Prompt and immediate attention to any spillages or stains is paramount to avoid the penetration of a stain into the carpet fibres. Liquids (particularly hot liquids) must be attended to immediately. If allowed to cool or dry, the stain will be almost impossible to remove. Care must be taken as haphazard attempts at spot removal can cause permanent stain setting, pile distortion and loss of colour.
Basic Synthetic Carpet Cleaning Steps:
1. Immediately remove as much of the spill as possible.
For solids use a blunt knife or spoon. Blot up liquids by applying pressure with white paper towels or tissues. Use a wet/dry vacuum for large spills. NEVER scrub or rub the carpet during the stain removal (or rinsing) process as a fuzzy area may result. Always work from the outside of the stain or spillage towards the middle to avoid further spreading using a blotting or dabbing motion.
2. Treat with cold water
Most common household food and beverage stains (not including stains containing strong dyes or substances which destroy or change the colour of carpet) need to be treated solely with cold water immediately applied to the stained area. Repeat treatment above until no stain is evident on the cloth or towels used to press dry the area.
3. Dry the carpet
Ensure carpet is press dried with a clean white cloth or white paper towel to remove excess moisture. Do not rub, as rubbing can alter the carpet’s texture.
4. Stain still remaining?
Should the stain remain, using a clean white cloth or sponge, treat with a mixture of 1 teaspoon of a laundry detergent and one teaspoon of white vinegar in 1 litre of warm water. Rinse with cold water, repeating treatment until no stain is evident on cloth or towels. Alternatively, try using Godfrey Hirst Spot Out™ Carpet Stain Remover spray. This non-toxic, PH neutral carpet cleaner is gentle on carpet but tough on stains. Available from Godfrey Hirst carpet stockists. See packaging for usage instructions.
5. Do not walk on the carpet until dry
After the spill or stain has been treated, place several layers of white paper towels over the area and place a flat weight on them until dry. A hair dryer may be used to speed up the drying process but do NOT overheat the area. Do not walk on the carpet until dry.
6. Repeat if required
Sometimes stains will reappear due to ‘wicking’ as stains hidden in the pile resurface as the carpet dries. If so, allow the carpet to dry fully and repeat the above treatment until no stain is evident (this process may need to be repeated over a number of days).
7. Need more help?
If stains fail to respond adequately to treatment, call a professional carpet cleaner immediately.
Stains should be differentiated from soiling. Ensure that any residue from spills or cleaning mixtures is fully removed. For example, many sugar-based spills, such as soft drinks and coffee, leave a sugar residue after removal. Similarly, when spills are cleaned with a detergent solution and the area is not sufficiently rinsed, a sticky detergent residue can remain. This sticky residue attracts soil from ordinary foot traffic and the resulting discolouration appears to be a stain. If so, repeat stain removal procedures above.