Be super wary of bad advice on Google when it comes to coffee stains…
I have just made the huge mistake of Googling ‘how to get coffee out of carpet’, and I can’t believe the advice that I was instantly met with; a lethal cocktail of liquid dish soap, white vinegar and water.
Let me begin by telling you this hard, and somewhat brutal, fact: There are countless companies and corporations out there who are quick to give you carpet care advice without having any authentic, living and breathing experience in the carpet care industry. For this reason, I want to emphatically warn you that searching on the internet for quick-fix advice immediately after that nightmare moment where you’ve flung coffee on the carpet is a loud and resounding ‘no-no’.
‘Why should I deem your advice as more reliable than those, though?’, you may be asking. When it comes to coffee stains, or all manner of stains for that matter, my experience of owning a carpet cleaning company for 8 years, and an anti-stain company for 4, affords me the experience and reliability to be able to tell you, with accuracy, what truly works and what really and absolutely doesn’t when it comes to your carpets.
Bear in mind that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to removing stains from carpets
Back to coffee stains. There are a few different categories that stains fall into, and coffee comes under the tanin-based variety of stain. Therefore, the likelihood of removing that masterpiece of a coffee stain you’ve created depends on a number of factors. These include the heat the liquid was at the moment of the coffee spill (that determines how much it permeates the carpet), the height it fell from, the quantity, whether it contained sugar, and even whether it was caffeinated. The latter is relevant because when caffeine is removed, artificial colourings are added in to avoid the drink looking like dishwater (so much for feeling healthy by drinking decaffeinated coffee, hey?).
Now that you realise that there’s so much more chemistry involved in stain removal than you thought, let me advise you as to the best approach to deal with the coffee stain. It’s important that you follow these steps alone and DO NOT combine it with any other advice. Otherwise you’re at major risk of damaging your carpet…
Now, how do we remove that coffee stain you’ve just created?
Please bear in mind this advice is relevant if you have wool or synthetic carpets. You can always drop us a line if you’re not sure what your carpet is made of.
Carefully blot (don’t rub) the coffee stain with warm water and a cloth, absorbing as much of it as you can and as quickly as you can. Add a little white vinegar to the warm water and blot again. Then, layer several pieces of kitchen roll on top of the stain and weigh it down with some heavy books. The logic here is that stains dry upwards, therefore applying weight encourages the stain to dry up into the kitchen roll and out of the carpet fibres.
White vinegar is safe when it comes to your carpet (being that your carpet is wool or synthetic). There are many things that are, categorically, not – including liquid dish soap and the artificial colourings residing within it, but I’ll save that for another blog and another day.
My final point – and the foundation on which this whole company is built – is that the best way of improving your chances of removing any stain at all is to Better Protect your carpet in the first place. It’ll make removing stains so much easier for you in the future.
Coffee stain? What coffee stain?