Carpet stain removal – Try to treat carpet stains immediately they occur. The longer they are left, the more difficult they will become to remove. Avoid adding extra liquids as far as possible, and do not rub or scrub the carpet as this will only drive the stain deeper, spread it or damage the carpet.
First scrape off any solid matter with a spoon or a blunt knife. Mop up any liquid by pressing on it with a dry towel or a wad of tissues. Use different areas of the towel or new tissue until no more moisture can be lifted from the carpet.
If a stain still remains, treat it according to whether it is water based or grease based. A water based stain such as tea or wine can be removed with a carpet shampoo, but a grease based stain such as oil or gravy, can only be removed with a dry cleaning solvent.
When applying the shampoo or solvent, use just enough on a cloth to moisten the area. If a saturated cloth is used, the stain will be driven in deeper. Turn the cloth to a dry side as soon as it becomes dirty. Work from the outside of the stain towards the middle to avoid spreading it. Finally, cover the area with a thick wad of tissues weighed down with something flat and heavy, such as a phone book. The remaining moisture will be absorbed by the tissues, further reducing the risk of a permanent stain. When the treated patch has dried out, it may be necessary to shampoo the entire carpet to ensure uniform colour. Carpet cleaning service companies can be called in for this carpet stain removal, or specialist carpet cleaning equipment can be hired.
Care must be taken not to over-wet the carpet, and avoid getting the backing of the carpet wet. Do not try to dry carpets artificially, for instance with a hair dryer, as the heat may damage the pile. Just smooth the carpet its natural pile direction and keep it well ventilated until dry.
Specialist carpet spot cleaning kits are also available for purchase and these will contain the relevant chemicals needed for different carpets and stains.