The team here at Rainier Chem-Dry is always at your service, and always ready to keep Tacoma’s carpets looking clean and bright. But when you spill something on your carpet, you shouldn’t wait for our expert team to arrive to deal with the stain. Instead, there are several steps you can – and should – take to ensure that a harmless spill doesn’t have a chance to become an unsightly and lasting carpet stain:
Act quickly. Even if this wasn’t the first step to cleaning away a carpet stain, it would top our list. Most carpets today are stain-resistant, but not stain-proof. This buys you enough time to act – and instant action can dictate whether or not the stain is temporary or permanent. After a spill, stop what you’re doing and…
Get something white & absorbent. A dry cloth will do nicely, as will a white paper towel. Don’t use a non-white cloth or a paper towel with a printed pattern – their colors might transfer and make the stain even worse.
Blot liquids, don’t scrub. We get it. Scrubbing is more satisfying. But scrubbing may also damage your carpet fibers and distort that smooth, uniform carpet pile. Our carpet cleaning methods are designed to be kind to your carpets; your stain removal should be, too. Continue to use a paper towel or dry cloth until the area is completely dry.
Don’t scrub in solids, either. For semi-solids, gently scrape up with a rounded spoon. Be sure to work from the outside in to avoid making the spill larger; work from the bottom up to avoid making the spill penetrate deeper. Solids should be vacuumed and broken up until completely removed from your carpet.
Pre-test any cleaning solution. Even a spot removal solution can create a stain in your carpet; test your solution in an inconspicuous area to confirm that it won’t damage the carpet fiber or dye. Test by applying multiple drops to your carpet, and then press a white cloth to the wet area for ten seconds. Examine the cloth and carpet for color change, color transfer, or damage. If you see any, use another solution.
Work patiently. Working slowly and gently will minimize the chance of making things worse (and requiring you to call your friends here at Rainier Chem-Dry). Start with just a little bit of cleaning solution (and a white cloth), and slowly blot it in. If you don’t apply enough cleaner the first time, blot in a little more.
Work outside-in. You’ll want to do what you did when you were blotting the spill – and for the same reasons: Working in from the edge keeps the spill from spreading.
Keep going. Continue using the carpet cleaning solution as long as there’s a transfer of the spill to the cloth. Don’t start using a second solution until the first one stops working.
Be patient. You might have to repeat the same step several times to completely remove the spill.
Rinse thoroughly. The work doesn’t end with the stain. Some cleaning solutions will cause rapid soiling if the solution is not entirely removed; you’ll need to rinse away the solution with cold water, and blot away with a dry cloth, until it’s all gone.
Dry thoroughly. Apply a layer of white paper towels to the affected area, and weigh down with a heavy, flat object. Continue to change paper towels as needed.
Sometimes, even if you do everything right, that spill will leave a stain. But even if you don’t remove the entire stain, you’ve improved the odds that our experts can do it. So give Rainier Chem-Dry a call. We’re proud to clean carpets throughout Tacoma, Puyallup, Kent, Bremerton, Federal Way, and beyond!