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Frequently Asked Questions

The machine should NEVER be used on a carpet or anywhere where standing water remains from a flood or from other situations. Only carpets and upholstery that are damp, NOT water laden or soggy are safe for extraction.  The machine is an electrical appliance.  Extracting water from overly wet carpet could be a risk of electric shock.  We recommend flood damaged carpet to be treated by the services of a commercial carpet cleaning technician.

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 pressing the spray button to give it an extra vacuuming only pass.
Wool carpeting can be safely cleaned with the Rug Doctor using hot tap water in the machine.
Do not use Rug Doctor machines or products on 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 outside 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 pile 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.

DO NOT use Rug Doctor Machines or Rug Doctor products on Persian rugs, Oriental rugs, Silk hand-loomed rugs, Braided rugs, or Non-colourfast fabrics. Some stains require professional treatment.

No. Do not 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.

To clean the stairs you use the Upholstery/Hand Tool attachment. Set the machine to “ON” for Upholstery/Hand Tool cleaning and use Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaning solution in the tank.
Position the Machine at the top or bottom of the stairway.

Act quickly. Clean the area as soon as possible to prevent it from soaking through to the backing and to avoid any permanent bleaching.

To eliminate pet urine use Rug Doctor Stain Remover. For pet odours use Rug Doctor Odour Remover.

Cats and dogs make wonderful companions and are very trainable. However, they sometimes develop habits that can damage your carpeting. With this simple cleaning tip you can remove the sources of existing cat urine stains and odours and, by removing the source, you can discourage future marking.

When a cat or other pet urinates on carpeting or furniture upholstery there is both a stain and odour problem to eliminate. Pet urine stains can have a permanent bleaching effect on some types of carpet depending on how they are dyed. Disperse dyed Polyester, solution dyed Olefin or solution dyed Nylon generally do not bleach with pet urine. Pet urine is more likely to have a bleaching effect on Nylon carpets coloured with acid dyes. Bleaching may actually not become apparent until the carpet is cleaned at which point the carpet dyes previously released by the pet urine are removed and suddenly a light spot appears. This is generally more visible in darker carpets. So, to avoid bleaching, address the problem as soon as possible.

Once you identify the problem area, apply Rug Doctor Stain Remover to penetrate into the carpet. Its active formulation seeks out the source of the stain to eliminate it. Following the instructions on the reverse of the label treat the stain accordingly. Then apply Rug Doctor Odour Remover to the same area. Generally the stain and odour will be resolved after one treatment. If for some reason they are not, reapply using the same steps. It is important to be thorough in cleaning cat urine spots because the dissolved crystals may release the strong scent of feline pheromones (glandular secretions contained in the urine to mark the cat's territory). Partial cleaning can actually make the odour seem worse as the stain may wick up from the backing and re-crystallise on the carpet fibre tips. Look for urine stains on adjacent walls or furniture and be sure to clean these areas as well.

Although pet accidents are never pleasant, they are a lot more manageable with this simple cleaning tip.

For safety reasons we recommend only cleaning in an area that is flat, clean, and dry hard floor surface. For cleaning mats, it would be preferable do this on your concrete floor. Avoid using on any other outside surfaces.

Rug Doctor Machine and Upholstery/Hand Tool attachment is recommended on most mattresses with the exception of mattresses or mattress toppers made with memory foam, foam or goose down. You can clean your mattress using the Rug Doctor Upholstery/Hand Tool and Upholstery Cleaner product. 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.

The Mighty Pack Machine weighs approximately 15 kilograms empty.

Yes. For best results clean with the Rug Doctor Machine and hire the Upholstery / Hand Tool attachment for using on the car seats.

Yes, for fabric upholstered seats and bunks use the Rug Doctor Machine and hire the Upholstery / Hand Tool attachment.

Yes, if they are a heavy duty fabric, not a delicate fabric.  Use the Rug Doctor Upholstery Cleaner solution in the machine for cleaning.  Check for colour fastness of the fabric by doing a test patch in an inconspicuous area before cleaning.

Ideal for cleaning mattresses, for best results clean with the Rug Doctor Machine and use the Upholstery / Tool attachment.



2 persons, non-smoking

12 months

2 persons, with smoking

4 months

Young children


6 months

6 months

Young children with pets


3-6 months

After every party!

The damaging effects of dirt, grit and grime to your beautiful carpet is something that you don’t always see.  Grit wears away and cuts at carpet fibres as they are walked on or where kids frequently play. High-traffic paths in your home will mat over time because of fibre abrasion, which can eventually lead to fibre loss.

Cleaning your carpet regularly not only maximizes the life of your carpet, it also is very important for the health of your family. Studies show that your carpet actually serves as a magnet for all kinds of pollutants, contaminants, bacteria and odours, not to mention nasties such as fleas, cockroach eggs and dust mites, a major cause of asthma in children.

To remove these you need to clean carpets deep down, it's easy with Rug Doctor.

For most carpets the best cleaning comes from hot-water extraction. It's the method recommended by most major carpet manufacturers and used by professional carpet cleaning services.  Regular deep-cleaning not only removes allergens, dirt, and grime, but can add years of life to your carpet by removing the abrasive grit that harms carpet fibres.

That's where Rug Doctor comes in - with the power to go deep so you can clean like a pro.

The Rug Doctor machine is available for hire at the following rates:




Hand  Tool

4 Hours (Minimum Rate)


+ $6.50

8 Hours


+ $6.50

Overnight (After 4pm - 9am)


+ $6.50

24 Hours


+ $6.50


The above rates exclude cleaning products and refundable bond.

Please note, the Hand tool is an additional cost to the hire of the machine. Please ask at checkouts if you require this.


These prices are GST inclusive


To hire a machine you need at least 2 forms of ID which include:

One ID from this list:

  • Current Photo Driver's License
  • Current Passport
  • Current Photo NZ Student University card


And one ID from this list:

  • Debit / Credit Card
  • Vehicle registration


Although Rug Doctor does not state that you need a credit card as one of your ID’s, most stores will not hire a machine without suitable ID.

A refundable bond of $20.00 is required at every store. The bond may vary in some stores. The bond will be refunded upon returning the machine to the store clean and back by the due time.

No. The Upholstery / Hand Tool for cleaning staircases & tight spaces or for furniture & upholstery is charged separately. This is an additional rate of $6.50 with a 4hr - 24hr machine hire. Remember to request the Hand Tool if required.

At Rug Doctor we are committed to protecting your privacy. Our booking system is designed to protect your information from others. Please see our other page on Privacy Policies.

Yes. It is recommended to book the machine in advance. More so when hiring during the weekend. To book phone or call into the store you plan to hire from and see them at the customer service desk.

Rug Doctor is not available by ordering a machine over the phone and having it delivered.

DO NOT use the Rug Doctor Machine and Hand Tool or Rug Doctor products on Silk, Leather, Suede Leather or Haitian Cotton.

Drying time is usually around two hours, dependent on weather and carpet thickness. Open windows and doors, or turn on air conditioning, dehumidifier or fan heater for faster drying.

To prevent stains, if replacing furniture before carpet is completely dry, place plastic or aluminium foil under furniture legs.