Professional carpet cleaners are great at getting rid of the tough stains. However, a variety of DIY methods can sometimes help you accomplish the same task–cheaper and easier.
For liquid spills, dabbing is one of the first and best ways to clean your carpet. You can simply use paper towels, a clean cloth, or sponge with a bit of cleaning solution, such as dish soap.
To clean the carpet, all you have to do is gently dab the stain. Dabbing applies a very small amount of pressure on the stain, allowing it to be soaked up out of the carpet. You must be sure to only dab because rubbing the stain will force the particles that comprise the stain into the carpet fibers. This will make the stain much harder to clean.
Finally, you should always dab the stain starting from the outer area of the stain. Dabbing from the center can cause the stain to spread, making clean up that much more difficult.
- Butter knife
Sticky items, such as candy, can be a dirt-attracting mess. Fortunately, if you address this type of stain immediately, you can remedy this situation quickly. The first thing you should do is use a butter knife to scrape off as much of the candy (or other material) as possible. Once most all of the material is removed, it is extremely important to clean the area. This is because any remaining sugar will attract debris and dirt, causing additional staining.
To remove the remaining sugar, you can simply dab a sponge dampened with water and a mild soap across the area. Once the area is clean, make sure to dry it by dabbing it with a dry towel or clean cloth.
- Shaving cream
It turns out that, for general stains, shaving cream is the go-to cleaner. In fact, it cleans so well that it will remove almost any type of stain from which your carpet might suffer. You can simply spray the shaving cream directly on the stain, and let it sit for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, you need simply use a dry white cloth to remove the shaving cream by dabbing it until all of the shaving cream is removed. Last, dab the area with a cloth to remove any excess solution.
Candle wax can be difficult to clean off a carpet. However, if you place a cloth over the wax, you can use an iron to heat the wax. Once heated, you can use a butter knife to scrape the wax off of the carpet.
Next, place a white paper towel on the remaining wax stain. With the towel in place, you can heat up the paper towel with the iron. As the remaining wax melts, it binds to the paper towel. Repeat this paper-towel step until all of the wax is removed.
Note: you should always use a white cloth and white paper towel with this method because colors will transfer to the carpet when heated. Additionally, never heat the wax for more than thirty seconds because you may unintentionally burn your carpet.
- Wet vacuuming
Wet vacuuming is, perhaps, the best DIY method for cleaning a carpet. Wet vacs utilize heated water mixed with a cleaning solution. During the pre-vacuum stage, you must soak the carpet by running the vacuum over the carpet without the suction turned on. Doing so premixes the solution into the carpet, and as you later vacuum the carpet, the water and stains and debris are sucked up from deep within the weave. Additionally, wet vacuuming is one of the best ways to eliminate pet dander. If wet vacuuming does not work, you have a stain best lest for professionals, such Crystal Clean Carpet Cleaning.
- Lemon or clear citrus
For greasy stains, squeezing a lemon or other clear citrus fruit, such as a lime, will help break up the stain. It is important to use a clear citrus fruit. For instance, although oranges will work, they, too, can stain the carpet. If you have a really light-colored carpet, you can dilute the lemon juice to reduce the chance of further staining the carpet.
- Baby powder
Sometimes, you can vacuum or even wet vacuum a dirty carpet, but the smell remains. In these cases, sprinkling baby powder on the carpet will help get rid of the smell. For the best results, you should sprinkle the powder onto the carpet then knead the carpet with your fingers. This helps the powder permeate the carpet weave. Once you have done this for the entire carpet, you can dry vacuum the carpet, and the odor will be nice and refreshing.
- Vinegar and water
For mold or mildew, white vinegar diluted at a 4-to-1 ratio of water and vinegar will kill most molds and mildew. Additionally, such a solution will eliminate the musty smells associated with mold and mildew. Although your carpet will smell like vinegar for an hour or so, this smell will abate, leaving your carpet much cleaner and healthier.