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Should I Use Vinegar On My Carpets?

If you’ve ever searched the Internet, or even just talked to someone about how to remove a particularly tough stain from your carpet, they’ve probably suggested using vinegar.

Plain white vinegar is often touted as a miracle cure for any kind of stain or spot, whether it’s a pet stain, chocolate, pasta sauce or even red wine. What’s more, it’s completely natural, baby and pet safe and really cheap.

But, does vinegar actually work magic, or is it all just hype?

Heck, what if it’s actually bad for my carpet?

If you’re looking for the unvarnished truth about vinegar, you’re in the right place.

Let’s have a look.

Vinegar Isn’t Always The Solution
While white vinegar can tackle some types of stain very effectively without damaging your carpet, it isn’t always the solution. In fact, in some situations it may not work at all, or even make matters worse.

Let us explain.

All substances in nature are either acidic or alkaline. Acidity and alkalinity are determined according to the ph scale, which runs from 0 to 14. 0 is the most acidic, 14 is the most alkaline and 7 is somewhere in between (called ph neutral).

When you’re cleaning a surface, you’re really attempting to undo the impact of a substance’s ph by neutralizing it and bringing it back to ph neutral. Because of this, alkaline cleaning products work best on acidic stains, whilst acidic cleaning products work best on alkaline stains.

Vinegar is an acidic product, so it works best on alkaline stains such as your pet’s urine and wine.

On the other hand, it won’t work on acidic stains such as ketchup or soy sauce. In fact, it will make matters worse. Rather than neutralizing the stain’s ph, adding vinegar will simply make the stain more acidic and harder to remove.

What Material Is Your Carpet Made Of?
But the stain’s ph is only part of the puzzle. You’ll also need to take your carpet’s material into account.

Carpets made of wool, silk and other natural fibers can be rather delicate, and don’t take too well to excessive exposure to very acidic products. Using vinegar on these types of carpet can permanently damage the fibers and ruin your carpet.


It’s All In The Technique
Your technique is just as important as the nature of the stain and the carpet’s material when you’re trying to clean using vinegar.

Always try to soak up as much of the spill with paper towels, before you attempt using vinegar. Blot, don’t rub, as this will only spread the stain and make matters worse. If the spill has dried up, start by gently scraping off as much as you can.

For the best results, you should dilute the vinegar with water before applying it to your carpet. Never pour undiluted vinegar directly onto the stain, as this will only serve to soak your carpet, spread the stain and possibly damage the fibers.

Ideally, you should mix about one half vinegar with one half water in a spray bottle, and mist the area gently. Let the solution sit for about five to ten minutes and blot it gently but firmly with paper towels. Repeat until the stain disappears.

Professional Carpet Cleaning
Have you tried using vinegar unsuccessfully?

Or maybe using vinegar on your carpet sounds more complicated than you initially thought?

Perhaps, it’s better to leave stain removal to the carpet cleaning professionals. They have the right equipment, experience and expertise to deal with stains effectively without damaging your carpet. In fact, they’ll make it look brand spanking new.

Are you ready to say goodbye to old stains? Click here for a free quote.

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