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How To Clean Your Carpets And Rugs Without Toxic Chemicals

How To Clean Your Carpets And Rugs Without Toxic Chemicals

Interior designers understand the integral part carpets and rugs play in decorating a house. They come in many patterns, allowing you to complete the look you were going for, break up existing dull colors and patterns, as well as being very practical in terms of providing insulation and making the floor much less slippery.

However, great as they may be, there is a lot of hassle involved with having a rug, and most of it boils down to not being able to keep it clean. It’s quite common for people, and particularly children, to bring in dirt from outside and spill things on the floor. Cleaning stains from rugs often involves the use of toxic chemicals. Although this is an easy way out, it doesn’t really address the cause of the problem and you can end up having to clean the carpet all over again in a short while if some preventive measures are not taken. Here are some useful tips on how to clean carpets and rugs without using dangerous chemicals.

1. Have people take off their shoes or wipe their feet when they enter the house.

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Doormat

    You can avoid a lot of persistent stains and cut down on your cleaning if you take these simple preventive measures. Place a nice big door mat at the front door where people can wipe their feet or even several door mats both outside and inside the house. You can also buy a bunch of inexpensive house slippers and have people take off their shoes and slip into a comfortable pair of slippers when they come into your home. Make sure that you thoroughly clean your pet’s feet and wipe him down before you let him into the house, so that he doesn’t make a huge mess.

    2. Vacuum regularly.

    Proper home maintenance is about much more than knowing how to clean carpets and deal with nasty stains. If you don’t pay attention to the state of your carpets on a regular basis you will have a much harder job keeping them clean. You shouldn’t have more than two days in between each vacuuming session, which equates to vacuuming three times a week. If you have pets that shed a lot, you should use a brush to get the hairs out and vacuum every other day. Wet/dry vacuums are a godsend, but you’ll need to act quickly before the liquids have time to set in. There are also specialized vacuums that can be used for removing dust mites that can cause allergic reactions.

    3. Use salt to soak to help soak up spills.

    If you don’t have a wet/dry vacuum, you can sprinkle salt on a spill, let it soak up the liquid and then run a regular vacuum over it. You should use salt immediately after noticing the spill. If the spill was left to soak into the rug, then you’ll need to sprinkle some salt on it, vacuum and use some towels to help you blot out deeper stains.

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    4. Good ventilation

    Ventilating your rooms frequently, especially during and some 20 minutes after vacuuming, will help you deal with unpleasant smells and dust. Letting some clean air into the room at least a couple of times a day is also great way to reduce allergic reactions caused by dust mites, as well as to prevent staining caused by cigarette smoke.

    5. Choosing the right rug makes all the difference.

    While there are a lot of cheap rugs that look relatively nice, these may not be as cost-effective as you think in the long run. Viscose rugs won’t last nearly as long as traditional woolen rugs, as the fibers break and discolor easily. Wool carpets are great for people with allergies as they soak up common allergens and do not re-emit them into the air, so a quick vacuuming session takes care of all those pesky allergens. Wool carpets also help prevent mold spores from taking root, which can save you a ton of money on mold removal as well. A big, fluffy carpet is a bit more difficult to clean and synthetic carpets tend to grab hair and lint, requiring more effort to get them out than just going over them once with a vacuum cleaner, and they hold odors much more readily than other materials. Take the time to choose the right rug; it will be worth your investment.

    6. A towel, soap and water can take care of most small stains.

    It’s important to act fast and deal with stains as soon as the mess has been made. A plain old white towel can be thrown on liquid spills to soak up most of it before it soaks into the rug or dries out. After you blot up the stain, you can wash it with some warm soapy water, rubbing it lightly with the towel and then leaving it to dry out. Soapy water will also do wonders for small dirt-stained patches.

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    7. Use carbonated water for persistent stains.

    Household carpet cleaners

      Carbonated water is great for taking out red wine stains, even if they have been left to soak into the carpet for a while. Some people even recommend mixing carbonated water with a bit of white wine for more persistent red wine stains.

      8. Use lemon juice on light-colored rugs.

      If the stains are on a light-colored carpet, mix lemon juice (from 1-2 squeezed lemons) with salt and apply it to the stain, leave it for about 20–30 minutes and blot it out with a towel. Lemon juice will also give that nice, fresh, citrus smell to your rugs, which is great for dealing with light odors.

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      9. Baking soda and aromatic oil keeps things fresh.

      Baking soda is great for soaking up odors, so if you have pets or small children you can mix a cup of baking soda with a bit of aromatic oil, sprinkle it all over the carpet and vacuum it up after about half an hour. Your carpets will smell as fresh as a beautiful spring morning

      10. White vinegar can be used to deal with strong odors.

      For pee stains and other odorous spills, white vinegar is the best solution. You’ll need to soak up the stain with a towel and then mix half a cup of white vinegar with 4–5 cups of water in a spray bottle and spray it on the stain. Just leave a window open for about an hour and then blot it up with a towel to get rid of the odor. Put a couple of towels over the area, put some weight on them and leave them for a few hours to soak up liquid that has gotten deep into the rug.

       

      There are a lot of things that can go wrong around the house, particularly when you have pets and kids or have friends over all the time. Someone is bound to spill something or make a bit of a mess on your rug, but it’s not the end of the world. In most cases you don’t have to take it to the cleaners or use toxic chemicals to remove stains. All you need in order to keep your carpets and rugs clean is to set some house rules and to learn how to clean carpets with a few proven tricks. These will cover most stains, but there are tons of other home cleaning tricks you can use.

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      Ivan Dimitrijevic

      Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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      Last Updated on March 13, 2019

      How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

      How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

      Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

      You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

      Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

      1. Work on the small tasks.

      When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

      Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

      2. Take a break from your work desk.

      Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

      Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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      3. Upgrade yourself

      Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

      The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

      4. Talk to a friend.

      Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

      Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

      5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

      If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

      Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

      Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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      6. Paint a vision to work towards.

      If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

      Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

      Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

      7. Read a book (or blog).

      The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

      Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

      Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

      8. Have a quick nap.

      If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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      9. Remember why you are doing this.

      Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

      What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

      10. Find some competition.

      Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

      Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

      11. Go exercise.

      Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

      Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

      As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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      Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

      12. Take a good break.

      Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

      Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

      Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

      Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

      More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

      Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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