Frequently Asked Questions

Usage Details

Can I clean Berber carpeting? How about wool? Area rugs? Shag? Oriental? Etc.

You can clean Berber carpeting, however care must be taken not to over wet it. Berber carpeting's tight, looped weave tends to hold much more moisture than cut pile carpets. Over wetting can create drying problems so you should make sure you are limiting your cleaning passes to one only. It's a good idea to go over Berber a second time without depressing the spray switch to give it an extra vacuuming only pass. Wool carpeting can be safely cleaned with cool water. However, do not use Rug Doctor machines or products on natural fiber oriental rugs (silk or wool), cashmere, hand-loomed wool rugs, braided rugs, sisal, jute-carpets or anything that states dry clean only. You can clean area rugs, however, you should remove them from any areas where flooring under the area rug can be damaged by water such as hardwood or laminate flooring. The best way to clean your area rugs is by taking them out side or to your garage and cleaning them there. Once they are completely dry the rugs can be returned to the hardwood flooring. You may use our machines to clean shag carpeting, the same instructions apply as cleaning Berber carpeting, make sure you don't stay on an area too long with the machine and make sure you are vacuuming up as much or close to the amount you are putting into the carpet.

Can I use an extension cord with the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner?

Though we do not recommend it, you can use a heavy-duty extension cord as long as the cord is grounded.

Can I use the tool and your solutions to clean a mattress?

Rug Doctor machines or attachments should not be used to clean mattresses or mattress toppers made with memory foam, foam or goose down. You can clean your mattress using the Rug Doctor Hand Tool and Upholstery Cleaner product plus Anti-Foam. It is very important in cleaning mattresses not to over wet them and allow plenty of dry time. We recommend you first set your mattress up on its side. Clean one side of the mattress, making sure you go over your cleaning paths a second time without squeezing the Hand Tool lever so that the second pass is vacuum only. Once you have finished one side of the mattress, leave the mattress on its side and let it dry completely before continuing to the next side.

Can the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner be used to extract water? From a flood for instance?

The Rug Doctor machine not only deep cleans your carpet, but can also be used to extract water from carpets left wet from a flood. Many people have used the machine to extract water from their carpet after a terrible flood. The machine is an electrical appliance. Good judgment must be exercised when extracting water from overly wet carpet as there could be a risk of electric shock. The machine should NEVER be used on a carpet or anywhere where standing water remains. Only carpets and upholstery that are damp, not water laden or soggy are safe for extraction.

Can you use the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner on tile, cement or any other hard surface?

You cannot use the Rug Doctor machine on tile, cement or any other hard surface. (1) At the front of the machine is a hard metal surface that may scratch the hard surface flooring. (2) There is nothing on the machine to capture the water from moving about when sprayed on the surface, the machine does not contain a squeegee.

Do the Rug Doctor products work well for people with allergies? Are the solutions hypoallergenic?

Cleaning of any kind will help people with allergies. Deep cleaning your carpet helps remove the dirt and allergens deeply imbedded in your carpet. We have not tested our solutions to be hypoallergenic.

How do you clean stairs with the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner?

To clean the stairs you use the Hand Tool attachment. Set the machine to "ON" for Upholstery/Hand Tool cleaning and use Steam Cleaning solution in the tank.

Is the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner heavy?

Depending on which machine you rent, the empty Mighty Pro Machine (smaller one) weighs 36 pounds and the Wide Track (Bigger one) weighs 44 pounds.


Do I have to sign for my packages?

A signature is required for all machine orders. Please make sure to use a physical street address where someone will be available to sign for the machine between the hours of 8 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Do you ship to a PO BOX?

We cannot ship to a PO Box. All deliveries must be to a physical street address.

Do you ship to my country?

We ship to the United States and Canada. All other countries, please contact Consumer Support Consumer Support at 1-800-Rug-Doctor (1-800-784-3628).

How do I know when my order has shipped?

You can track your order using our Order Status Order Status page. All you need is your order number (from your confirmation email) and your billing ZIP code.

How much does it cost to ship?

Shipping is only $29.95 to any state in the continental United States (AK, HI, and Canada vary).

