White carpets are beautiful and add a lot of character to any room you install them in. However, the slightest stain will stand out and ruin the appearance of the whole room.
If you want a white carpet to add to your home’s appearance instead of detracting from it, you need detailed knowledge of how to clean a white carpet.
To help you with that, we’ve compiled the seven best ways to clean a white carpet:
- Clean with white vinegar
- Use ammonia solution
- Remove using an iron
- Use rubbing alcohol
- Freeze wax and gum stains
- Clean using white vinegar and detergent
- Use a handheld extractor
The rest of this article will go in-depth into each of these cleaning methods. We’ll tell you exactly what you need and exactly how to use each method to make your white carpet spotless.
1. Clean With White Vinegar
Vinegar is excellent on water-soluble stains. As such, vinegar will work wonders on stains caused by any of the following substances:
- Alcoholic beverages
- Dairy products
- Wet paint
Here’s how you can get these stains out using vinegar:
- Pour a quarter of a teaspoon of white vinegar into 0.95 liters of water.
- Mix and pour it into an empty spray bottle.
- Spray the mixture on the dried stain.
- Use a sponge to rub the stained area and dry using paper towels.
You can also use non-bleach detergents or clear dish soap in this mixture instead of white vinegar. Remember to blot out as much moisture as you can from the cleaned area.
2. Use Ammonia Solution
There are certain water-soluble stains that white vinegar won’t work for. You can use an ammonia solution for these stains, which include the following:
Here’s how you can use ammonia to remove these stains from your white carpet:
- Add one tablespoon of ammonia to one cup of water. Mix.
- Spray on the mixture on the dried stain using a spray bottle.
- Use a sponge to rub the area and dry the wetness with a paper towel.
And here are a few tips regarding ammonia usage in carpet cleaning:
- If the stain is clear (like a white wine stain), pay special attention to it. The stain could get discolored over time due to the sugar in the liquid.
- Blood is best removed with immediate cold water treatment and hydrogen peroxide when it has dried.
- For a carpet made of wool or wool-blend, use a mild detergent instead of an ammonia solution.
3. Remove Using an Iron
You can get stains from oil, fat or wax off your white carpet using an iron. You just have to follow these steps:
- Put a paper towel on the stain.
- Iron the paper towel with iron in a warm setting.
- The spill should lift from the carpet to the paper towel.
If you have taken the precaution of treating your carpet, you can remove these stains with mild dish soap and water. Otherwise, you’ll have to use an iron to get them out.
4. Use Rubbing Alcohol
Glue is a common carpet stain, especially if you have children. If you mistakenly get glue on your white carpet, you can get the stain out by using rubbing alcohol.
Here’s how it works:
- Moisturize a cotton ball with rubbing alcohol.
- Gentle rub the spot with glue using the moisturized cotton ball.
- Repeat the process until the glue residue ultimately comes off.
5. Freeze Wax and Gum Stains
If you get wax or gum on your white carpet, you clean them up by freezing them with ice cubes or an ice pack.
Here’s the process:
- Freeze the affected area by rubbing the ice pack on it for approximately 20 minutes.
- If the frozen gum or wax is large, break it up.
- Vacuum the pieces and dry up the residual moisture with a paper towel.
- If the frozen gum is small, cut it out. Make sure you cut it as close to the gum as you can.
- If there is any discoloration, use an iron to remove it.
6. Clean Using White Vinegar and Detergent
If you get urine stains on your white carpet, a mixture of white vinegar and detergent should do the trick.
Here’s the process:
- Mix equal proportions of water and white vinegar.
- Spray the mixture on the area using a spray bottle or bolt out the stain using a rag moistened with the mixture.
- Mix half a teaspoon of non-bleach detergent in 32 ounces of water.
- Spray the mixture on the dried stain.
- Clean the mixture on the stain with a sponge.
- Dry up the moisture using paper towels.
- If the carpet still smells like urine, spray urine odor remover on the spot.
7. Use a Handheld Extractor
If you’ve got a stain that homemade methods aren’t working on, a handheld extractor might be the answer.
