Dealing with Carpet Stains

by Amy Gordon
(last updated June 18, 2012)

2

Find us a household that has not had to face the problem of stains on the carpets and we'll find you pigs with wings! Seriously though, carpet stains are part of everyday existence and removing stains from a carpet can be one of the toughest household chores. One encouraging fact is that most carpet manufacturers these days provide instructions to buyers on carpet maintenance and cleaning.

Let's take a look at a few tried-and-true methods for removing common carpet stains. (You should always realize that some stains will always prove tougher than others and may require cleaning at the hands of a professional carpet cleaner.)

Food and Drink Stains

For stains from beverages like tea and coffee and acidic drinks like fruit juice, the first step to removal is to gently mop the affected area with a paper towel. If you act immediately after the stain has formed, this usually does the trick. However, if the stain has been allowed to settle for some time, you may have to use a solution comprising one part white vinegar and three parts water. You can either spray the solution on the stain or apply it with a soft cloth. At any rate, the spot must first be soaked and then dried gently with a soft cloth.

A lot of people also use detergent to remove the stain, but this is only advisable if you know for a fact that this will not harm your carpet fibers in any way, since most detergents contain bleaching agents.

An additional remedy for fruit juice stains is to simply soak the affected area with water and then wipe it gently. Since the acidic content in fruit juice may require some bleaching, you could try using a small amount of hydrogen peroxide, which turns moist when exposed to sunlight and can be wiped clean.

Pet Stains

Offending items may include blood and vomit. Once again, the swiftest course is to blot as much of the stain as possible with a tissue or wet cloth. For more stubborn stains, the most common remedy is an ammonia-water solution, which should be left on the stain for a little while and then wiped off gently.

For bloodstains, it is imperative that all solutions used to remove the stain be cold. A small amount of detergent in water usually works best, failing which you can try the hydrogen peroxide solution previously mentioned, but once again, be careful to avoid bleaching. It is wisest to verify beforehand that the fibers in your carpet will stand up to hydrogen peroxide. On an inconspicuous area of carpeting, test the hydrogen peroxide by pouring it over a small area and letting it stand for at least an hour and a half.

Chocolate Stains

In a household with young children, chocolate can cause untold damage to carpets. Since any chocolate stain will leave a solid residue, the first step is to scrape this off gently with a hard brush or spatula. The remnants can be removed using a soft wet cloth or wet tissue. If this fails, use an ammonia and water solution and wipe off the excess moisture. In case this fails as well, you will probably have to use a little water mixed with detergent or even dish soap, but be very careful to prevent discoloration by wiping off the remnants of the soapy solution with a wet cloth.

Related to chocolate is chewing gum, which can either be scraped off gently, provided it is hard enough. If not, it needs to be hardened with ice and then scraped off.

Candle Wax and Glue

For candle wax stains, it is essential to gently warm the spot so that the wax melts. Of course, you have to take care that the carpet does not singe! Once the wax has melted, a simple wipe with a cloth soaked in alcohol will do the trick.

For glue, follow the procedure described above to remove chewing gum.

Author Bio

Amy Gordon

Amy Gordon loves keeping things simple, natural, and safe so she can spend more time having fun. Every day she learns new things about making life at home easier and she loves to share it with you! ...

MORE FROM AMY

Clean Marble and Slate with Ease

Marble and slate get dirty easily, picking up marks and dirt in their tiny crevices. Instead of using commercial marble ...

Discover More

Removing Mildew Stains

Mold and mildew build up and create unpleasant odors in moist areas of your home. Bleach is the best tool to remove mold and ...

Discover More

Removing Dead Wood

Dead wood on your tree can be unsightly, and can also make fruit trees not grow as well. You do not need to remove dead wood ...

Discover More

Tough Cleaning Jobs Require Brawny! Brawny paper towels provide the versatility you need: the strength for demanding jobs and the softness to clean up your child's messy face. This 24-roll pack of pick-a-size sheets can handle just about every cleaning task in your home. Check out Brawny 24-Pack Giant Paper Towels today!

More Cleaning Tips

Removing Blood Stains from Carpeting

If there is one type of stain that can be difficult to remove, then it has to be blood from carpeting. Now, just because ...

Discover More

Remove Gum from Carpet with Peanut Butter

Chewing gum can be nearly impossible to remove once it has gotten stuck to your carpet. It may seem counterintuitive to use ...

Discover More

Cleaning Rust Stained Carpet

Carpeting can be one of the most wonderful things in the world, but it can also be one of the most annoying things in the ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 - 3?

2012-06-18 07:36:39

Daniel

I clean carpets on the side and I find that a lot of stains removed with either the hand soap cleaner you use to get grease off your hand and almost any stain remover along with a brush before you use scrub machine or by hand. Great advice you also give..Thanks


2012-06-18 06:48:52

Ray

Hi, Can you provide me an idea of how to remove Millipede stain from carpet. The beastie crawled in and died and its juces stained the carpet.
Thanks


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.