How to Get Stains out of Carpets? Tried and True Techniques

It doesn’t matter how hard you try to keep stains out of your carpets, at some point, it’s just going to happen. Whether it’s your youngest spilling their Kool-Aid, or even your beloved pet leaving you a gift on your return home after work. But, getting rid of a carpet stain is easy if you know how!

How you initially try to treat and get the stain out of your carpet can be the difference between an easy DIY clean or a frantic call to your local professional carpet cleaner. However, when you find a carpet stain the first thing you should do is NOT to panic and then in the haste of the moment frantically grab the nearest cloth to try and remove the stains.

Each carpet stain needs a different approach to how you tackle it if you get this wrong from the get-go the chances of successfully getting that stain out from your carpet is going to be small. There are many different ways on how to remove stains from rugs and carpets however if you’re armed with some tried and true techniques the chances of you getting that stain out are going to be pretty high.

In this article, we’re going to cover some simple carpet stain removal techniques that have been proven to work on different stains, so take a deep breath and keep on reading.

Best Carpet Stain Remover for Common Stains

Below we have covered the best stain remover techniques for some of the most common carpet stains. If they’re not treated with the correct method when they occur, you may find that the stains will never fully be out and a call to your local professional carpet cleaning company is then going to be your only solution.

Pet Stains

pet carpet stains

If you own pets such as a dog or cat at some point you will have stains on your carpet, there is no getting out, it will happen. Sure this can be frustrating but there are some cleaning substances and simple methods that can erase those carpet stains and also remove the unwanted odors that are left behind.

Below are some tips to remove pet stains from carpet:

  • Before you do anything make sure you remove any debris that might be on your carpet. If it is a wet mess use a tissue to blot and to soak up as much of the moisture as you can, do not rub or smear the mess. Keep on blotting until the carpet is dry to the touch and the carpet stain is removed.
  • If the carpet stain has well and truly dried deep into the carpet fibers the best stain removing technique is to moisten the area. Once the stain has been moistened you can apply a cleaning product such as Professional Strength Stain & Odor Eliminator which has been specifically formulated to remove pet stains from carpets.
  • Most pet stains will leave a lingering odor even when the carpet stain has been fully removed. There are many different ways to get rid of these odors but I have found that simply using a vinegar and water solution or a powerful store-bought pet odor eliminator to work the best. To use the vinegar solution simply mix a 1/4 cup of regular household vinegar with a quart of warm water and spray directly onto the previously stained area. Let the vinegar sit on the carpet stain for 5 minutes and then use some tissue and the blotting technique until the carpet is dry.
  • If all else fails another proven way to remove pet stains from your carpet is to use a mixture of water and a stain-fighting laundry detergent such as OxiClean Versatile Stain Remover. Simply mix the laundry detergent with a quart of warm water and spray directly onto the stain. Allow the mixture to soak on the carpet stain or 5 minutes then blot with a tissue, rinse with warm water, and repeat if necessary until you get the stain out of the carpet.

Kool-Aid or Juice Stains

Kool-Aid stains carpet

The food coloring in juices and Kool-Aid can leave some nasty stains on your carpet that can leave you on the edge of tears. However, if you use a good carpet stain remover with a combination of simple home cleaning methods you will be able to remove carpet stains caused by Kool-Aid effectively.

Below are some tips to remove Kool-Aid stains from carpet:

  • Before you go running around the house screaming at the kids grab some tissue and gently blot the stain, proactive action here is going to get this colored beverage stain out with ease. Never rub a stain like this as that will only make it go deeper into your carpet and will make it harder to completely remove.
  • After you have blotted out as much of the liquid as you can I recommend first using a simple mixture of dishwashing liquid, white vinegar, and water in a spray bottle. I have found the best results are a mixture of a 1/4 cup of white vinegar along with roughly 1 tbsp. dishwashing liquid such as Dawn Dishwashing Liquid and water. Spray the stained area and then let it soak for around 10 minutes. Use a tissue to blot the damp stain until the stain is removed, repeat is needed.
  • If you’re really struggling with carpet stain removal your best bet is using one of the many best stain removers for carpets that are readily available. I have used the Bissel carpet stain remover in the past and have had great results. It can be used as a regular spot carpet stain remover or you can use it in conjunction with the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine if you want to clean your entire carpet.