How will my order be shipped?

To ensure speedy delivery, all orders to the contiguous 48 states are shipped with FedEx. Shipments to Alaska, Hawaii or Canada may be shipped with FedEx or the United States Postal Service.


Do I have to pay for shipping if I return it?

Should you change your mind about your purchase, you are responsible for the return shipping to our facility. You must call 1-800-784-3628 to obtain a Return Authorization Number and address to return the merchandise. No returns after 30 days.

What if I don't like the product? Can I return it?

Items must be returned in the same new condition as received within 30 days. No refunds or exchanges after 30 days. Missing items will be charged at full price. If on a payment plan, payments will be charged at their normal cycle until our Quality Control Department checks the machine. Initial shipping charges, a $29.95 In-Home Use Fee and state tax In-Home Use Fee are not refundable.

What if the product was damaged on delivery? Can I get a new one?

The damage must be pointed out to the delivery driver and you should refuse delivery of the item. If damage is noticed after your package is signed for, you must notify us within 30 days of receipt of the item of the situation.

What is your return policy?

Rug Doctor Single Payment refunds: Each Rug Doctor single payment product you buy directly from Rug Doctor comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you are not completely satisfied, you can return the product within the first 30 days after having received it. After we receive the single payment product, we will process the return and refund the full purchase price, less the initial shipping charges. Rug Doctor Multi Payment refunds: After we receive the product, we will process the return and refund the full purchase price, less the initial shipping charges, $29.95 In-Home Use Fee and state tax on In-Home Use Fee. If you choose to return the product during this time, just call 1-800 RUG DOCTOR to request a Return Merchandise Authorization number (RMA) and the return shipping address for Rug Doctor. You will be responsible for the return shipping costs.


Are the solutions safe for pets, small children, and biodegradable?

All of our Steam Cleaner solutions are water based and non-toxic, however, we always recommend that small children and pets are out of the areas until the carpet completely dries. When cleaning your carpet you will be pulling dust and dirt from the backing of your carpet into the machine, should any of those micro-particles become airborne they could be irritating to those with very sensitive skin and immune systems. All of our solutions are biodegradable.

Can Rug Doctor machines be used on all types of carpets, including wool area rugs?

Rug Doctor machines and cleaning products are safe for most carpets. However, you risk damage to carpets and hard floor surfaces not intended for water extraction method cleaning. Do not use or place the Rug Doctor machine or cleaning products on: Natural fiber oriental rugs (silk or wool), hand-loomed wool rugs, braided rugs, sisal or jute carpets, hardwood, or laminate floorings. Use cool water when cleaning wool area rugs. For more details, visit our Cleaning Tips page.

Do you have a product for killing fleas in carpet?

Rug Doctor does not currently produce a product that will kill fleas in carpet.

Do you have any videos of your products in use?

Here you can find videos of our carpet cleaners carpet cleaners in use.

What is a coupon code, what is good for, and how can I get one?

At this time we do not have any coupon codes in place.

What's the difference between the Wide Track® and the Mighty Pro®?

Compare our cleaning machines Compare our cleaning machines to find out which Rug Doctor machine is right for you.

Which solutions can be used in the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner, which ones are spot cleaners, how can each one be used?

Not all of Rug Doctor's solutions can be used in the machine. Steam Cleaner, Upholstery Cleaner and Odor Remover can be used in the machine along with water in the lower tank. You cannot use the Steam Cleaner or Upholstery cleaner directly on carpet or upholstery as a spot cleaner. It is used exclusively to eliminate foam build up in the machine and is added to the upper (white) recovery tank by itself. Odor Remover, however, can be used in the machine, directly on a spot or even in a spray bottle as a room freshener. Hi-Traffic Pre-Treatment can only be used prior to cleaning your carpet, it cannot be used in the machine nor can it be used by itself without being extracted later. Spot Remover and Pet Stain Remover are both spot treatments to be applied directly onto carpets or upholstery, they do not go in the machine. It's convenient to keep products like Spot and Pet Stain Removers, even Odor Remover on-hand since they don't require machine application and are excellent products to use in between machine cleanings to keep your carpets and upholstery spot free.


