One of my guilty pleasures is having a big a bowl of chocolate ice cream as I watch something on Netflix. Sometimes, if what I’m watching is really engrossing, I end up spilling some of the ice cream on the carpet. Call me clumsy, but it does happen.
This is what happens to me, but in your case maybe you have young kids. They might mistakenly turn over a bowl of ice cream or drop a little from a melting cone. Irrespective of how the chocolate ice cream got on the carpet, it’s bad news.
You need to act as soon as you spot it on the carpet. The longer the ice cream sits on the carpet, the harder it will be to get it off and remove the stain left behind. There’s also the chance that someone might step on it spread it other parts of the carpet via their shoes.
What Do You Do First?
As soon as you spot the ice cream on the carpet, get a spoon and scoop up as much of it as possible. You need to begin from the outer edges of the area where the ice cream has spilt and with an inward motion towards the centre scoop up the ice cream. The reason for doing it this way is to prevent the ice cream from spreading further and leaving behind a larger stain. Also, keep paper towels handy and wipe the spoon clear after every scoop. This too will ensure that the spill doesn’t smear other parts of the carpet.
Now that you have scooped up as much of the chocolate ice cream as possible, use paper towels to blot up some more of it. Remember to use only up and down motion while blotting. Do not try to rub it as that might both spread the stain and harm the carpet fibres. Once no more of the ice cream seems to be blotting up, you can move on to one of the methods for removing the stain that’s left.
For Carpets Made of Synthetic Fibres
Carpets made of synthetic materials like nylon, olefin, polyester, etc., can withstand much more aggressive cleaning techniques as compared to the ones made of natural fibres such as wool and silk. More about cleaning carpets made of natural fibres later.
Use Liquid Dishwashing Soap and Vinegar
- Step 1: Mix a drop or two of the liquid soap in a bowl of lukewarm water. Using a clean white piece of cloth that is soft, apply the solution over the stain by gently dabbing it in. Do not rub the solution into the stain as this might result in it spreading wider.
- Step 2: Once you have applied a generous amount of the solution on the stain, let it be for 10-15 minutes. The soap solution will gradually dissolve the stain.
- Step 3: Now use white paper towels to soak up the excess moisture. Use as many paper towels as required, till no more of the moisture gets soaked in it. Once again, remember not to rub the paper towel over the carpet. Use an up and down motion to dry it.
- Step 4: Alternatively, mix two big spoonfuls of white vinegar into half a litre of water. Using a white soft cloth (just like before) apply this mixture over the stained area, making sure that you don’t rub the carpet at any point.
- Step 5: Just like earlier, wait for 10-15 minutes. Then pour a little bit of lukewarm water over the spot and dry it using paper towels. What this will do is remove any soap residue left on the carpet.
- Step 6: Once the stain has been removed, use a moist cloth to gently dab the spot. Then use papers towels to soak up any excess moisture.
- Step 7: Finally, lay several paper towels over the spot, a clear plastic sheet over them and a flat weight such as a book on top. Leave it for a few hours to completely dry.
Use Hydrogen Peroxide
This is a much more aggressive method of cleaning. You should use it only if the earlier method has failed to completely remove the stain.
- Step 1: Apply hydrogen peroxide over the stained area and leave for about an hour.
- Step 2: Use a clean white absorbent cloth to soak up moisture. Make sure you’re wearing a hardy pair of gloves.
- Step 3: When the stain is removed, the drying process is the same as that mentioned above.
For Carpets Made of Natural Fibres
Natural fibres need to be cleaned with gentler products. In fact, it’s best to seek professional help for high-quality wool and silk carpets as they are very delicate. If you want to do it yourself, then the liquid soap solution method can be used.
Use Carpet Shampoo
- Step 1: Apply cold water over the stain using a sponge. Follow this up by blotting up excess water using paper towels.
- Step 2: Mix carpet shampoo in room-temperature water in a 1:4 ratio. Use a white cloth to apply this solution over the stain and then let it rest for 15 minutes.
- Step 3: Use paper towels to soak up excess moisture.
- Step 4: Wet a piece of white cloth in cold water and dab it over the stained area and use paper towels to soak up excess water. This will remove the shampoo residue from the carpet.
- Step 5: Once again, the drying process remains the same as above.
Things You Need to Keep in Mind at All Times
- Wear a good pair of gloves while cleaning.
- For every stain removal method mentioned above, first, test it on a hidden patch of the carpet. If it doesn’t affect the carpet in any adverse manner, only then use it on the stained area.
- Do not use products like bleach and ammonia on carpets made of natural fibres.
- Hydrogen peroxide can have a bleaching effect too.
- Consult the recommended care instructions provided by the carpet manufacturer. If any of the products/methods mentioned above have been forbidden by the manufacturer, then abide by that.
- If you are having difficulty completely removing the stain, you could try sprinkling baking powder over the affected area. Leave it for a while, preferably overnight, and then vacuum the carpet.
It’s tough to not eat your favourite dessert on your oh-so-comfortable carpet and accidents can happen at any time, so it’s best to be prepared for such situations so that you don’t have to worry about it in case you, your kids or anyone else ends up spilling some chocolate ie cream on your carpet.