It’s a scenario that nobody wants to happen, but is a common occurrence – a glass or open bottle of red wine tipping over onto a carpet. Inevitably, panic might set in, as you curse yourself and worry that your lovely new carpet is ruined for good.
Fortunately, red wine spillages don’t have to mean the end for your carpets. With prompt action and the right kind of cleaning solutions, you can get rid of red wine from a carpet, without noticing it was ever there in the first place.
1. Act fast
As mentioned, the sooner you act to remove the red wine, the more effective the outcomes will be. The longer you leave it, the more likely the red wine stain will set deeper into the carpet pile. So no matter how tired you are, don’t leave it until the next morning to sort it out.
2. Get blotting
The first thing you should do is grab a clean kitchen cloth or paper towel and blot the spillage to soak up as much of the moisture as possible. Blot lightly; don’t rub or scrub at the spillage as this will spread it further around or push it deeper into the carpet.
Add a tiny drop of cold or lukewarm water to dilute the red wine spillage, and keep blotting until no more liquid is transferred to the cloth or paper towel. Never use hot water, as spillages exposed to high temperatures are harder to remove and may set into the carpet, as well as damage delicate carpet fabrics.
There are various home remedies you can use to help remove red wine from a carpet, albeit with varying results. Many of these you’ll already find in the bathroom or kitchen cupboard, which is handy when accidents do occur.
Some people swear by mixing cleaning vinegar with a quarter of a cup of baking soda or salt into a paste, and applying it onto the red wine spillage. After the solution has been allowed to dry on the carpet, it should then be vacuumed up.
Cleaning vinegar is thought to be more effective than the vinegar you use with cooking as it is more acidic, so is better at dissolving the red pigmentation in wine.
As an alternative, you could also try mixing a tablespoon of washing up liquid with the vinegar and two cups of warm water, and then applying the solution to the spillage. Gently blot with a clean cloth.
When red wine spillages strike, salt can be a lifesaver – and the good news is most of us have some to hand. The beauty of using salt is that it absorbs the red wine, helping to lift the colour and moisture from the carpet. Simply sprinkle salt on the spillage after you’ve blotted it. Leave it for a few minutes and rinse the area with warm water. If the salt has lifted the red wine out, you can then vacuum the remaining salt up. In some cases, you might need to leave the salt on the spillage for longer, possibly even overnight, if it’s not lifting out the first time around.
Bear in mind that you should always use table salt as opposed to rock salt, which is corrosive and could damage your carpet.
5. Baking soda
There are two ways that baking soda can be used to help shift red wine from a carpet. As previously stated, it can be mixed into a paste with a little vinegar. It can also be applied by itself, combined with a drop of water to form a paste. The solution should be left to dry on the carpet, and then removed with the vacuum cleaner.
Although baking soda is considered as a natural deodoriser, it should be used sparingly on a carpet as it can harm carpet fabrics.
6. Fizzy water
It’s thought that the bubbles in fizzy or carbonated water or club soda can help to lift a red wine stain from a carpet. After you’ve blotted the spillage, apply a small amount of fizzy water and then blot again.
There’s no strong evidence to suggest this works any better than using still water, but it’s worth giving it a go. Fizzy water is inert, so is relatively safe if you’re worried about your carpet becoming discoloured.
7. White wine
Pouring a very small amount of white wine on a red wine spillage is said to work because the white wine has a neutralising effect and can dilute the red wine. However, whether this works any better than just plain old water is debatable, so don’t go opening a bottle of white especially.
8. Hydrogen peroxide
Having a bleaching effect means that hydrogen peroxide is often used to remove red wine from a carpet. But, proceed with caution, as it may cause discoloration, and only use on light-coloured carpets. It should never be applied undiluted to a carpet, so mix with water or a suitable liquid soap, and always do a spot test first.
9. Stain removers
As well as using natural methods to help lift red wine from a carpet, there are a multitude of different stain removers you can buy in a supermarket or online, some of which are specifically designed for carpets as well as removing red wine.
Always read the instructions on the bottle carefully, do a small patch test and make sure the product is suitable for your particular carpet fabric type.
The cleaning results can vary from one stain remover to the next. Some products contain harsh, toxic chemicals that may cause discoloration, or affect your health if you’re exposed to any residues. If residues aren’t properly removed, they might leave sticky deposits that can attract dirt, which may also create the perfect environment for mould to form and grow.
10. Professional carpet cleaning
There are risks involved with trying to clean a red wine stain yourself, whether you opt for a natural solution or a shop-bought product. The spillage might not come out of the carpet properly, or even at all, and may even set deep into the carpet becoming a permanent fixture. Carpets may become discoloured or damaged if the wrong substance is used.
To reduce these risks from occurring, and to give you peace of mind that the red wine spillage is correctly and properly removed from a carpet, the best and most effective option is to use a professional carpet cleaning company.
Expert cleaners will have in-depth knowledge of different carpet fabrics so will know which is the most reliable and effective product to use for each carpet type.
For example, at Carpet Bright UK, we use high-quality cleaning solutions that are designed to remove a very wide range of stains from carpets, including red wine spillages. Our cleaning results are very impressive, and we even offer a 7-day satisfaction guarantee. We’re also available six days per week, so can get cracking sorting out any red wine spillages as soon as they occur.
What’s more, we use effective cleaning and drying solutions that remove all excess moisture from a carpet, so that it doesn’t become prone to mould or mildew.
In addition, we offer stain protection treatments which can be applied to carpets to help repel future spillages from turning into troublesome stains. Odourless and invisible, our stain protection solutions work for up to two years, so there’s no need to be fearful every time you open a bottle of red wine!
Call our friendly experts for further details and a free quote.