We get it.
You’ve got a stubborn stain you need to remove–and quickly.
While some stains require professional cleaning, others just need a little practical know-how.
Try these tips first.
We’ve been cleaning carpets and upholstery for 40 years. So we’ve seen and tackled almost every imaginable stain or minor damage. Take our word for it – we use these same tips at home!
Carpet and Upholstery Stains: What to Avoid
Avoid detergents containing optical brighteners.
Most “carpet cleaning” sprays contain optical brighteners, which do not clean the stain, only cover it. They work by reflecting the colors around them, lightening the stain. However, the actual soil gets pushed farther down into the carpet, making it more difficult to clean later.
Avoid dishwasher detergent or anything containing bleach.
This will absolutely destroy your carpet. It will not only hurt the color, but it will also damage the binding mechanics of the carpet, making the carpet age much faster than normal.
Carpet and Upholstery Stains: A DIY Solution
Here’s a proper, easy-to-use solution for cleaning a stain:
- Mix 1 teaspoon of mild laundry detergent with 1 pint of warm water.
- Sponge the detergent mixture into the stain, working from the outside to the center of the stain. A lather will form.
- Gently sponge off the lather with a cold, damp towel until all the suds disappear.
- Let the carpet or upholstery dry.
…Special Instructions for Cleaning a Mud Stain
In case of mud, let it dry first and then vacuum. Any initial blotting will result in the mud traveling farther into the carpet.
…Special instructions for Cleaning a Pet Stain
With pet urine or vomit, it is always important to pick up and vacuum as much of the stain as you can before you clean it. Follow the cleaning method as described above.
Important: Highly acidic stains such as pet urine or vomit may require several treatments.
Repairing Matted Carpet
Carpet that gets matted from heavy furniture is a common problem. One solution is to use a slightly damp towel. Lightly rub the area with the towel, leaving it damp. Then gently agitate the fibers with a hard, flat surface (such as a coin or a spoon). Non-flammable hair spray can also be used to set carpet pile.
Advice for Maintaining Your Carpets
The best maintenance for your carpet is routine vacuuming.
Most soil (about 80%) is dry particles and will be removed by vacuuming. Use a vacuum with a reel-type brush to move the tips of the pile so the dirt can be removed from the fibers. Heavy traffic areas should be vacuumed slower, back and forth, in both directions.
Be sure to change the bag or empty the vacuum often. Check the drive belt that moves the brushes.
But one of the best ways to prevent soil in the first place is to use removable mats at entrances. Mats can easily be cleaned by vacuuming, hosing, beating, or laundering.