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Carpet Cleaning Hot Water Extraction - All you Need to Know

hot water extraction carpet cleaning
December 21, 2022

Even if you vacuum your carpets regularly and take good care of them, they will accumulate dust, dirt, and bacteria over time. As a result, they may not only appear dull and lifeless but also smell bad. This is especially true if you have a pet at home.

One of the best ways to keep your carpets fresh and tidy is to have them professionally cleaned at least once a year. Professional carpet cleaners have the necessary equipment and know the best cleaning methods to successfully remove stubborn stains, surface dirt and bad odour from your carpets.

Carpet cleaning companies usually offer a variety of cleaning methods. A highly effective approach and one that makes the industry stand out is hot water extraction cleaning. It is quick, easy, and usually produces better results than other cleaning methods.

Here, we'll go over what hot water extraction carpet cleaning is, how it's done, and how you can benefit from it. We will also compare this cleaning method to other commonly used carpet cleaning techniques such as steam cleaning and dry cleaning. So, please continue reading!

What is hot water extraction carpet cleaning?

Hot water extraction is a carpet cleaning method that uses a special machine, warm water, and a powerful cleaning agent to remove all dust and dirt from the carpet. When compared to regular steam cleaning and dry cleaning, this method is thought to be more effective. This is due to the fact that hot water extraction combines the power of machine pressure, cleaning detergent, and high temperatures.

This cleaning technique can eliminate even the toughest stains and extract dirt that has been set deep within the carpet fibres. The hot temperature used during the cleaning process will kill all germs and bacteria that might be accumulated on your carpet. The detergent will help break down all stubborn stains and dirt which then will be picked up by the professional cleaning machine.

Hot water extraction is the preferred method by many people since it is quick, eco-friendly and much more effective than steam cleaning or traditional cleaning with rented equipment.

How is hot water extraction cleaning done?

The hot water extraction cleaning process consists of a few steps which include preparation, extraction and final inspection.

The following is a detailed explanation of what you should expect if you hire a professional hot water extraction cleaning company.


Hot water extraction cleaning always starts with pre-inspection and preparation of the carpet. The specialists should first carefully examine the fabric, determine the type of fibres, identify any stains and decide which detergent is best for treating the surface. Pre-inspection is a very important step of the process because using an unsuitable cleaning solution can ruin your carpet.

After the examination, the specialists will proceed to vacuum. This step is essential for eliminating loose soil, debris, pet hair and dander and larger particles. Carpet cleaning companies usually have professional equipment and will use a more powerful vacuum cleaner, not just a regular domestic vacuum.

After getting rid of the particles, the technicians will apply a cleaning agent which will work deep into the pile. Such treatment will help break down dirt particles and bacteria and also ensure the complete removal of treatable stains. Any tough spots such as those from red wine, oil or pet urine may need to be treated with special stain removal products.

Hot water extraction

Once the carpet has been vacuumed and treated for stains, the professionals will start the actual hot water extraction process. For this purpose, they will use a special type of carpet cleaning machine (hot water extraction machine) that generates heat, water pressure and suction.

The hot water extraction system works by pumping a hot cleaning solution (clean water mixed with special cleaning detergent) into the carpet. You can usually see the steam from this hot solution as this tool comes across the carpet.

The front part of the hot water extraction machine sucks out the solution with a high-power vacuum and then stores the dirt in a recovery tank. The technology is also equipped with special strips which help remove as much moisture as possible leaving your carpet fresh and clean.

Once the heat treatment is completed, your carpet will need between 6 and 12 hours to dry completely.

Final inspection

At the end of the hot water extraction carpet cleaning, the technicians will invite you for a second walk-through to verify complete satisfaction with the job.

Pros and Cons of Hot Water extraction cleaning

Here we will list some of the advantages and disadvantages of using the hot water extraction method.