These extractors cost between $50 to $200. With the use of suction, they will help you get dirt and stains out of your carpet more effectively than home remedies can.
Note: If you have a wool carpet, ensure you use neutral detergent in your cleaning.
What Is the Best Way to Lift a Stain From a White Carpet?
Many people make the mistake of scrubbing out stains from their carpet. You usually only end up with a much larger stain this way. In cleaning stains from your carpet, you should try to blot out the stain from where it is instead of scrubbing.
A paper towel makes this cleaning more manageable, as you just have to press it against the affected area. You can also use a rag but ensure you do not end up scrubbing. If you are soaking up moisture from the carpet, work from the outer areas of the stain inside.
Prevention is better than a cure, though. If you want to get the most use of your white carpet, you need to learn how to maintain it and not just remove stains. We have highlighted some tips that will be helpful below.
How Do You Maintain a White Carpet?
While there are effective ways to get stains out, you can prevent these stains in the first place by adequately maintaining your white carpet.
Apply a stain-resistant protectant or treatment
A stain-resistant protectant or treatment adds a seal over the surface of your carpet. This seal will help prevent some stains and make the unavoidable spills easier to clean.
A stain-resistant protectant or treatment might come with your carpet. If it doesn’t come with your carpet, you can pay a professional to apply one to your white carpet for you.
Vacuum your white carpet regularly
This tip might seem very obvious, but many people often neglect to follow it.
Dirt and debris love to hide in your carpet. If you don’t vacuum regularly, dust will slowly build up and eventually create permanent stains on your white carpet.
To prevent dust stains, you should clean with your vacuum at least two times a week. More than twice a week is preferable, but most people won’t have the time for that.
Don’t wear shoes on your white carpet
No matter how clean your shoes are, wearing them on your white carpet is a no-no.
If you have a large family with kids and relatives, make sure everyone that enters the house knows that all shoes should remain off of the carpet.
To encourage this, you can create a small space where people can pull off their shoes when entering the house. With this preventative measure, you can keep your white carpet from getting dirt and dust stains caused by dirty shoes.
Use plastic rugs or mats in certain areas
There are certain areas in your home where it would be smart for you to put synthetic rugs or mats:
- Areas where there is a lot of foot movement. Even if people take off their shoes after entering, there is still the potential for dirt to get into the carpets your home’s exits.
- Under furniture that is frequently moved. This prevents dirt from entering the carpets that then doesn’t get cleaned because a couch has been placed over it.
- In eating areas. Eating areas are notorious for spills, so placing a synthetic mat or two can help protect carpets in these locations immensely.
Placing plastic rugs and mats in these areas will protect your carpet from spilled food and drink, wear and tear from furniture movement, and even dirt from foot traffic.
Get rid of stains immediately
No matter how many preventative measures you take, you’re still going to stain your carpet from time to time.
The best way to keep up your carpet maintenance is to attack the stain as soon as possible. The longer a stain is allowed to sit, the harder it will be to get out.
Hire a professional cleaner
No matter how good you are at maintaining your white carpet yourself, you cannot clean it as well as a professional cleaner. After all, they are called professionals for a reason.
At least once a year, you should employ the services of a professional cleaner to help you clean your white carpet. Not only will a professional’s touch make your carpet look nicer, but it will improve the lifespan of your carpet as well.
Many carpets also come with warranties – and those warranties come with stipulations that you have to meet. One of the most common things you must do to keep a warranty valid is to hire a professional cleaner every 12-18 months.
So check your carpet’s warranty details. If you need to get your carpet professionally cleaned to keep the warranty valid, it might be worth doing.
If you don’t want to hire a cleaner or use any of the DIY cleaning methods mentioned above, you can rent or buy a carpet cleaning machine and do the job yourself.
While this is costlier than some of the homemade cleaning methods, it’ll still be cheaper than hiring a professional. Your carpet will also get a more thorough cleaning than if you used a DIY method.
