Identifying and Dealing with Unknown Stains

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated July 28, 2014)

Have you ever wondered how you can go about identifying and dealing with unknown stains? Chances are the answer to this is a resounding yes. After all, everyone has come across a stain at some point in their life that they can't really identify. The problem is that identifying a stain, when you don't know what it is, is next to impossible without loads of expensive equipment. What you can do, is actually treat the stain to the best of your ability. There are ways that you can deal with unknown stains, but it may require a bit of patience on your part. Here's how.

  • Identify the material. The main key to treating an unknown stain lies not in identifying the stain, but in identifying the material that that the stain is on. This will tell you what methods you can safely use to remove the stain from the material. After all, you don't exactly clean acrylic fabric in the same manner that you do marble. By taking the time to properly identify the material will give you the next step to take in the process of cleaning.
  • Treat the stain according to the material. Once you have the material figured out, you can begin looking up some methods for cleaning that particular material. For example, you can remove many unknown stains from alabaster or marble by simply wiping a warm sudsy cloth or sponge across the stain. In the event that the stain persists, you can leave a cloth that has been soaked in rubbing alcohol on the stain for about five minutes, and then repeat.
  • Use some commercial cleaners. There are some commercial cleaners, such as Pro-solve or Resolve, that you can use on a variety of different materials, and which will remove many types of stains. Simply apply the cleaner according to the directions, and you should get most of the stains out of the material it is in.
  • Hire a professional cleaner. In the event that you find yourself unwilling, or unable, to take the time to experiment a little to get the material clean, you can simply hire a professional to do the job. While it is more expensive, professional cleaners often have the tools, experience, and time necessary to get the job done. This should be held as a last resort, only to be used in the event that you cannot get the stain out yourself.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

MORE FROM LEE

Streamlining Your Library

As any book lover can tell you, personal libraries have a habit of growing almost exponentially. For some reason those who ...

Discover More

Making Your Own Barbecue Sauce

Barbecue sauce is a great way to add a little extra zest to dinner, but what do you do if you don't have the money to buy ...

Discover More

Removing Permanent Marker from Vinyl

Considering how common both vinyl and permanent markers are it only stands to reason that the two will come into contact at ...

Discover More

The Power of Microfiber! Zwipes Microfiber Cleaning Cloths will become your favorite tool for every cleaning task. This 36-cloth package is perfect for hundreds of uses in the garage, kitchen, bathroom, laundry, and all around the house. Each cloth is tough, streak-free, lint-free, reusable, and washable. Check out Microfiber Cleaning Cloths today!

More Cleaning Tips

Removing Salt Stains

While the snow and ice of winter can be a beautiful sight, the salt that generally comes out at the same time can create some ...

Discover More

Removing Paint Stains

Paint stains are best treated while still wet. For watercolors and latex paints, just pre-treat the stain with stain remover ...

Discover More

Removing Deodorant Stains

To remove pesky deodorant stains, first try a stain-removal product and liquid laundry detergent along with regular washing. ...

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 eight minus 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


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.