DIY Carpet Cleaning: Should You Risk It?

DIY Carpet Cleaning

In an attempt to save money, many homeowners choose to clean their carpets and rugs on their own, rather than hiring a professional to do the work. But is doing it yourself worth the potential risk to your carpet investment?

DIY, or “do-it-yourself” carpet cleaning is discouraged by most carpet manufacturers because improper cleaning solutions and techniques may cause problems that could void the warranty on the carpet. Common issues that can arise from improper DIY carpet cleaning are mold and mildew growth, backing separation and fading or discoloration.

Overwetting is the most prevalent of these DIY carpet cleaning blunders. If you overwet the carpet, it will take much longer to dry, potentially leading to fungal growth and seepage into your subfloors. But it can be difficult for a homeowner to calculate how much water and/or detergent to use, or how long to leave a steam cleaner in position. Making a mistake during this phase of the carpet cleaning process can be very costly indeed, which is why the majority of homeowners choose to hire a professional carpet cleaning service with a good reputation for the job.

Improperly formulated carpet cleaning solutions are another culprit behind DIY carpet cleaning disasters. Solutions that are not formulated correctly for your carpet may strip the carpet of its stain-resistant treatment. Or the solution may contain bleach or even optical brighteners that literally dye your carpet instead of just removing stains. Some improper formulations can also destroy the fiber of your carpet, leaving it looking matted or frayed.

Consumer Reports has found that when it comes to carpet cleaning, pros do it best. Though it may cost a bit more than renting a machine from your local supermarket, the benefits in knowledge and assurance that you get from having someone experienced do the work far outweigh the extra cost.

So, the message here is Clean Your Own Carpets At Your Own Risk. If you do choose to clean your own carpets, you should take the time to do your research first. Find out exactly what type of cleaning or detergents your manufacturer recommends, and then follow the directions of the detergent or steam cleaner precisely. Always spot-test an out-of-the-way corner of your carpet before cleaning it, to prevent discoloration issues. If you are renting steam cleaning equipment to perform the cleaning, ask the rental provider to demonstrate its use before taking it home. Listen for out-of-the-ordinary clunking noises and check the test carpet for fraying and loose fibers.

If, on the other hand, you want to forego the risk, give your local professional carpet care expert a call. If you live in the Asheville NC area and are looking for quality carpet cleaning services, give Five Step Carpet Care a call at (828) 772-1824 or use our contact form to get in touch with us today. You might be surprised at how much you can save by hiring professionals to get the job done!



Upholstery Cleaning Rental or Pro?

upholstery cleaning rental

So you’ve got some furniture that needs cleaning. Probably the arms are stained, and maybe the cushions or the head rest. You know the upholstery needs attention, but you’re not sure how to proceed. Should you hire a professional service to clean your sofa and chairs, or should you rent an upholstery cleaner from your local supermarket or hardware store?

At first glance, the rental option seems a good choice. The price is quite a bit lower, and how hard can it really be to operate one of those things, right?

Well, maybe. But let’s consider all of the variables. If you rent a machine and do the work yourself, you’re paying for not only the rental fee, but also the time it takes you to do the work itself, plus the cost of time and gas to pick the machine up and return it.

But that’s not all. The models frequently available for rent tend to have a weaker water flow than the units used by pros, and weaker suction as well. What this means is that you will use more and more water to extract dirt and stains, and may not be able to get it all out again. If your upholstery remains damp for two days, it could cause mildew growth to develop. This is one of the most common problems we see when folks try to go the DIY route to clean their upholstery.

In addition to our better quality cleaning units, we pros also have years of experience in cleaning all types of fabrics and getting out all kinds of stains. No matter how rare the upholstery type or how outlandish the source of the stain, chances are, we’ve already cleaned dozens of pieces of furniture exactly like yours. (We will not raise an eyebrow at the words “chocolate sauce”, take our word for it.) So when you hire a professional service with a solid reputation, you are not only benefitting from superior equipment, but also from a great store of knowledge and know-how.

If you do choose to go the DIY route to clean your upholstery, be sure to test the rental machine on a piece of practice furniture first, like that old corduroy couch in the garage. This way, you can hopefully get a decent feel for the equipment before trying it on your nice living room suite. And be careful to read the directions for the machine, as well as the ingredients of any cleaning solutions you use to ensure they won’t damage your upholstery fabric or void your manufacturer’s warranty.

