The Only Way to Deep Clean an Area Rug

young woman kneeling on floor, starting to roll out an area rug

There are dozens of options when you walk down the bath and shower aisle of your local market. People tend to have their favorite or go-to products, the ones that work for them. No right or wrong. Some people swear by sulfate-free products. Others sing the praises of goat milk bars. A few don't bathe at all. In case you didn't already know, none of these are the right options for your area rug. In fact, unlike the diversity of human hygiene products, there is only one appropriate way to deep clean an area rug. There is only Zuul immersion washing. You may know Zerorez as your friendly and fabulous carpet cleaning service, but below we share our expertise on how to deep clean an area rug.

Apples : Oranges :: Carpets : Rugs

Area rugs may seem like the slimmer, more attractive, less high-maintenance cousin of your carpet, but they're quite different. For one, carpet has had some work done; carpets have plastic backing. Jokes aside, this means that carpet is meant to be vacuumed from the top. Rugs are constructed differently. Composed of tightly woven fibers, rugs trap dirt deep in their foundation.

Vacuuming alone won't remove this dirt. Okay, so you hire a carpet cleaner to deep clean an area rug in your home.

Bad idea.

Professional rug cleaning should never be done in the home. In order to get a rug truly clean, special rug dusting equipment is needed. Traditional carpet cleaning methods just don't get the job done.

Why Carpet Cleaning Methods Don't Work on Rugs

Carpet cleaning targets the face yarns of the carpet, and can't dislodge the soil held by the tightly woven fibers of an area rug. It may get the tips of a carpet clean, but the biggest threat to a rug's long-term health is deeply trapped dirt. In fact, carpet cleaning can damage the fibers of your area rug. When water and cleaning agents mix with the dirt at the foundation, it can create a kind of plaster at the base. This can actually cause the rug foundation to become brittle and crack, accelerating wear.

These nasty li'l deposits can be removed through harsh chemicals and aggressive cleaning, but of course that can damage the pile of the area rug. This is especially the case with wool. As a natural fiber, it's extra sensitive. You would never want to use steam cleaning on a wool rug because hot water will shrink the fibers. Steam cleaning dyed rugs is another no-no, because it can cause color bleeding.

How to Deep Clean an Area Rug

In order to deep clean an area rug, professional cleaners should take the area rugs to a properly equipped facility. The Zerorez process looks something like this:

Area rugs are brought to our cleaning facility, where they first receive a thorough dusting. A machine beats the soil out of the rug, shaking dry particles loose through vibrations. Then, the immersion washing begins.

The rug is submerged in a pool of water and soap is applied. We pay close attention to the chemistry of this soap because different fibers respond to different cleaning agents. While nylon can be cleaned by detergents (although we don't recommend it), wool is far too delicate. It would be like bleaching your eyebrows.

The soap is lathered, sometimes by hand (we're sticklers for quality). A roller is used to flush the water out of and away from the rug, pulling deeply embedded dirt particles with it. This rinsing process is repeated until the water runs clear and practically sparkles.

Finally, special drying equipment is used to remove all moisture from the rug. This is a crucial step. The tight weave of a rug means that even when the outside is completely dry, the inner layers can still be wet. Our procedure ensures total dryness, and does it so quickly that you'll have your rugs back within a few hours.

When to Deep Clean an Area Rug

The short answer is every 2-3 years. The more involved answer is, "it depends". Areas that receive moderate traffic can be professionally serviced every two years. If you vacuum weekly, however, or if traffic is lighter, this could be postponed to every three years. On the other hand, high-traffic areas (e.g. entryways and bedrooms) ought to be cleaned annually. This is especially the case if pets or allergy sufferers are present!

Why Hire Zerorez to Deep Clean Area Rugs in Your Home?

Why hire Zerorez? Our allergy-friendly, non-toxic cleaning method won't damage the fibers of your area rug. The technology is green and the method reaches all the way down to the base of your area rugs. It can even restore color to faded pieces! Another bonus is the short dry time, meaning you can use your rugs just a few hours after we clean them. For more information, visit us at or give us a ring at (949) 387-2222..


Book a Cleaning with Zerorez® Today!