How To Spot Clean Carpet?

If you have carpet flooring, then you must have experienced its staining or spotting susceptibility. Any spill, such as wine, coffee, chocolate, makeup, or your pet’s pee, can draw this stain. In such a situation, you might wonder about finding a cleaning strategy that works on all types of carpet spots. And on the same line, you may think: “How To Spot Clean Carpet?”

How To Spot Clean Carpet

Every household with pets and kids is at risk of getting their carpet stained. To deal with such a situation, several carpet cleaning manufacturers have formulated a special cleaning solution that will eliminate stains in no time.

However, such a solution contains an immense amount of chemicals. Sad but true! So you cannot use such a cleaning solution repeatedly. In such a case, you can opt for a homemade solution. But what solution will be perfect for carpet spot cleaning?

Let’s find out!

What Kind Of Spots Can Carpet Have?

A carpet can get stained due to any regular household essentials. It can be related to your consumption or makeup or drawn by your pets and kids. These stain spots can be eliminated easily if you have taken action at the right time, but once they dry, they can get deep into carpet spores and backing.

Let’s look at a few usual carpet stain spots a wall-to-wall may carry:

Coffee Or Wine

Coffee Or Wine

Coffee or wine are the most common spills that a rug comes across from time to time. But the good news is, you know, when both of these spills occur. So, if you notice coffee or wine dribbling on your rug, clean it immediately with a mixture consisting of 2 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide and 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid.

You can also use a vinegar solution by adding it to an equal amount of water.

After sprinkling the solution, blot the spill with a microfiber towel and leave it for a few seconds. Now, rinse the stain with water to blast out all the coffee or wine remains and solution.

Pet Urine

Pet Urine

It is not a plain sail to handle pet urine because it contains a strong, musty odor that smells like ammonia. Also, the urine leaves a yellow patch that is difficult to eliminate once it dries. To eliminate such odors or stains, you can either use an enzyme cleaner or prepare a DIY carpet cleaning solution after mixing vinegar into water.

After cleaning, ventilate your room to let the fresh air flow inside. It will neutralize the foul pee odor spread in your room and speed up the carpet drying.

Food Spill

Food Spill

Any food spill can consist of grease, gravy, and other filth that can attract molds and mildew over time. If you don’t want to let this happen, then scoop up the food at the time of the spill and wipe it with a damp microfiber towel.

For stain treatment, sprinkle baking soda and wait for a few hours or overnight until the cleaning agent gets hardened. Once you notice the baking soda sucks all the moisture, vacuum the carpet thoroughly and then blot the stain with rubbing alcohol.

This will disinfect the carpet fibers and restrict the development of allergens due to spills!

Candle Wax

Candle Wax

If you have dealt with a few drops of candle wax on your carpet earlier, then you might know that you cannot eliminate it with regular cleaning process.

For such a stain, you either need an ice pack to harden the wax or iron to melt it. If you are using an ice pack, place it on the stained spot for 3 to 4 hours and then break up the wax after it hardens.

After this, vacuum your wall-to-wall and wipe it with a damp towel containing a small amount of rubbing alcohol.

Gum Or Slime

Gum Or Slime

If you have spilled gum or slime on your carpet, then you may think about peeling it off. Unfortunately, this is not the ultimate method for such cleaning. You need a special solution and a professional method to eliminate the sticky gum or slime attacked deep into carpet fibers.

You can peel off the exposed gum or slime as much as you can and then harden it with an ice pack!

Once the gum has solidified, scratch it with a dull knife or spoon and vacuum the carpet thoroughly. You can use a dry-solvent carpet cleaner or a deodorizing spray if any lingering smell is attached after cleaning.

Are Stains Harmful For Carpet?

Are Stains Harmful For Carpet

A carpet stain can adhere deep into fibers and develop allergens, mold spores, mildew, dust mites, particle pollutants, dirt, and carpet beetles. These little larvae, pests, or pollutants get deep into fibers, and some of them can be fed on the filthy stains and carpet fibers.

Hence, we can say that stain can call upon early shedding of carpet, especially if you have a high pile wall-to-wall. Sad but true! So, it’s better to exfoliate the spots it is at the time of the spill and give it an early cleaning treatment.

