The soft, snuggly feel of carpet is lovely, especially on a cold winter's day. However, dust and dirt have a habit of making themselves at home deep within carpet fibres. In addition, carpet stains can ruin the look of your plush, clean carpet.

Take this quiz to learn some handy carpet cleaning tips.

1. What is used to remove red wine stains from carpet?
a) white wine b) soda water c) salt

2. How do you know when it is time for a professional deep-cleaning on your carpet?
a) carpet feels sticky or there are marks on it  b) carpet is faded   c) carpet feels soft

3. What can be used to raise depressions left in carpets by heavy furniture?

a) an iron b) a fork c) a comb

4. When vacuuming your carpet, how many times should you go over the same spot?

a) once   b) twice  c) several

5. What is the number one rule when cleaning stains from your carpet?

a) clean from the middle outwards b) Only use a clean towel to clean the spill c) clean the spill immediately

6. What should you avoid doing when trying to lift a stain from your carpet?

a) wetting the stain  b) scrubbing the stain  c) drying the stain


1) a and c First dilute the red wine stain with white wine. Then clean the spot with cold water and cover the stain with table salt. Allow the salt to absorb the stain, leaving it for about 10 minutes. Then vacuum up the salt.

2) a If your carpet feels sticky or is matted, if it is a different colour to the swatch you originally looked at, if there are grimy marks around the chair legs or if you see dust emerging from the carpet when you walk on it, it is probably time for a deep-cleaning job. This will require a machine to shampoo and rinse the carpet properly.

3)  a Hold a steam iron close enough to the carpet that the steam reaches the carpet but that the iron doesn't make contact with the carpet fibres. After steaming the fibres, lift them by scraping the edge of a coin or spoon over them.

4) c Pass over each section of carpet several times and move the vacuum slowly to allow the suction to remove dirt deeply embedded in the carpet, especially in plush carpets.

5) c Clean the stain immediately. You have a better chance of completely removing the stain if you tackle it immediately.

6) b Try not to rub or scrub the stain as this can lead to creating a larger stain or permanently damaging the fibres.