Before you attempt to remove a stain, always remember to blot it, working from the outside in. Rinse your rag with clean water, and repeat. If you scrub your carpet, you’ll risk ruining its fibers or causing a stain to penetrate to the pad.
To remove splashes and stains from colas, jelly, mud, gravy, berries, ice cream, milk, washable inks, paints, and alcoholic drinks, apply a mix of ¼ teaspoon of non-bleach detergent, or white vinegar, combined with 32 ounces of water.
For even tougher water-soluble stains, including blood, wine, mustard, chocolate, coffee, tea, and even vomit, apply a mixture of one tablespoon of ammonia and one cup of water, unless the carpet is wool, or a wool-blend. In that case, use a combo of a mild detergent and water. If neither of those options remove the stain, try one part chlorine bleach to five parts water—only use this on solution-dyed carpets, because bleach will harm other kinds of carpets. If you’re unsure about what type of carpet you have, consult the manufacturer.
When it comes to wax and gum messes, ice is your friend. Rub ice onto the wax or gum, then break apart the frozen, brittle pieces using a spoon or other blunt object. Vacuum up the pieces and blot the carpet with a towel.
When a crafts project gets messy and glue finds its way onto the carpet, moisten a cloth or cotton ball with rubbing alcohol and apply pressure to the stained area. The glue will moisten. Wipe it away, and repeat the process until clean.
To remove a cigarette burn, simply rub your carpet with a hard, flat surface, like a dull knife.
Maintaining Your Carpet
Always clean your carpet every 12 to 18 months. You can do it yourself using a steam cleaner, or you can call in a professional carpet cleaning service.
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