Vacuuming goes a long way to extend the life of carpeting, but sometimes actual cleaning is essential. Interim carpet cleaning helps minimize the frequency for deep extractions and includes some type of mechanized cleaning system that may use dry chemicals, crystallized compounds, powders or sprayed chemicals that are applied to a carpet surface and then agitated and picked up by a machine. When using this method on carpets, it is imperative to remove as much of the cleaning compound as possible and to let the carpet thoroughly dry before foot traffic is allowed back into the area.

In order for effective interim cleaning to occur, four elements must interact in the process: The right chemical needs to be applied properly; accurate water temperature should be used; proper dwell times will guarantee soil is released; and machines should be used for agitation. If any of these four elements are left out, cleaning will not be effective.