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Understanding and preventing early carpet wear and tear

When it comes to the glitz and glamour of your living room, nothing steals the limelight like your trusty underfoot superstar: The carpet. But wait, what's this? Could those be...? Yes, they are! Unwanted blemishes from daily life, also known as carpet wear and tear.

8 common culprits behind early carpet aging

Most causes of carpet wear and tear are unavoidable. ūüėď But! There are ways you can protect your investment.

Foot traffic

Your comings and goings are one of the top causes of natural carpet aging. It's also one of those things you rarely think about. Grime? No biggie. Well, you know what they say: Famous last words!

Shoes (and paws) bring in dirt and debris, 79% of which are insoluble soils like sand and dry particulate matter. Sounds innocent enough, except soil is like sandpaper: Gritty, rough, and abrasive. ūüė¨

Just so you know, every step works those particles deeper into a carpet's fibres. The result is pile thinning, cut fibres, tread patterns, and a dull appearance.

Your shoes also track in oils and grease. You don't spot these stains outdoors, but unsightly black marks are glaring obviously indoors.

So, is going barefoot the answer? Nuh-uh! Sweaty feet mean moisture, and moisture attracts dirt, which eventually becomes dark spots.

Prevention:

  • Place Grubby Paw Doormats at all entry points. They capture dirt, dust, debris and moisture before you track them in.
  • Vacuum high-traffic areas at least 1 to 2x weekly.
  • Switch to exclusively indoor slippers or wear socks on the carpet.

Pets

Our furry friends are gentle with our hearts but not our carpets. ūüėí

Puppies put their little chompers to good use, gnawing on the edges of rugs or, for extra funsies, on the trimming. Pups and kittens scratch/claw anywhere that interests them. There may also be tugging. And, without fail, there will be stains from biological messes.

All the above leads to fraying, tufting, bulging, and discolouration.

Prevention:

  • Set house rules, e.g. no doggos on the Persian rug, or restrict access to particular areas via a safety fence or closed doors.
  • Purchase toys and accessories, like a scratching post, for your pets. This helps distract them from the magnetic lure of carpets.
  • Use E.N. Zyme Stain and Odour Remover to resolve pet messes on rugs.

Furniture

Solid wood dining tables. Grandma's antique armoire. That heavy-duty bed frame you can finally afford! Over time, furniture weight causes permanent dents, possibly even discolouration.

Moving (OK, dragging) them around when it's time to shampoo your carpet or because you want to rearrange furniture often results in friction burns, tears, snags, and other irreversible damage.

Prevention:

  • Use furniture coasters to distribute weight over a larger area.
  • Move your furniture every month to prevent deeper dents.
  • Utilise furniture sliders (or gather the family around) to help you lift and move pieces.

Sunshine

Prolonged exposure to the sun's powerful rays is harmful. To your skin and, unsurprisingly, to rugs and carpets, too!

UVA and UVB rays from direct sunlight, especially in south-facing rooms, cause dyes to get bleached, fade, "burn", or turn yellow.

Prevention:

  • Use curtains/blinds, or get solar-tinted glass for your windows.
  • Rotate rugs and carpets every few months for balanced exposure.
  • Invest in high-quality carpets that are fade-resistant.

Insects

Watch out for moths and carpet beetles! Once eggs hatch, you're in trouble because larvae feast on clothes, furniture, and carpet fibres.

When that happens, there's no going back to better days. Warning signs include missing carpet pile, a delicate, white webbing, or a dry, sandy residue.

Prevention: Vacuum often, including the backside!

Water damage

Water‚ÄĒfrom floods, burst pipes, an overflowing washing machine, flower pots, or urine‚ÄĒis your rug's worst enemy!

Moisture frequently leads to irreversible damage like:

  • Mould and mildew: Spores can begin to grow within 24 to 72 hours! ūüė≤ They'll be visible to the naked eye within 18 days.
  • Carpet degradation: Underlying rug fibres rot, becoming brittle and inflexible.

Prevention:

  • Ensure carpets dry thoroughly after every deep clean session.
  • Purchase flower pot saucers to catch excess water.
  • Housebreak your pet!

Accidental spills

Kids will be kids. Pets will be pets. What's your excuse? ūü§™ Just kidding! We all know that spills happen. We also know they're some of the toughest stains to clean. Juice, coffee, wine, and sauces (including oil) leave visible marks and sometimes permanent damage.

Prevention: Just be careful. And if you do spill something, clean it up fast.

Strong odours

This one doesn't cause any physical or visible damage, but carpet odours are no fun, either‚ÄĒthey‚Äôre embarrassing! Unpleasant carpet smells typically come from pet urine, mould/mildew, indoor smoking, and cooking strong-smelling foods.

Prevention:

  • Vacuum weekly.
  • Ventilate rooms regularly.
  • Wash carpets with our fibre-friendly, fresh-smelling Eco Carpet Cleaner.

While we're all tempted to sweep our problems under the rug, ignoring the signs of carpet wear and tear is the fastest way for it to go from A-list to D-list! But with these practical tips, you can easily protect your investment. ūü•ā

 

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