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and are in the market for upholstery cleaning, give Five Step a call at (828) 772-1824, or drop us a line via our contact form (link). You might be surprised at how much time and money you can save by trusting professionals to clean your upholstery instead of taking the DIY risk!

The Best Carpet Cleaners Asheville NC

Asheville Rug Cleaners | Five Step Carpet CareWhy do our clients think we’re the best carpet cleaners in Asheville NC? We could tell you all about how effective our cleaning process is, or how friendly and professional our staff is, or how our cleaning solutions are all 100% green and safe for your home. We could tell you it’s our industry knowledge that gives us a superior edge, or how customer service is what makes us shine, and all of that would be true! But we think you’d rather hear it from our customers themselves.

So we’re devoting this blog post to some of the great testimonials we’ve received from WNC homeowners and businesses over the years. Take a look at what our customers have to say about Five Step Carpet Care!


“Scott Finney and the Five Step Carpet Care team are hands down the best carpet, rug and upholstery service I’ve ever used. Their customer service, quality of cleaning and punctuality are consistently first in class. I’ve used them for my home as well as my health care office and it’s important to me and my patients that they use green products that are safe for the environment. Their philosophy that the customer comes first is clear in every aspect of working with this company and I’ve referred them to numerous coworkers and friends. Thanks Five Step for making my life easier and my house and office smell better!”

Dr. Larry Golson of Envision Eyecare


“Top notch service from the first phone call – to walking in our front door. Scott was so personable and made the whole experience easy. He was professional and his work is flawless. Very happy customer!”

Juliet, Homeowner


“We love Five Step Carpet Care and depend on Scott and his team for all our carpet cleaning needs (which were considerable with a particular feline companion we had… we’d highly recommend them to any and everyone!”

Mitchell, Homeowner


If you need carpet cleaners in Asheville NC, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or use our contact form to get in touch with us today. Or if you just want to keep in touch, go like our Facebook page for carpet care news (and, okay, a few cat memes).

How Healthy is Your Home?

Carpet bacteria mold mites

Does Your Home Harbor Carpet Health Hazards?

Everyone wants a clean home. That’s why Americans spend $168 billion a year on cleaning supplies, with the average family of five spending upwards of $700 per year, not including services like professional home or carpet cleaning. But as savvy homeowners know, true cleanliness goes deeper than the surface.

When you prep raw meat in your kitchen, for instance, you’ll want to clean up afterwards. You could just wipe up with a wet paper towel, or even worse, a dirty cloth—and that might make the prep surface look clean, but appearances can be deceiving. Beneath the façade teems an army of germs and bacteria. So we use antibacterial cleaning agents, whether they be commercial products or natural ones like a vinegar solution, to produce not just a clean appearance, but a healthy environment in the place we prepare our meals and spend so much of our time as a family.

The same applies to carpets. Carpet health hazards often go unaddressed, because they are invisible. Most people vacuum their carpets about once a week—more if they have pets. Vacuuming does its part to keep your carpet looking clean, and it also does a pretty good job of dealing with certain unwanted debris and particulates, like mold spores. But for a healthy clean you can trust, carpets require occasional deep cleaning.

A carpet that is overdue for a deep cleaning can harbor all kinds of microscopic carpet health hazards, from bacteria and viruses to mites and fungi. Vacuuming alone can’t tackle these undesirables. Some of these contaminants may be odor-causing, which will, over time, impact not just your health, but also your enjoyment of your home. A professional deep clean can eliminate those threats and leave you confident in not only the cleanliness, but also the healthiness of your home.

Five Step Carpet Care can help you maintain a healthy environment in your home with our unique, environmentally friendly process. We can consult with you beforehand about your carpet maintenance goals, whether you have stains that need addressing, or odors to be eliminated, or just want to get rid of any invisible health threats hiding in the fibers of your carpets. Our cleaning solutions are 100% non-toxic, so you don’t have to worry about additional health threats being introduced to your home in your effort to clean it.

Not sure if your carpets are due for a deep cleaning? Check out our blog post on how to plan a maintenance schedule for your carpets.

If you live in the Asheville, NC area, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or use our contact form to schedule a consultation. You can also keep touch by liking our Facebook page. We hope to hear from you soon!


Asheville Hardwood Floor Cleaning

Asheville hardwood floor cleaning

You might have thought that Five Step Carpet Care NC only cleans carpets and maybe some upholstery now and then, but that’s not true! We are also Asheville’s source for green hardwood floor cleaning and polishing!

