Shag carpet, once thought of as an outdated relic of the 70's, is making a comeback. Putting a shag carpet in your living room or bedroom is a fun way to set your home apart, but there is one thing you need to be aware of: it's not the easiest to maintain. The long fibers are great at trapping dirt an moisture, and they fray easily if you're not careful when you clean them. Don't let this dissuade you from your dreams of owning a shag carpet. Just follow these tips to maintain it properly.

Hire a professional to shampoo the carpet.

Home carpet shampooers work well for traditional carpets, but they're not a great choice for shag carpeting. They're just not powerful enough to suck water out of the long fibers. Clean your shag carpet with a home carpet shampooer, and it will likely stay too moist and develop mold. Professionals have powerful extractors that will make sure all of the water and dirt are removed from deep within the carpet. If you live in a moist environment where it's expected that your carpet may take a long time to dry, they may even bring in big, industrial fans to speed the process along.

Be careful with vacuum brushes.

Your instinct may be to lower the brushes on your vacuum to make sure it combs through those long fibers properly. But while this might get your carpet clean, it can also cause the shag fibers to fray. A better strategy is to leave the brushes on the vacuum at a higher setting, but go over the carpet several times for a more thorough cleaning. Go left to right, back to front, and diagonally. This way, the fibers will "lay down" in each direction, allowing you to more effectively clean each side of them.

When cleaning up spills, part the carpet.

If you ever spill something on the carpet, the best way to address the spill is to "part" the carpet (like you'd part your hair) and then blot up the spill. Part the carpet an inch or so over from the original part, and then repeat the blotting process. Do this several times until you've blotted the entire spill area. This is more effective than trying to rub at the spill, and will ensure you remove the liquid from deep beneath the fibers—not just from the surface.

For more information or assistance, contact services like Parker Floor Covering.