Is Carpet Stain Toxic For Your Health?

Is Carpet Stain Toxic For Your Health

Stains are not only harmful to carpets but also toxic to your health. As discussed above, filthy stains can call upon several allergens, larvae, pollutants, and pests that can aggravate respiratory issues, such as coughing and sneezing, dyspnea, and sometimes also trigger asthma. Many people have also complained about carpet giving headaches.

So, if you have a filthy wall-to-wall and you are feeling a lack of breathing, then you can blame your rug for this!

The best solution to tackle such problems is to establish a regular cleaning routine for your carpet. Sweep your rug at least twice a week and spot-clean it at the very time of spill. But what methods and solutions can you use in a carpet spot-cleaning project? Let’s check!

How To Spot Clean Carpet?

To spot-clean your wall-to-wall, you first have to collect all the cleaning equipment so that you don’t have to rush toward the market during the process. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Vacuum Cleaner
  • Microfiber Cloth or Paper Towel
  • Spray Bottle
  • Clean Water
  • Bowl (optional)
  • Vinegar, Baking Soda, Club Soda, Ammonia (depending on the method you choose)

Step 1: Wipe The Stain

Wipe The Stain

After you encounter any spill, rush to grab a clean microfiber cloth or a paper towel to wipe it off before the spill dries to become a stain. Remember to use a white towel so that the color of the towel does not transfer to the rug while cleaning.

To remove the exposed stain nicely, you have to follow a few professional hacks, such as:

  1. Wipe the stain in the inward direction so that the stain does not transfer to the nearby location of the carpet.
  2. Turn the towel after each wipe to transfer the spill from the rug to the towel as much as possible.
  3. Now spray some fresh hot water on the stain and leave it for a few seconds to saturate the carpet well. Ensure that your carpet is not overwet at this stage.
  4. Dab the carpet spot with a clean microfiber cloth or paper towel to transfer the water and spill from the rug. Continue dabbing until the water transfers to the cloth completely.
  5. This method is sufficient to clean regular water-based stains such as lemonade or fruit juices, tea, jelly, syrup, and curry.
  6. If the spill is harder, then move to the other step, which includes tough cleaning solutions.

Step 2: Use Carpet Spot Cleaning Solution

Use Carpet Spot Cleaning Solution

By wiping the stain, you can not only carry off the exposed filthy marks but also the remains stuck loose to the internal fibers. However, this method is not sufficient for cleaning the entire carpet spot, especially if it contains grease and has the ability to leave a colorful mark.

To deal with such stubborn spots, you have to use a special carpet cleaning solution. But before applying it directly on your wall-to-wall, first try it on an inconspicuous part of your rug to check if it causes any discoloration or stiffness.

Apply Vinegar Solution

Vinegar contains acetic properties that help remove any filthy stains from the surface and dissolve dirt, grease, and grime. It is strong enough to kill allergens and bacteria and eliminate molds and mildew that grew due to your improper carpet cleaning routine.

Here’s how you can use this all-purpose-cleaner for your carpet spot cleaning process:

  1. Mix 50% of vinegar with 50% of water and pour it into a spray bottle.
  2. Sprinkle the solution on the stained part of the carpet and leave it for 10 to 15 minutes to let it absorb into the carpet fibers.
  3. Blot the stain with a clean microfiber towel while applying little pressure with your palm.
  4. Rinse the stain with clean water and wipe it off with a clean paper towel or cloth.
  5. If the stain is still visible in its place, then repeat the process until the stain vanishes.

Apply Club Soda And Dishwashing Liquid

Club soda is carbonated water with a stinky odor that can lift up any stubborn stains. By applying it before a readily available dishwashing liquid, you can eliminate any tough carpet spots such as blood, wine, milk, oil, or coffee.

Both of these cleaning agents have a superior performance that can neutralize any foul odor and un-stain a base. So, to use them for a carpet spot-cleaning project,

  1. Sprinkle club soda evenly on the stain and leave it for 1 to 2 minutes to get socked by the carpet fibers.
  2. Dab the stain with a clean microfiber towel to lift up the stain.

