The decorations are down, the last remaining dregs of festive cheer have been retired to the back of the drinks cupboard, and you are faced with myriad mysterious stains from guests’ spills. Don’t despair about the port stain on the carpet, or the unsightly mark of unknown origins on your favourite rug; here are our top tips for carpet cleaning.
The best way to avoid carpet stains is to get to them as soon as possible; whether it’s chilli sauce or a glass of red, here’s what you can do straight away:
DON’T scrub at the stain; this will spread it out, ingrain it into the surface, and could damage the rug or carpet.
DO dab and blot to get rid of the excess.
DO work from the outside of the stain inwards, to prevent smearing.
DON’T use too much water; this will soak your carpet, and any underlay, which will make the stain worse.
DO use minimal water, or just cleaning agent (such as a carpet spray, a paste made of bicarbonate of soda and water, or a mixture of water and white vinegar).
DO test any products on a small, discreet area first, to make sure it doesn’t bleach the carpet or rug.
DO allow cleaning solution to soak in before blotting, then repeat as necessary.
DO use a small amount of water to wash away residues of cleaning solution when you have successfully removed the stain.
DON’T tackle mud straight away – this is the exception to the “Act Now” rule: be patient and wait for the mud to dry, before brushing off the excess, vacuuming and cleaning with a solution of water and vinegar, or bicarbonate of soda.
If you discover dried-in stains, the first thing that you want to do is wet them a little (not too much). Dampen the surface of the stain with a little water, then follow the rules: blot, dab and repeat before applying a small amount of detergent, or cleaning solution.
We know that carpet cleaning can be a headache, and that it is not always possible to eradicate stains, particularly dried ones. If you want to give your carpets and rugs a new lease of life and make them stain-free, consider consulting a reliable, local professional carpet cleaner, who knows all of the tricks of the trade and possesses the skills and technology to make your carpets look as good as new.