Stain Removal Emergency Tips

It is important to respond promptly and knowledgeably to accidents in order to be resolved. Here is where professional carpet cleaners can help but there are a few steps you can take yourself which will prevent further damage by the time the professional arrives.

Helpful Preparation

As recommended by the National Carpet Cleaners Association it is good to have the following items at hand to prevent staining:

  • Clean white absorbent cloth
  • Dry Cleaning Solution – Surgical Spirit (can be found at local Chemists)
  • A solution of one teaspoonful of gentle detergent and half a pint of warm water
  • Detergent Vinegar Solution- a teaspoonful of white vinegar added to the Detergent Solution
  • Ammonia Solution – Mix one teaspoonful of branded household Ammonia (can be found at hardware stores) with one cup of warm water

General Recommendation

  • Avoid over wetting backing materials
  • Start with testing any solution on an unnoticeable area of carpet prior to treatment
  • Stick to recommended dilution ratios of detergent solutions
  • Blot up any liquid excess
  • Do not use inappropriate detergents on carpets or upholstery that may only worsen the problem
  • Work from the outside towards the centre of the stain to avoid further spreading
  • Apply the cleaning solution to the absorbent cloth
  • Arrange quick drying
  • Act quickly

For alcohol, coffee, tea, urine based stains is useful to blot up excess, use a little bit of Detergent Vinegar Solution, work from the outer edge to the centre of the stain, blotting with dry cloths, rinse finally. For Chocolate, Sweets, Blood, Glue, Egg, Diary products, Soft Drinks, Vomit- start with scraping up with a blunt knife, use detergent solution, always work from the outside-in, blot with dry cloths, apply ammonia solution, and blot with dry cloths before the final rinse. For Solids, Tar, Chewing Gum, Oil based, Shoe Polish stains start with scraping up again with a blunt knife, apply a dry cleaning solution first and then a detergent vinegar solution, blot with dry cloths and final rinse.For unknown stains scrape or blot first, use a dry cleaning solution and then clean lukewarm water. Blot with dry cloths, for further assistance use detergent or detergent vinegar solution, blot with dry cloths, final rinse.

Final Rinse Procedure for all above methods of stain removal

  • Mix one to four parts white vinegar and water
  • Use spray bottle to spread the solution over the stained area
  • Blot and remove excess
  • Spread white towel or absorbent cloth over the affected area and place a weight on top
  • Leave overnight and repeat the procedure if needed

Unfortunately, there is no guarantee of complete stain removal, but the correct first response will give your professional carpet cleaner the utmost chance of success.


National Carpet Cleaners Association, Emergency Tips for Spills and Stains. Available at: (Accessed: 19 August 2011)

Source by Kate Stoycheva

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