Vinegar is safe and effective for cleaning carpets and rugs. Using vinegar will save you money, as a gallon of vinegar costs much less than manufactured carpet cleaners. Different vinegar to water ratios are used depending on the type of cleaning your carpet needs.
Remove small carpet spots by filling a spray bottle with 1 part vinegar and 5 parts water. Spray the spot and allow the vinegar solution to soak for a few minutes before rubbing it with a clean cloth. Repeat the process until the spot is gone.
Deep, set-in stains and dirt are removed with a solution of 1 part salt, 1 part borax and 4 parts vinegar. Dissolve the salt and borax in the vinegar. Rub the mixture into the stain and allow it to dry, then vacuum. For tough stains, reapply the solution until the stain is gone.
Restore dingy and worn carpets by mixing 1 part vinegar with 16 parts water. Dip a clean broom in the solution and brush the carpet. Avoid walking on the carpet until it dries. The carpet threads will perk up and the vinegar will help prevent mildew from forming in the carpet.
Use 1 cup vinegar for every gallon of water in a machine carpet cleaner. Do not use chemical carpet cleaners with the vinegar solution. Deep clean the carpets using the manufacturer's instructions.