The A – To Z Of Stain Removal

Head to your local hardware store or supermarket for all removal agents mentioned.

Stain

Ballpoint ink

How to solve the problem

Methylated spirits

How to do it

Dab with absorbent white cloth and methlyated spirits

Stain

Beetroot juice

How to solve the problem

Borax and biological detergent

How to do it

First rinse with cold water. Soak coloureds in a solution of borax for 15 minutes. For white linen, sprinkle borax on the fabric and flush with hot water. Wash with biological detergent.

Stain

Bird droppings

How to solve the problem

Borax, biological detergent and chlorine bleach or hydrogen peroxide

How to do it

Scrape off excess droppings and sponge with a solution of borax or soak in biological detergent. If stains still remain, try soaking in dilute chlorine bleach (white cotton) or hydrogen peroxide (coloureds and synthetics, but not nylon).

Stain

Blood

How to solve the problem

Salt or biological detergent

How to do it

Presoak fresh stains in heavily salted cold water or detergent.

Stain

Candle wax

How to solve the problem

Absorbent paper, a warm iron and methlyated spirits

How to do it

Scrape away the excess. Place a kitchen towel over the residue and press with a warm iron until the paper absorbs the softened wax. Dab any colour residue with methlyated spirits before washing.

Stain

Chewing gum

How to solve the problem

Ice cubes

How to do it

Freeze the gum with a bag of ice cubes. Once it becomes hard and brittle, break away the gum with a knife.

Stain

Coffee and tea

How to solve the problem

Detergent, vinegar and borax

How to do it

Flush with cold water and spot clean with a solution of washing detergent but not soap. If staining remains, soak in a solution of one part vinegar to two parts water or a solution of borax.

Stain

Colour run in washing machine

How to solve the problem

Washing soda and colour dye remover

How to do it

If you dye an entire washload, soak in cold water with washing soda to avoid setting the colour. As soon as possible, machine wash again with a colour run dye reversal product.

Stain

Contact adhesive and glue

How to solve the problem

Acetate (nail polish remover)

How to do it

Dab with acetate.

Stain

Cooking fat

How to solve the problem

Bicarbonate of soda and biological detergent

How to do it

Add a few drops of water to bicarbonate to make a paste and spread over the stain. Leave for 30 minutes and then wash in biological detergent.

Stain

Crayon

How to solve the problem

Methlyated spirits

How to do it

Scrape away excess before dabbing with methlyated spirits.

Stain

Curry

How to solve the problem

Biological detergent and hydrogen peroxide

How to do it

Some curry stains contain strong natural dyes that are almost impossible to shift. Dab with a strong solution of detergent before laundering. Soak stubborn stains in a solution of hydrogen peroxide bleach.

Stain

Dried fruit

How to solve the problem

Lemon juice

How to do it

Place the garment stain side down on absorbent kitchen towel and dampen with lemon juice. Dab with hot water and wash.

Stain

Fresh fruit

How to solve the problem

Borax or salt

How to do it

Soak in a solution of borax for 15 minutes to neutralize the acid and then wash. Alternatively cover the stain with salt and then wash.

Stain

Grass stain

How to solve the problem

Biological detergent or methylated spirits

How to do it

Grass is a combination of protein and dye. Detergent should remove most stains. Dab any remaining dye with methlyated spirits.

Stain

Ink on coloured fabric

How to solve the problem

Milk

How to do it

Soak immediately in slightly warm milk then wash

Stain

Ink and felt tip pen

How to solve the problem

Methlyated spirits

How to do it

Dab with an absorbent pad dipped in methlyated spirits

Stain

Lipstick

How to solve the issue

Soap or methlyated spirits

How to do it

Rub fabric against fabric with soap or a little washing-up liquid and then wash. Dab with methlyated spirits if the fabric isn’t washable

Stain

Mildew – dried

How to solve the issue

Salt or lemon juice

How to do it

Rub with damp salt or a lemon and leave in the sun for at least 12 hours.

Stain

Mildew on shower curtains

How to solve the issue

Chlorine bleach

How to do it

Sponge or soak in dilute bleach and machine wash with detergent.

Stain

Mildew on white cotton and linen

How to solve the issue

Household chlorine bleach

How to do it

Mildew is almost impossible to remove and is caused by damp. Soak in diluted bleach then thoroughly rinse and wash.

Stain

Mildew on white synthetics

How to solve the issue

Hydrogen peroxide

How to do it

Soak in one part hydrogen peroxide to nine parts water. Rinse and wash.

Stain

Paint- emulsion and water based

How to solve the issue

Water

How to do it

Sponge immediately with plenty of warm water. Dried paint can be scraped or picked off, but is difficult to wash off.

Stain

Paint – solvent based

How to solve the issue

White spirit

How to do it

Dab with white spirit.

Stain

Perspiration

How to solve the issue

Clear vinegar or lemon juice

How to do it

Soak or sponge with vinegar, but use lemon juice on wool. Rinse and wash.

Stain

Plasticine

How to solve the issue

White spirit

How to do it

Scrape off as much mud as possible and dab dye stains with white spirit.

Stain

Pollen

How to solve the issue

Sticky tape

How to do it

Lift away the pollen with sticky tape or a vacuum cleaner, but don’t rub or you’ll fix the dye.

Stain

Red wine

How to solve the issue

Carbonated or soda water

How to do it

Dab or flush with carbonated or soda water and wash.

Stain

Rust

How to solve the issue

Lemon juice

How to do it

Flush with lemon juice, leave for 15 minutes and launder.

Stain

Scorch marks

How to solve the issue

None

How to do it

Scorch marks are permanent damage, but their appearance can be disguised by carefully shaving away the damaged fibres.

Stain

Shoe polish

How to solve the issue

White spirit

How to do it

Dab with white spirit and wash

Stain

Urine

How to solve the issue

Detergent, vinegar or shaving foam

How to do it

Soak in detergent and wash. For non-washable fabric, dab with mild vinegar solution. On mattresses, sponge with a dab of shaving foam.

Head to your local hardware store or supermarket for all the removal agents mentioned.

For more hints and tips watch out for the Cleaning Bible by Kim and Aggie (£9.99, Penguin non-fiction).



Source by Penny Day

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