Can I Clean Carpet With Laundry Detergent?

Can I clean carpet with laundry detergent?

can i clean carpet with laundry detergent

You can use laundry detergent to clean your carpet, especially if you run out of carpet cleaner shampoo or you’re operating on a tight budget. Similarly, laundry detergent will get the job done effectively if you can’t get your hands on some carpet shampoo.

Reasons for and against cleaning carpet with laundry detergent

reasons for and against cleaning carpet with laundry detergent

You may be wondering whether it’s right to use laundry detergent to clean your carpet. It has its advantages, as well as some disadvantages.

Some of the reasons why laundry detergent is better than other cleaning agents include:

  • Cost-effectiveness – Laundry detergent is the most affordable of all the cleaning agents you can use on your carpet. The good news is that if you use it in small quantities, it’ll last long, bringing your carpet cleaning costs down.
  • Availability – Laundry detergent is available in every home. Therefore, finding it shouldn’t be a problem. Whatsmore, every local store will stock it, and you’ll always find the one you need, saving you the hassles of moving from one store to another looking for other cleaning agents.
  • Fresh and clean smelling – Just like your clothes remain with a scent for a while after washing with laundry detergent, carpets are no different. They’ll smell nice and clean too, and everyone who enters the room will like the pleasant smell.

Reasons you should avoid laundry detergents for your carpet include:

  • Laundry detergents are made for washing machines to clean clothes and not for use in cleaning equipment used to clean carpets. They may end up damaging both.
  • Using laundry detergent to clean your carpet may result in a dirtier carpet as the remaining residue soon attracts dirt.

Spot Cleaning Takes Longer

Of course, you cannot compare cleaning clothing with a carpet. Spot cleaning takes longer, as you’ll have to scrub more vigorously to remove the dirt. Ultimately, this results in the usage of large quantities of detergent.

Especially for stained areas, it may take a lot of your time and detergent.

How to clean your carpet with laundry detergent

When cleaning your carpet with laundry detergent in your carpet cleaner, you follow the same steps as when cleaning using a carpet cleaning shampoo. However, be more careful because excessive use of laundry detergent may result in mold accumulation. Therefore, use controlled amounts to avoid excess foam getting into your rugs.

Will detergent harm my carpet?

will detergent harm my carpet

It’s 100% safe to use laundry detergent to clean your carpet.

It’s a great substitute for carpet cleaning agents that delivers excellent results. However, you only need a small amount of detergent.

If you use way too much you could end up harming your carpet quality due to the chemicals present in the detergent, but it’s not very likely to happen in most cases.

How to clean your carpet with laundry detergent

how to clean your carpet with laundry detergent

There’s no difference between how you clean your carpet with a carpet cleaning shampoo and using a laundry detergent. Maybe the only difference comes in with quantities. Using laundry detergents requires you to use smaller amounts of cleaning agents.

Otherwise, it’ll be as much effective and leaves your home with a pleasant smell.

Using It with a Steam Cleaner

When using laundry detergent with a steam cleaner, follow these steps:

  1. Remove the fluid canister from your steam cleaner.
  2. Pour a capful of your laundry detergent into the canister. If you wish to include a disinfectant, add ½ cup of white vinegar for synthetic carpets and ¼ cup for natural fiber carpets.
  3. Add water up to the fill line.
  4. Place the canister back to the steam cleaner and turn the machine on.
  5. Leave it for five minutes to heat before you can start cleaning.

It’s worth mentioning that you should move the steam-cleaning unit slower than you would when vacuuming to allow the steam and cleaning solution to penetrate the carpet.

Dishwashing detergent as a homemade carpet cleaner

dishwashing detergent as a homemade carpet cleaner

You can use dishwashing detergent as a homemade carpet cleaner. This saves you carpet cleaning costs as you only use products around your home for easy and effective carpet cleaning.

Forming a detergent solution with dishwashing detergent, vinegar, and water will be safe, as there are lesser harsh chemicals.

James Marshall
About the author

James is a business management professional and consultant with a former background in maintenance, repair, and hands-on projects. He enjoys DIY tasks and maintenance around the home as well as part-time writing. Read more »