One of the most difficult stains to remove from the carpet is a blood stain. The main reason it’s so difficult to remove blood stains is because once the hemoglobin in the blood comes in contact with oxygen, it binds with the carpet fibers and material. The coagulation of blood thus makes it really difficult to remove dried blood.
It is thus very important that you clean any blood you spot on the carpet right away, even if it is just a drop. This it because fresh blood is easier to clean than dried up blood. In fact, the fresher it is, the easier is its removal.
You can also use stain removes and carpet cleaners to remove blood stains where the enzyme-based cleaners are the better option as blood is a protein. While enzyme-based cleaners are not safe to use on wool carpets, it is always better to the package directions and warnings to ensure the cleaner or stain remover is safe to use for your carpet.
While water is the best cleaning agent for removing blood stains, you should never use hot water on stains as the hot water helps the stain to set faster into the carpet. Moreover, it is important that you blot and not rub the stain in while removing blood stains. Rubbing only pushes the stain further into the carpet fibers.
How to remove fresh blood stains
- Start by using a clean white cloth to blot and remove as much of the blood as possible. Only blot but do not scrub as your aim is to ‘lift’ the blood stain and not rubbing it into the fibers.
- It is better if you work from the outside of the stain towards the inside than vice versa as it helps prevent the stain from spreading.
- Once most of the blood is removed, spray the stain with cold water and then blot and remove as much of the stain as possible. In some cases, just repeated blotting of the area with cold water and a clean segment of the cloth or a clean cloth helps remove the blood stain. However if this doesn’t seem to help, you can try using a water and dish detergent solution.
- Make a solution of 1 tbsp. dish detergent (which is mild enough to remove blood stains without damaging the carpet) with 2 cups of cold water in a clean container. Then spray this solution onto the stain and blot using a clean, dry cloth till there’s no stain on the cloth.
- You need to either change your cloth often or use a clean side of the towel every time you blot to prevent any spreading of the stain. Repeat the process of spraying the soap solution and blotting till the stain is not noticeable.
- Next, spray with some clean water and blot again using a clean cloth. Repeat if required to completely remove any residue of the cleaning solution.
- Cover the stain using a clean cloth or a stack of paper towels with a heavy weight on top and leave it for a few hours so that all remaining liquid is absorbed. Once all the liquid is absorbed, remove the weights and let the carpet air dry.
- Once the spot has completely dried, vacuum the area to restore the carpet’s texture and remove any cleaning solution remnants. In case you notice the area has turned brown after drying, just mix a part of vinegar with 2 parts of water. Apply the solution to the dried spot and blot it dry. If required, repeat the procedure only one more time.
Removing dried and stubborn blood stains
In case of a dried blood stain, it’s better to first remove as much of the dried, hardened blood by brushing the carpet using a steel brush. However be careful while doing this as there is a chance of the brush snagging the carpet. It’s better vacuuming the dried blood if you manage to loosen a significant amount.
Next, you need to dip a clean cloth into a soapy water mixture and gently dab the cloth on the bloodstain. Keep blotting till the blood releases from the fibers while rinsing in between dabbing as required.
Do change the cloth if it gets stained with blood as using the same rag can return the blood to the carpet to worsen the stain. Though you may have to continue dabbing and blotting for some time, it is important as eventually the stain will disappear.
Once the stain has disappeared, dab the spot using clean water and cloth to remove soap residue. Then dry the carpet out using a dry cloth. Pointing a fan directly on the spot for a few minutes helps remove the excess moisture and thus dry the area faster.
In case of stubborn blood stains, mix a tablespoon of ammonia with half cup of water and repeat the dabbing procedure as above. Once again, give a last dab with clean water and cloth when the stain is removed.
However you need to exercise caution while using ammonia to clean the blood stain as ammonia is dangerous to health and shouldn’t be inhaled. Before starting, it’s also better to first try the ammonia solution on a hidden part of the carpet to ensure it doesn’t discolor or damage the carpet.
Hydrogen peroxide helps
Even hydrogen peroxide helps at removing blood stains. As with the ammonia solution, first try the hydrogen peroxide on a hidden area of the carpet as it could slightly bleach your carpet. In case you find it safe to use, repeat the dabbing procedure as above.
Apply the cleaner or stain remover to the stain to saturate it and leave it on the carpet for a few minutes. Then use a clean cloth to remove the cleaner and blood from the crept and some fresh water and clean cloth to remove the cleaner residue from the carpet.
You can also try using a good laundry cleaner or dish washing detergent on the stain by rubbing it onto the stain using your finger, without spreading the blood stain. Let the cleaner set for a few minutes and then scrub the blood using a piece of sponge. Then soak the area with cold water and blot dry using a clean cotton cloth. Repeat the process till there’s no blood on the rag and then blot dry the excess water.
Common salt removes blood stains
Salt also helps at removing blood stains from the carpet. Just make a thin paste of salt and water and using a towel, rub it onto the stain. Leave the mixture on the stain for about 15 minutes so that the blood absorbs it. Then start blotting the stain till the stain is removed. Once done, do vacuum the region to remove any salt residue in the carpet.
Some tips worth knowing
- While all these blood stain removal methods use water, make sure you use only cold water and never hot water as hot water helps the stain settle faster.
- While you have to rub or dab the carpet, never push down on the carpet as this only pushes the carpet deeper down into the carpet.
- It is always better for your carpet if you vacuum the area once it dries. It helps restore the carpet’s texture and help it look normal.
- You can also use some other household items to remove blood stains like baking soda and meat tenderizer. You just have to make a paste of baking soda and water, or meat tenderizer and water and apply on the stain. Then blot the stain till it disappears, and vacuum off any remaining residues.
- It helps if you use the bottom of a spoon to gently work your cleaning solution onto the carpet fibers instead of using your hands as the spoon does not damage the carpet fibers.
- It’s better if you do not use carpet spot cleaners on oriental rugs as it only ends up damaging the fibers. While it’s safe to use water or dish detergent on oriental rugs, do clean with caution.
So in conclusion, it is important you remove any blood stain as quickly as possible from the carpet as fresh blood is the easiest to remove. Of course, it’s not that it’s not possible to remove dry blood, but it takes a bit more time and effort. While there are different cleaning options available to remove blood stains, they all do effectively remove carpet blood stains!