoleum kitchen and bath. We put an area rug in the living room but it wasn't very big and it was mostly covered with furniture. You had to literally move all of the furniture to properly clean the rugs and, I'm embarrassed to say, it didn't happen very often. We all took turns vacuuming and the degree of cleanliness depending largely on the person wielding the vacuum. Tim was more inclined to move furniture than me.
When we moved to Colorado, for the first year we lived in a rental that had tile kitchen, bath, entryway and very pale beige wall to wall carpeting everywhere else. Because this was someone else's house, we were very mindful of taking good care of it. We lived in terror of getting those carpets dirty and tried our best to levitate across rooms rather than walk across them in an effort to keep them pristine at all times. We cleaned voraciously and frequently. There were rules! No eating anywhere but the kitchen table (tile being so much more forgiving than carpeting). Tim rented a carpet cleaner multiple times during that year after he found me in hysterical sobs the day the cat puked on the carpet as I scrubbed and scrubbed attempting (and finally succeeding) in getting the stain out. We still didn't get our deposit back when we left. Oh well.
When we moved into our own house in Colorado, the floors were a mix of tile, wood and wall to wall carpet. The wood and the tile was soooo easy to take care of and that carpet was the bane of my existence. I hated it. But at least it was ours and the rules were relaxed a bit more. From time to time Tim rented a carpet cleaner and overall, the place looked good.
When we moved to Florida I was so happy to have tile floors everywhere. If you spill on tile, you wipe it up and you are done. You don't have to be reminded every day by the ghost of a stain or have stiff or sticky carpeting. There is no lingering stink or deeply ingrained bacteria growing from errant cookie crumbs or coffee splash. The bonus is the lovely year 'round cool tiles underfoot when you live in a place notorious for warm weather.
But, we discovered quickly, with only hard surfaces, sounds bounces around which makes hearing and understanding what you are hearing a challenge. There is a funny echoey sound with any noise at all. If you drop a book, they can hear it next door, if you drop a pot lid it's a cacophony!
So we got some area rugs and sprinkled them around, here and there. There is one in the living room and two in the family room. It had helped tremendously with the sound bounce issue and, as a bonus, there is a nice visual division between the various spaces of such a big open area. And it's kind of a cozy look too which is just nice :)
I vacuum every week, sometimes twice if needed. The floors get washed every week and any spills are cleaned up immediately. If there happens to be some unvacuumable dirt on the area rug, again, I just spot cleaned and went on about my day.
We had been discussing renting a carpet cleaner once again recently and I left Tim to the details since generally he is the one who does that job. Those machines are HEAVY! And instead, to my surprise, the carpet cleaner at the top of the page showed up at our door. How Exciting! Tim decided that, considering the cost of the rental, within just a few uses the purchase would have balanced out. After that, any uses are basically free.
I was excited to check it out. I read the instruction manual (unusual for me) before using it then, feeling marginally confident in my understanding, I got to work. It was actually fairly easy, lighter weight than the rental ones, and did a Great Job. The water in the extraction bin was DISGUSTING! I always believed myself to be a clean person. Perhaps I was just in denial because that was gross. Tim helped me and all three rugs are now practically pristine. The kitties watched the entire process with great fascination.
I don't know yet if I will just automatically clean the carpets on some sort of regular schedule or will I wait until the spirit and the level of dirt compels me. But at least when carpet cleaning does happen again around here, we don't have to drive to the hardware store, pay to rent, drag the dang thing out to the car, load it up, schlepp it into the house and then once used, do it in reverse. Nope, now I just go to the closet, use it, clean it, return it. Nice.
Why did we wait so long???
Have a GREAT weekend!
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.