Are products available when I order online?

Our Urine Eliminator offer is available for online purchase. Our complete line of products is available at over 33,000 locations nation wide. Check out our product locator for a store near you!

Can I purchase RugDoctor Machines or Accessories with a prepaid credit card?

RugDoctor does not currently accept payments with prepaid credit cards.

Do I have pay sales tax on my order?

Sales tax is added to all orders in which Rug Doctor operates its rental facilities.

How can I get parts for my Rug Doctor?

Parts can be obtained by calling our Consumer Support Consumer Support line at 1-800-784-3628.

How long will it take for me to receive my order?

Orders placed for delivery within the continental United States are generally delivered within 10-14 business days. For all other delivery locations, please contact Consumer Support Consumer Support for tracking information.

I haven't received an order confirmation email. Where is it?

Look for your confirmation email immediately after completing your order. If you have not received it within 24 hours, check your spam box or add our email address ( to your address book to ensure receipt of communication from Rug Doctor. Still no email? Contact Consumer Support Consumer Support for assistance.

I represent a tax-exempt entity, how do I purchase a machine free of sales tax?

For tax exempt purchases please call 1-800-784-3628 .

I selected the multi-pay option, when are the payments charged?

Payments are automatically charged to the credit card number used during your initial purchase. The payment plan is only available to be set up on a direct charged to a credit card. Your first recurring payment and subsequent payments will be approximately 30 days apart until the balance is paid in full. We do not send out billing statements or allow payments by mail.

Is interest charged to multi payments?

Rug Doctor's multi-payment plans are interest free.

What forms of payment do you accept?

We accept Visa, MasterCard, and Discover card on approved credit. For Canadian orders, we accept Visa and MasterCard on approved credit only.

Filling and Operation

Do I need to rinse my carpet with water after using the Rug Doctor?

There is no need to go back over the carpet with just water. Used properly, the machine picks up 50% - 80% of what it injects. More water on even minimally damp carpet could result in over-wetting.

Do you have to put hot water in the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner?

No you do not have to use hot water, though hot water is recommended when cleaning carpet (except wool).

Do you push or pull the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner when cleaning?

The Rug Doctor machine cleans in a backwards motion. When walking backwards, the carpet cleaner is able to spray, brush and vacuum all at the same time, so you don't have to walk in the areas you've cleaned as you progress.

Does the machine have a heating element in it, how does the water stay hot?

The machine does not contain a heating element. Hot water directly from your tap is completely adequate for effective cleaning. Some carpets such as wool should not be cleaned with hot water. Cool water is better for wool to prevent shrinkage.

How can I remove difficult stains such as red wine or candle wax?

Your best choice for cleaning difficult spots, stains, or traffic areas is to use one of Rug Doctor's specialty products: Hi-Traffic Pre-Treatment, Spot & Stain Remover, Urine Eliminator®, or Odor Remover. For useful tips on removing difficult stains see our Cleaning Tips webpage.

How do you clean the Rug Doctor when you are ready to return it?

To make sure the machine is properly cleaned for return, first make sure the top recovery tank and the lower solution tank is completely empty. Next check the filter inside the clear dome of the machine, simply pull it out and run it under hot water for about 20 seconds to make sure there is not any dirt, hair or residue left on the filter. Wipe away any debris or residue inside the dome and replace the filter. Finally, tilt the machine back and take a napkin and gently clean the under side and brushes of the machine.

How do you empty the lower container once you are finished?

When you've finished using the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner, after emptying the upper white container, take the machine either outside (never in the rain), or to a shower stall, bath tub or other floor drain. With the machine plugged in, turn the switch on to Upholstery/Hand Tool cleaning (so brushes will not sweep while emptying) and press the handle button for spray. If you used the machine last with a Hand Tool hooked up, you can take the machine to a sink area and spray out the balance of the water through the hand tool. ALWAYS BE SURE TO set the machine to "ON" for Hand Tool and Upholstery cleaning so that the brushes cannot damage the surface of the floor or area where you set the machine.

