Carpet cleaning rental machines are everywhere.

At the moment, most supermarkets have an area dedicated to offering a well known brand of machine and its associated cleaning products.

But is it worth renting out one of these machines to clean your own carpets?

The problems with DIY carpet cleaning

DIY carpet cleaning rental machines can appear a tempting proposition.

You can pick one up on a whim, you don’t have to wait for an appointment, and the marketing suggests that they’re easy to use and will achieve good results.

Unfortunately, this rarely proves to be true. There are many potential pitfalls associated with renting a carpet cleaning machine.


An increasing percentage of our work these days entails rectifying damage caused by rental machines used in the home. This is often due to the machines over-wetting a customer’s carpet and causing excessive drying times and a damp, mouldy odour.

This is in part due to operator error, but it is also often due to insufficient vacuum power to extract the excess moisture that has been put into the carpet.

On some occasions, over-wetting can cause a permanent odour due to the water seeping into the underlay of the carpet, making it a breeding ground for bacteria and germs.

Carpet shrinkage

A carpet can shrink due to several reasons. Over-wetting is one such culprit. As is cleaning the wrong type of carpet with the wrong method and chemicals. Another cause is cleaning a natural carpet that isn’t correctly secured and gripped down.

These are all issues that a professional carpet cleaner should be experienced enough to avoid.

Ineffective stain removal

The vast majority of people who operate rental machines simply don’t have any basic stain removal knowledge.

This means that when using the chemicals that are sold with a supermarket rental machine, most common carpet stains are often treated incorrectly.

A professional carpet cleaning company will carry multiple specialist stain removal products that are effective and safe to use on your carpet.

Hidden costs

At first glance, DIY machines can appear an enticing deal.

Indeed, you may be able to rent a machine for a headline price of as little as £30.

But is that the actual real cost?

Well, in addition to the rental fee, you’ll also need a bottle of basic cleaning solution that will cost around £15. And then for heavy traffic areas such as hallways, you’ll need an additional chemical at a cost of £5.

And what about ‘pet stains?’ For those, you’ll need a urine product that will cost another £5.

Add a bottle of £5 spot and stain remover and you’re nearly set.

But wait… to avoid being held responsible for damage to the machine you’ll need to pick up a bottle of ‘anti-foam.’

And don’t forget your bottle of ‘odour remover’ to try and eliminate the musty odour caused by damp carpets!

In reality, an average supermarket hire ends up costing around £70, only to achieve a very poor result and risk permanently damaging your carpets.

Not such a great investment after all.

Why you should hire a professional

A professional carpet cleaning company (look out for NCCA membership) will have invested in professional training, equipment and cleaning solutions. They will also hold full insurance to remove any risk from the transaction.

And with years of experience of cleaning carpets, they’re going to achieve results that a supermarket rental machine simply cannot match.

If you’d like to discuss your carpet cleaning requirements, or you’d jutst like some friendly advice, call us today on 07887 842821.