...it's the fourth pass on the "heavy traffic" setting and the waste water you're pouring down the drain is still dark brown sludge. Bluh.
I borrowed my friend's Bissel to do the former boys' bedroom, which is really the master bedroom, and I'm absolutely amazed (and revolted) at how much crud can build up in a carpet in a kid's bedroom, even when you vacuum fairly regularly. The more I think about it, the more disgusting wall to wall carpet seems to me. I suppose it might get cleaner faster if I was using some harsh, heavy duty, stinky chemical solution, but I went with an all-natural product because I don't need to spend the next few weeks in a VOC-induced stupor, thanks.
Thanking my lucky stars the carpet is a glue-down--no underlay to collect mud during the shampooing process, only to reimpregnate the carpet with filth as the fibers dry and wick the dirty moisture up. Before I installed laminate in the living room, I made the mistake of shampooing the carpet before my inlaws came to visit. There was one patch I went to town on every day for over a week--kept looking clean, then ten minutes later I'd turn around and holy crap, the dirt's back. I eventually gave up, and had to deal with having them judge my housekeeping skills by the ugly brown stain on the floor in front of the sofa.
If, when I move, there is any amount of wall to wall in my new place, I'm totally investing in a steam cleaner. I'll do the whole floor every month or two, just to not have to look at the filth in the waste reservoir.
On the bright side, with the exception of two small stains (from strawberry-flavored fruit roll-ups, I think), the spots are coming out. I pre-treated them with a spot remover--Folex--which comes in a very lacklustre spray bottle that was virtually invisible next to all the TV-familiar brands on the shelf. But reading the label--no petro-chemicals, no VOCs, no obnoxious scents--won me over. And it worked really well. Smells like...well, like nothing, which is good for someone with chemical sensitivities.
And if you all are as grossed out as I am by the thought of kids playing legos on a floor completely saturated with filth, all I gotta say is moderately unsanitary conditions build healthy immune systems. My kids? Their immune systems must be super-human--but then I figured as much when the Swine Flu visited our house and didn't even cramp their styles. My coworker, who practically lives in rubber gloves and bleaches her whole house weekly? She and her kids were down for three weeks.
Yup, it's Sophistry, but it works for me.