The Best Method For Cleaning Your Indoor-Outdoor Carpet

Adding a rug or carpeting to your home is an easy way to bring in a bit more coziness and texture, but, when it comes to your outdoor living space, it's important to focus on cleaning these textiles routinely. Dirt, dust, pollen, and leaves can all quickly build up on your outdoor fabrics and leave them grimy and dingy-looking. The same goes for foot traffic from muddy paws and dirty shoes, severe weather conditions that can leave the fibers soaked, and frequent spills from outdoor dinners or drinks. Most of the time, this can be combatted with regular sweeping and vacuuming, but, every now and then, your indoor-outdoor carpets need a deep clean to combat any built-up debris.

Any spills or muddy footprints should be dealt with promptly to prevent staining. Moreover, it is recommended to wash your carpet at least twice a year. Thankfully, these big seasonal cleans are fairly simple, especially if you're working with a rug that can easily be lifted and moved.

How to clean indoor-outdoor rugs

If you're working with an outdoor rug that is simply laid over your patio's surface, you're in luck when it comes to cleaning. Being able to access both sides of the rug can help to ensure you get a deep clean, and the ability to hang your rug to dry allows you to fully soak it with water without having to worry about mold and mildew.

To properly clean your rug, it's best to start by clearing away any surface dust and debris. Sweep, vacuum, or beat both the top and bottom of the rug until it seems like you've removed most of the dirt — doing both sides helps to loosen any stubborn particles stuck between the fibers. After this, you can go in for the deep clean. Hang your rug somewhere like a fence or railing if you have one available, then thoroughly spray down with a hose. After this, fill a bucket with water and a bit of dishwashing soap. Dip a brush into your solution and scrub the rug, especially areas that have set-in stains. Once you're satisfied, rinse away all the suds and allow your rug to dry.

How to clean installed indoor-outdoor carpeting

Most homes are designed with more weather-resistant flooring in their indoor-outdoor spaces, but, in some situations, you might have a sunroom or screened-in area that includes carpet. Cleaning this type of flooring is a bit more tricky, especially if you're dealing with dirt, but it can be accomplished with a bit of effort. Obviously, if you're working with installed carpet, you can't rip up the flooring every time you need to clean, so the goal is to break down as much grime as possible without completely soaking the material and opening up the door for mold and mildew.

To do this, vacuum to clear away any debris, then mix a solution of vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Spray areas of the carpet and then gently dab with a cloth to soak up dirt, cleaning the cloth as it becomes dirty. Work across the carpet in small sections until you've completely cleaned the area, then allow everything to fully dry. For a more efficient but potentially costlier approach, you can also rent or buy a steam cleaner to accomplish similarly sparkling results.