If these steps do not fails to eliminate stubborn stain, then,

  1. Add 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid in 2 cups of cold water and pour it into a spray bottle.
  2. Sprinkle soapy water on the carpet spot. Do not over-saturate the carpet, as it will take several hours or a day to dry the rug completely.
  3. Blot the stain with a microfiber cloth or paper towel with a little pressure.
  4. Rinse the stain with clean cold water to blast out all the solution and spill remains, and dry it under good ventilation or the sun.

Apply Baking Soda

The mild alkali nature of baking soda makes it the best cleaning agent to dissolve dirt and grease. It is a non-toxic cleaner that not only lifts up stains but also deodorizes the base. Hence, you can use it without being worried about your rug’s safety. To use it for your carpet spot cleaning,

  1. First, apply the vinegar solution on the carpet stain and then sprinkle baking soda evenly to cover the spot completely.
  2. Let the mixture sit for a few hours or 1 to 2 days if you are treating some tough spots such as coffee or wine spill or pet urine.
  3. Before leaving the mixture on the stain, place a place or bowl over it so that you do not walk on the solution unknowingly.
  4. Sweep up the dried baking soda mixture with a vacuum cleaner and ventilate the room to remove the vinegar smell from the carpet.

Use Commercial Carpet Cleaner

There are several commercial carpet spot cleaners available in the market. If you don’t want to engage in a DIY solution preparation, then buy any commercial stain cleaner that does not contain perchloroethylene (also known as tetrachloroethylene or tetrachloroethene) or a high amount of bleach.

If you are not sure about which cleaner is perfect for your wall-to-wall, then consult an expert or a professional carpet cleaning service.

Use the commercial spray as per the manufacturer’s instructions so that you do not end up creating dull patches on your beloved wall-to-wall.

Step 3: Dry The Carpet

Dry The Carpet

After the whole spot cleaning procedure, dry your carpet under the sun or ventilate your room to let the air flow inside. If you live in a region with extreme climatic conditions, then use a dehumidifier to give your rug a proper drying time.

Do not walk over the wet part of the carpet and avoid laying any furniture over it, as a moist wall-to-wall is more likely to trap dust mites and grow allergens over time.

Step 4: Vacuum The Carpet Thoroughly

Vacuum The Carpet Thoroughly

Once your carpet dries completely, vacuum it thoroughly to remove all the dry debris you got into during the cleaning process. Give extra dry blows to the region you have cleaned. By this, the flattened fibers of that portion will fluff up, and your carpet will look fresh once again.

How To Protect Carpet?

How To Protect Carpet

According to the American Lung Association, you can use a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter in your vacuum cleaner to sweep up the carpet.

However, this method can distribute particles settled deep in the fibers, but with proper ventilation and a regular cleaning routine, you can tackle this problem easily.

Also, remember to deep clean your rug at least once in 12 to 18 months. This time gap depends on the area you have chosen to rug up, such as a carpet lying in a high foot traffic region that needs more frequent deep cleaning than one unrolled in the bedroom.

If you have bought a new wall-to-wall, then before installing it directly, put it in a well-ventilated room for at least 72 hours. Like this, the toxic elements and volatile organic compounds (VOC) glued over your rug can space out in the environment.


If you have kids and pets in your home who are habitual to spill something on your wall-to-wall, then you may think: “How To Spot Clean Carpet?”

There are several commercial sprays available in the market that work especially for spot treatment, but due to their expensive nature, it’s better to find an alternative DIY cleaning solution that works on all kinds of spots and is pocket-friendly.

To protect your carpet from spills and the growth of allergens, you also have to find a proper carpet cleaning routine that can make your rug non-toxic for you and your loved ones.


Which DIY carpet cleaner is best for spot cleaning?

To clean some stubborn greasy stains, vinegar solution and baking soda work best, but for a regular spot cleaning routine, you can use DIY dishwashing liquid solution as it is non-toxic and safe for rug fibers.

Is baking soda safe for carpets?

Baking soda not only dissolves stains and grime but also neutralizes the foul odor. Due to its non-toxic and easy-to-use nature, it has become the favorite of many carpet owners. Hence, you do not have to worry about your carpet fibers before applying it.

Do baking soda and vinegar remove old stains from the carpet?

Yes, the combination of baking soda and vinegar can remove any old stain because the oxidation power of baking soda creates a vigorous solution that can eliminate any set-in stain from the carpet.

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