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5 Ways to Make Your Carpet Last Longer

5 Ways to Make Your Carpet Last Longer

Tips for Protecting Your Carpet Investment

It’s said that properly cleaned and maintained carpet can last up to twice as long. Which got me to wondering: How long should my carpet typically be expected to last?

According to experts, most of us can count on the carpet in our homes to last anywhere from eight to ten years. This, of course, is assuming “normal traffic” and “appropriate maintenance.” Which brought up more questions: What is normal traffic? What is appropriate maintenance?

Obviously, what may be “normal traffic” in my home may not be normal for everyone, so for our purposes we’ll assume an average home with four or five people, coming and going from work, errands, school and play. Now that that’s settled, what about “appropriate maintenance”? Here’s what I learned.

Maintaining Your Carpet

Many times, when carpet wears out or loses its attractiveness long before it should, it’s due to three main reasons:

  1. Existing dirt particles in the carpet. Dirt is the main reason carpet deteriorates. Sharp particles of sand and grit can actually tear into carpet fibers, causing your carpet to dull with every step. This is the reason for the “lanes” you can see in high-traffic areas.
  2. Failure to remove newly deposited soil from the carpet on a routine basis. In other words, to keep carpet in good shape, vacuum well and vacuum often. According to the Carpet and Rug Institute, your carpet should be vacuumed a minimum of once a week throughout your home, and up to daily in high-traffic areas. Also be sure tackle any new stains quickly.
  3. Lack of regular deep cleaning. To keep them looking their best, carpets need to be deep-cleaned every 18 to 24 months. Fortunately, many professionals are now using organic or chemical-free deep-cleaning methods. Just be sure to research them carefully to know exactly what they will be using on your carpet.

Finally, if most carpet lasts only a decade under the best of circumstances, then I want to make sure I get my full ten years out of it. I’m sure you do too! So here are some tips for extending the life of your carpet. (As a nice side note, some of these practices are also healthier for your family since they help reduce indoor air pollution.)

  1. Make sure you have mats by every entrance, including the garage.
  2. Employ a “no-shoes indoors” policy.
  3. Make sure your vacuum is set at the right height and has a clean bag or filter. Replace bags when they’re one-half to two-thirds full.
  4. Vacuum slowly, especially over high-traffic areas. And go over these areas twice to get ground-in dirt. One quick pass over low-traffic areas is usually enough.
  5. Vacuum last, after dusting, so you get maximum clean for your efforts!
comment_2Have you ever had to replace the carpet in your home? Do you have tips for extending the life of your carpet? Please share them with our readers in the comments below.


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Amelia Flickinger
Amelia Flickinger
3 years ago

Leave shoes at the door & investing in a high-quality entry mat is worth the expense! A lot of the dirt, debris and chemicals are tracked in on our shoes. The Norwex Entry Mat has worked well in our home/piano studio!

Kim Metzger
Kim Metzger
3 years ago

Another tip to extend the life of your carpet. Vacuum in two directions. This will maximize the cleaning while only hauling out the vacuum and fighting the cord once!

Tracy Tapscott
Tracy Tapscott
3 years ago

Finally! An answer to the long-standing argument: Which should you do first? Dust or vacuum? Now I have an answer! Thanks!

Deb Pearl
Deb Pearl
3 years ago

Thank you for all the tips on how to make your carpets last longer. I just got some new carpet down in my basement and I would love to keep it looking good. I’m glad you mentioned that carpets need to be deep cleaned every 18 to 24 months. I will have to make sure I get it cleaned often.

Samantha Yule
Samantha Yule
2 years ago

Never thought of vacuuming after dusting! Seems so obvious now. Good tip!