Which Carpet Cleaning Method Should You Choose? Steam or Dry?

The Benefits and Drawbacks of Each Carpet Cleaning Technique

Which Carpet Cleaning Method Should You Choose? Steam or Dry?

No matter how much and how hard you’ve cleaned and vacuumed, dust, dirt, germs and allergens have accumulated in your carpets which are now looking decidedly shabby. Domestic carpet cleaners and supermarket detergents are just not up to the job of removing everything from each layer of a carpet. Therefore, it is time to have your plush floor coverings professionally cleaned. But which method should you choose? So, we talked with an expert from Best 1 Carpet Cleaning Brisbane who has given us his insights on pros/cons for each option. Continue reading to make an informed decision.

Dry Carpet Cleaning

This is also known as chemical carpet cleaning and it uses cleaning solutions called dry shampoos. These are sprinkled onto carpets where they break down and absorb dirt embedded in the fibres. In a way, the chemicals act like mini sponges. The use of the term ‘dry’ is a little misleading because professional cleaners also use a small amount of water, so the technique is not completely dry.

Pros of Dry Carpet Cleaning

  • Virtually no drying time which means you can walk on the carpets immediately. This is good news for anywhere that has high-traffic areas.
  • It is highly effective at cleaning surface dirt.
  • You can look forward to long-lasting results.

Cons of Dry Carpet Cleaning 

  • It is not a deep clean. Therefore, deeply embedded dirt and stains may remain.
  • Chemical residues may be left behind in the top parts of the carpet.
  • Some chemicals may be harsh and give off an offensive odour. They could also provoke adverse reactions in people who are sensitive to chemicals. Before engaging a carpet cleaning company, it is a good idea to ask them about the types of chemicals they use.
Dry Carpet Cleaning Method

Steam Cleaning

This is the most widely used method and is also known as hot water extraction. A carpet cleaning machine sprays hot water and detergents into the carpet. The hot water activates the detergent then a high-powered wet vacuum is used to suck up the moisture, pre-spray, cleaning solutions and dirt. Despite the name, steam does not actually clean the carpets. It is a by-product of the hot water that penetrates the pile.

Carpet cleaning companies will use either a portable machine or a truck-mounted unit which  tends to be more powerful.

Pros of Steam Cleaning

  • Provides a much deeper and more thorough clean than dry carpet cleaning. It removes spills and stains that are deeply embedded into fibres.
  • High temperatures kill off viruses including COVID-19 without having to resort to potentially harmful chemicals.
  • Fewer chemicals are involved.
  • It is an eco-friendly approach.

Cons of Steam Cleaning

  • The carpets can be wet for several hours after cleaning has finished. So, you will have to keep off them until they are dry. In some cases, the wait can be as long as 24 hours.
  • There can be a risk of damage to the carpet through over-wetting.
Steam Carpet Cleaning Method

Dry Carpet Cleaning Vs. Steam Carpet Cleaning

So which method is best to use – dry carpet cleaning or steam carpet cleaning? Well, there is no one correct answer because it will all depend on your needs and circumstances. There is no perfect approach suitable for everyone.

If your carpets require an intense clean to eliminate almost 100% of the dirt and debris, then steam carpet cleaning is the most appropriate method. It is also a popular choice with people who want to use fewer chemicals on their carpets. If you are concerned about exposure to chemicals, steam cleaning might be the better option.

However, if you need to use the carpets immediately after cleaning and are nervous about spaces where a wet carpet may be a hazard, such as hotel foyers and pubs, then dry carpet cleaning is best. This cleaning method is also an excellent choice for carpets that are lightly soiled.

Excellent Carpet Cleaning Results

Whether you opt for dry carpet cleaning or steam cleaning, you should enjoy excellent results provided you choose an experienced and reliable carpet cleaning company. And as long as your carpets are looked after and cleaned properly, they should give you many years of enjoyment.

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