Photo Courtesy: Zach Klein
Carpet is plush and comfortable. It feels good under your feet, and it looks warm and inviting. However, the major downside to carpet is that it’s prone to stains, which is why many homeowners these days prefer hardwood.
Here are the liquids that are most likely to stain your carpet permanently, along with tips on how to remove them as best as possible.
1. Motor oil
Oil quickly soaks into carpet fibers and can be very difficult to remove. Worse yet, it’s often tracked into your home by dirty shoes, leaving a long trail of ugly stain. Popular cleaning tricks include baking soda (let it soak in for 10 to 15 minutes), liquid dish soap diluted with water and rubbing alcohol for synthetic carpet fibers.
Once it dries, blood is almost impossible to remove. But if you catch the stain when it’s fresh, there’s hope. Try blotting the stain with cold water first, then move on to stronger methods if that’s not effective. You can use a dish soap and water solution or ammonia and water.
3. Red wine
There’s nothing worse than watching a party guest spill a glass of red wine on your white carpet. Of course, it’s no fun if you’re the culprit either. First, gently blot the stain to remove excess liquid. Then try one of the many removal methods, including baking soda, vinegar, club soda, hydrogen peroxide or even white wine. Click here to read about the pros and cons of each method.
Ink is a stain that also needs to be removed immediately, otherwise you’re probably going to have to live with it. Your best bet for removal is rubbing alcohol or regular cleaner. Remember never to rub the carpet – just blot. Rubbing the carpet can damage the carpet fibers.
Maybe your kids made a mess with the finger paints. Or maybe you made a few spills while painting the walls. Latex paint, when wet, can easily be removed with soap and water. If the paint has dried, head over to your local hardware store to buy a product specially made to remove dried paint.
6. Red sauce
There’s nothing like homemade spaghetti or meatballs, just not when they end up on your carpet. First, scoop up any excess sauce, being careful not to spread it. Then blot the stain with cold water. If that doesn’t work, try applying white vinegar or baking soda and letting it sit for 15 minutes or so.
7. Urine and pet stains
The worst part about pet stains is the odor. Avoid using any cleaning products with ammonia because it is a major component in urine. Instead, blot the stain first to remove excess liquid and then use a vinegar and water mixture.