Carpet Cleaning In a World infatuated with DIY
Starting with the first question, Should you DIY your carpet cleaning? With all of us being more cautious with our money these days it’s no wonder that it’s no fun trying to pick a service professional, especially a carpet cleaner. Most of us think that it’s going to get dirty again so I'll save some money and just do it myself. Sure you could do it yourself and you may even be somewhat happy with your results. Let's just put some numbers to it and just see if doing it yourself is really cheaper.
Let's use that little red machine we all can find at our local grocery store. We'll call it the Carpet Nurse. First we need to drive to the store to pick it up. Not very far away but it takes gas to get there so we will say $4 in gas to get there and back, most of us live within a mile or so of a big box store with a Carpet Nurse kiosk. Now we are at the point of actually renting the best, greatest, hottest and fastest machine on the market to clean our carpets (at least the fancy sign says so). So we rent it for $30. Now what cleaner to use? How do we choose? They have a few options -Pet Urine Cleaner- Sure i have pets so I’ll get this one, but wait they have one for heavy traffic well I have that too. Should we just mix them together or maybe clean the heavy traffic with one and the urine with the other. Yeah that sounds right so we will buy both! So at $20 each we are going to spend $40 on cleaner. Now that we have our Super Duper Carpet Nurse and the two different cleaners for it we should be ready to tackle our carpets and with any luck at the end have carpets that look better than before we started.
So now we can add up the cost and see just how much we are saving by cleaning our carpets ourselves. We come up with $74 before taxes but there is a couple of costs that we forgot to add in. These costs are not so straight forward but we will do our best to get some sort of numbers. Now that we are home with our Carpet Nurse someone has to take time out of their day to clean these Dirty Carpets. Now we aren’t all professional carpet cleaners and even though we have the greatest of all store rental carpet cleaners it’s just might not perform as well as those big professional vans so let's say it’s going to take us 4 hours to clean all the carpets in our 1,500 square foot Living room and 3 bedroom home. Now I can't speak for everyone but my time is worth something. Let's go conservative and say that we are worth $20 an hour. Now we can add in another $80 which is going to bring our total to $154. So $154 doesn't seem that bad and is less expensive than most professional cleaners out there but the cleaners that are cheaper than that we probably wouldn't want to use them anyways, they are cheaper for a reason but we can discuss that in another blog. Ok so 4 hours later the carpets are sort of clean, well they look a lot better than they did 4 hours ago but there are still a few spots that we just couldn't get up with our Carpet Nurse which makes us wonder if they could come out or are they just there to stay. Gee I wish we had someone that knew what they were doing here so we could ask them.
Let's take a look at hiring a professional carpet cleaner. If we call around and ask for estimates they will range from under $100 all the way up to over $300. Most of us that own our own homes will want to go for the higher end professional and spend around let’s say $200. Now with that price we get a few things that we didn't get by doing it ourselves. First we get to relax while the Pros take care of the carpet. Second we get someone that has the knowledge to know what cleaners to use and how to use them and third we get truly clean carpets that are cleaned correctly and with self-neutralizing cleaning agents that will keep our carpets cleaner longer and actually feel clean. Now spending the extra money on hiring a professional cleaner is not for everyone but it should be considered if we want carpet that is cleaned correctly and then there is always the question of “Ok so I took your advice and I’m going to call a pro but who do I use?" Well I'm Glad that you asked but that answer will have to wait for the next blog. Until next time keep those questions and comments coming in!