The growing trend towards green cleaning seems to be taking root nationwide. But one area of the home that often gets overlooked when it comes to being environmentally safe are your carpets. For most homeowners, the process of carpet cleaning usually entails contacting the professionals, getting a quote, and leaving it in their capable hands. But if you're not being proactive about green cleaning methods for your floors, you're putting yourself, and your home, at risk. Here are four things you may not know about green carpet cleaning and how it can benefit you.

Better Health for the Whole Family

You're probably aware of why green cleaning is better for the environment. But for many of those same reasons, they're also safer for you and your pets.

Many cleaning agents that are used to dry clean or spot clean carpets contain chemicals called perchloroethylene and naphthalene, substances that are known to cause health problems ranging from headaches and upset stomachs all the way to hemolytic anemia, cancer, and damage to the kidneys and central nervous system.   

Carpet cleaning companies that implement green techniques are aware of this and specifically use products that are organic or plant based, omitting the toxic stuff and leaving behind all-natural ingredients that are safe for you, your children, and your pets.

Less Disruptive to Your Routine

If you've ever hired a professional carpet cleaner, you may know that traditional methods typically involve "steam cleaning." But it's not technically the steam that cleans your carpets. First, the technician will apply a detergent as a pretreatment. Then they'll use a wand to blast hot water into the carpet before vacuuming it up. Because so much water is used, it can take days for your carpets to dry. And if you're cleaning your entire home, that drying process can be expected to take longer. That's because the air in every room becomes filled with moisture, making it difficult for the water in the carpet to evaporate and dry.

Not only that, many companies will advise you to stay out of the home—pets included—until the floors are no longer wet. This is due to the chemicals and fumes given off during the drying process.

Now, you may be thinking that dry cleaning is a good alternative, and perhaps it is if your only concern is having immediate access to your house once the job is done. But remember those methods that use dry cleaning products also have dangerous chemicals that are toxic to you and the environment.

Since staying away from home for a day or two isn't always convenient, you'll be glad to know that with green cleaning methods only a fraction of water is used compared to traditional methods, so your carpets will dry much faster. In fact, many companies claim they only need about two gallons of water per home as opposed to 40 gallons used by other non-green systems. This difference can allow you back into your home in as little as one hour upon completion.

Less Opportunity for Mold Growth

Mold spores are pretty much everywhere, and it takes only 24-48 hours for them to start growing under the right conditions. Here's the thing: the surface of your carpet might feel dry, but the padding underneath could stay wet for days after a steam cleaning. With green methods and less water used, mold growth really becomes a non-issue.

Longer Life for Your Carpet

If you'd like to see your carpets last a while, then green cleaning is your best bet, and here's why. Carpet fibers actually break down bit by bit every time they get wet or are exposed to harsh chemicals. Since green methods use less water and are chemical free, your carpets will last longer. As a matter of fact, it's been estimated that you can get several more years of use out of a carpet that's been "green" cleaned with safe products.

For more information or to schedule a cleaning, contact a professional green carpet cleaning service, such as Southwest Chem-Dry.