Top 5 Carpet Cleaning Machines
Machines make even the most difficult tasks easier. If you have a large carpeted area or you are too busy to clean your white carpet by hand, you should consider investing in a carpet cleaning machine.
Note: A carpet cleaner is a considerable investment. If you don’t have a lot of space to clean, you should just get one of the handheld extractors mentioned above. The extractors will help you get stains out without the cost of a carpet cleaner.
However, if you decide you need a heavy-duty carpet cleaner, the following options are some of the best on the market:
Bissell 3624 SpotClean
Bissell is known for its high-quality carpet cleaning products, and the 3624 SpotClean is no exception.
This particular Bissell product is made specifically for cleaning carpets and upholstery. It comes with a 22-inch power cord and a 4-inch hose, giving you a decent amount of length to work with.
The tank capacity of the cleaner is a third-quarter of a gallon, so a lot of cleaning can be done at once without refilling. And if you buy it new, it comes with a two-year warranty, which should be plenty for a product of this caliber.
Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe
The Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe has five scrubs that spin a full 360 degrees, enabling you to clean any stain from any angle. The V-shaped nozzle ensures perfect suction.
This machine is also fitted with a water tank, an Automix solution tank, a water trigger switch, and a hole for the detachable hose.
Rug Doctor Pro Deep Carpet Cleaner
The Rug Doctor Pro Deep Carpet Cleaner is a professional, powerful cleaner with super brushes. These features make the machine very useful in the removal of stubborn stains.
With a one-gallon tank capacity, you don’t have to refill often, no matter how big your room might be. For efficient cleaning, the dual cross brushes will aid your task. It comes with an upholstery tool that you can use to clean your upholstery surfaces.
McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Cleaner
The McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Cleaner has a lot of accessories that can be used for various purposes. More than your carpet, you can use it for the cleaning of other surfaces like windows, appliances, cars, and floors. The steam cleaner will give all the surfaces a gleam.
This McCulloch does not use any chemical solutions, only pressurized steam, and the power cord is 15.7 feet long. The machine has a large capacity tank and a 2-year warranty.
Bissell ProHeat 2x Revolution Pet Carpet Cleaner
The Bissell ProHeat 2x Revolution Pet Carpet Cleaner comes with a pet-urine eliminator, a unique two in one tool, Oxy formula, a clean-shot pre-heater, and EZ brush roll cover.
This cleaner dries quickly with your carpet ready within an hour. Considering the stain and smell pets could cause if you own pets, this machine is a good fit.
You can make your choice of any one of these five carpet cleaner to aid you in maintaining your white carpet. Check out the purpose and use of the carpet cleaner well before you make a purchase, though.
How Do You Choose A Carpet Cleaner?
Carpet cleaners are not interchangeable. What works well in a one-room apartment may not work for a four-room apartment with different types of carpeting.
The main features you should look at include tank capacity, attachments, and chemicals used in the cleaning solution.
You should also consider not purchasing a standard carpet cleaner if someone in your house is affected by the fumes of cleaning solutions. If that’s the case, you can get one that does not use chemical solutions, like a steam cleaner. No matter what you do, you must consider all the factors before you choose a carpet cleaner.
Remember that getting a carpet cleaner does not eliminate the need for professional deep cleaning at least once a year. You can attempt to deep clean on your own if you’re willing to take the risk. Deep cleaning on your own can be risky, though, as many carpet warranties require you to hire a professional cleaner every 12-18 months.
If you do decide to deep clean yourself, make sure you don’t get the carpet too wet. Excess wetness is the biggest problem DIY deep cleaners run into, as too much water can cause a mold issue and permanently ruin the carpet.
If you get stains on a white carpet, don’t worry. There are a variety of easy and inexpensive methods you can use to clean them:
- Using white vinegar
- Creating an ammonia solution
- Using a clothes iron
- Applying rubbing alcohol
- Freezing the stains
- Mixing ammonia and detergent
- Using a handheld extractor
If you’re concerned that the DIY methods listed above won’t work, you can always call a professional cleaner to ensure the job is done right.