For most homeowners, carpet cleaning can be a very tedious task. It is not enough that you spend a long time vacuuming your carpet; you also need to take special maintenance and care procedures to make sure that it stays in excellent condition.If you are a new carpet owner, here are the basic carpet cleaning tips that you should always keep in mind.When you buy a carpet for your home for the first time, the carpet has been initially treated with a chemical known as a soil retardant. Soil retardants serve as a protective coating on your brand new carpet. It helps prevent dust and dirt from sinking deep between the carpet fibers, so that it is easier to vacuum. It also accords some protection against the stains caused by spills. However, you need to clean up all spills immediately before it could be absorbed completely by the fibers. Soil retardants have a life span of 2 to 3 months. If you want to preserve your carpet after this period, you need to take it to the cleaners for new retardant to be applied.The rule of thumb is that carpets should be vacuumed weekly. However, carpets that see heavy traffic need to be vacuumed more frequently. When you vacuum your carpet, you remove all the gritty particles that have sunk deep and which could cut the fibers. The right way to vacuum your carpet is by first doing forward and backward vertical strokes before doing overlapping strokes in a crisscross pattern. This will help to get most of the dirt out. Never rush vacuuming your carpet. You have to work slowly and thoroughly to suck out all that dust and dirt that have sunk deep.If you have wall-to-wall carpeting, it is best to divide the carpet into sections. To make it more convenient for you and so that you won’t miss a spot, you can use masking tape to divide the carpet into quadrants. Make sure that you vacuum one section thoroughly before moving to the next part.It should be mentioned that dust and dirt don’t just come from people’s feet or shoes. Sometimes, dirt can come from furniture or other appliances that you have sitting on top of the carpet. Prior to cleaning your carpet, dust of all furniture and appliances. Standing electric fans and radiators can gather quite a lot of dust which can fall on your carpet. Use a crevice tool to clean up baseboards and other areas that are hard to reach. Once you have finished cleaning all of these furnishings, you can proceed vacuuming your carpet.So that your carpet will not get any odors, fill your vacuum bag with baking soda. The vacuum will disperse the baking soda into your carpet and it will absorb any odors. You can also make your own homemade carpet freshener. Simply combine 1 teaspoon each of baking soda, ground cloves and cinnamon with 1 cup of crushed dried herbs (such as lavender, rosemary or southernwood). Sprinkle all over your carpet and let it stay for an hour. Vacuum it away afterwards.Learn more basic carpet cleaning tips today!