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Ask Shrusti: Should You Keep Cleaning Carpet until Water Is Clear?

How do you usually clean your carpet? Undoubtedly, you would want to keep rinsing your carpet until the water is crystal clear during the clean-up process. Black water could mean you haven’t got rid of all the grimes and detergent. 

Over time, your carpet collects dirt and mould, so washing it becomes necessary. An unclean carpet is a home to tiny microbes which can result in allergic reactions and other illnesses. Therefore, for reasons such as these, proper washing of the rug until the water becomes clear is a must. 

Without much delay, let’s dive into the issue in detail and find out why you keep getting murky water and what you can do about it. 

Should I Rinse the Carpet After Shampooing

The shampoo is an effective cleaning solution for cleaning a carpet. Add the desired amount of shampoo and brush on the tough stains and for tougher stains, move the machine back and forth over the stained area many times.

The water foam should be black as the stains come off from the carpet. 

After shampooing, rinse the carpet firmly and repeatedly until you’re sure it is clean and you see clear water. Ensure rinsing the carpet properly so there are no shampoo foams left as it may lead to a build-up of new dirt. 

This process correctly ensures keeping those dirty spots on the carpet clean for a long time.

My Carpet Cleaner Keeps Pulling Dirty Water

It can be a significant concern if the carpet cleaner keeps pulling dirty water and doesn’t change color even after continuous passes. However, it’s nothing alarming. 

There are several reasons why this keeps happening, and there could be an answer. It could probably be because you’re following a wrong cleaning procedure or a severe mold infestation which should be dealt with without further delay.

Another reason could be because some excess residues of detergent are still left on the carpet from your previous washing session. Detergent attracts dirt and, therefore, soils the carpet.

Another explanation could be the coloring used in the carpet-cleaning solution and not because the water is dirty.

When Is a Carpet Too Dirty to Clean

Carpet adds beauty to your home, and it is essential to clean it at least once a week and have it cleaned by experts at least once a year to extend its life and prevent health conditions. 

The more people you have walking over the carpet at home, the more it becomes dirty. And this may result in staining the rug, leading to wear and tear. 

A carpet is too dirty to clean if you observe the following signs.

  • You haven’t cleaned the carpet in about a year. 
  • You’re experiencing allergy reactions.
  • It looks dry and dirty.
  • It has visible spots. 
  • It has permanent stains.
  • It has an unwanted lingering odor.
  • It has gone through much wear and tear.
  • It has worn-out padding.

How Many Times Should I Rinse My Carpet

How often you should rinse your carpet depends on whether the water collected in your carpet cleaner is clear. If the water is still black, you should make another pass and continue until you’re confident it’s clean. 

Proper rinsing ensures that your carpet is deep-cleaned and you have removed all the dirt and shampoo left. Detergent foams in the carpet attract grimes, which can further mess up the carpet. 


However, you should note that the more you rinse your carpet, the more you’re doing it harm due to the excess moisture. As a result, the rug will take longer to dry, leading to mold formation on the padding resulting in several health issues.

Therefore, over-rinsing can spoil your carpet padding, attracting even more grime and eventually staining your rug on drying. 

My Carpet Cleaning Water Is Black

Typically, your carpet cleaning water is black during the washing process, and the filth comes off your carpet when you cleanse it.

Anyhow, suppose the cleaning water is still dirty after numerous passes. In that case, it could mean something wrong, such as a severe mold infestation, or you’re not doing it right.

Let’s look into some of the many reasons why your cleaning water is black.

You Are Rushing The Cleaning Process

It’s not wise to rush while cleaning your carpet. Run the cleaning machine gradually over the rug covering all areas. 

Make sure you wait for the cleaning solution to spread over the carpet. Likewise, work unhurriedly to cover all spots when removing the detergent and rinse your carpet repetitively until the water clears.

You’re Missing Some Spots

While cleaning, you should be meticulous in your work and not miss all the carpet spots. Be methodical and slow while working with your cleaner on the rug.

Rather than cleaning the carpet in a straight line, opt for a diagonal pattern. Rinse and continue this pattern until it is thoroughly cleaned. 

You’re Leaving Excess Foam

Your cleaning water is still black even after continuous passes because you’re leaving a lot of foam behind. Using a solid mixture of cleaning solution creates more foam, which helps remove grimes off your carpet.

After cleaning, move your cleaning machine slowly to suck in the foam completely as dirt particles attach to it and make the water black.

You May Have a Mold in The Padding

Another reason can be mould build-up in the padding. Having molds in the carpet padding will make the water black even after repeated rinsing. 

Molds result from dampness or over-wetting of the carpet; if this is not checked immediately, it’ll create health issues. Get your carpet replaced or take the help of an expert to handle this mold infestation.

Will Water Ever Be Clean

Yes, the water will eventually be clean after you have removed all the dirt and shampoo from the carpet and rinsed thoroughly. You will need to make continuous passes to achieve clear water.

Passes Needed to Clean Carpet

It’s a general rule that while cleaning your carpet, you should keep making repeated passes with the cleaner till you obtain clear water. Hence, perform the cleaning process properly and operate your carpet cleaner precisely as recommended to achieve the potential outcome. 

Failure to follow the correct cleaning method will result in unpleasant conditions where you have no option but to dispose of the carpet, which isn’t something you wish. 

How to Get Clear Water Faster when Cleaning Carpet?

First, ensure washing your carpet following the correct procedure by slowly operating the cleaning machine over the carpet from north to south, east to west. This multi-direction method ensures that you don’t miss out on any spots. 

Follow the same method for removing the detergent. Once done, take your vacuum to suck up all excess moisture. If you do as suggested, you’ll have clear water faster when cleaning carpet.

Wrapping Up

Hopefully, this article on ‘do you keep cleaning carpet until water is clear?’ answers all your questions on cleaning your carpet. 

Following the cleaning techniques discussed here in this post will make you realise that your carpet is deep-cleaned when you see clear water collected in your carpet cleaner while rinsing, which means you’ve washed away the dirt from the rug and have a dirt-free carpet again.