Even though you keep your wood floors clean through regular maintenance, you might start to notice it looking duller and dirtier as the years go by. A hardwood floor needs periodic deep cleaning to maintain its beauty and brilliance. After years of foot traffic, the floor’s finish can slowly wear off. Or the floor’s luster could be hidden under layers of floor wax.

But deep cleaning your hardwood floor on your own can be time-consuming and labor intensive. Plus, there can be a lot of confusion surrounding the process. There are so many cleaners on the market, and it can be hard to figure out which one is right for your wood floor. Many types of wood flooring cannot be cleaned with liquids and as such require special coatings in order to truly shine. In addition, engineered wood floors can not be polished because the polish will not adhere to engineered floors.

Our superior wood floor cleaning process can restore the radiance of your floor, making it look brand new. And at Five Step, we only use 100% all natural and biodegradable cleaning products. Our cleaners are non-acidic and contain no bleach, no enzymes and no dyes or colors. Our impact on the environment is just as important to us as our customers’ satisfaction.

If cleaning alone isn’t enough to make your wood floor shine, we can remove the older urethane or wax coating and refinish your floor in new gloss, leaving your old wood floor looking as good as new.

Give your old wood floor new life with a cleaning from Five Step Carpet Care NC. We are your source for Asheville hardwood floor cleaning. If you live in Asheville, NC or the surrounding areas, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or use our contact form to get in touch today!

How Can I Protect My Carpet?

carpet care

This post is the third and final installment in a series on implementing a carpet maintenance program for your home or business. In Part 1, we talked about vacuuming frequency. Part 2 discussed how often you should get your carpets professionally cleaned. In this post, we’ll take a look at some easy ways to protect your carpet and mistakes to avoid to prolong your carpet’s life and to increase your enjoyment of it.

What can I do to protect my carpet? This is a question we hear from customers all the time. Luckily, there are several simple things you can do to keep your carpet clean, lush and beautiful for years to come. Below is a list of do’s and don’ts that will help you maintain your carpets, whether in a home or workplace setting.


  • Provide welcome or “walk-off” mats at ground level entry areas to catch and contain dust and soil tracked in from outside.
  • Clean these mats regularly.
  • (In residences) Ask family members and guests to remove shoes at the door.
  • Implement a regular vacuuming schedule (read our post on vacuuming frequency to decide how often you should vacuum.)
  • Vacuum room edges and under furniture every second or third time you vacuum.
  • Brush and bathe pets regularly to reduce hair, dander and dirt from being absorbed by your carpets.
  • Avoid eating juicy or sticky foods in carpeted rooms.
  • Serve children beverages in cups with tight-fitting lids.
  • Act fast to remove a stain. The longer you wait, the more opportunity the stain has to set in the fibers and absorb into the carpet padding. This can lead to odor and mold growth.
  • Keep a small remnant of your carpet for testing new spot cleaners or other cleaning solutions before using on the installed carpet. Some cleaners can damage the color or texture of certain carpets.
  • Have your carpet professionally cleaned periodically. (Read our post on carpet cleaning frequency to decide how often.)


  • Vigorously scrub a carpet stain. It is ineffective and will push the stain further down into the carpet, while fraying the carpet fibers. Blot instead.
  • Use the wrong cleaning product. To avoid permanent damage or discoloration, thoroughly read the manufacturer’s instructions on the product’s label to ensure compatibility.
  • Use deodorant powders incorrectly. Deodorizing powders can leave gunky residue on your carpet, which can become more and more noticeable over time with repeated use. Remember, deodorants are not a substitution for professional cleaning!
  • Use too much cleaner. Oversaturating your carpet with cleaning solution can lead to permanent damage and can allow dirt-attracting residue to build up. Check the label on the product to determine how much to use.
  • Rent faulty carpet cleaning equipment. Rental equipment is frequently damaged and unfortunately, it is often not maintained properly. Sometimes rental machines can do more harm than good.

With a little bit of knowledge and planning, you can get the most out of your carpet for many years to come! We hope you found this series of blog posts helpful and informative. If you live in western North Carolina and want to discuss one-time or regularly scheduled carpet cleaning for your home or business, give us a call at (828) 772-1824.

