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Viewing posts categorised under: Stain Removal

How to Remove Pet Urine Odor Naturally

by Jeff in Carpet Cleaning, Stain Removal

Although this is a natural formula, you are mixing together items that could have a reaction if left to sit. Be safe and properly dispose the leftovers if any.

As with any product, ALWAYS test a small section of the carpet, hard wood floors or furniture to make sure that this formula doesn’t react negatively with your items.

How to Remove Pet Urine Odor Naturally

We used this formula on wood, carpets and linoleum floors and had no issues with any of them…but always check to be on the safe side!

  1. First rinse the pet urine area with a 50/50 vinegar to water solution and either blot up or extract with wet vac or home carpet cleaner
  2. Gather your ingredients: 4oz hydrogen peroxide, 1 tsp baking soda, 1tsp vinegar, 1/2 tsp castile soap, 3-5 drops orange essential oil
  3. Combine all ingredients in an empty spray bottle and shake gently to mix
  4. Test for colorfastness in a closet corner or hidden area
  5. Liberally spray the soiled area with this solution
  6. Allow to dwell on pet urine spot for 30 minutes to an hour
  7. Rinse the saturated area with   tap water or your 50/50 vinegar solution and blot out with a towel or extract with wet vac or home carpet cleaner
  8. Repeat if necessary
  9. Discard any leftover solution

 

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DIY Carpet Spot Cleaning Trick with White Vinegar

by Jeff in Carpet Cleaning, Stain Removal

Here’s my favorite little trick for tackling carpet spots on the cheap and without harsh chemicals.

Eco Carpet Spotter

  1. Add 1 part water + 1 part vinegar to a spray bottle
  2. Spray directly on the spot
  3. Blot with a white towel (DO NOT RUB!)

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7 Simple Steps to Remove Grease Stains from Carpet

by Jeff in Grease, Stain Removal

Got a grease or oil stain in your carpet? Don’t panic!
Grease Carpet Stain Removal

  1. Remove the excess oil with a cloth, newspaper or brown paper bag.
  2. Cover it completely with cornstarch, brushing it over the area to work it into the fibers. Let it sit for about an hour.
  3. Vacuum the cornstarch from the carpet.
  4. Repeat the process if needed with larger spills.
  5. Apply a little liquid detergent to the stain (most detergents are able to remove grease, but for tough stains you may need to try a liquid dish soap). Scrub the detergent into the carpet with you fingers or a toothbrush and let it sit for 3-5 minutes so it has a chance to break down the grease.
  6. Pour a little water onto the area and blot it up with a clean, absorbent cloth right away. Repeat until all of the soap is removed.
  7. Absorb any extra water with a towel.

 

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Simple Steps to Green Your Carpet Cleaning

by Jeff in Carpet Cleaning, Green Carpet Cleaning Products

Are you considering taking steps to green your life a bit?  One of the simplest ways to make a big impact on your family’s health is to

start decreasing your use of chemicals for your carpet cleaning projects.  The great news here is that you don’t have to sacrifice a thorough clean just because you’re using with gentler products.

Green Your Carpet Cleaning

  • Choosing certified green carpet cleaning products is easier than ever.  Steer clear of petroleum-based cleaners, and look for healthy alternative made from renewable resources like plants.  Birch bark, citrus-based solvents and palm oil are examples of natural resources that are commonly found in environmentally-friendly cleaners (Seventh Generation makes a great, non-toxic option).
  • Using fewer harsh chemicals also improves your home’s indoor air quality.  Toxic substances in many standard cleaners can linger in the air and cause irritation to family members (including pets) for an extended period of time.  Even the average carpet fresheners often contain phthalates and other chemicals which can end up doing more harm than good.   Baking soda does an amazing job of neutralizing odors and can be sprinkled on your carpet before vacuuming to create a fresh scent.
  • Sweeping/vacuuming/mopping your floors often helps prevent an accumulation of unseen toxins being brought inside on your shoes.
  • Removing your shoes before entering your home reduces your exposure to lead, pesticides and more increases indoor air quality by a shocking 65%!

Green cleaning starts with understanding what chemicals are being brought into your home.  Be sure to locate a trustworthy carpet cleaning professional who cares enough to offer green cleaning solutions!

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How to Remove Chewing Gum from Carpet

by Jeff in Carpet Cleaning, Stain Removal

Bubble GumIf you have kiddos running around, you’re bound to end up with a rogue piece of gum in your carpet.  I’ve got a simple way to help you conquer that sticky little wad with some simple tools you probably already have in your bathroom cabinet.

How to Remove Chewing Gum from Carpet

  • Grab your electric hair dryer. Heat the gum, being careful not to melt the carpet fibers.
  • Use a piece of plastic wrap or a plastic bag to lift the softened gum away. Just allow it to stick to the plastic, then pull it up. This may get most of it.
  • Next, apply a muscle rub containing methyl salicylate such as Ultra Strength Bengay (the Equate brand will work just as well too).
  • Use plastic again to pull more gum out. Repeat if necessary. A rag can also be used for this step.
  • Once you completely remove the chewing gum from the carpet, clean the area with a few drops of dish soap in a cup of warm water.
  • Rinse with warm water and dry the area.

