6 home remedies to lift carpet stains

Paint on your carpet, a wine stain that's yet to set? For most stains, there are solutions, and happily, these six happen to use products you are likely to already have at home.

6 home remedies to lift carpet stains

1. Peanut butter to remove gum

Peanut butter as a carpet cleaner? It's a nutty idea, but nutty in a good way. Peanut butter helps remove chewing gum from a carpet.

  • First, heat the area with a hair dryer to loosen the gum.
  • Press the area gently with a plastic bag, which should lift at least some of the gum; you could also try scraping it up with a plastic spatula.

Some gum will remain in the carpet, which is where the peanut butter comes in — its natural oils help the carpet fibres detach from the gum.

  • Rub a small dollop of peanut butter into the spot and leave it sit for five minutes.
  • After five minutes, wipe it up with a damp cloth.
  • Now dab the spot with warm water mixed with five millilitres (one teaspoon) of dishwashing liquid.

2. Remove paint

Don't waste time crying over paint on your carpet. Instead, spring into action before it sets:

  • Mix seven millilitres (1.5 teaspoons) of vinegar and seven grams (1.5 teaspoons) of laundry detergent into 500 millilitres (two cups) of warm water.
  • Now sponge away the paint (a task that takes time and elbow grease).
  • Rinse with cold water.

If you're lucky, what might have been an unwelcome — and permanent — decorating touch will be gone.

3. Fight stains with baby wipes

Yet another great use for mild baby wipes, which already have so many more uses than they were intended for, is as a simple carpet stain cleaner. Blot up a spill with a damp (but not soaking wet) baby wipe. This will lift out the stain before it sets.

4. Shaving cream to the rescue

To clean a stain that hasn't yet set, squirt non-gel shaving cream directly onto the stain and wipe clean with a damp rag or sponge.

5. Club soda can save your carpet

Every waitress and bartender knows how reliable club soda is as a stain remover. To use it on a stained carpet, pour it onto the stain, leave it for three minutes, then dab it up with a paper towel or sponge.

6. For tough stains

To clean tougher stains, mix 250 millilitres (one cup) of household ammonia in two litres (0.5 gallon) of warm water, sponge it onto the stain, then dab it until the stain disappears.

You'll be the hero of the day when you rescue your carpet — or that of a friend's — from unwanted stains with these easy, handmade remedies made from ingredients found in most home pantries.

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