How Much Does Carpet Cleaning Cost?

Common Range: $40 – $125 Per Room (up t0 250 sqft)

National Average: $75 Per Room

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Updated: June 8, 2022, by: Steve Hansen

Cost Range for Carpet Cleaning

The average cost of carpet cleaning is $0.33 per square foot, which comes to about $28 to $72 per room based on room size and what treatments are applied. Most homeowners pay a price that is between $260 and $550 for carpet cleaning in a 3 bedroom home.

Expect to pay about $300 to have 1,000 square feet of carpet cleaned when the carpeting is in average condition with minor stain treatment needed. Cost can be a little lower when the carpet is in good condition with few stains – or significantly higher when heavily soiled with larger stains.

Average Costs

Average Do It Yourself Cost
$35 – $70 
Average Professional Carpet Cleaning Cost
$260 – $550
Typical Cost Average
$40 – $120 Per Room

professional cleaning a carpet

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Overview of Carpet Cleaning

Carpeting experts tell us that regular carpet cleaning is the best way to prevent wear from ground-in dirt that shortens the life of the carpeting and dulls its appearance, requiring you to replace your carpet sooner. Most recommend weekly vacuuming and having carpet professionally deep-cleaned one or two times per year. It’s one of the most popular indoor projects for homeowners planning to entertain during the holiday season – or those who find their carpets need attention after entertaining.

Did you know? Most carpeting warranties require you to have professional steam cleaning done at least once per year. The technical term for this cleaning is “hot water extraction.” It’s a good idea to keep receipts for cleaning, so that if you have to make a warranty claim, you can document that you’ve followed the warranty’s guidance on cleaning.

This Costimate covers carpet cleaning cost, cost factors, a sampling of pricing from other estimating site and costs submitted by other homeowners. If you’re planning to have a pro clean your carpet soon, consider bookmarking this page to return and share your cost for the benefit of other readers.

Costs for carpet cleaner rental and prices for buying your own machine and supplies are included too.

Carpet Cleaning Cost Factors

Our estimate of $28 to $72 per room is based on cleaning the carpeting in an entire home. Cost is higher when just a few rooms are cleaned. Home Guide suggests $25 – $70 per room with an average cost of $0.25 per square foot, which seems accurate only if a large quantity of carpeting is cleaned. Home Advisor suggests cost per square foot to clean carpeting as low as $0.18, but that seems low, especially if any additional treatments are applied.

When hiring a professional carpet cleaner for the work, costs will be based on these factors.

  • Who Does the Work – You’ll save quite a lot by renting a carpet cleaner and doing the work. Even buying a quality machine will pay for itself over time as you DIY instead of hiring a pro. However, keep in mind the concerns mentioned below about doing it yourself.
  • Amount of Carpet – Obviously, the more carpet you have, the higher the total price will be. However, cost per square foot usually goes down and the amount of carpeting goes up. If you’re only doing one room, expect a minimum fee of at least $75 to cover the company’s expenses for travel and time. For example, Homewyse estimates that having just on 10×10 room (100 square feet) cleaned will cost up to $130, or $1.30 per square foot, while cleaning a 1,000 square feet reduces the price to as little as $0.26, or 26 cents, per square foot. One major cleaning chain charges $99 for one room of any size, but just $119 for two rooms and $159 for three.
  • Does Furniture Need to be Moved? – If the carpet cleaner company needs to move some or all the furniture out of the room for the cleaning, it’s going to add to the cost.
  • Deodorizing and Protecting – When you add these services, expect additional costs in the range of $25 to $40 per room depending on how many rooms are included. Protecting the carpet usually entails applying Scotchgard or similar material, while deodorizing is done with chemical agents sprayed or sprinkled onto the carpet before the hot water extraction process.
  • Stairways, Hallways, Entryways – These are typically treated as a room, though some companies charge a little higher cost for stairways.
  • Carpet Condition – Some carpet cleaning companies provide an approximate estimate with a little wiggle room for heavily soiled carpet and for treating large or numerous stains.
  • Where you Live – The same chain charging $159 for three rooms in the Chicago area charges just $139 in Tulsa, OK and $300 in NYC. This shows costs increase or decrease with the general cost of living for the area.
  • Apartment Buildings – Most steam cleaning equipment is truck-based. If you live on the third floor or above, mobile equipment might be required, and costs can as much as double. This can also be true if you live in an inter-city area where parking isn’t guaranteed.
  • Time of Year – Everyone wants clean and fresh carpeting when guests are expected for the holidays. You might pay higher cleaning costs during this peak season – or you might find you can’t get on the schedule if you wait too long.
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Rental and Retail Carpet Cleaners

If you DIY, your options are renting a carpet cleaner or buying your own. Keep in mind that neither of those options will satisfy the strictest carpet warranties.

