We’ve all been there. You’re having a great time drinking wine with friends and catching up, and suddenly there’s a gigantic wine stain on your new carpet. Even if the carpet isn’t new, and even if have the benefit of noticing the wine stain exactly as it happens, you know you’re in for a long, frustrating night of blotting and cleaning. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be this way, even with stains as deep-setting as those caused by wine spills. All you need to do is find the right tools and keep them close, and you’ll find it a snap to remove tough stains. If you’re worried about your carpet ever looking the same again after a night of revelry, here are a few foolproof tips to restore your carpet to its natural state.
Have a Stain Removal Kit on Hand
You don’t have to be a professional cleaner to know that when a stain occurs, you can’t waste any time cleaning it up. The longer a stain sets, the harder it becomes to remove, as the offending material seeps deeper into your rug’s fibers, causing odor and bacteria to spread. To avoid ruining your carpet by neglect, attack that wine stain as soon as you see it by keeping a clean-up kit nearby. Your kit should have a combination of powerful, stain-busting liquids like hydrogen peroxide, ammonia, and acetone, as well as baking soda and a spray bottle of plain water and gentle soap. For wine, which is an acidic stain, you’ll want to start by blotting the excess liquid with a white cotton towel or paper towel. Be gentle when dabbing up the wine, making sure you’re not pushing the liquid deeper into your rug’s fibers. If you have a short-haired rug, this should be easier, while shaggy rugs may take more time. Using a small amount of diluted hydrogen peroxide, sprinkle a small amount on your stain and follow it with baking soda. You should hear some bubbling and crackling as the two mix. Allow these ingredients to do their thing for about 2-3 minutes.
Blot, Dab, Repeat
After a few minutes, you should be looking at an almost spotless rug. However, if it hasn’t done the trick, don’t be afraid to go back and repeat the process. If you need to leave the solution there overnight, you’ll give the baking soda more time to soak up odors and bacteria beneath the surface. However, to avoid creating a mess in the morning, leave a paper towel on top to soak up the debris. If you’re more comfortable working with ammonia for acidic stains, you can easily replace the hydrogen peroxide or vinegar with a diluted ammonia mixture. Just make sure whatever you do not to mix even a small amount ammonia or vinegar with hydrogen peroxide. Doing so can create a compound that can easily endanger your health and safety. When it comes to strong chemicals, always do a thorough check to see what can safely be combined and what needs to be left alone.
Use a Plain White Towel
If you’re using ammonia, don’t use a colored towel on your stain. The chemical could easily cause bleeding and transfer onto the rug, making an even bigger stain that will be harder to take out. You also want to avoid using ammonia on wool and other sensitive raw materials. If your rug is made of a raw, natural fiber, you’ll want to use extreme caution when applying any direct chemicals. When in doubt, opt for a gentle soap and water solution and a heated paper towel left overnight. Don’t overdo it with the soap and water; only use a sparing amount so that you don’t create a water stain in the process.
Get Regular Carpet Cleanings for Good Measure
Sometimes even the best-laid plans go amiss when it comes to getting tough, acidic wine stains out of our beloved carpets. When that happens, you’ll want to take your rug in for a professional cleaning. While these cleanings can end up feeling like a huge expense, you should actually be setting up a rug cleaning appointment at least a few times a year at a reputable carpet cleaning Indianapolis location. Even if your rug doesn’t look dirty, tons of dust particles, dirt, and bacteria strains tend to build up deep in your carpet’s surface over the course of the year. Even though your wine spill might not seem like a blessing at the time, it’s helpful to think of it as a reminder to keep your rug regularly cleaned and well-maintained through the year.