Summer has now come and gone as we are moving into September. September brings autumn and autumn brings a whole list of holidays, from Halloween to New Years. This can be such a joyful time, with pumpkin smells, trick-or-treating, spending time with family, traditions, loads of food, and so much more. Along with all of that, the holidays bring a lot of stains. Halloween candy that gets dropped on the floor, the cranberry sauce that drips from the plate of turkey onto the carpet, eggnog that grandpa accidently tipped over and spilled everywhere, you name it. All stains are pesky and annoying but usually not enough to want to call in a professional to clean one tiny stain. Although some may seem impossible to get out, if you act fast and use these simple techniques, you can conquer almost any stain from sweet potato casserole to pie filling.
If you move quickly and get on the stain immediately, you have a much better chance at removing it completely. Don’t wait for all the in-laws to clear out, do it as soon as it happens. The longer you wait, the longer the stain will have to react chemically and set in your carpet which will make it harder to remove. You also want to get to it while it is still wet. After it dries, it becomes more difficult to get out.
Some stains are the result of dropping a sort of solid and semisolid onto the carpet. Before being able to efficiently remove these stains without causing further damage, you will first have to get rid of those different solids. Avoid digging, grabbing, or scooping. When picking up dry solids, you can use a vacuum. The best way to pick up a semisolid is to use a spoon or a dull knife to scrape it towards the middle of the stain and then onto a towel. Avoid spreading the stain, making it bigger and therefore harder to remove.
The biggest thing to remember when trying to get a stain out is to blot, never rub or scrub. Not only will this spread and make the stain bigger, but it will also separate and damage the fibers of the carpet and leaving you with a fuzzy area. Be sure to blot and dab moving in towards the center of the stain. Start by using a dry white towel to absorb as much of the stain as you can BEFORE adding any other liquids or chemicals. Avoid using colored or patterned towels to absorb the stain as the dye may transfer into your damp carpet, creating an even bigger problem.
A lot of stains can be removed with water, no chemicals necessary. After you have absorbed as much of the stain as possible with just a towel, you can start gently working water into the stain with a damp white towel and continue blotting until it is gone. Be patient, this isn’t going to happen instantly. You will have to continue this process multiple times before it will work.
If you have tried using water and it still isn’t working, you can then try something stronger. If you don’t have certified carpet cleaning product laying around, you can try using club soda or vinegar with the same techniques as you did with the water.
Stains are tricky, and not all of them will remove without calling in a qualified professional to clean your carpets, but hopefully these tips and tricks will enable you to work through the and remove as much of the stain as you can.