How to Effectively Get Those Unsightly Stains Out of Your Carpet With Only 5 Household Items

Unfortunately I don’t have the pleasure of having kids yet, nor the responsibilities of cleaning up the monstrous messes little kids tend to leave behind, but I do have two rambunctious dogs that, without trying, are masters at tracking in mud, dirt and other debris into the house.  Not only that, but they do tend to have their occasional accidents every now and then and the frequent upset tummy when they have eaten something outside that doesn’t agree with them.  That being said, I have to admit that sometimes the food scraps I give them off the dinner table don’t help to alleviate their upset stomachs and instead seem to end up right back on the floor.  Either way, whether you have kids, pets, or both, stains on your carpeting are inevitable.

Carpeting takes on a lot of abuse because foot traffic, especially in the areas closest to exit doors, further imbeds the dirt and debris brought in from outside.  Carpeting also collects foods, drinks, and shedding of human skin, nails, hair and oils that are naturally released from our bodies.  Our furry friends also experience the same bodily situations as well.

In this post, I’ll introduce a very simple process you can use to get the toughest stains out while using an all-natural and environmentally friendly stain fighting solution that won’t have you worrying about inhaling toxic fumes or whether the kids will break out in nasty rashes.  This means you won’t have to hire a professional carpet cleaner as often, or only for your larger carpet cleaning jobs.  I’ve been using this same process for years and it doesn’t fail.


Here are the only items you will need:

  1. ½ -1 cup of white vinegar (doesn’t have to be exact)
  2. 2 cups of warm water
  3. Tea Tree Oil (optional though highly recommended)
  4. An iron at medium temperature
  5. About 3 clean washcloths (white)
  6. Small bucket of warm water

The Ingredients:

Vinegar is one of the best natural cleaning agents there is and is due in large part to the anti-microbial fighting properties found within it.  It has an acidity level of approximately 5% and is made from the fermentation of either fruits or grains, but its most impressive quality is its disinfectant property for killing off microorganisms, bacteria and mold.  Not only that, but it’s odorless once its dry, its safe and non-toxic, it’s a natural bug repellent and best of all, its really cheap.  Who doesn’t appreciate that?

Tea Tree oil, though its optional, also boasts many amazing properties.  It is an anti-bacterial, anti-infectious, anti-fungal, microbial and viral essential oil that also smells amazing.  It has been in use more heavily over the last 100 years and there have been over 327 scientific studies showing its antimicrobial efficacy.  It is even used in air diffusers to kill off mold.  In addition, Tea Tree Oil gets used on acne, bacterial infections, psoriasis and eczema, insect repellent, and as a natural deodorant to name a few.  This is an essential product you want to always have stocked in your home.

The Preparation:

In a medium sized plastic spray bottle, mix the ½-1 cup of white vinegar into the 2 cups of warm water and shake well.  Don’t worry about your carpet smelling like a salad, as mentioned above, once the vinegar dries it becomes odorless.  As a tip, I like writing the recipe of the solution on the back of my plastic spray bottle.  Allow the iron about a minute or two to heat to a medium temperature.The process:

Using the spray bottle, apply the solution generously to the affected area making sure to allow the mixture to clean to the base of the carpet.  Once the solution has been applied to the carpet, take the three white wash clothes and soak them in the bucket of warm water.  Make sure to squeeze the excess water out of the washcloths, you are looking for them to be damp, not soppy wet.

Next, nicely layer the 3 washcloths one over the other making sure to cover the stain and the solution.  Take your iron and lay it flat on top of the damp washcloths making sure to move it around the entire surface area of the washcloth.

The point of this is to have the steam that is generated from the Iron loosen up the matter that has been locked into the carpeting. As the water and vinegar loosen up the stain, the washcloths will be absorbing the dirt.  If this is a higher traffic area, such as a foyer or hallway, feel free to grab wider utility cloths to absorb a larger surface area.

Once the washcloths become dry from the iron, wash the dirt out of the washcloths with running water out of the sink and repeat the process once again.  After repeating this about 3 or 4 times, you’ll notice that the white washcloths won’t have any more dirt to soak up and the carpet will look just like new.

I’d recommend leaving the carpet just slightly damp, as you don’t want to accidentally leave the iron on the washcloths too long and singe the underlying carpet.  To avoid this, remember to set the iron to medium heat and always keep the iron in motion.

As an extra tip, if you prefer to have the carpet completely dry when you are done, you can grab a blow dryer and apply medium heat to the clean area until it is dry.  Again, make sure to never keep the dryer pointed in the same area for extended periods of time.  To finish off the job, I love adding a hint of orange or citrus oils to make the area smell great (my favorite scents).

I love using solutions that are safe for my health and the environment too.  This is one that I’ve been using for years and gives me comfort in knowing that there are no carcinogens or other gasses that could harm my body.  The great thing about this process is you can apply as many rounds as you see fit and it works like gangbusters too!