There’s nothing worse than that moment right before you spill something onto your carpet, clothes, or furniture. You can almost see it happening in slow motion. You feel yourself trip or lose your balance and just like that your drink is jostled and spilled. Even the smallest amount can be big trouble when your carpet is light or your drink is dark. Children, pets, or even grown adults with slippery fingers can cause all kinds of messes that add up over time.
If you take a good look at the carpet in your house right now, you can pretty much be guaranteed that you will find at least one stain somewhere. It’s not just your carpet, either. All sorts of surfaces can develop stains, like couches, rugs, and tile floors. So, how do you actually fix all these stains to get your house looking spotless again?
Part of the issue with stains is their origin. Stains can come from a plethora of places and things, and therefore have to be treated with different things. This is the most important thing to remember when learning about stains, as it will help you in deciding what kind of treatment you need to use. The next most important thing is knowing who to go to and how to choose professional carpet cleaning. This article will identify the types of pesky stains we often encounter and how to treat them, and then how to find a professional carpet cleaning when the do it yourself option fails.
- Oil based stains
Frying up some meat in a skillet or using some olive oil as a dip for bread can result in some pretty bad oil stains on your clothes, carpet, or rugs. One key to oil stains is to wash in the hottest water possible. This helps to dissolve the oil from the fabric. It’s also a good idea to pretreat the stain prior to washing with either liquid detergent or soap, or even baking soda.
- Outside stains
For grass stains, try using a mixture of rubbing alcohol and water and blotting the mixture on the stain. For white items, bleach is best for removing the grass stain. The key with mud stains on the other hand is to let them fully dry before treating. Once dry, shake off as much mud as you can, and then use a liquid detergent mixture to treat the fabric, or a stain removing product if the detergent doesn’t do the trick. Wash as you normally would.
- Food stains
The tiniest bit of sauce or jam can create a big mess on your clothing or furniture. Your best bet with these types of stains is to rinse as much of the stain off as you can under water, then try laying out in the sun. If the stain persists, repeat the process with a detergent mixture treatment first.
- Wine stains
There’s a few different tips for wine stains out there, and many people will have totally different ideas of how to treat it. Some say that using white wine is the perfect anecdote, where others say club soda will take the stain right out. The truth is that all of them will at least help with a stain, but a tried and true option will be to soak up as much of the wine as you can, then soak in a stain removing product and rinse with hot water.
- Animal stains
For those pesky animal stains, try using baking soda and vinegar. First, pour the vinegar directly on the stain, then sprinkle the baking soda over it. No scrubbing needed, simply allow the baking soda to bubble up and do its work, then vacuum or sweep away any excess.
- Sticky stains
Glue, sticker residue, and gum may be stains that are especially frustrating, as you also have to deal with the sticky object first. To remove, first scrape off as much of the adhesive as you can. Then, if dealing with a garment, try soaking in hot water to remove residue. If this doesn’t work, you’ll want your tried and true mixture of liquid detergent and water and blot away the stain.
- Tile stains
Stains on tiles are often a result of rust or grime. Using a tile cleaning product is usually the easiest way to remove these, as it contains the necessary ingredients to power through the tough grime. If you’re looking to save some money, you can also use a mixture of baking soda and water and a scrub brush, or use one of these tile cleaning DIY mixtures.
Sometimes, though, you have exhausted all your options and tried every trick in the book, and you still can’t get the stains out of your clothes, carpet, or upholstery. Your next move will be to go to the professionals.
- Professional carpet cleaner
Hiring a professional carpet cleaner will get you the best results with the least amount of work on your part. The time and energy you would have to put into spot cleaning all the various stains in your carpet is overwhelming, especially when a professional can clean all of your carpet in one go. They also will remove allergens and hidden bacteria which will help keep you healthier and breathing better air.
A cheaper, but similar option is to rent carpet cleaning equipment. This do it yourself option will be the next best thing to hiring carpet cleaners, with similar results for less money. The downside is the inconvenience of having to haul the equipment and do the work yourself, but can save you some money and therefore is desirable.
Finally, if your upholstered furniture is in need of a cleaning, having a specialist upholstery cleaner come in is the best idea to take the guesswork out of which stain removing method you should use.
And there you have it! The answers to every pesky stain you never know how to treat, and the pros and cons of doing it yourself versus hiring a cleaner or equipment. With any luck, you’ll have your house looking spotless once again… until the next spill.