Today's carpets resist stains better than ever before. But prompt clean up of spots spills and accidents is still a must. The longer you wait, the harder they are to remove.
Whenever a spill occurs, follow these three simple rules:
- Remove as much of the spilled substance as possible before adding any water soap. Use paper towels, a spoon, a vacuum cleaner, whatever necessary.
- When applying water or a cleaner, always blot, never scrub. Most do not have the patience to keep blotting, Unless you have a powerful vacuum to extract, blotting is the only way to remove a spot without damaging the fibers.
- If the basic cleaning solution did not work, leave the spot alone. It is tempting to start pulling chemicals out of the garage, but stop yourself! Most chemicals were not made to be mixed together and will only make the spot a permanent one.
There are many different types of products sold in stores which purport to permanently remove stains. Don't believe the advertising however. There are no products that magically remove every type of stain. In fact, many products can only be used on one type of carpet without causing damage. An example of this is the use of Oxyclean, which seems to be safe only for olefin carpets, since it causes permanent color loss in nylon carpets. We offer all of our customers a neutral spotting solution which is safe to use on all fabric types.
If you do not have a professional spotting solution available, be very careful about using store-bought cleaners. Most are too powerful and can damage carpet. Always test in an inconspicuous area when you first purchase a product. Wait at least a week to determine that no adverse effects have occurred. Besides using a neutral spotting solution, we recommend basic clear liquid dishwashing soap (non-bleach and non-lanolin). It is the safest household product to use on carpet because it will not "set" stains as will most cleaners. Follow the instructions below to safely remove most types of stains.
- For liquid spills, blot damp areas as soon as possible with plain white paper toweling. For dry spills, remove as much substance as possible with a paper towel or vacuum.
- Apply a solution of 1/4 teaspoon of a liquid dishwashing soap with one cup of lukewarm water. Do not use automatic dishwashing detergent or laundry detergent.
- Apply a small amount of the selected cleaning solution to a white cloth, allow to sit for about 10 minutes and work in gently.
- Work from the edges of the spill to the center to prevent the spill from spreading. Do not scrub! Blot, absorbing as much as possible, and repeat if necessary.
- Continue rinsing and blotting with the soap solution and water as long as there is a transfer to the toweling or improvement in the spot.
- If the spot is from urine, follow the soap application with a solution of one cup white vinegar to two cups water, and blot dry.
- Make sure to rinse with plain water thoroughly so as to avoid leaving a soapy residue that will only cause rapid soiling.
- Apply a clean white towel or several layers of paper towels (one-quarter inch thick) to the area, and weigh down with a flat heavy object.
Never use all-purpose spray cleaners, bleach, or alkaline detergents. You can damage the carpet. Also remember: Some stains need professional treatment.
If you're not satisfied with your results, please call us. Even if you don't need our help, please try to remember what was spilled and where it happened. That way you can point it out to us when we come to do your carpet's periodic deep cleaning. Some spills - and especially pet accidents - can leave bothersome residues that require special treatment.