Spills happen, and when they do, you'll want to make all the right moves when it comes to keeping your carpet spotless. There are plenty of ways you can deal with carpet stains, but there are also several wrong ways of doing it. The following highlights 3 common mistakes people make when spot cleaning stains from their carpets. In addition, you'll also find out what you can do to keep your carpets looking spotless for years to come.
Mistake #1: Using Carpet Cleaning Solutions
Using carpet-cleaning foams and sprays to remove stains can be a bad idea in the long run. Unbeknownst to most people, these soap-based carpet cleaners typically leave behind residue that attracts dirt and dust to the treated area. The end result is an area of your carpet that progressively becomes darker as time goes on, since the residue left behind continues attracting dirt and dust.
Instead of using foam or spray treatments, you can use a 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water to treat carpet stains. Fill a spray bottle half-way with vinegar and fill it the rest of the way with water. Spray the affected area and let it soak for 15 minutes. Afterwards, blot the area with a clean towel to absorb most of the solution and leave the rest to dry. Repeat as necessary until the stain disappears.
Club soda also works wonders against recent beer and wine stains. Simply pour some club soda on a cotton cloth or clean towel and blot the affected area of your carpet with it. As with the white vinegar and water treatment, repeat this step as many times as needed.
Mistake #2: Rubbing the Stain Instead of Blotting It
Another mistake people tend to make when spot cleaning their carpets is rubbing the stained area instead of blotting it. Rubbing the stain simply drives it deeper into the fibers of the carpet, making it that much harder to remove the stain. Rubbing can also cause the stain to spread further, leaving you with a larger cleaning area to work with than before.
Blotting the stain, on the other hand, allows you to soak up the still-wet stain with a clean towel or a disposable paper towel. This should be done as soon as the spill occurs. Blotting stains as soon as they happen lessens the likelihood of the stain becoming a permanent fixture in your carpet.
When blotting, you can get a little more mileage out of your towels by folding the towel in quarters. Keeping the towel folded helps absorb more of the spill. If necessary, use your body weight to apply pressure on the towel so that it absorbs more liquid.
Mistake #3: Using Colored Towels to Clean Up Stains
Most people don't give much thought to the color of their towels when it comes to cleaning up carpet stains, but using a colorful towel or rag can make a bad stain even worse. Colored towels usually contain dyes that can easily transfer from the towel and onto the carpet fibers, especially when over-the-counter carpet cleaners are used. No matter how colorfast you think your colorful towels are, using them to blot out a spill always comes with the risk of a color transfer.
What you should you do instead is use a white towel, preferably one made from absorbent cotton. If you don't have any white towels lying around, you can always use white paper towels to clean up a spill. This way, you won't run the risk of leaving behind any dyes on your carpet.
Knowing how to spot clean your carpet properly not only keeps your carpet looking pristine, but it can also help extend the life of your carpet. For stubborn stains, contact a carpet cleaning company.