When my husband and I were looking for a house, we put our poor Realtor through the wringer! When you have kids and pets, you have specific needs when looking for a home. A lot of the properties we looked at were just missing the “wow” factor for us. What we found frustrating about the houses that we did like was the flooring. WE found that more often than not, the hard flooring was not of the highest quality and with our kids, we knew they would not last long. The other funny thing we found was almost every single house had very light colored carpet. Why in the world anyone would prefer a light colored carpet that will get dirty so quickly stumps me! So, we finally decided to buy a carpet cleaner and use that when the carpets needed cleaning. Those machines work fine for everyday stains, but if you have a pretty major stain, they do not always get it out. Here are some great tips I found for trying to get stains out yourself:
- Water Soluble Stains: For stains like milk, juice, alcohol, jelly, mud, washable ink and similar products try this: mix 1 tsp. of vinegar to 32 ounces of waster and pour on the stain a little at a time , blotting in between each pouring. Remember to blot, not scrub or rub as this can hurt the carpet.
- Special Water Soluble Stains: For tougher stains like coffee, tea, vomit, mustard and chocolate, use 1 tsp. of ammonia mixed with 1 cup of waster. Follow the same steps as above.
- Fat, Oil or Wax: Place a paper towel over the stain and with an iron set on warm, place the iron on the stain. The heat should lift the stain.
- Wax or Gum: Use ice to freeze the stain and then smash it with a spoon! Vacuum the pieces.
- Stubborn Stains: If you have a stain that you cannot get out like dark juice, koolaid or red wine, try this: mix a solution of white vinegar, dish detergent and water. Pour a small amount on the stain and wait a few seconds. Place a paper towel and place an iron set on warm over the stain. Repeat this process until the stain is gone.
Removing Carpet Stains
If you have tried any of the above solutions and you still cannot get your stain out, it is time to call in the professionals. It is better to spend a few dollars for professional cleaning now rather than a lot of money for a new carpet later. One of the best companies for carpet cleaning, restoration and other services usually come from referrals. Ask your friends, family and co-workers if they have a good carpet cleaning service they have used. Often times someone we know has also been in the same situation with a bad stain and needed to call in the reinforcements! If no one you know has a company they have used, you can do an Internet search. This is a fine way to find a reputable company as long as you read their reviews and check with the Better Business Bureau. In my book, it is always better to be safe than sorry in that regard. Once you get your carpet cleaned and the stain is gone, be sure to ask the service technician to recommend a good stain protection product. Just like you can spray a protection solution on your furniture to repel spills and stains, you can do the same for your carpet. If you follow these recommendations, you have your carpet back to looking brand new in no time!