Removing Christmas Tree Stains from Carpeting

by April Reinhardt
(last updated December 17, 2012)

If you've ever had a live Christmas tree during the holidays, then you have most likely encountered cleaning up pine needles and sap from the carpeting below the tree. While using a tree skirt can help to protect your carpeting from bringing nature indoors, there are times when your carpeting will receive stains from a live Christmas tree. One of the worst carpet stains to remove is sap residue.

To keep a live tree green so that it doesn't shed its needles, you need to use a tree stand and water the tree just as you would any other plant in your home. The water in the tree stand collects sap from the raw tree trunk, turning the water into a sludgy, brown, sticky concoction. If the tree is nudged, the sticky water can slosh from the tree stand onto the carpet below. Even if you use a tree skirt, the residue may filter through that fabric and into your carpet. Oftentimes you won't discover the stain until you take down the Christmas tree, having allowed the stain to set for days or even weeks.

When you find that you have carpet stains left over from the holidays, don't despair. Follow these techniques to remove Christmas tree stains from your carpeting. If one doesn't work for your particular stain, then try another until you find a solution that gets rid of the stains:

  • Gel hand sanitizer. Since the properties of gel hand sanitizer are thicker than mere liquid, allow a glob of it to sit on the tree stain for at least fifteen minutes, and then dab it away with paper towels.
  • Mayonnaise. Spread a thick layer of mayonnaise onto the stains and then cover with plastic wrap, letting it sit overnight. In the morning, work the mayonnaise into the carpet with your fingers, and then wash away with a mild liquid dish detergent.
  • Laundry detergent. Mix a paste of powdered laundry detergent and club soda and, using a stiff brush, work the paste into the carpet and then rinse away.
  • Bug repellent. Spray bug repellant (like Deep Woods Off) onto the tree stain. Then agitate with a stiff brush and rinse away.

Always test an inconspicuous area of carpeting with any of these options before using in a wide area. When using any type of products that are flammable take caution. Also, it is worth stating that if the tree stain is sticky, do not use a vacuum cleaner, since the stickiness may transfer to the inside of the machine.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...


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