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Semele's Riches: DIY Pet Stain Help

Semele's Riches

Adventures in handmade childhood.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

DIY Pet Stain Help

This concoction did a good job of heavy duty odor and stain removal on my light-colored basement carpet, which I had thought a total loss.  (We bought the house with the carpet.  Knowing how many pets we have, we'd have chosen something different.  Note to the world: Step away from the beige carpet.  Do not install that in the basement.  Pick a nice Berber that will work with you when you try to clean up after the occasional damp issue.  It's a BASEMENT.)

This works on mildew and pet stains, but you'll need to try something else for rust- lemon juice, salt, and Barkeeper's friend have all proved minimally effective for me.

1 quart hydrogen peroxide
1 cup washing soda
3 quarts hot water
1/4 cup CLEAR liquid laundry detergent- optional

Mix well.

What you're doing here is creating an oxygen bleach, chemically similar to OxiClean but at the right strength for the job at hand.  (AND CHEAP.) 

The laundry detergent will help where there are visible stains.  DON'T use a blue variety or you risk staining your carpet or upholstery blue instead.  It's important to use laundry detergent because it's low-foaming.  It's very important to note that WASHING soda, which is very inexpensive, made by Arm & Hammer, and carried around here by Giant, is not the same as Baking Soda.  You'll find it in the laundry aisle.

I apply this mixture liberally to stains, let it sit for as long as a half hour, and then use my carpet steamer to remove it and rinse the area.  I can't say it's restored the carpet to "like new" status, because the repeated application down there has resulted in some wear on the fibers.  But what it DOES do is remove the odor and stains at a fraction of the price of some of the things I tried that didn't work nearly so well.

You can store leftovers in a closed container.  The hot water is to dissolve the soda; I don't know that it makes the product more effective to use it warm.

So before you throw something away because you think it can't be saved, try this.  You'll be out a couple of bucks if it doesn't work, which is nothing compared to what you'll save if it does.

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