Vacuum your carpet often. Once or twice a week at least. Vacuuming removes the sharp soil that can cut and slice the fiber causing premature wear. Much of this soil is not visible to the eye. Vacuum before the carpet looks soiled. Remove any loose particles such as loose food, leaves, pieces of crayon, bugs, etc. as these items can cause a spot on the carpet.
2. Professional Cleaning: As a general rule, professional cleaning by a professional, certified firm should take place about once per year. For extremely heavy traffic areas, cleaning may be required more often. Proper professional cleaning will no leave a sticky residue behind and can be done as many times per year as needed. MANY STAIN RESIST WARRANTIES REQUIRE PROFESSIONAL CLEANING EVERY 2 YEARS. Professional cleaning removes the damaging soil from the traffic areas that vacuuming has not been able to remove. WARNING: UNINFORMED CARPET CLEANERS MAY VOID YOUR WARRANTY, BE VERY SELECTIVE WHICH COMPANY YOU HIRE.
3. Warranty: Stain resist warranties can vary from 5 to 20 years. ALL STAIN RESIST WARRANTIES REQUIRE REGULAR CLEANING AND IMMEDIATE SPOT REMOVAL.
4. Spot Removal: Immediate spot removal is key to a clean carpet. Great care also must be taken in how spot cleaning is performed. When a carpet is new, or has sufficient protector on it, plain tap water will remove many spots. However for those spots that will not move easily with water, you must use a spot cleaner. Select a spot cleaner that is recommended by the carpet manufacturer or your trained, certified professional cleaner. Most spot removers that are purchased over the counter leave too much soap residue and can cause yellowing. Avoid using foam carpet cleaners or any product that is not specifically for carpet. Apply spot cleaner sparingly to white terry cloth and gently massage spot causing it to transfer into the cloth. Never pour spot cleaner directly on carpet. If the product that you are using seems to cause the spot to re-soil after a few weeks, discontinue use. Any spot that you are not able to remove, and for pet urine or feces, call your professional cleaner immediately.
5. Protective Coatings: Most residential carpets are treated with stain resist properties and soil resistors known as Dupont Teflon or 3M Scotchgard. After a period of 2 to 3 years, some of the soil-resistor wears off. At that point you should consider having a professional carpet cleaner re-apply the treatment after professional cleaning. The soil resistor will help the soil slide off of the carpet easier when vacuuming, spots will be easier to remove, and professional cleaning will be more effective.