Coffee Stains

Coffee Stains carpet

Coffee stains on the carpet are one of the more common stains that I have seen. If they are not treated correctly, coffee stains can leave a light colored carpet looking like it is filthy plus this yellowish-brown tone on the carpet can easily be mistaken as an ignored pet mess by friends and family.

Below are some tips to remove coffee stains from carpet:

  • As with all of the above stains your first job should be to try and remove any liquid from your carpet using some tissue and then blotting the area as much as possible. Keep on replacing the tissue to try and soak up as much coffee as possible.
  • With almost any carpet stain my first try is typically with a mixture of white vinegar and water inside of a spray bottle. If that doesn’t successfully get rid of the carpet stain, try using a non-bleach detergent along with a spray bottle, rinse, and repeat.
  • If you have exhausted the above options and the stain is still present I would recommend using a strong store bought good carpet stain remover product such as Greenwald’s Carpet, Upholstery & Fabric Stain Remover Kit or BISSELL Professional Power Shot Oxy Carpet Spot and Stain Remover to get rid of this type of carpet stain quickly and effectively.
  • On some carpets such as Polypropylene types, you can actually use a stain removal treatment with bleach and water. Simply make a mixture of a 1/4 of water along with a 1/4 cup of bleach into a spray bottle and spray on the stained area. Rinse and blot the area with a tissue and repeat until the carpet stain disappears, then use a good vacuum cleaner to fluff up your carpet.

Ink Stains

Ink Stains carpet

Ink stains on carpets can be one of the hardest stains to remove and if not treated correctly they can leave your carpet in ruins. However, using the best stain remover for carpet along with some tried and tested stain removal methods using household products that ink stain on your carpet will be banished.

Below are some tips to remove ink stains from carpet:

  • The best carpet stain remover I have found for ink is simply using a clean white cloth and some isopropyl alcohol. Gently dab the ink stain with the isopropyl alcohol being careful NOT to rub which can cause the stain to go deeper into your carpet and can also make it spread.
  • Hairspray also works well at removing ink from carpets but make sure you rinse the area well with warm water once the stain has been removed. Some people suggest nail polish removers for removing ink stains but I personally don’t recommend this as it is too strong of a chemical that can take the color out of your carpet.
    If in doubt try dabbing an inconspicuous area of the carpet to make sure that the hairspray or isopropyl alcohol isn’t going to do more damage to your carpet because various carpets can react differently.

Blood Stains

Blood Stains carpet

There are many ways to remove carpet stains that are caused by blood but as with any carpet stain removal the faster you act, the more effective the carpet stain removal method will be. Getting rid of blood stains on your carpet needn’t be difficult if you follow the below tips.

Unlike the other methods of removing stains from carpet where warm water is typically used, when it comes to blood stains cold water is recommended. Why? Well if warm water is used the blood can coagulate making it harder to remove.

Below are some tips to remove blood stains from carpet:

  • My first recommended carpet stain remover approach with this type of mess is to use a simple solution of liquid dish detergent and cold water. As simple as this sounds I have had great results in removing blood stains from carpet with this method. 2 tsp. of liquid dish detergent combined with cold water inside of a spray bottle and applied to the stain until well soaked usually does the trick. Leave for 5 to 10 minutes and then blot the area with tissue until the blood is transferred and soaked up into the tissue. Rinse with cold water and repeat if needed until the blood stain has completely gone.
  • If you have a stubborn blood stain or one that has fully dried I recommend using a strong, good carpet stain remover such as OxiClean Max Force Stain Remover Spray, it is perfect for blood stains. Even though the bottle says to use warm water, ignore that and use cold water it works just as well.
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Nancy N. - October 18, 2016

Another good idea for a carpet stain remover is to combine 2 parts hydrogen peroxide to 1 part dish soap. Stir the solution together well, and apply to the stained area. Leave it for a moment or so, and then gently work it in with your fingers. Rinse the area with water, blot, and repeat until stains and residue are gone!


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