Helpful Tips For Banishing Stubborn Carpet Stains

Published on July 02, 2019 08:20 AM in Car Care, Maintenance
Helpful Tips For Banishing Stubborn Carpet Stains

Even the most diligent drivers wrestle with vehicle carpet stains occasionally. Spilled coffee or soda. Muddy shoes. Toddlers dropping bottles of formula. 

What’s the best way to go about getting rid of unsightly stains?

Spray cleaners offer a convenient solution for travelers. Get one designed specifically for vehicle upholstery. 

Also, steam cleaning can help reduce odors and clean fibers. Yet, even steam might not be enough to fully wash away deep stains.

According to Darren Murphy of Southeastern Equipment & Supply, Inc. in South Carolina, stubborn stains embedded deep in the carpet fiber may reappear as the surface dries. 

“Steam can leave most of the stain hidden from view and therefore likely to return shortly thereafter,” Murphy said. “Professionals call this the wicking effect.” 

Products such as extractors can help drivers remove even stubborn stains. They use a combination of heated water and heavy suction to penetrate vehicle carpet fibers.

Consider the following tips on stain removal from car care experts:

  • Tidy up. Pick up loose change, debris and small pieces of garbage. They can attract grime and contribute stains--coffee cups, food wrappers, ketchup packets. 
  • Vacuum frequently. Vacuuming removes particles that not only contribute odors but attract moisture and soil carpeting. Be thorough, stretching the vacuum nozzle underneath the pedals and seats. 
  • Dilute stain. Start spot-treating by diluting the stain with cold water and blot dry with a towel. The sooner you treat stains, the better chance of removal.
  • Spot-treatment. Keep a bottle of carpet cleaner for vehicles in your cabin. Test a small part of carpet that’s not easy to see to make sure the cleaner won’t damage or discolor fabric. 
  • Microfiber towels. Keep a few on hand in your vehicle cabin for spills and cleaning. They are safe to use, easy to clean and ready to soak up spills.
  • Choose wisely. Not all products are created equal. Look for products designed for vehicle upholstery. What kinds of stains does it treat? Make sure to follow product directions before applying stain removal to large areas of your vehicle carpet.

One thing to remember: The most stubborn stains might require you to call out the big guns, devices known as “extractors”, equipment that’s purpose-built for removing the most difficult, deeply embedded carpet stains. Read more about extractors.