It can happen to anyone. As careful as you are around upholstered furniture and carpeting, the accidental spill can occur. Some of the most dangerous culprits are red wine, ink and dirt. The list continues if you have kids and pets who leave all sorts of stains behind.
If this sounds like your home, know you’re not alone. But if you do have pets and children in the household, you may have to be more particular about what stain removal treatment you choose. Many commercial products contain harsh chemicals that can harm the health of your family. See a few solutions for stain removal, the natural way.
Could you use an expert to help get out your tough stain? Contact a cleaning pro for up to four quotes from contractors in your area for free.
Upholstery Cleaning Costs
Tough fabric stains come in all shapes and sizes. While you may only see the surface, the stain itself can go deeper, making it harder to remove. You may want to leave it to the pro, who can provide you with safe cleaning options for your furniture to look good as new again. The average cost to clean furniture is $155, with most homeowners spending between $127 and $164.
Before you begin, you should identify what cleaning solutions are best. Most upholstered items have a tag that lets you know how you can clean it. Here’s what the letters mean:
W: Clean with water
S: Solvent-based cleaner only
SW: Water or solvent-cleaner are OK to use
WS: Spot clean only with upholstery shampoo
X: Vacuum clean only
If you find that stains happen frequently in your home, you may want to consider investing in professional fabric protection. This isn’t your typical plastic covers, but rather a spray that won’t alter the look and feel of your furniture. New furniture can often be treated in the store for an average cost of $50 to $100. Prices may vary for older pieces that can be done at home.
Coffee & Tea Stains
The worst way you could start the morning is with a coffee spill. But never fear! If this happens to you, use a sponge with cold water to pat the stain. Next, apply a few drops of liquid detergent. Let it sit and then use your sponge with cold water to clean.
Red Wine Stains
Of all the stains, red wine might be the trickiest to remove, especially if it’s on a light-colored fabric. Oddly enough, salt and club soda can work together to combat this stain. If you spill red wine, use a generous amount of salt to cover the area. Next, pour club soda over the spot and let it sit for about an hour. Use a paper towel to remove the excess liquid when time is up.
With many family members moving around your home, you’re bound to get dirt stains at some point. Be cautious with just using water, as it can make dirt stains worse. First, try a simple solution of liquid detergent and water, ensuring you’ve removed all the soap when complete. If this still does not work, you can use vinegar on a cloth to slowly remove the dirt marks from the upholstery. Gently blot the area until it begins to disappear.
Another stubborn stain is ink. They are tricky to remove and spread easily if you use water. The first step when an ink stain appears is to use a baking soda paste, by mixing two parts baking soda and one part water. Spread over the ink stain and let it sit for about five minutes. If you have a spray bottle handy, pour some white vinegar in the bottle and spray over the stain. Gently blot away the mixture with a paper towel, vacuuming the spot once it is dry. You may need to repeat this process depending on how deep the stain is.
Food on or over upholstery and carpeting can lead to grease stains. Never fear. There are a few ways you can handle these types of stains. For smaller, fresh stains, sprinkle corn starch over the spot. Let it sit overnight to absorb the grease and brush off when completed. For more stubborn stains, use warm water and dish soap to gently blot the stain. To really boost your grease-fighting stain power, try a drop or two of lemon essential oil with your dish soap and water.
Stains On Surfaces
Stains don’t always happen on fabric. In some cases, it can happen on a surface. For example, our dog had an accident in the bathtub recently. Unfortunately, the accident left a stain on the surface of our tub. For the first attempt, we used a rough sponge and baking soda to get it out. While it dulled the mark, it didn’t get it out completely. What worked best was pouring a little hydrogen peroxide on a paper towel and covering the spot; checking it about every 30 minutes to make sure the hydrogen peroxide was not doing any damage to the tub. We covered it with plastic wrap and let it sit overnight. The stain was gone the next morning!
While this worked in our situation, hydrogen peroxide may run the finishes of some solid surfaces. Research your surface first to see how it may react, keeping a close eye on your stain removal as you begin the process.