How to Remove Soot Stains from Your Carpet

file5861258258347Soot stains are an especially exasperating kind of stain. They’re so dark and always seem to spread like magic. One minute you have a little soot on your pants and the next minute you’ve got huge stains on your upholstered couch and your carpet. Removing these stains can be a little tricky, but with the right tools and strategy, you can get your couch and carpet looking great.

The most important thing remember is that you can’t wet the stain until you’ve shaken out as much of the soot as you possibly can. Otherwise it will just create a sludge that will smear and be even harder to remove.

Grab the Vacuum

Being careful not to step in or smear the stain in any way, use your vacuum to get up as much of the soot as possible. If the soot is somehow already wet, grab a bit of cornstarch or baking soda, sprinkle it on the stain and wait about 15 minutes. This will draw up some of the damp soot so you can either gently scrape or vacuum it up. If there is a lot of soot or it’s especially damp, you may need to repeat this process a few times until no more damp soot is absorbed by the cornstarch or baking soda.

Mix It Up

Mix two cups cool water with one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and use this solution to sponge the soot stain with a clean white cloth. Make sure you use a white cloth because a colored one may transfer dye to the carpet or upholstery and that’s the last thing you need! Make sure you blot at (not rub or scrub) the stain until the liquid is absorbed. Repeat this process as many times as you need to until your cloth comes away clean. Use only as much water as you need to remove the stain; do not drench your carpet or upholstery.

Remove the Cleaning Solution

Once the stain is gone, use untreated cold water and a new clean cloth (still white!) and sponge the area to remove the cleaning solution. Blot dry.

If there is still a stain that this process can’t remove, you may want to consider using a dry cleaning solvent. However, you need to make sure you read the instructions and test the product in an inconspicuous spot (such as on the back of the sofa or a corner of the carpet) before applying it to the stained area.

Professional Help

If you have substantial fire damage or lots of soot stains from a careless repairman, it may be necessary to call in professional help. 1st Class Cleaning is a New York-based cleaning service that offers a variety of clean up services. If you can’t rid of the soot or just don’t want to deal with it yourself, give us a call at (800) 309-7881. You can hire us for a one-time clean or set up a recurring schedule so your home or office is always immaculate.

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