FAQs About Renting a Rug Doctor

Is the Hand Tool part of renting a Rug Doctor carpet cleaner? Do they come together as a set when you rent the Rug Doctor?

No. The Hand Tool whether intended for cleaning carpeting such as stairs and tight spaces or for upholstery is charged a separate rental fee. However the fee is modest with most stores only charging $3.00 for a 24 hour rental.

What do you need in order to rent a Rug Doctor carpet cleaner? Is a credit card necessary? Deposit?

To rent a machine you need at least 2 forms of ID which include: Current Driver's License, Current Passport, Military Identification Card, Student Photo ID, Credit Card, State/DMV issued Photo ID, Immigration Card w/photo, or Store Check Cashing Card. Though Rug Doctor does not state that you need a credit card as one of your ID's, most stores will not rent a machine without a Credit Card. Deposits are not required at every store. If the store does require a deposit, the deposits vary.

What does it cost to rent a Rug Doctor carpet cleaner?

The smaller Rug Doctor® Machine rents for $20 to $30 depending on store and market area. The Wide Track carpet cleaner rents for $25 to $32.

Where can I rent a Rug Doctor?

Click the link to find a location near you: Rent a Rug Doctor carpet cleaning machine in the USA Rent a Rug Doctor carpet cleaning machine Rent a Rug Doctor carpet cleaning machine in Canada Rent a Rug Doctor carpet cleaning machine in Canada

FAQs About Buying a Rug Doctor

How can I get parts for my Rug Doctor?

Parts can be obtained by calling our Consumer Support line at 1-800-964-4362.

Where can I download the owner's manual for my Rug Doctor?

Download the Mighty Pro and Wide Track User Manual Mighty Pro and Wide Track User Manual or see our Cleaning Tips Cleaning Tips..

Customer Service

How can I get in touch with Rug Doctor customer service?

Rug Doctor Consumer Support can be reached by telephone, by mail, and by email. Visit our Consumer Support Consumer Support page to contact us.

What are the hours of operation for customer service?

Rug Doctor Consumer Support Consumer Support Specialists are available to assist you from 8 am to 8 pm CST seven days a week.

Cleaning Products

Can I use products other than Rug Doctor in the carpet cleaning machine?

Products that are not made specifically for water extraction method cleaning of carpets should NEVER be used. Damage can occur. Carpets need a specific pH range of cleaning that is effective and won't damage fibers. As well, products that are not made for the kind of simple rinsing and extraction provided by the machine will leave residues that attract dirt. Through extensive testing we have found no products that compare to Rug Doctor in terms of the 3 essential elements for complete carpet cleaning: (1) effective deep-cleaning to release embedded dirt, bacteria, and allergens from carpet fibers, (2) a pH balanced formula for safe cleaning and (3) clean rinsing ability. For these reasons, we do not recommend the use of any cleaners other than Rug Doctor solutions in Rug Doctor machines.

Can the Rug Doctor solutions be mixed together?

Some Rug Doctor solutions are not intended for use in the machine though no harm will come to your carpets if you do use them mixed with Steam Cleaner. Pet Stain Remover, Spot Remover and Hi-Traffic Pre-Treatment are all meant to be applied directly to stain or traffic areas. However, Odor Remover can be used as an excellent cleaning booster agent in the machine along with Steam Cleaner to help take care of stubborn odors in carpets. Its enzyme formula actually attacks the source of odors and helps eliminated them permanently. Heavy odor problems should be treated with a direct application of Odor Remover.

Can you use Rug Doctor solutions with other carpet cleaning machines?

Yes, as supported by extensive testing, we can recommend the use of Rug Doctor products in other deep cleaning machines. In fact, the superior Rug Doctor formulas could improve your cleaning results. Especially when using Rug Doctor Oxy Steam you will likely notice the carpet you clean stays clean longer. That's because other brands of carpet cleaners leave residues behind that attract dirt. Rug Doctor Oxy Steam contains oxygen boosters that lift out embedded dirt, bacteria and allergens so that they can be rinsed away, leaving only fresh, clean carpets.

*Suction tested against leading portable carpet cleaners measuring air watts pursuant to ASTM F558 at cleaner head.


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