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So You’ve Spilled Coffee on Somebody’s Pristine White Carpet. What Next…?

Updated: Jun 26, 2020

1. Emigrate.

2. Spill coffee all over the rest of the carpet in an effort to even things up.

3. Read this really useful article by Best Choice Cleaning Company.

Coffee, tea or red wine spilled into somebody else’s light coloured carpet - by you. It’s the stuff of nightmares. It doesn’t have to be though. As commercial cleaners we’ve cleaned our fair share of carpets at offices across London and Kent, so we know a thing or too about getting rid of stubborn stains.

Here are our top 6 tips.

1. Assess the Stain

The deed has been done but don’t panic. Take a deep breath and assess the stain. Is it liquid or does it have a thicker consistency?

Liquid stains like spilled coffee, tea, food or red wine should be cleaned immediately. If they’re left to sink into the carpet they’ll become harder to remove later. As an added tip - whatever you may have heard - don’t pour salt on to red wine stains. This actually helps the stain to set more deeply into the carpet and you don’t want that.

Stains like mud or chocolate should be left to dry before any attempt is made to clean them up. If you try to clean them before they dry, you risk smearing them into the carpet fibres making the stain harder to remove.

Once dried you should be able to brush away most of the dried matter with the brush attachment on a vacuum cleaner. A good carpet shampoo should be able to erase any remaining stains.

2. Rub-a-Dub-Not

It’s a natural instinct to want to roll your sleeves up and attack the stain with a vigorous scrub but please avoid this at all costs. Rubbing it can irreversibly damage carpet fibres. It can also spread the blemish so that it covers a larger surface area of your carpet than the spill itself.

Instead of scrubbing the stain, blot it with a cold damp cloth. This will help to lift the mark out of the carpet. Once you’ve soaked up most of the liquid, treat the area with a cleaner immediately.

A word of warning though, be careful not to over blot the carpet because this can push the stains deeper into the carpet fibres creating an unholy mess.

3. Water

Hot water can make stains worse so choose cold water instead. Go easy on the water though as over saturating the area can lead to the underlay leaching into the carpet, creating a brand new accident. Two for the price of one? No thank you…

4. Carpet Shampoo

When you have a spill the sooner you can tackle it the less damage you’ll experience, so preparedness is the key. Keep some carpet shampoo amongst your cleaning solutions so that if you do have a mishap in your home or office you can deal with it straight away. If you’re particularly organised it’s worth spot testing your carpet with the shampoo. Choose a small inconspicuous area to ensure that the shampoo won’t discolour or stain the carpet fibres.

5. Natural Cleaners

Try baking soda. After blotting the stain to remove excess liquid, cover it with baking soda and leave it for up to fifteen minutes. After the time has passed, vacuum the baking soda away.

Alternatively, you can try using a solution of two pints of water with a quarter of a teaspoon of white vinegar. This preparation can be used to blot away water soluble stains like soft drinks.

For tougher stains like red wine and coffee, try blending one large spoonful of ammonia with one cup of water. However, if you have a wool or wool blend carpet, use a mild detergent mixed with water instead, as ammonia is too harsh for wool and wool blend carpets. If you’re unsure spot test a small section first.

6. Avoidance is the best way

Accidents will happen but spills can sometimes be avoided with a bit of forethought. If you don’t already have one in your home or office, invest in a doormat. This should encourage most visitors to wipe their shoes prior to entering your home or work premises.

Wear outdoor footwear outside and never in your home. It will help to contribute to a cleaner more hygienic environment. Encourage your guests to your home to do the same wherever possible.

Avoid bringing drinks into carpeted areas. If you have an uncarpeted dining area eat and drink there. If you don’t have this option, try to avoid filling your cup or glass to the brim.

Ensure that your drinks aren’t kept on the floor, close to people’s feet.

We hope these tips help you but if your efforts at stain removal at your office have been unsuccessful or you're in need of more general carpet cleaning get in touch with us at We’re the best choice in commercial cleaning and we’ll be happy to help you.

Words: Susie Vandi

Photo: Tyler Nix (Unsplash)


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