Do you think it's worth the time to just purchase a carpet steam cleaner instead of renting one? Recommend any good models?
To give you my comment, I will offer my experience in floor maintenance. In your case it's carpet maintenance. You asked if it's worth your time to purchase a carpet steam cleaner instead of renting one. It depends on your need for the tool. The areas where the carpet is, do you entertain in that area and the floor has to look good? Or do you have lightly colored carpet and it gets dirty frequently? Do you need the machine one time? It's up to you if want the convenience of keeping one in the closet or renting when you need it. For further opinions, ask you steam cleaner sales person.
I'd like to ad that a steam cleaning machine is not recommended. Many carpet manufacturers recommend professional hot water extraction as the most effective carpet cleaning method. Actual steam could damage man-made carpet fibers or shrink natural fibers such as wool. I say research the subject, google carpet cleaning, click on wikipedia. I just read it. I agree with their suggestions. Happy carpet cleaning.
I have the Bissell Big Green Machine at home. It is much better than the typical Hoover type models.
Big Green Machine
You would have to answer that question. If you have a ton of rentals with carpet in them then it might be a worthwhile investment if you don't have many then it might be cheaper and less headache to just pay a company whenever you need it done.
The girlfriend and I bounced ideas around. We decided to just rent one for the time being--one of those rug doctors that they have at Ingles--but we'll probably look back into the question after we buy our first property. I think, like @Chris K. points out, it'll come down to a decision on which is worth more to us at that time, the money savings or the time savings.
I've had the Bissell carpet cleaner and it worked pretty well. If the foundation was concrete, I would actually bring a garden hose into house to add more water. The more water you put down, the more dirt you'll get up. (I would never attempt this with a wood subfloor.)
With the extra water, a Bissell cleaner works pretty well. However I believe a steam cleaner is far better than a DIY job. I've used Stanley Steamer twice and I now I couldn't duplicate the results. It seems to be reasonably priced as well. It also shows professionalism when welcoming new tenants to say the carpets have been cleaned (and sanitized) by steam.
I totally respect the DIY, but sometimes it's better to pay.
i find all units you can rent or purchase to be worthless other than the large commercial grade/truck mount units. you just dont get the same product when you are done. make a deal with a local service and you will be well ahead of the game in how clean your floors are and in money spent to maintain equipment. or maybe even start your own cleaning biz on the side to service yourself and others in town. if done well seems it could be a money maker in some cities.
I would suggest renting a Bissell Big Green Machine the next time you get a chance vs. the Rug Doctor. The RD is difficult to use and does not clean as well. For the $400 the Bissell costs online it is a good tool to have as a landlord. It has more than paid for itself several times over vs. paying a professional. The tenants call me and let me know if they want to borrow it and I let them as many times as they want if they are willing to do the work for me. It comes with a 5 year warranty so don't worry about any repair costs. The unit they sell retail vs. renting is exactly the same except the rental has an time meter.
Disclaimer: I actually work for Bissell and know more about carpet cleaning than most people and obviously I lean towards our machines vs. others but try both and see for yourself.
Not promoting anything just giving my opinion as I have tried several machines.
Let me know if you have any other questions.
For years we have shared an old Rug Dr., we shared with a friend & it was great for dirty disgusting apartments etc. However, the $400 big green Bissell we bought is much lighter, a better design (both tanks are removable) & is very effective on the home front (grand children spills) regardless of carpet thickness. The attachment for stairs is also far superior than those of the Rug Dr. However, as we continue to eliminate carpets in our rentals it will be rarely used.
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