  • $30 – $100+ | Carpet Cleaner Rental per half-day or day. The cost is often based on the quality and performance of the machine. For example, Ace Hardware rents a non-steam residential-grade carpet cleaner for $30 per day in most locations while Sunbelt Rentals offers a steam cleaner for $95 per day.
  • $90 – $400 | Retail Cost for Non-heated, Residential-grade Carpet Cleaners. Popular options like the Bissell Big Green ($399) carpet cleaner.
  • $200 – $600 | Retail Cost for Residential-grade Carpet Cleaners with Heat. The Bissell ProHeat Series ($229-$299).
  • $1,000 – $3,500 | Retail Cost for Pro-grade Hot Water Extraction Carpet Cleaner.
  • $10 – $30 per gallon| Carpet Cleaning Solution

Sample Carpet Cleaning Project Costs

Cleaning costs on the low end are for cleaning only. Higher costs include carpet treatments like deodorizing and Scotchgard protection. These estimates are based on actual quotes for professional steam cleaning, i.e., hot water extraction cleaning. Here are average carpet cleaning costs per home size.

  • 1-3 rooms, up to 1,000 square feet: $100 minimum fee to $450
  • 4-6 rooms, up to 2,000 square feet: $350 – $750
  • 6+ rooms up to 3,000 square feet: $525 – $950+

Permits, Inspection, Related Costs and Installation Time

Permits and Inspection Cost

  • $0 | No permit is required to have carpets cleaned

Carpet Cleaning Time

Carpet cleaners charge per room or by the number of floors rather than by the hour. The process goes pretty quickly.

  • 1-2 Hours | Set up and clean up to 3 rooms
  • 3-5 Hours | All carpeting in most 2-bedroom to 3-bedroom homes
  • 6-8 Hours | Most larger homes with stairs
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We’ve found the projects listed below to be commonly related to carpet cleaning and home maintenance.

Are You a Pro Carpet Cleaner?

If so, head over to our Costimates Pro’s page, and help us make this page better and more accurate for both our visitors and your future customers.

DIY or Hire a Pro?

Carpet cleaning is something many homeowners tackle as part of annual maintenance or more often if they have pets and small children. Simply remember that your carpet’s warranty might depend on having the carpeting professionally cleaned using hot water extraction technology.

In terms of a machine, you get what you pay for. Whether renting or purchasing your own carpet cleaning equipment, we recommend choosing a quality steam or hot water machine. Frankly, cheap carpet cleaners aren’t strong enough to extract dirt from deep in carpet fibers. And they won’t remove stubborn allergens trapped in the carpet, a must for those with allergies, asthma and other breathing problems.

Here’s a tip from allergists: If you’re cleaning your carpeting because of persistent allergies, consider hard surface flooring like genuine wood flooring or more affordable laminate flooring the next time your carpeting needs replacement. Many solid surface types are Certified Asthma and Allergy Friendly.

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Compare Costs from Leading Resources

  • HomeGuide: $25 - $70, Per Room, or .25 cents per square foot
  • HomeAdvisor: $25 - $75, Per Room, or flat rate of $75 to $125 per room
  • Fixr: $40 - $70, For Each Room up to 250 Sqft
  • HomeWyse: $110 - $135, To Clean a 250 Square Foot Room
  • Thumbtack: $80 - $300, Per Room, Depending on Obstacles ands type of Cleaning
  • Yelp: $20 - $80, Per Room

Common Questions and Answers

Does DIY Carpet Cleaning Work as Well as Professional Cleaning?

In most cases, no. Professional carpet cleaners have much more powerful cleaning systems and access to far better chemicals than you'll find at most places that rent you a carpet cleaner.

How Often Should You Have Your Carpets Cleaned?

In most cases, you want to have your carpets cleaned at least once per year. If you have very low traffic areas, such as a bedroom that's no longer in use, it can go 2 years between cleaning.

How Long Does it Take for a Carpet to Dry After Being Cleaned?

A carpet will usually dry within 8-12 hours after cleaning. If you have high humidity or low air circulation, it could take up to 24 hours to dry completely.

What Do I Need to Do Before the Carpet Cleaners Arrive?

Before carpet cleaners arrive, it's best to declutter the areas as much as possible. Pick up anything off the floor, setup an area to secure your pets if you have them, etc. Ideally, the carpet cleaners will come in, clear out the area as needed, before vacuuming and cleaning the carpet.

Reviewed and Edited by Steve Hansen of Costimates

steve hansen of costimates-sm Steve Hansen is the Lead Editor of Costimates. (Learn more) An avid home improvement professional with more than 35 years experience in both DIY projects and working as a construction foreman in residential new home building, upfits, repairs and remodeling.

"Like most homeowners, I became frustrated with the lack of quality information available on specific home improvement repairs and renovations. In 2015, Costimates was formed to help homeowners learn as much as possible about various projects and their costs so they could make better financial decisions."