How often should you vacuum carpet? Expert advice to avoid overdoing it

Here's what the experts suggest is a regular vacuum cleaning routine for carpets to keep your floors spotless while making sure you're not overdoing it

Green living room, grey sofa, carpet
(Image credit: Carpetright)

It might not be everybody's favorite cleaning task, but there really is a certain number of times we should be vacuuming our carpets every month. 

The best vacuum cleaners can dig deep into carpets, removing all the dust and dirt that builds up from our home activities. Any home with pets should listen closely, and if you wear shoes indoors you might need to be vacuuming more often than you realize.

Read on for our expert advice on how often you should be vacuuming your carpets.

Carpet trends 2020

(Image credit: Cormar Carpets)

How often should you vacuum carpet?

'On average it’s best to run the vacuum round at least once per week,' explains Michael Witherspoon, cleaning expert from GK Products. But as with any cleaning routine, understanding how often you should vacuum carpet largely depends on your home activity.

'The frequency will depend on a number of factors, including whether you have pets, whether shoes are worn in the house, the type of carpet you have fitted, and what the room is used for,' Michael adds.

An example is if you have rooms where young kids might be crawling around. In this case, you might prefer vacuuming a couple times a day, so that you're removing any dirt that they could be putting in their mouths. On the other hand, for a room that isn't used very often and it's rare for shoes to be worn, a weekly vacuum will be enough to remove any built-up dust.

Tina Priestly, owner of Ready, Set, Refresh, agrees: 'I recommend vacuuming at least once a week to keep those pesky dirt, dust, and mystery particles at bay. You'd be surprised how quickly they accumulate, especially if you have a busy household or pets roaming around.'

Vintage-style hallway with blue console table, antique chair, textured carpet and colorful rug


Vacuuming regularly is more important than keeping your carpets looking fresh. Letting dust and dirt build up 'may result in bacteria growing, resulting in potential health issues for those that use the room and lasting damage to your carpet,' Michael says. 

'Dirt may also stain the carpet, making it harder to remove and clean in the future,' Michael adds. If you have pets, not vacuuming regularly will inevitably lead to pet hair being embedded into the fibers of your carpet, making it much more difficult to clean down the line.

You can also limit how quickly dust mites reproduce by vacuuming regularly. Dust mites predominantly feed off our skin cells, and if left unattended, they'll reproduce around your home, causing allergies and spreading their own messes in the process. Vacuuming regularly removes both dust mites and the skin cells that they feed on.

Luckily, carpets are durable, and there isn't really a danger of vacuuming too often. 'Some believe the vacuum can damage the carpet, but in actual fact the dirt embedded into it is likely to cause more lasting damage than it being vacuumed too frequently,' Michael explains. 

If worrying about damage to the carpets, consider choosing softer suction or flat vacuum heads. But, really, as long as you're vacuuming at least once a week, you can save the rest of your time for more enjoyable activities.

For more carpet goodness, find out how often you should replace your carpets, too. We also recently learned how effectively shaving foam cleans carpets, to give your floors a deeper clean.

It's also worth considering a carpet cleaner to tackle your fibrous floors more thoroughly, like the Shark CarpetXpert that we found worked excellently in our tests.

Dan Fauzi
Home Tech Editor

Dan is the Home Tech Editor for Homes & Gardens, covering all things cleaning, smart home, sound and automation across the Solved section. Having worked for Future PLC since July 2023, Dan was previously the Features Editor for Top Ten Reviews and looked after the wide variety of home and outdoor content across the site, but their writing about homes, gardens, tech and products started back in 2021 on brands like BBC Science Focus, YourHomeStyle, Homes & Antiques and Gardens Illustrated.

Dan is based in Bristol, UK with a BA in Philosophy and an MA in Magazine Journalism. Outside of work, you'll find them at gigs and art galleries, cycling somewhere scenic, or cooking up something good in the kitchen.