How Often Should I Have My Carpets Cleaned?

asheville, how often should i have my carpet cleaned

This post is Part 2 in an informational series on carpet maintenance. In the first post, “How Often Should I Vacuum?”, we discussed the reasons for regular vacuuming and considerations on determining how frequently to vacuum. Today, we’ll talk about professional carpet cleaning.

“How often should I have my carpet cleaned?” This is probably one of our most commonly asked questions. And it’s not a simple one to answer. Just as with vacuuming (or really any home or office maintenance regimen, for that matter), the answer will vary from place to place and person to person. But there are a few factors to consider that should help you plan an effective cleaning schedule for your home or business.

Most people don’t think about getting their carpet cleaned unless it is visibly dirty or has noticeable odors. But even if your carpet doesn’t exhibit any stains or odors, it is still important to have it cleaned periodically in order to protect the health of your home’s inhabitants or your business’ employees and customers.

As we discussed last week, carpet absorbs and traps pollutants over time. Some of these, like dust, pollen and fungi, are pretty easily combated with regular vacuuming. But others, like bacteria, viruses, chemicals and pesticides require professional cleaning to extract.

Here are some factors to consider when implementing a cleaning schedule for your home or place of business:

  1. Family residences and office buildings should stick to a regular cleaning schedule of every six to twelve months for the higher traffic areas. Lower traffic areas such as guest bedrooms or conference rooms may need less frequent cleaning.
  2. Restaurants and nursing homes should have carpets cleaned more frequently in order to maintain a healthy environment. Monthly cleaning is recommended.
  3. Schools should have carpets cleaned on an every three to six month schedule.
  4. Day Care Centers: Young children are built low to the ground and attract a lot more dirt and dust than adults, as well as bacteria and viruses. They are also much more susceptible to contagious diseases and respiratory problems due to poor air quality. Therefore, it is recommended that daycare centers have carpet cleaning done weekly.
  5. Special Circumstances: If the humidity is high in your area, or if you live in a place with a lot of dust, you may want to consider more frequent cleaning. Same goes for homes with pets. Ground floor rooms will require more frequent cleaning than upstairs rooms. Schools, nursing homes, medical facilities and daycare centers will want to commit to rigorous weekly cleaning when dealing with epidemic disease.

Hopefully, this brief guide will help you make informed decisions when implementing a carpet cleaning schedule. Be sure to check out our next installment in this series, “What Can I Do to Protect My Carpet?” in two weeks.


How Often Should I Vacuum?

how often should i vacuum

We clean a lot of carpets, and there are a few questions we get asked regularly. One is:  How often should I vacuum? Another is: How often should I have my carpet cleaned? And finally: What can I do to protect my carpet?

To try and help you gauge the answers for yourself, we decided to write a three-part series on these topics. This post, Part 1, will deal with vacuuming frequency, and Part 2 will deal with professional carpet cleaning frequency. Part 3 will detail some steps you can take aside from vacuuming and professional cleaning to protect your carpet and prolong its life.

We install carpet in our homes and businesses in order to enhance our quality of life and improve our aesthetic surroundings. There are other benefits to the carpet as a floor-covering, however; namely, it reduces noise and vibration and helps insulate against cold air rising up from beneath the floor. These are especially popular reasons for installing carpet in office and retail businesses.

But the carpet is also an absorber of matter. It attracts and traps unwanted substances over time, whether these substances are visible or not. In other words, even though your carpet may not be visibly stained or dirty, it can still hold pollutants as a result of normal use. These pollutants can include soils, fibers, and atmospheric dust, as well as allergens such as pollen, fungi, mycotoxins, microscopic mites. If you have pets, you can add pet hair and dander to the list as well. Happily, regular vacuuming is moderately to highly effective at removing these pollutants. (Bacteria and viruses can also hide in your carpet, but these are more difficult to extract with just vacuuming. We’ll deal with them in our next post.)

So, how often should you vacuum? Well, it depends. Not only is the answer going to vary from home to home and office to office, but it can also vary from room to room and season to season.

Once a week will probably be sufficient for a moderate-traffic room with no extra considerations such as pets, children or high humidity. Light traffic rooms may need less, and high traffic rooms may need more. You can determine your carpet care maintenance program by evaluating the list below.