  • It provides thorough and deeper cleaning. This offer better outcomes than other carpet cleaning methods such as traditional steam cleaning, carpet shampooing or dry cleaning.
  • It can eliminate odour. This cleaning approach will refresh the carpet pile from head to toe, leaving it stain and odour free. It can also improve the air quality and help you avoid allergies and other health problems.
  • It offers non-toxic and eco-friendly cleaning. This approach can be environmentally friendly if the right cleaning solutions are used. There are many carpet cleaning companies that work only with non-toxic products.
  • It doesn't leave any residues. Unlike other cleaning methods, hot water extraction cleans the carpet 100%. The water-detergent ratio is strongly in favour of water. As a result, it is able to rinse the carpet fibres properly without leaving chemical residue behind.


  • This carpet cleaning approach might be not suitable for all types of carpets. It is best not to try DIY hot water extraction since it may damage your carpets. Always work with professionals. They will inspect your carpet and determine whether hot water extraction or other cleaning method is best to use.
  • There is a possibility for mould growth if the carpet hasn't been left to dry properly. After cleaning, the carpet must be left to dry completely otherwise the moisture can cause mould to grow.

Make sure that you hire a professional carpet cleaning company to get your carpet cleaned. The cleaner specialists have the tools and skills to safely remove all dirt and stains from your carpets.

Which is the best carpet cleaning method?

For years, steam cleaning has been claimed to be one of the most effective carpet cleaning methods. However, recently hot water extraction has been growing a lot in popularity. This is one of the new arsenals in professional carpet cleaning and is been considered to provide better results than traditional steam cleaning. This is because this technique uses the powerful effects of hot water, cleaning detergent and high pressure.

However, steam cleaning and dry cleaning are still widely used and highly effective methods. But how they are different from hot water extraction? What benefits and drawbacks do they offer? Here you can learn more about that.

Carpet steam cleaning vs Hot water extraction

Carpet steam cleaning and hot water extraction usually seem to be very similar, however, they are two different cleaning processes. The main differences between them are the water temperature and cleaning solutions used during the treatment.

Steam carpet cleaning uses water that is heated to boiling point so that it evaporates. This approach does not involve the use of a cleaning solution, instead, it relays only on steam. Hot water extraction, on the other hand, uses water that is hot enough to clean carpets but does not create steam. In addition, it includes the use of cleaning products which is why it might be more effective for stain removal.

Pros and cons of steam cleaning

Here are some benefits of steam carpet cleaning.

  • It is a relatively safe cleaning method.
  • It leaves no residue on the carpet.
  • No harsh chemicals are used during the cleaning.
  • It is very efficient in eliminating dirt, dust, and debris, and sanitizing the carpets.

These are some disadvantages of the technique.

  • It requires proper drying time.
  • This option might be not suitable for all types of carpets.

Dry carpet cleaning vs Hot water extraction

Dry carpet cleaning is quite different from hot water extraction. As its name suggests, dry cleaning does not involve the use of water. In addition, no liquid detergents or complex cleaning agents are used in the process. Instead, it uses cleaning powder to refresh the carpet surface.

Pros and cons of dry cleaning

Here are some of the benefits of dry carpet cleaning.

  • It poses less risk of carpet damage.
  • It is a quick method that saves time.
  • It doesn't require drying time.
  • It uses fewer chemicals and thus poses no health risks.

However, this cleaning technique comes with some disadvantages as well.

  • It may leave residue behind.
  • It can be ineffective if done by non-professionals.
  • In this method, the carpet is not cleaned from the bottom, only the top layer of dirt is removed.


Is hot water extraction good for carpets?

Yes, it is one of the best carpet cleaning methods. It not only treats the surface of the carpet but also penetrates deep into the carpet fibres to eliminate all dust and dirt that have accumulated. In addition to carpets, the technique is great for cleaning upholstery.

How long does it take for carpet to dry after hot water extraction?

Your carpet will need a long time to dry, about 6 to 12 hours after it has been cleaned through hot water extraction. However, how much time your carpet will need to completely dry depends on the type of material and its thickness as well as the weather conditions in your location.

Is hot water extraction better than steam cleaning?

In most cases, hot water extraction provides better results than other methods such as steam cleaning and dry cleaning. Using hot water and detergent with high pressure makes the cleaning approach very effective. It can be an ideal choice when it comes to cleaning carpets and upholstery.

How hot is hot water extraction carpet cleaning?

Depending on the heat available from the cleaning unit, the solution comes into contact with the carpet at a temperature between 50 and 120 degrees Celsius.

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