Carpet Shampooer VS Steam Cleaning!


What’s The Difference – Carpet Shampooer Vs Steam Cleaning

I’ll start this review by asking you if you have ever used a real carpet shampooer before? Some will remember them and others will not. Like the ones back in the old days where you squeezed a trigger to let a small amount of super soapy and sudsy solution on the carpet while rotary brushes scrubbed the soap into the fibers. If you have then you probably understand why the carpets seem to always get dirtier after a cleaning.

The whole secret to keeping your clean carpets looking clean longer is to remove as much soapy and sticky residues as possible from the fibers.

It takes a good emulsifying pre-spray with a little alkalinity, a powerful hot water jetting action and vacuum system to get that part cleaned efficiently. Past residues like carpet soap, sugary drinks and yes, even store bought carpet cleaning solutions can be fast Re-Soil Attractants.

Next time you try the diy method remember to watch for the extra soapy areas and use a de-foamer solution on those areas. The de-foamer (liquid or powder) will dissipate the suds build up that clogs and downgrades the carpet cleaning machines ability to extract the water and dirt. You will usually know when you are going over those heavily spot cleaned areas by the sound of the bogging vacuum sound. It will be starving for air as the suds are taking it all away as it’s traveling to the waiste tank.

The cost of carpet is at an all time high so why not give our carpets every chance in the world to last as long as they can? I highly suggest to never use a carpet shampooer again but always use a good ‘Hot Water Extraction’ method! Less soil collection makes vacuuming easier and adds years to the life of your carpet.


Here’s a short clip of a few months old coffee stain in a customer’s hallway…


If something is feeling weird when you touch your carpet it’s probably because it’s loaded with dried soapy residue left over from last cleaning episode.

Solution; Go to your local cleaning, janitorial supply store and purchase some de-foamer, take it home and use plain water and the defoamer to clean your carpet again.

Please leave a comment below for any weird or normal carpet shampooer or carpet steam cleaning  question, Thank you,

Allen B  – Huntsville AL


70 thoughts on “Carpet Shampooer VS Steam Cleaning!

  1. Hey there!!!!

    I’ve never guessed that it was the actual cleaning material that has been attracting all that dirt after cleaning.the carpet. Quite an eye opening article 🙂

    As you said, carpets aren’t usually cheap and I would really like them to last long. Thanks for the good information 🙂

    • Another huge dirt attracter I run into are ground level apartments close to black top driveways where dirt and black oils track in and begin the attraction process. It’s best to clean those carpets regularly and apply a carpet guard stain resistant product like Scotch-guard from DuPont.

    • Hello Catherine, I’m happy that I could help. I’ve been so busy and the phone is still ringing into the cold months now I have a hard time checking my messages here. I checked your site out and wow, it is a beautiful one 🙂

  2. I never knew that you could have your carpet shampooed. I always thought that steam cleaning was the way to go if you had a professional clean it. It sounds like having your carpets shampooed sounds like a great alternative if you can’t do steam cleaning.

    • Hey Tyler, since we now have emulsifying agents with a Low Suds cleaning solutions and pre-sprays we can now use water pressure and not bog our vacs down with heavy suds. We only had high suds like cleaning solutions years ago and would leave a ton of sticky soap in the carpets after we shampooed our rugs. Yuck!

  3. I want to make sure that I get my carpet cleaned properly. It makes sense that I would want to have it steam cleaned! That way I can ensure that it ends up super clean. I’ll find a professional to handle this for me.

    • Hey Branden, you know that too much of anything is usually not safe as we must find the medium when dealing with cleaning agents, water temps etc. Most new carpets these days are so finely woven that the plastics can be damaged with actual real steam temperatures. Most manufacturer’s warranty labels void warranties if steam cleaned. So I like a lot of other carpet cleaners call our method the Hot Water Extraction Method 🙂

  4. My toddler always spills his juice all over the carpet even when I tell him to be careful. I like what you said about removing as sticky stuff as possible. It would be really nice if I could get a professional to help me deep clean the carpet.

    • Hey Jenna, hopefully, you found a great carpet cleaning service near you. I know that a lot of Huntsvillians here where I live are. Our phone is ringing like Google love 🙂

  5. That’s good to know that steam cleaning would be better for your carpets. I would want them to stay as clean as possible, so steam cleaning sounds like a better option. I’ll have to make sure that if I decide to get my carpets cleaned that the company I choose uses a steam cleaner.

  6. That’s good to know that you could get a carpet shampoo to make your carpets last longer. I would think that it would be good to have them last since you would need to walk on them for along time. I’ll have to consider getting my carpets shampooed every once in a while to keep them nice.

  7. There’s some really old stubborn stains in my carpet that just won’t go away. I’m pretty sure they are wine stains, so they are really in there. It makes sense that getting it properly steam cleaned would be a good idea! Getting a professional to handle that would ensure that this gets done properly.

