Professional Carpet Cleaning vs DIY Carpet Cleaning

Professional Carpet Cleaning Versus DIY (Do It Yourself) What’s The Big Difference?

Carpet, like everything else, gets dirty. Clothes, shoes, dishes, and cars all get dirty. So do the carpets and rugs in your home. Carpeting needs to be cleaned and maintained just like everything else. Professional carpet cleaning is so important to carpet manufacturers that most of their warranties specifically state that if you do not have your carpeting cleaned by an IICRC or CRI professional every 12-18 months, the warranty is voided!

Professionally cleaned carpeting helps maintain the health of your carpeting, improves indoor air quality, helps reduce traffic lanes, and keeps your carpeting looking it’s very best.

Can I Rent A Machine and Clean My Own Carpeting?

Spot cleaning a soiled or stained area is a great way to help your carpet look good, but cleaning a whole carpet yourself with a rental machine can be daunting. Let’s examine the pros and cons of professional carpet cleaning versus DIY cleaning.

Professional Cleaning:


  • Experts – Did you know that not all carpets can be steam cleaned? A professional carpet cleaning technician does know that not all carpet material is the same. Carpet cleaning technicians know how to clean all types of carpet materials.
  • Equipment – Professional carpet cleaning equipment is much more powerful and heats water to a much higher temperature than DIY rental equipment, creating a much cleaner result. To clean carpeting properly, you need three things in place, quality cleaning agents, high steam, and agitation.  If you’re missing any of these three elements, you’re not “cleaning” but merely moving the dirt around. The hot water generated in a home is around 115-125 degrees.  Professional carpet cleaners using quality equipment generate steam in the 240-degree range.
  • Convenience – Hiring a professional saves a lot of your time. By the time you go to the store, rent the equipment, load it in your vehicle, move the furniture, clean the carpet, clean the machine, and return the equipment to the store, you have invested quite a bit of your time.
  • Drying – Since professional equipment is so much more powerful, it extracts much more water, so your carpet takes much less time to dry.


  • Expense: It does cost a little more money to hire a professional than if you go the DIY route; however, you’ll never be able to clean it as well as a professional, and the savings, after you subtract the rental, purchase of the chemicals for your DIY project, and your time invested in the entire project, is saving $15-$20 really worth the effort for sub-par results?
  • Timing – You may not be able to get an appointment time that is convenient for you. You may have to rearrange your schedule a bit to fit it in.
  • Bait and Switch Carpet Cleaning – Click here to learn what to look out for when hiring a carpet cleaning company.

DIY Carpet Cleaning:


  • Scheduling – Since you are doing it yourself, you can schedule the cleaning for a time and date that is most convenient for you.
  • Expense – It does save money for DIY carpet cleaning. At least initially.
  • Satisfaction – When the carpet is dry, the furniture is back in place, and the machine is back at the store, you can enjoy your sense of accomplishment.


  • Drying – Since DIY equipment is not as powerful, it leaves more water in the carpet, making for a longer drying time.
  • Cleanliness – As previously mentioned, DIY equipment is less powerful than professional equipment. It leaves more water and cleaning solution in the carpet, which will eventually trap and hold more dirt, causing your carpet to look dirtier quicker.
  • Equipment – Professional carpet technicians maintain their equipment. DIY equipment may not be as well maintained. Some people, unfamiliar with the machines, may accidentally damage the equipment. Being afraid of extra charges, they may not say anything, leaving the malfunctioning machine on the shelf for the next person to rent.
  • The cleaning solutions you purchase while renting the machine are “watered-down” consumer versions of a general cleaning agent.  A professional will have multiple cleaning solutions and spotters designed for the task at hand.

Routine carpet cleaning is a must to extend the life and beauty of your carpets and rugs. However, incorrect cleaning can cost you time and, more importantly, money. Plus, incorrect cleaning can shorten the life of your carpets and rugs. Spot-cleaning your spills and stains is important, but professional carpet cleaning is the best way to protect your investment.

Tru-Clean Surface Care is a professional carpet, tile, and upholstery cleaning company serving clients throughout SW Florida.  We clean the carpeting in thousands of homes annually, and we’ve seen the mess DIY rental carpet cleaning equipment can leave behind.  In addition to the time it takes to pick up the equipment, clean your carpeting and return the equipment (don’t forget the purchase of the watered-down cleaning agents), clients actually lose money with the DIY yourself method (unless they don’t consider that their time is money). And because of the sub-par cleaning of these machines, we are now seeing property managers ban their use and demand that renters hire professional carpet cleaning companies (receipt required) if they don’t want the cost of a real carpet cleaning subtracted from their security deposit.

Tru-Clean Surface Care is a Certified Partner with the prestigious Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and the International Carpet & Rug Institute (CRI).  We are a WoolSafe Approved Service Provider, A+ Rated by the Better Business Bureau, and an eight-year-in-a-row winner of the coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award.  Our cleaning solutions are allergen free and safe for pets and infants.

If your carpeting can use a thoroughly exhaustive carpet steam cleaning, please consider allowing a professional like Tru-Clean Surface Care to take care of your cleaning needs.  For more information on our company, please visit us online at or check out our Facebook Page at  You can also give us a call any time at 239-541-4888 – Cape Coral and Lee County, 239-206-1935 – Bonita Springs, Naples, and Marco Island, or 941-621-2198 – Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte, Florida.

Video Library

How Much Should A Professional Carpet Cleaning Cost? 

ABC News Undercover Video on Bait and Switch Contractors:

The Benefits Of A Professional Carpet Cleaning: