How to Clean Tough Carpet Stains

A soft carpet can bring a fresh and inviting look to the living room or bedrooms of your home. The downside to carpeted floors, however, is the risk of stains. Let’s face it – between pets, spilled drinks, and even everyday use, there comes a time when your carpet has seen better days! Prolong the life of your carpets with these tips for cleaning even the toughest of stains.

Act Fast

First and foremost, try not to let a stain sit and set into your carpet. The sooner you start cleaning up a fresh carpet stain, the more likely your carpet is to make a full recovery. Start cleaning up a spill as soon as it happens by blotting (never scrubbing) the area. If the spill was something thick, remove debris from carpet fibers with a fork or spoon. Before you move to a deeper cleaning, see if the spill can be blotted out with water.


Vinegar is a great natural cleaning solution for many home surfaces and can remove all types of common stains from carpet floors. A typical cleaning mixture consists of one part vinegar to one part water. After soaking up as much of the initial spill as possible, apply the vinegar mixture to the stain and keep blotting! If the stain has left behind an odor in your carpet, consider letting the vinegar mixture soak in overnight.

Baking Soda

Baking soda has cleaning, sanitizing, and deodorizing powers all in one. This means it can be an especially great solution for cleaning carpet stains left by pet urine or vomit. Instead of blotting a baking soda & water cleaning mixture, try applying the mix, letting it dry up, and then vacuuming it away for an even easier fix.

Laundry Detergent

hand cleaning a carpet with sponge

Carpet is essentially a fabric, just one that you probably wouldn’t wear! Just like a washing machine does with your clothes, mix a color safe laundry detergent with water and blot on a stain. Be careful not to over-soap, about one tablespoon of detergent with two cups of water should be enough to start with.

Carpet Cleaning Machine

Investing in a carpet cleaning machine can be a great option for removing stains from spills, or just grime from everyday wear & tear. Instead of a basic vacuum, you can invest in a machine that scrubs carpet with a specialized detergent and also has a drying feature. Regular upkeep like this will make your carpets look brand new for as long as possible!