    • wine stains sound like a permanent color change problem, but no problem with products like Red Relief, a damp towel, and a good steam iron. Good for red kool-aid stains too 🙂

  8. Thanks for explaining that using shampoos can cause carpets to get dirtier after they’re cleaned because of the small amount of sticky residue that’s left behind. My husband and I are considering having our carpets cleaned because we’ll be hosting a party in our home this weekend. I’m glad I read your article because now I feel prepared to choose the right carpet cleaning service after talking to them about what method they use.

  9. I didn’t know that carpet cleaning solutions can be re-soil attractants. I’ve been cleaning my carpet with shampoo this whole time! No wonder it seems to get dirtier even after I clean it. I’ll have to try an alternative method like steam cleaning.

    • Hello Randy, nice to meet you. Yea, just make sure to go over the rug slow enough to allow the water and vacuum to flush the carpet well. Happy cleaning.. 🙂

  10. I want to make sure that I get rid of the stains in my carpet. It makes sense that steam cleaning would be the best way to handle it! I should find a professional who can do that for me.

    • Hey Braden, thanks for stopping by today. Did you know not only does removing the past residues allow your carpet and rugs to stay cleaner longer, it also helps vacuums extract more loose dirt and grit out. That alone can add years to the wearability and stop the matting in its tracks 🙂

  11. I had a party in my home the other day, and things got a bit out of hand. There’s a lot of stains in my carpet, and I’m not sure what to do about it. It makes sense that getting someone to steam clean my carpet would be the best move! It’s great that those methods can clear out stains so effectively. I don’t want to have to have my family come over only to see beer stains in my home.

    • You know it’s a shame that every fun party requires a Big cleanup afterward lol. I would go over that carpet very slowly with my carpet cleaning system and perhaps pour a small amount of a water-based deodorizer in the freshwater tank also. We cannot have a musty ole beer odor lingering in the home right after all that work, right? Good luck on your cleaning sir 🙂

  12. My kids always throw and spill anything I give them to eat. No matter how many times I ask them not to, they do. So, I believe I need a deep cleaning of my carpet with any professional.

    • I agree with that. A slow vacuum will remove more micro sand particles from the fibers saving years of wear and dullness. I just moved into a rental home with wooden floors throughout. I have area rugs scatter tho but I want to try a robot vac some day 🙂

  13. I really appreciate you talking about how it’s very important to get a lot of that soap and dirt out of the fibers of the carpet. My parents are coming to visit our home soon and I want to make sure the house looks nice. I think it’s smart to hire a carpet cleaning company that can do this for me so that I can focus on other projects.

  14. It’s really nice that you talked about using a defoamer so that we can do some DIY cleaning as well. My partner and I are trying to get the house cleaned up this week before my parents come to visit. I’ll probably get a cleaning service in here so that we can focus on other things right now.

  15. I didn’t know that carpet cleaning solutions could be re-soil attractants but that’s good to know for the future! My husband keeps wondering why our carpet gets dirty so fast, so maybe that’s why. I’ll try a different method next time I clean it.

    • Hey Tori, as you can see by my late response to your message, we have been swamped for the past few months.

      A good carpet cleaning technition will always know how strong they mixed the cleaning solution,
      and how many times needed to slowly extract those areas. It truly takes great cleaning solutions,
      a powerful carpet extractor, and a seasoned carpet cleaning professional, That Cares!

  16. Heloo!,I like your writing so much! share we communicate more about your article on AOL? I need an expert on this area to solve my problem. Maybe that’s you! Looking forward to see you.

  17. This is really interesting, You are a very skilled blogger. I’ve joined your rss feed and look forward to seeking more of your great post. Also, I’ve shared your site in my social networks!

  18. My carpet has a stain in it, and I’m not sure what to do about it. It makes sense that I would want to get a professional to handle cleaning it for me! They would have the equipment to get it handled properly.

    • Hello, 1) first I would try a diluted mix of dishwashing detergent and warm water on a white cloth.
      2) Have a white absorbent cotton towel ready. (important!
      3) Use the wet rag wet with diluted detergent and gently rub a small area. (did any stain transfer to the rag?)
      4) If so, continue wetting and blotting the stain.
      5) After a few agitations, Use the clean dry rag and push blot the stain, folding the cloth as you go.

      This spot cleaning process should have lightened the stain a lot if removing a food or beverage stain.

  19. Thanks for mentioning that steam cleaning won’t leave behind any wet and soapy spots! My wife and I want to get our carpet cleaned, but we don’t want to be out of the house all day as it happens. We’ll be sure to keep your tips in mind as we search around for carpet cleaning services near us!

  20. My parents are coming over for a while to stay at our home. I think it’s time to spend some money to clean the flooring so that it’s not so dirty. I want the floors and rugs to look their best without chemicals, so it’s good to hear that a strong water jet and vacuum can accomplish that.

  21. I want to make sure that my carpet gets cleaned up properly. It makes sense that getting a professional to handle cleaning it for me would be beneficial! That seems like a good way to ensure that it ends up getting done right.

  22. I am agree with Your last opinion “I highly suggest to never use a carpet shampooer again but always use a good ‘Hot Water Extraction’ method!”
    Only good Extraction’ method can clean your carpet Properly. I watch some Video, though they suggest to use Shampooer. I don’t faith how its woks to clean my carpet ??

