Getting Down And Dirty

I can’t believe I’m baring my dirt to you.

We all have dirt, so I’m trusting you with mine.

Let’s just say, carpet is a nasty thing to have in your main living area.

It’s taken me having my own home to really realize that carpet might be a thing of the past for clean freaks, like myself. Carpets in bedrooms I’m still on the fence about. It can be cozy, and helps with noise, but matted down carpet from high traffic areas is never an attractive sight, and that’s inevitable with carpet. At least the cozy, short shag kind.

We purchased our house brand new just over 4 years ago, and from the day we moved in, we knew we had really cheap carpeting. Most homes in our community had the option to upgrade to all tile in the living areas, but since ours was a short sale, we didn’t have that option.

While I was home in Minnesota earlier this year, Pete surprised me by cleaning the carpets as a birthday gift to me. Best birthday gift ever! And I totally love him for it.


The machine he used must not of had enough suction power because it left lines in the carpet. I’m guessing it’s where the dirty water between the scrubbing brushes didn’t get sucked up.

He was so proud, I didn’t have the heart to say anything until we just recently decided to clean them again. Sweet boy.

By the way, we do not recommend renting The Rug Doctor. Your carpet will end up looking like this..
Do you see the lines? I thought it was just the way the carpet was laying, but after vacuuming multiple times, against the lines, I realized it wasn’t.

Here’s a shot of the lines from the other end of the room.
carpetbefore Pete worked so hard to surprise me, but The Rug Doctor failed miserably. At least it was somewhat cleaner than before!

It wasn’t that he did it wrong.. He went as far as to boil all the water he used in the machine, so it was crazy hot to maximize it’s cleaning capabilities. And he went over the carpet in all the rooms twice, nice and slow.

Our carpet is shot, regardless of how clean it is, and we just need new flooring. But, we work with what we got, and I like a clean house, so that’s how we ended up here…
Rented from Ace Hardware, this ancient professional carpet cleaning machine did an AMAZING job. Boiling hot, soapy water goes in on the right, and dirty, hot, soapy water sucks back up on the left.

Before we really get down and dirty, lets view all of the before pictures.
How about that area rug? You know.. the one that didn’t come up when I rolled up the real rug. Oh wait… that be clean carpet underneath! Let’s take a closer look shall we.
Ah yes. There she is. How gross is that!

Talk about embarrassing. My VDL is showing (visible dirt line).It’s like that one episode of Roseanne where they move the couch for Jackie’s wedding and find out what the actual color of their carpet is! Barf.

Matted and gross. I cannot say gross enough. And that’s after I vacuumed.


Okay, let’s get on to the slightly cleaner part.

Since Pete did it the last time, it was my turn.
This machine didn’t have any scrubbers, but it still did an amazing job. You spray the hot soapy water over an area, giving it enough time to sit for 20-30 seconds and then go over and suck it all back up. I went over it too many times to count. And that was completely necessary, especially in the dirtiest areas.

This was after my first pass starting in the corner and working out in front of the entertainment center. It wasn’t a super high traffic area which makes it worse. GROSS!

Let’s do it again. :)

After too many passes to count, just in the couch area around where the rug left it’s mark, and in front of the lazy boy, we made it here. It was a solid hour to an hour and a half before we made it this far. I took a break, and Pete demonstrated for us. The blue hose sprays on the hot soapy water when you pull the trigger, the other one sucks up the gunk. Pete worked just as hard keeping water boiling all the time, and constantly refilling and dumping the water in the machine so I could keep going.

LOOK at this line.
IMG_4180[2]web Clean vs. Dirty, which side do you want to be on? You must think we are horribly dirty people! I vacuum regularly, and we never wear our shoes in the house, but we have two dogs. Of course they can’t be blamed for all of this, but I don’t wipe their feet every time they come inside. Dust and dirt happens I guess!

Here they are watching from a safe distance.

Doing more cleaning in the higher traffic area, we ended up with this hairy mess.
And I had vacuumed just minutes before we started.

Want to see how dirty this one was?

I know you do.
It was so gross, yet so rewarding. That much less dirt was on our floors. If this isn’t personal, I don’t know what is.

Let’s view another Dirty vs. Clean…
This is the area between the bar on the left, and our dining room table on the right. A major high traffic area. Ew!

Here he is, pouring the soapy, boiling water in like a boss.

Now, prepare yourself for the next image. It is the worst side by side Dirty vs. Clean picture I got.
This is our highest traffic area in the house, and this 20 year old machine completely made my carpet new. Granted, I made 5 passes over the whole entire area, but clearly it was necessary.


So, I finished the living room, and then we took a break. 4 hours in and the living room was done, and my back was breaking. After my break, I did our master bedroom, and then I was done. I couldn’t push myself anymore, my limbs had become noodles. So Pete took over because it was 11pm, and we still had the office, the guest room, and the landing area between the two rooms left to do. We shared the rental with our neighbor, who came by at 1am to pick it up to bring back in the morning on his way to work. This was an alllllll day thing. I could of had it for two days just to save the back breaking time frame, but it was worth it to get it done in one day.

How about some after shots now?!

Do you see an area rug line? NOPE! (chuck testa) Sorry, I had to. :) We even pushed the couches back about 6 inches to clean a bit more in that part.

So fresh and so clean clean!

Oh, and I almost forgot. We cleaned Chloe’s chair. Pete cleaned it the last time he did the carpets only 4 months before, but had forgotten to do the back of the chair.
Who knew that was dirt and not the color of the fabric.

The machine had a handy smaller attachment which made cleaning the couches in the garage, this chair, and the lazy boy really easy.

Well, all in all I’d say this was a successful attempt at cleaning the carpet.
The doggies love it.
After! About 4 shades lighter and 100 times cleaner. Right up my alley. I’ll be doing this again in a few months to keep it up.

I’m going to rub my face on my nice clean carpet now. Thanks for letting me air my dirt. And thank you for not judging.