Carpet stains – the ultimate DIY tutorial / how to removal guide.

So you need help with your carpet stain. You are in good hands here – we have 2 generations and a combined 50 + years of passionately perfecting the art of professional carpet cleaning. First gently remove as much of the stain as possible with no cleaning solution. I like a spoon. Do not press so hard that you damage the twist of the carpet fiber. It can fray and look bad. Start from the outside and work in so you don’t spread the stain. Now look at the chart below or @ CarpetCleaningCleaners.org/carpet-stains to find the correct cleaning solution for your stain. This is the very best guide I have seen using products that are easily accessible for the home owner. Professional carpet cleaners do have access to better cleaning solutions, much higher temperatures and years of training that allow them to get out some pretty incredible stains. See our article on how to find great carpet cleaners.

Always pre-test all carpet cleaning solutions in an inconspicuous area to make sure they will not discolor your carpet.

Read the instructions for your specific stain before proceeding!

Most stains will then follow the following procedure • The key here is to NOT OVERUSE the solution and read BEFORE applying anything – most stains are best vacuumed first. Most importantly do not overuse the cleaning solution, it will make the stain look better but it is just allowing some of it to escape down into the pad where it will continually wick back up after many, many cleanings and is impossible to remove without deep flushing or replacing the pad. This is the #1 mistake I see people make. You can minimize this by IMMEDIATELY following the application of the cleaning solution with a wet vacuum or dry blotting which will be covered next. • If you have a decent wet vacuum it is better than blotting for removal of the cleaning solution and rinse water. • Carefully vacuum or blot always working from the outside in. Never over agitate or you will fray the fiber – watch it closely. • Repeat this process until there is no more transfer of the stains color when you blot with a clean white rag. • Rinse blot with good clean and warm water until ALL of the cleaning solution is removed. If you don’t get it all it will look fine now but will re-soil later and look gray and nasty. This is the second most common mistake I see • Vacuum or dry blot. • Place a fan so that the air flow is maximized all the way to the base of the fiber – but do not create a fire hazard by putting too much strain on the fan motor – it could burn out and start a fire. • If this does not work I would call a professional. For totally free tips on how to avoid shockingly frequent horror of a bad carpet cleaning and find a great carpet cleaner you can see my report at CarpetCleaningCleaner.org o Thanks, good luck and good day!

Carpet cleaning Supplies needed (Source)

Mild non-bleach Laundry detergent (Grocery, Wal-Mart) Dry cleaning solvent (Hardware store, grocery, Wal-mart) Clear / non-sudsing ammonia (Hardware store) White vinegar (Grocery, Wal-Mart) Nail polish remover-always pretest! (Grocery, Wal-Mart)

*Always mix the cleaning solutions as follows: Laundry detergent: 1 teaspoon detergent with 1 qt. water White vinegar: 2 tbs. with 1 quart water Dry cleaning solvent: use as directed on bottle. Non-siding/clear ammonia: 2 tbs. with 1quart water Nail polish remover: use straight – do not dilute *Always vacuum immediately and thoroughly after application of each cleaning solution. The #1 mistake is using too much and sending the stain down into the pad where it will continually wick back no matter how many times you clean it.

Stain type: Proper home based cleaning solution

Asphalt*: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, blot/vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Bleach**: Water. If the color has been removed then it must be re-dyed by a professional.

Blood: Cold Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, blot/vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Butter: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum/blot Dry cleaning solvent

Carbon: Vacuum, Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Chalk: Vacuum, Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Charcoal**: Vacuum, Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Chocolate*: White vinegar (2 tbs. to 1 quart water), blot/vacuum,

Coffee**: White vinegar, vacuum, Non-siding/clear ammonia

Crayon: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, blot/vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Dirt : Vacuum, Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Dye**: Seek out a top professional carpet cleaner

Feces: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar

Furniture polish**: Dry cleaning solvent

Furniture stain**: Dry cleaning solvent

Glue (hobby): Dry cleaning solvent

Glue (white): Laundry detergent, Non- sudsing/clear ammonia (2 tbs. to 1qt. water)

Graphite**: Vacuum, Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum, Dry cleaning solvent

Grease (automotive): Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, vacuum/blot Dry cleaning solvent

Grease (food): Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Gum: Freeze it with ice, smash it with a hammer, Vacuum, then use Dry cleaning solvent.

Hair oil: Dry cleaning solvent

Hair spray: Dry cleaning solvent

Hand lotion: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Ice cream: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Ink (ball point pen)**: Dry cleaning solvent

Iodine**: Dry cleaning solvent *seek a professional

Lipstick*: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Liqueurs**: White vinegar, vacuum, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Oil (machine): Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Makeup*: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Marker**: Dry cleaning solvent

Mascara*: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Mayonnaise: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar, vacuum, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Milk: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar, vacuum, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Mud: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar, vacuum, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Nail polish**: Nail polish remover

Paint (Latex)*: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Paint (Oil based)**: Dry cleaning solvent

Paper Mache: White vinegar, vacuum, Non- sudsing/clear ammonia

Petroleum products: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Rubber cement: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Rust: White vinegar

Shoe polish**: Dry cleaning solvent * seek a professional

Shortening: Dry cleaning solvent

Solder**: Dry cleaning solvent * seek a professional

Soot : Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Tar* : Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Tea*: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar, vacuum, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Toilet bowl cleaner**: Dry cleaning solvent * seek a professional

Toner**: Vacuum thoroughly then Dry cleaning solvent

Toothpaste: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Unknown: L. detergent, Dry cleaning solvent, White vinegar, vac., Non sudsing/clear ammonia

Urine**: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar

Varnish: Dry cleaning solvent * seek a professional

Vomit**: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Wax: Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, Dry cleaning solvent

Wine (red)*: *seek a professional

Wine (white): Laundry detergent, vacuum/blot, White vinegar

*may be un-removable without high temperatures, vacuum or professional cleaning products, call a professional carpet cleaning company. (How to find a great carpet cleaner)

**may be un-removable even for a professional carpet cleaner.

Carpet cleaning Cedar Rapids, Iowa City and Marion,. The best carpet & rug cleaners - 100% guaranteed.

American Dream - World Class Carpet & rug cleaners
Cedar Rapids - Marion
(319) 350-5530
Iowa City (319) 936-1800
by Bill Harris