If you are not completely satisfied, we will pay for another cleaner of your choice!

Call Now

Carpet Cleaning Techniques.

Carpet Cleaning Techniques – Professional carpet cleaning companies use several carpet cleaning methods to clean a home’s carpets. Each cleaning method has its own advantages and disadvantages. But how do you choose between them? Review these pros and cons before deciding which method you would like to be used to clean your carpet.


Basically, carpet cleaning methods may be placed in one of two categories.  There is wet cleaning or dry cleaning. Wet cleaning includes hot water extraction which can include cleaning with an absorbent pad. Dry carpet cleaning involves the use of chemical powders or foams which is applied by special machines with counter rotating brushes, pads or cylinders.


Wet cleaning

How it works

Also known as hot water extraction or steam cleaning, the carpet is first pre-conditioned with a chemical reagent that liquefies soils and oil-based substances which may be present in the carpet fibres. Water is heated to a temperature near its boiling point and pressurized, then injected into the carpet. After about 10 to 15 minutes, the solution is extracted with a vacuum.


  • Gets out soiling from deep down in the carpet.
  • Allows the use of high temperatures, pressures and chemical concentrates.
  • Permits extended dwell times for reaction of cleaning solvents.
  • Chemical reactivity facilitated by agitation with grooming tool or extraction wand.
  • Most widely used method.
  • Recommended by carpet manufacturers and industry cleaning experts and professionals


  • Relatively long drying time, but this can be reduced with the use of powerful equipment by competent technicians.
  • Expensive equipment usually required for maximum efficiency.
  • Relatively high cost factors.


Cleaning with an absorbent pad

How it works

This carpet cleaning method is also commonly known as bonnet cleaning and is most often used for routine light maintenance. It can also be used for regular carpet cleaning. The carpet is first vacuumed.  Then a chemical solution is sprayed on to it with a hand pump or electric sprayer. The solution is allowed to stay on the carpet for a suitable dwell or reaction time.


The absorbent pad or bonnet, which looks like a towel, is placed on the drive block of a rotary floor machine.  This is then spun over the carpet surface at 100 to 300 rpm. This action serves to impregnate the carpet fibres with the chemical solution.  It then picks up with the soils afterward.


  • Fast, simple and inexpensive.
  • Excellent results with lightly soiled carpets.


  • Only cleans the top one-third of carpet fibres, incapable of reaching deeper down.
  • Leaves dirt and chemicals to accumulate at the bottom of the carpet fibres.


Dry cleaning with an absorbent compound

How it works

A powder that has been mixed with special solvents and cleaning agents is spread over the carpet.  Then it is worked into the carpet fibres with a machine fitted with counter-rotating brushes. The powder absorbs soils in the carpet fibres. After it’s allowed to set on the carpet for 10 to 15 minutes, it’s vacuumed up.


  • Very simple system with no special technical training required.
  • Very fast drying, it typically only takes about 20 minutes before the carpet can be back in service.


  • Powder may be trapped in plush pile carpets and left to build up over time.
  • Can cause excessive dust build-up in the home.
  • Unable to clean deep down into the carpet.


Dry foam or rotary shampoo method

How it works

A cleaning agent is applied to the carpet to help suspend dirt and debris in the carpet  Then it is whipped into foam and worked into the carpet fibers with the rotating brushes of a special machine. After a short dwell time, the foam is extracted with a vacuum.


  • Fast, simple to apply and inexpensive.
  • Rotating brushes provide excellent agitation.
  • Small amount of moisture allows fast drying of carpet.


  • Unable to achieve thorough soil extraction below the surface of the carpet.
  • High temperatures usually not achieved.
  • Excessive wetting possible with equipment malfunction.


Need to know more?  Give us a call on 0800 800 382.

Scroll to Top