Cleaning High-Traffic Carpet Areas – A Quick Guide

Let’s face it: Everyone has those specific spots in their homes where the carpets seem to get dirty time and time again. 

These ‘high traffic’ areas are typically located by exterior doorways, where outside dirt can easily get tracked inside. 

However, these dirtier spots can also be found both inside and outside the interior doorways of your home, as shoes and feet pick up dust and debris from wood or tile floors and carry them across the threshold onto the next room’s carpets. 

Even if you have your carpets regularly cleaned (professional cleanings, performed once every 12 months, can significantly increase the lifespan of your carpets), these high-traffic spots will often become dirty between cleanings.

So what can you do to keep your carpets looking nice?  

Here’s a home remedy you can use when needed, along with the specific steps you can follow to keep those areas clean year-round.  

First, Gather Your Ingredients

First, you’ll need to gather these ingredients.  

The total amount required may vary, depending on how much surface area you’re cleaning. But in general, you’ll want:

  • One cup of warm water
  • One cup of white vinegar
  • Some dish soap (can vary from a few drops up to approximately a teaspoon, depending on how dirty your area is)
  • Baking soda

For larger areas, you can double or triple the recipe to create more. 

Now, let’s talk about the steps required to use your supplies to clean your dirty, high-traffic carpet areas.

Cleaning Your High-Traffic Carpet Area

Step 1: First, thoroughly vacuum the area to be cleaned.  

Remember, dirty carpets are the result of both stained carpet fibers (from mud, slush, or other dirty liquids) and dust and debris that has fallen down between the carpet fibers.  

Using the vacuum on the area will remove most of the debris and leave only the stained fibers to clean.

Step 2: Next, mix the first three ingredients together in a container (like a bucket).  

Mix your warm water, vinegar, and soap together, and transfer them to a clean spray bottle. (Note: Do NOT add baking soda to the mix! You’re going to use that for something else.)

Step 3: Spread a thin layer of baking soda all over the area to be cleaned.

Step 4: Spray your mixture on top of the baking soda—enough to lightly soak the carpet.

Step 5: Leave this to sit for a while.  

You’ll see a chemical reaction between the vinegar and baking soda—some fizzing and/or bubbling.  

This reaction will loosen the stains from the carpet fibers.

Step 6: Next, use a clean towel to gently blot away any visible stains and soak up any remaining liquid.  

Don’t scrub too hard, as this may damage the fibers.

Step 7: Next, use a clean WET cloth to wipe down the area, removing the last traces of your mixture.

Step 8: Use dry clean towels again, to dry the area as much as possible. Then let it air out until completely dry, which may take several hours.

Step 9: Finally, vacuum the area thoroughly once again, to loosen up any carpet fibers that have become matted together.


Following these steps should keep your high-traffic areas clean year-round. And the best part is this natural remedy avoids the use of bleach, so it’s much safer for children and pets!

RCH Professional Cleaning specializes in thorough cleaning services for homes and businesses in Southwest Missouri. 

When you need your carpets professionally cleaned, we can help! 

Contact RCH Cleaning today for more information.

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