There are endless carpet stain removal tips and this article will address some of the more popular methods. Carpets in newer houses can have the benefit of being more stain-resistant. If you are one of the lucky few to live in a newer house, spills will not stain if they're attended to right away. However, stain-resistant carpets are not infallible, nor do most people have them.
A good rule of thumb is simplicity: plain water and a cotton cloth, towel, or paper towel works the best. Pat the stain, do not rub it! Patting it allows the clean cloth to make contact with the stain and pick up the offending substance. If you rub the stain, it picks up some of the substance, but it mostly grinds it into the carpet.
Do not try to clean a stain before you've picked up any solids that went along with it. If you spill a bowl of pasta, quickly pick up every last noodle. Why spread the mess around or risk it staining another part of the carpet? If the stain is of a substance that has a specific remover (like paint thinner or glue remover), try that first and then work on the stain. You can not do anything if the stained carpet is covered by a hardened substance.
Detergent markers also work very well after a stain has been blotted. If you use other cleansers, apply them to the cloth first and then use the cloth on the carpet. This gives you more control. It also allows you to apply a little at a time and work on it. You can see if it cleans the stain or is making the stain worse.
Vacuums with both wet and dry abilities may be the absolute best. The suction picks up the mess without driving it further into the fabric. It also gives the carpet numerous douses with water, removing the stain a little bit at a time.
Look for specific tips online if you know the exact cause of a stain. For example, if you spill candle wax on a carpet, wait for it to completely dry and harden. Then take a paper towel or bag and put it over the wax. Turn your iron on a low setting and iron the paper. It will melt the wax again and lift it right from the carpet onto the paper.
Some say hairspray removes ink stains, shaving cream removes hardened mud stains, and toothpaste removes a variety of substances. You can never have too much information on hand! One word of advice, though, look for many people who have recommended a certain method. You do not want to take the advice of just anyone!