Some factors to keep in mind when deciding how often to vacuum are:

  1. Frequency of use: is the room a high traffic area, like a family room, waiting room or hallway? These sorts of rooms will need more frequent vacuuming than low traffic areas like guest bedrooms and conference rooms.
  2. Children: Do you have children living in your home, or does your business cater to a lot of children, like a daycare or an indoor entertainment facility? If so, you will want to vacuum more often, not just because children tend to be greater vectors for dust and debris, but also because they are more susceptible to illness than adults.
  3. Sick and Elderly: Does your business serve the elderly and/or infirm? If you are operating a medical facility or a nursing home, you will want to vacuum more often as well in order to protect the health of your vulnerable patients.
  4. Temperature, Humidity and Time of Year: Does the area get more traffic during the summer than the winter? Often, the carpet in homes will need more vacuuming in the warmer months because people spend more time outdoors and therefore bring in more dust and debris from outside. Humidity is also a factor: the moisture in the air can collect pollutants and then condense on the carpet.
  5. Pets: Have cats and dogs? You should probably double the frequency of vacuuming in the rooms where they spend the most time.
  6. Smoking, cooking, and woodstoves: Smoke and ash can easily get trapped in your carpet, as can oils and other cooking residues.
  7. What floor is the room on? Ground level floors tend to absorb more matter from outside than upstairs floors.

vacuuming frequency

We hope you found this post informative and helpful! Check out Part 2 in our series, “How Often Should I Have My Carpet Cleaned”, which will be published in two weeks. For other information on cleaning your carpet check out this page.

Carpet Cleaning Hendersonville NC

Hendersonville Carpet Cleaner

A lot of folks have called to ask us if we serve areas outside of Asheville, and the answer is YES! We are your go-to carpet cleaner for all points west. If you’re looking for quality carpet cleaning in Hendersonville, NC or other parts of western North Carolina, we’ve got you covered!

Five Step Carpet Cleaning is WNC’s most trusted green carpet and rug cleaning service for a reason. We offer prompt, dependable service, and best of all, when we clean your carpets, area rugs or oriental rugs, you can be sure that they’ll actually be clean!

Our team is friendly and professional, and willing to go the extra mile to get the job done. Plus, we use a completely non-toxic, environmentally friendly cleaning process (link), so you can feel good about your choice to protect the health of your family and the environment while you’re enjoying your freshly cleaned carpet.

We take care of all types of carpet and rug challenges, including ground in dirt, food stains and pet stains and odor. And we also clean upholstery, tile, slate and hardwood floors. We don’t cut corners, we clean them!

We serve both residential and commercial clients (link) all over WNC, including the following areas:

  • Asheville
  • Hendersonville
  • Waynesville
  • Sylva
  • Marshall
  • Cherokee
  • Rutherfordton
  • Forest City

And we’ve even been known to travel outside of the region. If in doubt, give us a call at 828.772.1824 or use our contact form to find out if we serve your area.



Oriental Rug Cleaning Asheville NC

oriental rug cleaning, asheville nc

If there’s one thing every oriental rug owner should know, it’s the number of a good, professional rug cleaner. Buying an oriental rug can be a serious investment, and keeping it beautifully maintained is a lifelong commitment. So don’t just choose the first company in the phone book or the first result that comes up on the search engine. Get to know the people who are going to clean your oriental rug, and make sure you can trust their cleaning process.

If you’re looking for a good, trustworthy oriental rug cleaning service in or near Asheville NC, we encourage you to do your research on all the companies vying for your business. To help you make an informed decision, we’ve made a short video to explain how we clean fine rugs. Check it out!

And here are a few facts about our fine rug cleaning technique:

  • We use the gentlest, most effective process available for cleaning oriental rugs and other fine rugs.
  • We don’t use bleach or bleach-based cleaners.
  • Our prices are affordable.
  • We can eliminate stains caused by ground in dirt, food spills, mold and mildew, and even pet stains.
  • We don’t use enzyme-based cleaners.
  • There are no harsh chemicals in our cleansers.
  • We don’t wash your rug in a tub with other rugs.
  • Our cleaning solutions will not cause the colors on your rug to fade or bleed.
  • Our cleaning process is completely safe for wool fibers.
  • We offer to pick up and delivery service.
  • Our products and process are entirely non-toxic and environmentally friendly.
  • Our team is professional and reliable. You can trust us to take good care of your fine rugs.

Check our website for current pricing.

We look forward to being your trusted source for green oriental rug cleaning. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at 828.772.1824 or send us a message via our contact form (link).