When a spill or an accident happens on the carpet, many people have developed an automatic response: douse it with chemical-laden spray to try to keep the stain from setting in. While some of these products can be very effective, they can cause breathing difficulties for some people and may even be harmful over the long-term with frequent use.

clean carpetsLuckily, there are other alternatives that most people have in their cabinets at home already. First, be sure to consider the type of carpeting where the stain or spill is located, and then the type of stain. Acidic stains often respond best to basic treatments, and oily stains often respond best to detergent-type treatments, for example.

Here’s a quick run-down of four trusted home remedies for quick, effective, and safe stain removal.

  1. Vinegar. White vinegar works well in deodorizing and removing many different types of stains. If cleaning up a stain on a natural fiber carpet, a mixture of one part white vinegar to one part water can be spritzed on the stain. For a synthetic carpet, opt for one part vinegar to two parts water, and use a white cloth dipped in the mixture to dab the stain until moistened.
  2. Baking soda. Known for its ability to absorb odors, baking soda is great for pet urine and other stains that can be treated while still wet. After sprinkling the area liberally with the powder, let it sit for a few minutes before sweeping up a bit (to loosen the baking soda and the stain) and then vacuuming up the rest. Some users also recommend using a small amount of borax mixed with the baking soda to help get rid of the smell of pet urine on carpet.
  3. Salt. Believe it or not, salt is great at absorbing liquid from dark stains, like red wine, before they dry. After the stain is dry, the area can be vacuumed and a good portion of the stain will already be lifted. This can also be done in a mixture with baking soda.
  4. Dish soap. For stains on synthetic carpet, colorless dish soap mixed with warm water in a one part detergent to four parts water ratio can be dabbed onto the stain. For natural fiber carpet, opt for a 1:48 ratio of detergent to water (or about 1 teaspoon soap in 1 cup water) in a spray bottle and mist the mixture on the stain.

Unfortunately, these DIY methods don’t always work completely, and sometimes pesky stains will keep reappearing the day after they are treated. That’s where Royal Carpet Cleaning comes in. Outside of regular carpet cleaning recommended a couple of times a year, you can always call them to treat the pesky stains that you just can’t get out on your own.