Blood stains can be especially difficult to remove because the hemoglobin in the blood acts as a binder when it contacts oxygen and binds with the material in the carpet. You may want to try a test application on a small, hidden spot to be sure it does not damage the color or fibers of your carpet.
Blood Stain Removal
It is easiest to remove blood when it is still wet. Dried blood stains are notoriously harder to remove. Also be sure throughout the process to blot the stain, not rub it, as this will only push the stain further into the carpet fibers. Use the following steps along with the appropriate cleaning solution for your carpet type.
You Will Need:
- Cleaning solution (choose one):
- Wool: 1 teaspoon mild, non-alkali detergent with 1 cup cold water
- Synthetics: 2 tablespoons household ammonia with 1 cup cold water
- Oriental: 1 part white vinegar with 2 parts cold water
- Clean white towels
- Spray bottle (for cleaning solution)
- Rinsing Solution:
- 2-6 drops mild, non-alkali dish detergent with 1 cup cold water
- Water bottle
How to Remove the Stain:
- Begin by blotting with a clean cloth to remove as much of the blood as possible. It’s very important to BLOT throughout this entire process DO NOT SCRUB. Your goal is to “lift” the stain, not rub it into the fibers. Working from the outside of the stain towards the center will keep the stain from spreading.
- Spray stain with cold water.
- Blot to remove as much of the stain as possible.
- Spray a small amount of cleaning solution on the stain.
- Blot with a clean dry cloth until no more stain shows on the cloth. You will need to change your cloth often or use a clean patch of the towel each time as you are blotting to be sure you are not spreading the stain.
- Repeat steps 4 and 5 until the stain is no longer noticeable.
- Spray with rinsing solution.
- Blot with clean cloth to remove.
- Spray with clean water.
- Blot with clean cloth. Repeat as necessary to be sure all cleaning solution has been removed.
- Cover stain with clean cloth or stack of paper towels and put heavy weight on top (heavy books, etc.)
- Leave set for several hours to absorb any remaining liquid.
- Remove weights and cloths and let area air dry.
- When spot has dried completely, vacuum thoroughly to restore carpet texture and pick up any remaining cleaning solution residue.
- If the spot turns brown when it dries, mix 1 part vinegar with 2 parts water. Apply the solution on the dried spot and blot to dry. This can be repeated ONE time.
Additional Tips and Ideas
- The following common household items can be used to remove blood stains: baking soda, meat tenderizer, salt, or hydrogen peroxide along with cold water.
- For baking soda and meat tenderizer, make a paste using cold water and apply to the stain.
- Pour salt on the stain and blot with a towel dampened with hydrogen peroxide solution (2 parts water to 3 parts hydrogen peroxide). Rinse by blotting with a clean, damp towel.
- Avoid using warm water, it speeds up the setting process and makes the blood stain more difficult to remove.
- Do not use laundry detergent or dishwasher detergents as they may damage the fibers of your carpet.
- Do not use bleach or ammonia on wool carpets as it will damage the fibers.
- Use the bottom of a spoon to gently work cleaning solutions into the carpet without damaging the fibers.
- If nothing else works, try spitting on it. It may work, especially if it’s your own blood.
- Do not use carpet spot cleaners on oriental rugs as it will damage the fibers.
- Oriental rugs should be cleaned with caution. If your rug is an antique, silk, or part silk, contact a professional to remove the stain.