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How to Use a Vacuum Cleaner on Carpet

Published by: Katherine Frame

How to Use a Vacuum Cleaner on Carpet

We believe most people must be aware of the concept of using a vacuum cleaner to remove dust and dirt from the carpet. However, there are certain important aspects to keep in mind to get the best care and security for your carpet. 

In this article, we will provide you with several recommendations that will ensure that you vacuum your carpet correctly and that it looks and performs at its best.

The Right Way to Use a Vacuum Cleaner on Carpet

Not many people would be aware of this fact but there’s a proper vacuuming technique for everything.

Cleaning experts have gotten vacuuming down to a science, even though most of us have been vacuuming our homes for years without challenging our technique. You’ll get a hold of more crumbs, dog hair, and dust, as soon as you use these pre-approved tips, and your floors, rugs, and carpets will be very clean. 

To learn how to vacuum properly, follow the vacuuming instructions that we have provided below…

1. Don’t rush

Going slow is the secret to making the cleanest clean. Begin at the far edge of your carpet or rug and move forward in a straight line with the vacuum. This action raises the floor covering’s nap (or fibers) to expose any dirt or debris underneath.

After that, slowly pull the device back toward you to gather all of the debris. Repeat the procedure for the next row, overlapping the first by about 50% and cleaning the entire surface. 

2. Clean the Surface in Two Directions 

Another way to make the carpet extra clean is to sweep it not just up and down in rows, but also 90 degrees and side-to-side. The extra effort will pay off in the end, as it will aid in the collection of all dust and debris. 

3. Keep Your Machine Clean 

It is always a good idea to clean your vacuum. Cleaning the bristles as well as brushes will allow them to take each and every crumb present on the carpet, and emptying the canister regularly will boost the suction.

It is crucial to clean the bristles after each use, the canister after a few uses, and the filters once a month. The device can run smoothly with a little maintenance, so you won’t have to vacuum the same spots over and over.

4. Vacuum frequently 

It turns out that the frequency at which you should vacuum your carpet is determined by the amount of traffic and activity in your house. Vacuuming a carpet once a week should be the bare minimum for any household. 

Vacuuming would be expected more regularly in homes with heavy traffic or pets, most likely twice or thrice a week. This will help to keep the carpet looking and working its best by releasing allergens such as dust and pet hair from the carpet fibers.

5. Select the correct setting 

You need to make sure that you choose the correct setting on your system and this is one trick that has helped many people vacuum their floors more effectively. A lot of vacuum cleaners provide several settings that allow you to customize your cleaning experience depending on the surface you’re cleaning. 

If you’re cleaning a shaggy carpet, you will be required to use a different setting than if you’re cleaning hardwood floors. Your vacuum cleaner’s settings should be modified according to the height of the surface you’re sweeping. You will ensure that you get the best suction and effective cleaning when you change this height.

Using attachments

You will see that a lot of vacuum cleaners are accompanied by hose attachments. This makes it simple to vacuum hard-to-reach areas and vacuum upholstery, among other items.

It is suggested that you make good use of these add-ons. To avoid dust build-up and filtration soiling, use a crevice attachment along the baseboard at the room’s edge.

Get rid of foul smells 

To get rid of odors in your carpet, start by blotting any heavily affected spots with a damp cloth. Using a clean (dry) cloth or paper towel, blot the region dry. Apply a good sprinkling of baking soda to the rug. Vacuum the carpet with your regular vacuum cleaner after 30 minutes.

In case the odor still persists, you can simply repeat the process.

Select the right vacuum cleaner

When you look around in the market today, you will find out that there are a plethora of vacuum cleaners to choose from. Vacuums ranging from hand-held to canisters to upright vacuums are all available.

However, it is important to note that not all sorts of vacuums are designed equal, hence, it becomes vital to point fingers on one that will properly satisfy your carpet’s needs.

You may consider consulting with the carpet manufacturer to see if there are any recommended features for your new carpet if you’re buying new carpet for your home. For instance, today’s common “soft carpets” can necessitate a different form of vacuum compared to the cut-pile carpets which are used traditionally.  

And in case your vacuum system is the one which is known as the Central Vac, then you have options for several kinds of head attachments of the vacuum, so give those options a good look and only then, make an informed decision. 

Beater bars

A spinning brush, known as a beater bar, is used in several vacuums to agitate the carpet fibers and loosen soil deep inside the mound. Many cut-pile carpets benefit from this feature, but it can be detrimental to certain types. 

Berber carpets, for example, should not be vacuumed with a beater brush because they can loosen the fibers and cause the loops to look “fuzzy.” Moreover, if a small strand of fiber has fallen loose from the loops, it may wind itself around the beater bar and be pulled out of several rows, causing a run in the carpet.

Beater bar in a vacuum cleaner (Source)

A beater bar may also harm long frieze styles as the long strands of fiber may get entangled in the brush. Natural fiber carpets like wool should never be vacuumed using any kind of beater brush. 

In case you own any one of these carpets, avoid vacuums with beater bars or select one that allows the beater bar to be switched off, allowing the vacuum to run solely on suction.


Cleaning your carpets should be quick and enjoyable with these above-mentioned vacuum tips. Your home will be free of troublesome dust and debris if you adhere to a daily schedule and make vacuuming a priority.

Also, you need to keep in mind that vacuuming is an excellent way to not only keep your home tidy but also to extend the life of your floors and maintain better indoor air quality.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are some additional tips to keep my carpets clean?

To stop bringing unnecessary dirt into the house, the first step is to take off your shoes at the entrance. Another thing you need to keep in mind is to maintain a clean floor by picking up noticeable items so that you don’t have to do a pre-vacuum declutter every time you vacuum. Also, move the furniture occasionally.

What are some things to avoid while vacuuming?

Damp dirt used coffee, ash from the fireplace, wood scraps, bits of old paint, sawdust, coins, and any other metal items are the things that you need to avoid while vacuuming.

Is a vacuum with a full bag a bad idea?

A vacuum cleaner with a full bag would only imply less suction capacity, which would further lead to a reduction in the effectiveness of your time and effort. Therefore, it is advised that you must not let the bag fill up to three-quarters to keep your vacuum working at its best.

Photo of author

Article by:

Katherine Frame

Katherine Frame is a professional writer and reviewer who worked in higher education for eight years before working on The Hardware Hub. She has written for multiple home magazines and blogs.

1 thought on “How to Use a Vacuum Cleaner on Carpet”

  1. Can you use the stiff brush setting for tile floors, on short hair carpet? It gives a great result – but I’ve been told NO!


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