    Thanks for such great information.

  23. That’s good to know that hot water extraction would be the best method for cleaning a carpet. I want to clean my carpets up so I can avoid having and dust or allergens in them, snd I would want to avoid doing it again for as long a possible. I’ll have to try the steam cleaning if I decide to have the carpets cleaned.

  24. It’s a very good point that you need to take really good care of the carpets because they are pretty expensive now. My sister is trying to renovate her home this year and she wants to keep her carpets and hardwoods. She needs to hire carpet cleaners that can give it a fresh look so that it matches the rest of the house.

  25. My carpets have some stains in them, and I’m not sure how to get rid of them. It makes sense that getting a professional to help me out would be beneficial! They would be able to do steam cleaning, which seems like the best option for getting rid of the stains completely.

  26. It’s a really great point that carpets are really expensive right now, so it’s worth it to take really great care of them. My brother is trying to get new carpets in his home so that it looks much better for the future. However, he can’t get that done for a few years, so he needs to clean his old carpets really well so they look new again.

    • Hey Russel, thanks for stopping in. It sounds like he may be saving for a new carpet. This idea is not for everyone but if you need to save money, have extra time and energy, then the Rug Doctor brand rentals are the best quality cleaning machines. One will have to fill and empty tanks constantly so lots of back bending to do. They are small and timely to use but the quality of clean is nice.

  27. Thanks for the tip to remove as many soapy residues as possible from your carpet to keep it alive. I want to clean my carpet but I am afraid I’ll mess it up. I’ll have a professional come out and clean it for me this weekend.

  28. Hey Franklin, thanks for commenting. Yep, by the time you find, pickup the carpet cleaning rental equipment, pay for it, along with the cleaning detergents required, you mind as well call a pro. Just make sure that you hire a hot water extraction process service. Good luck and Happy carpet cleaning my friend 🙂

  29. It makes a lot of sense to get rid of all the soapy and sticky substances that are trapping dirt in your carpets. My brother is coming into town soon and we want to be prepared for his arrival. I’ll get a carpet cleaning service in our home so that we don’t have anything that is stained and unsightly.

  30. I want to make sure that my carpet and fabrics are properly cleaned. It makes sense that I would want to get a professional to handle this for me! I can see how using the proper equipment to remove stains from fabrics would be very important.

  31. Indeed a very good read on carpet vs steam cleaning. But, I have some old stubborn stains on my carpet, and I have tried different solutions but stains are not getting away? What should I do? Should i try professional cleaning services?

  32. It’s so helpful to know that some of the soaps that you get from the store will attract more soil into the carpet over time. My brother is trying to clean his house up nicely before his boss comes over for dinner. He needs to hire some professional carpet cleaners to make sure this job is done properly so that it looks great.

  33. I like that this post mentioned that professional carpet cleaners are equipped with the necessary tools to properly clean our carpets. It is because of their tools and skills that they are able to clean them efficiently. I will definitel hire a professional carpet cleaning service to clean my carpets.

  34. It’s interesting that you really suggest using the hot water method rather than the shampoo vacuums. My brother is coming into town for a few weeks next month. We want to make sure our home is spotless and clean so we are going to hire some professionals to clean our carpets for us.

  35. And what do you think about the dry carpet cleaning method? Many of my customers ask about it because they believe it uses no steam whatsoever, which of course is not the case. But the carpets do dry faster and there is much less soapy residue after the treatment. Do you have any experience with it?

  36. There are many carpet cleaning firms available in the market that don’t take care of your carpet during washing they use toxic detergents. Therefore you need to pick reputed and skilled carpet cleaners for the full safety of your carpets

    • I appreciate this comment. I have heard many stories from new customers about the bad smells from certain cleaning company’s cleaning chemicals.
      Our cleaners and deodorizers smell so good that many have asked to buy some from us. I always carry extra spray bottles for them 🙂

  37. The choice between carpet shampooing and steam cleaning can be confusing. Your post compares the two methods well, helping readers make an informed decision based on their carpet’s needs. This kind of information is invaluable when planning a carpet cleaning routine.

    • Most folks have no clue how many ways there are to clean carpet and rugs. We don’t know what we don’t know so I hope this article continues to help those who search it.

  38. I find it convenient that cleaning your rugs can help you improve your carpet’s appearance. My friend is planning to invest in remodeling his living room this year by adding rugs and other home theater components. I think finding a carpet cleaning company that can look after his rugs is a good investment.

  39. Choosing the right carpet cleaning method is a decision that homeowners and businesses often grapple with. This informative post sheds light on the differences between carpet shampooing and steam cleaning, guiding readers toward an informed choice. The emphasis on professional expertise in selecting the most suitable method resonates with my own experience as a carpet cleaner. The article recognizes that professional cleaners bring not only the right equipment but also the knowledge to tailor cleaning approaches to the unique needs of each carpet. It’s a valuable contribution to the ongoing conversation about the best practices in carpet care and reinforces the notion that professional insight is invaluable in maintaining the longevity and beauty of carpets.

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