Keep in mind that rough scrubbing will wear away your carpet fibers. Use a little elbow grease if you need to, but remember that you can accidentally cause a worn sport if you’re not careful.  This is why we use a rag instead of a scrub brush or scouring pad.  If the gum doesn’t come out easily, you’ll want to contact a carpet cleaning professional.

P.S. If you don’t have muscle rub on hand, you can try using a spoonful of peanut butter instead.  Massage it into the gum, let it sit for a few minutes and then scrape it away.  The down side to this method is that now you’ll  have to work on removing the peanut butter, but it’s easier to remove peanut butter from the carpet than gum.   You can let the peanut butter dry for a little while, then vacuum it up or you can sponge it off with a wet rag.   If you end up with a light stain, just blot it with a little dish soap or vinegar. Dab with a damp cloth or sponge to rinse.

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Which Carpet Cleaning Products Are Not Safe?

by Jeff in Carpet Cleaning, Green Carpet Cleaning Products

Healthy Child Healthy World is an indispensable resource for trustworthy information on environmental toxics.  I often refer my clients to this article for questions about about the safest options for professional carpet cleaning, as well as stain removal for those in between times when you need to get something cleaned up quickly.

Our carpet cleaning products and methods meet Healthy Child’s recommendations for safety and are certified by both the EPA and Green Seal.  You can read more about the specifics here.

Healthy Child Healthy World

by Aisha Ikramuddin

Among the inevitable things in life is the fact that all carpets will get dirty over time. Carpets and rugs, of course, take a lot of abuse from rambunctious children and pets, dinner guests who spill, people who refuse to wipe their feet before entering–the list goes on and on.

So it is also inevitable that carpets have to be cleaned somehow, at some point. Like other cleaners, carpet cleaners may contain toxic ingredients, some of which are not listed on labels because they are considered “proprietary” or “trade secrets”.

Some carpet cleaners–especially spot removers–can be particularly dangerous, because they contain chemical solvents similar to those used by dry cleaners. These chemicals dissolve dirt without soap and water, but give off strong odors. Other potentially problematic ingredients in carpet cleaners include other compounds that produce lots of fumes (like formaldehyde), acids, pesticides, disinfectants, lye (sodium hydroxide), fragrances and many others.

Fabric and carpet stain repellents or “guards” may contain plastics and other potentially dangerous ingredients. The key ingredient in 3M’s popular Scotchgard® line of products, perfluoro-octane sulfonate (PFOS), was once portrayed as chemically inert, but recent research shows that it is a persistent organic pollutant (POP). PFOS, a suspected hormone disruptor, accumulates in the environment and the tissue of animals and humans. Despite ample evidence of PFOS’s persistence, 3M kept it on the market for 40 years. In spring 2000, 3M announced it would phase out PFOS products by the year 2002. The safety of another perfluorinated compound, perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), the main ingredient in Teflon®, which is used to coat non-stick pans and in fabric protectors, is currently under investigation.

During application and while drying, the chemicals in carpet cleaners and protectors evaporate and may concentrate in the air, causing indoor air pollution. This is more likely if the room is not well ventilated, the weather is hot and humid or the room is damp. Indoor air pollution can cause headaches, irritation to eyes, nose and lungs, asthma attacks, congestion, sneezing, coughing, fatigue, nausea and other symptoms.

There is some speculation that there is a link between carpet cleaners and Kawasaki Disease, though there is limited evidence to support this. Long-term exposures may increase the risks for chronic diseases, such as heart disease and cancer, depending on the chemicals involved.

Carpet shampoos usually leave a sticky residue on carpet fibers. The residue is usually hard to see or feel–though it can make carpets feel rougher and you may be able to smell it. Not only does the residue attract and latch onto dirt, but children, who crawl and play on carpets, can inhale these residues and get them on their hands, which often go into their mouths.

Dry shampoos, powders and foams may also linger on carpet fibers. These products generally contain solvents and detergents that must be applied for a specific period of time, then vacuumed to remove the cleaning product. A residue may be left behind or the product may sink deep enough into carpets to avoid being pulled out by the vacuum cleaner. Powders or dusts are easily inhaled and may irritate airways and cause asthma attacks. In fact, anti-dust-mite carpet treatments sometimes contain tannic acid or benzyl benzoate, both of which are skin, eye and respiratory irritants. Deodorizing powders often contain fragrances that irritate asthmatic lungs as well.

To remove shampoo residue from your carpet, see How to Keep Carpets Clean without Dangerous Chemicals . Healthy Child Healthy World recommends that children stay out of the house for at least four hours after carpets have been cleaned by any method. This can help reduce the risk of Kawasaki Disease, which may be linked to carpet cleaning.

Dangerous Chemicals Found in Some Carpet Cleaners

  • Solvents Butoxyethanol and other glycol ethers,Tetrachloroethylene, Perchloroethylene
  • Acids and other corrosive chemicals Hydroxyacetic acid, Hydrofluoric acid, Nitrilotriacetic acid, Sodium hydroxide, Sodium carbonate
  • Mildewcides and Disinfectants Tributyl tin, Formaldehyde, Phenol
  • Other chemicals Butane, propane and isobutanes (aerosol propellants), Dibutyl phthalate, Nonylphenol ethoxylate (surfactant), Octylphenol ethoxylate (surfactant)

You can find out if a carpet cleaning product you use or are considering contains any of these ingredients on the Household Products Database, produced by the National Institutes of Health. You can also search by ingredient.

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