Carpet Cleaning and Taking Care of Stains


Although many homes have wood floors, lots of houses still have carpets and, as with any flooring, there are spots and stains.

A spill or stain doesn’t have to be a major disaster or result in a permanent stain.

After the holidays and during the winter, carpets take a lot of abuse. When dealing with stains and carpet cleaning always act promptly. Don’t wait until spring cleaning to give your carpet attention even if there aren’t major stains.

Regular maintenance is the first step. Carpets should be vacuumed at least once a week. A thorough cleaning is important, especially in high-traffic areas. For the most efficient cleaning, use an upright or canister style with a power nozzle.

If your carpet is left untreated, dusty airborne particles can dull the colors.

Spots and stains should be treated promptly. Many of today’s carpets are treated with a stain-resistant finish, which means with immediate treatment, some spots and stains can be removed.

Tips for treating stains:

* Blot liquid stains, using a clean white cloth or paper towel.

* Scrape up semi-solids with a small spoon.

* Break up solids by gently using a spoon and vacuum up the debris.

* Gently blot. Rubbing and scrubbing will grind  stains into the carpet.

* Test a spot-removal agent in an inconspicuous area of the carpet or on a remnant, if you have one. Wait 10 minutes, then blot the area with a white cloth to make sure there’s no dye transfer to the cloth or color change or damage to the carpet.(For stains needing a solvent, try Goof Off. Use it according to directions.) White vinegar is good for many stains (use half water and half white vinegar.

* Apply the cleaning solution to a white cloth and gently blot it onto the carpet. Work from the edges of the spill to the center so the stain doesn’t spread. Blot and repeat as necessary until the stain no longer transfers to the cloth. This may take several applications.

* Rinse the areas with cold water, then blot with a dry white cloth until all the solution is removed.

* Cover the damp spot with an ⅛-inch stack of paper towels or dry cloth. Weight them down with a heavy object and leave so any remaining moisture in the carpet will be absorbed.

Pet urine stains and odors are common. A white vinegar solution will help neutralize the order. Most stains can be removed if treated within the first couple hours.

Clean with a carpet cleaner or hand-dishwashing detergent solution. Sponge, rinse and follow with a half water- half white vinegar solution. Leave for a few minutes and then cover with an absorbent material.

Routine vacuuming is important for good carpet care. If your carpet gets heavy use or has set-in stains, a professional cleaner may be necessary.

It is recommended carpets be professional cleaned every 12 to18 months. Ask for references from carpet cleaners to determine how others felt about their cleaning. Also ask for an estimate so you know up front what your costs will be.

By taking proper care of your carpet, it will last longer and save money. A stain removal kit with the proper cleaning agents is helpful so one can give quicker attention to spills.


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