Hot water extraction which is incorrectly referred to as steam cleaning is the most common among the various carpet cleaning methods. This method relies on spraying a jet of hot water on the carpet and then using a vacuum to suck all the water and diluted dirt and other particles out of the carpet. To avoid larger particles of dirt from turning into mud when sprayed with water it is essential for the carpet to be prepared by thorough initial vacuuming. The high water temperatures are adequate to kill any living organism in the form of dust mites, fleas, and any other germs. The strong vacuum and high pressure water used provide a good and effective combination in removing dirt and particles from the carpet. Hot water extraction uses little or no detergent.
On the other hand, high pressure hot water extraction is one of the common carpet cleaning methods which is correctly referred to as steam cleaning. Here the carpet is first prepared by applying a preconditioning treatment. The carpet is then scrubbed using a grooming brush or an automatic scrubbing machine and then a pressurised cleaning tool is used to rinse off the preconditioning solution and dirt mixture. It is important to note that steam cleaning uses detergent based solutions as opposed to hot water extraction which may not use any detergents at all.
Dry cleaning is among the carpet cleaning methods that are gaining popularity. This process relies on chemicals to weaken the bond between dirt particles and stains and carpet fibres. Once these bonds are weakened by the applied chemicals the carpet is vacuumed and left clean. This method is gaining acceptance as it provides expected results while eliminating the need for drying as no water is used; the carpet is dry as soon as the procedure is done.
Other carpet cleaning methods include powder and foam cleaning. In powder cleaning, the powder is sprinkled on the carpet and then a machine is used to work it into the carpet. After a while, the powder is vacuumed off after detaching dust particles from the carpet. Foam cleaning relies on a machine to generate foam, which is then worked into the carpet by brushes on the machine. The foam is then vacuumed off after removing dirt from the carpet fabric.