How to remove carpet stains

TEASER: “If you have spotted a stain on your carpet and are not sure how to go about removing it, take a look at our top carpet cleaning tips for some expert guidance.”

Even careful, child- and pet-free households suffer carpet spillages from time to time – and the speed with which you deal with them, and the method you use, will largely determine how well you manage to shift them. For the best results, take a look at some of our top tips…

Stock up on the basics

Arm yourself with some essential stain removal ‘ingredients’ in preparation for any spillages or stains. These are the most important:

  • Several clean, white cloths with plenty of absorbency.
  • Dry cleaning solution / surgical spirit.
  • Detergent solution: 1 tsp gentle detergent (e.g. hand wash intended for delicte fabrics) mixed with half a pint of warm water.
  • Detergent vinegar solution: 1 tsp white vinegar mixed into the detergent solution described above.
  • Ammonia solution: 1 tsp branded household ammonia mixed with one cup of warm water.

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General tips

Work on the stain or mark as soon as you spot it. Any excess solids (e.g. dirt) should be scraped up carefully, while excess liquid should be blotted. Always use the minimum amount of liquid possible to clean the stain. If you over wet the carpet the backing material will get drenched and could deteriorate. Never scrub at the carpet or you could damage it, and never use inappropriate household cleaners such as bleach or washing up liquid unless expert guidance suggests otherwise. Test any detergent / solution on a hidden patch of carpet (e.g. in an area that is usually underneath an item of furniture).

Work from the outside of the stain inwards to avoid it spreading over a larger area. Dry the area after cleaning as quickly as possible – you may want to use a hair dryer on a low heat setting.

Removing common stains from a carpet: Blood, chocolate, glue, egg, milk, vomit and soft drinks

Contrary to popular belief, there are various successful methods of removing carpet stains caused by blood – but the key is to use cold water instead of warm / hot water. Blood coagulates with heat, so cold water helps to prevent the blood from permeating into the carpet fibres. Apart from the water temperature, however, all the stains listed above can basically be treated in the same way:

  • As always, treat the stain as quickly as possible – this is particularly important when it comes to blood stains.
  • Use a detergent solution (cold if it’s blood!) , spraying it on to the stain, working from the outside inwards.
  • Blot dry, preferably with paper towels or a dry cloth.
  • Follow up with an ammonia solution.
  • Blot dry again.
  • Follow the ‘Universal Final Cleaning Step’ below.

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Universal Final Cleaning Step

Once you’ve followed instructions for the specific type of stain you are tackling, you can often achieve even better results by doing the following:

  • Create a solution in a spray bottle of one-part white vinegar / four-parts water.
  • Spray over the stain area.
  • Blot up excess moisture.
  • Place a stack of about 5-8 white kitchen towel sheets over the stained area then put a heavy item such as a large book on top.
  • Leave it overnight – then repeat this process the next day if you can still see the stain

These useful carpet cleaning tips was bought to you by www.bestathire.co.uk , your national tool hire centre.

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