Are Carpet Cleaning Chemicals Safe for Pets and Humans?

Just like your car, cleaning and upkeep are essential to making sure your cozy-soft carpet continues to look clean and new, smell fresh, and last for years.  Routine maintenance of your carpet will prevent degradation, keeping its beauty, integrity, and health intact.

So how do you ensure your carpet is well taken care of in a way that is safe for your family and pets?

With regular vacuuming and spot cleaning, you’ll probably need to deep clean your carpet no more than every 12-18 months, unless you have an active family with kids or pets and your carpet gets really soiled.

Keep in mind that not all carpet fibers are created equal, so you will want to check with the manufacturer about the type of carpet you have.  Something that works well on polyester might be too harsh and damaging for a wool carpet.

It’s vital to ensure that any carpet cleaning chemicals used in your home are not just human-safe but also harmless to your pets – after all, they are 100% exposed to whatever compounds are used; being so close to the floor, absorbing any residuals through their feet and skin.

The experts advise that it’s best if all cleaners are free from the following:

  • Chlorine that irritates the skin and eyes
  • Ammonia that can cause serious reactions
  • Stain removing ingredients that are chemical solvents
  • Formaldehyde
  • Sodium hydroxide
  • Other potential irritants, such as disinfectants, acids, artificial fragrances and pesticides.

Also, be aware that, in addition to the cleansing ingredients, some carpet cleaning solutions or services also use “guards”, which can be as dangerous. 

Some carpet stain repellents or “guards”, which protect fabrics from stains and other similar issues, may contain plastics and other potentially dangerous ingredients.  For instance, the compound Scotchguard has been shown in recent research to be a persistent organic pollutant containing a suspected hormone disruptor that accumulates in the environment and the tissue of animals and humans.  The product has been on the market for over 40 years but is finally being phased out.  Teflon, however, is still being used in some cleaners to prevent future staining, but is under investigation and best to be avoided.

Always ask about any guards or potentially harmful ingredients when buying a cleaner or hiring a professional service to ensure that the carpet cleaning and treatment process is leaving no toxic residues behind.

Some carpet shampoos used by carpet cleaners will leave a sticky residue on carpet fibers, which is hard to see or feel, but it can make your carpet feel rougher and you may be able to smell it.  The residue tends to attract and latch onto dirt, and not just pets but also children – who crawl and play on carpets – can inhale these residues and get them in their hands, which often go into their mouths.

Some carpet treatments and products, such as dry shampoos, powders, and foams may also linger on carpet fibers.  They are easily inhaled and may irritate airways and cause asthma attacks.  In fact, anti-dust-mite carpet treatments can contain tannic acid or benzyl benzoate known to be skin, eye, and respiratory irritants.  Deodorizing powders frequently contain scents that cause irritation to asthmatic lungs.

You can help reduce risks of irritation or negative reaction by also making sure that you ventilate your home well.  Allow the cleaning product to dry and the room to air out for days afterward ideally before letting pets or others inside.  

Also, take steps to improve air quality while any cleaning products are in use.  During application and while drying, the chemicals in carpet cleaners and guards evaporate and may concentrate in the atmosphere, causing indoor air pollution – which is more likely to happen if the space is not well ventilated, the weather is hot and humid, or the area is damp.

The good news is that there are numerous human- and animal-friendly cleaning products, so do your diligence to find the cleaners, companies and services that use such ingredients.

If you are not going to tackle the job yourself, look for carpet cleaning services that offer either no chemical services or “green” services that rely on eco- and animal-friendly compounds.

Your search for a trustworthy cleaning team of professionals can end right here, with CleanWorks – Lancaster PA’s favorite home services and carpet cleaners.

We stay current with all the research coming out revealing the everyday dangers and toxins in our environment and in our homes, and take measures to ensure our carpet cleaning services are safe so that your pets and kids can stay healthy while breathing in, touching, and playing on your carpets and rugs.

We use products that have been rigorously tested to meet reduced environmental and health concerns, and they are child and pet-friendly. 

Our concern with the health of your home requires the highest level of qualification.  We are certified and backed by insurance, and all of our technicians hold the Institute for Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification.

When searching for carpet cleaning company near me, trust CleanWorks to provide professional residential carpet cleaning and other residential cleaning services that far exceed just the appearance of cleanliness – call us at (717) 509-1453, or schedule an appointment today!