What Are Some Tips For Removing Very Tough Stains From Carpets?

What are some tips for removing very tough stains from carpets? Tips for removing common carpet stains like coffee, wine, grease, blood, pet stains, paint, gum, nail polish, ink and candle wax. Nothing brings...

Nothing brings an evening down quicker than spilling something on a brand new carpet. Spilling can be the least of your carpet concerns because some stains can set in that are a little bit tougher than the ones that come from the refrigerator. Those stains - grease, candle wax, blood, paint and chewing gum - can easily ruin the life of a carpet. But with proper treatment, those stains and all evidence of the stain can be removed.

Casey O'Hanlon has been in the carpet cleaning business for more than 25 years. As the owner of the Austin Specialty Cleaners located in Austin, Texas, Hanlon has seen all kinds of stains and has different tips and pointers that will help any carpet keep its luster.
How does O'Hanlon deal with removing grease from carpet?

"It depends on the kind of grease," he said. "If its kitchen grease, natural greases, you will need a spot cleaner designed for carpeting. If its synthetic oil, something tracked in from a car or something, you actually need solvents to break it up. A product called Energene is excellent. You can get it at drugstores or Wal-Mart."

Another very difficult stain to remove from carpets is candle wax. O'Hanlon said that removing candle wax is tough, but can be done with ease if done properly.

"You should scrape up as much of the solid as you can," he said. "Then use a brown paper bag and an iron. Place the paper bag over the wax. Take the iron, on a low setting, and put the iron over the paper bag. Then you can slowly slide the paper bag along the wax. It turns the paper bag into wax paper."

As we all know, it's almost impossible to paint any room and keep it all on the walls. So for removing paint from carpet, O'Hanlon suggests using a wet-vacuum.

"If it's fresh latex paint, you should use a wet-vacuum," he said. "You should try to locate a wet-vacuum as quickly as you can because paint has massive amounts of pigment in it. Blotting will never get it up. You'll just be blotting for weeks."

"If it is enamel, you have got to blot it with a solvent, but be careful. You can't actually soak the carpet with the solvent because it will break down the back of the carpet. If the paint is left to dry, then there is nothing a customer can do because the solvents involved are very aggressive. You can actually damage the backing of the carpet."
Anyone who has kids has had to remove chewing gum from carpet.
"Ice cubes will generally work," O'Hanlon said. "Well, ice cubes would work in breaking it up, but it only works on certain types of carpeting. You can actually damage other types. The best bet is a solvent to break it down, like Energene. The Energene will work."

"There are other ideas as well," he added. "If you are stuck, believe it or not, baby oil or peanut butter will do it. But then you're stuck with baby oil or peanut butter stain. The peanut butter stain will come out with a carpet spotter. The baby oil stain would work with a carpet spotter as well, but you've got to use a formulated spotter for it."

And as for blood stains on carpet, O'Hanlon said it's simple to remove as long as it's the right type of carpeting.

"As long as it's not wool carpeting, you can dab it with household ammonia, and that will take up almost all of it," he said. "Just blot it with ammonia. For the last traces of blood, you can spray it 2 or 3 times with just a store bought hydrogen peroxide."

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