There’s nothing like kicking back and relaxing with a cold beer after a long day at work. But accidents happen, and beer spills can be disastrous for your carpet and fabrics.
Beer is especially problematic because of its sugars. The sugars in beer leave carpet fibers sticky and crunchy, while the color creates a dark, urine-like stain. If left to sit, dirt and dust can actually stick to the sugar in the beer and cause dark splotches. Plus, the sweet smell can attract pests into the house.
Wine is another dreaded stain, especially dark wines. Red wines quickly seep into fabrics and quickly cause long-lasting stains. Even professional carpet cleaners can’t always get wine out of a carpet.
In this article, we’ll go through how to clean up beer and wine spills to get your carpets fresh and clean no matter what happens during your off time!
Beer carpet stains
You want to start by pulling up as much of the excess liquid as you can. Use a clean, white rag or paper towel. Press on the stain and blot up. Do not rub, which can make the stain spread and set. (Don’t use a colored rag, as the color can transfer to the carpet.)
Apply pressure as you blot. You can also put the rag on the stain and step on it with clean feet or shoes to pull up more of the liquid.
Make sure you move quickly to remove as much as possible of the staining agent before it sets into the fibers of the carpet.
2. Create vinegar solution.
Create a solution of 1/3 cup white vinegar and 2/3 cup distilled water.
White vinegar is a natural antibacterial and disinfectant. It will help remove the stain and smell of the beer without damaging the carpet around it.
Distilled water is preferred as some tap waters contain particles that can interact with and worsen the stain. Distilled water is cleaner and healthier overall. Learn more about clean water here.
Thoroughly blend the vinegar and water together and pour in a clean spray bottle. We recommend a glass spray bottle that’s reusable, safe, and good for the environment.
3. Spray on vinegar solution.
Spray the vinegar-water solution directly on the stain so it’s slightly damp. You don’t want to drench the stain. Let the solution sit on the carpet for 1-2 minutes.
Use a clean paper towel or white cloth to blot the solution off the carpet like you did in step one.
You’ll want to repeat this step until the entire water-vinegar solution has been used. Spray the stain, and blot it up. This helps ensure that you’ve attacked even the deepest stain particles.
4. Use detergent solution.
After using the vinegar solution, you’ll want to add another layer of protection with detergent. Mix one cup of water with a few drops of plain, unscented dishwashing detergent. We also recommend Castile soap, which is a natural, effective cleanser. (It actually has 18 home uses!)
Mix thoroughly in a bowl or bottle. You’ll want to dribble a small amount of this solution on the stained area. Then, use a clean white rag to blot it up.
Continue until you’ve used up all of the detergent solution.
Apply a small amount of clean, distilled water on the stain. This helps to cleanse the area of the vinegar and detergent solution. Dab it dry until the majority of the liquid is removed from the carpet.
You want to try to dry your carpet as fast as you can to avoid moisture getting locked and breeding bacteria. We recommend using a fan to help it dry faster.
If you don’t have a fan on hand, find a few silica gel packs and put them on top of the stain. These can help soak up moisture faster.
Do not use a hairdryer, as the heat can damage the carpet.
7. Use baking soda.
This last step is optional but it’s a great way to remove any leftover gunk and odors. Sprinkle fresh baking soda or freshening powder over the stain. Don’t scrub in, as these particles can get stuck in carpet fibers.
The baking soda will help remove odors while soaking up any extra stain particles and moisture.
Vacuum baking soda and liquid with a vacuum. This helps get rid of any particles while bringing that extra vitality back to your carpet.
Other beer cleaning tips:
Wine carpet stains
Removing wine stains is similar to removing beer stains, but they can set faster and deeper. You’ll want to treat the stain as quickly as possible to avoid it permanently getting into the fibers of the carpet.
You’ll want to follow all of the above steps of beer removal.
When blotting up excess liquid, we recommend using paper towels. We don’t suggest using a cloth for these, as the wine can quickly stain the cloth as well.
In step four, where you apply the detergent solution, you’ll want to dribble it on the area and work it in with a sponge or rag. This helps to loosen any of the staining agents without spreading it to the surrounding fibers.
Like with beer, you’ll use the vinegar-water and detergent solutions until they’re fully used up.
Because red wine stains are harder to remove, you may need another step after step 6. After blotting up the last of the detergent, you might want to spritz on a solution of 3% hydrogen peroxide. You can apply by spraying out of a bottle or pouring on a cloth and dabbing the affected area.
Let the hydrogen peroxide set on the carpet for one to two hours. Then, dribble distilled water and blot with a clean cloth to remove the peroxide from the carpet.
However, you want to be careful with hydrogen peroxide. It can bleach or lighten the color of your carpet. Start with a small amount to see how it reacts to the carpet and the stain. If it lifts the stain without damaging the carpet’s color, then use it. Otherwise, reapply the vinegar solution until the majority of the stain is lifted.
After cleaning the peroxide from the carpet, you’ll want to place a fan near the carpet to rapid dry it. Not only will this dry your carpet faster, but it will also prevent deep-set stains from rising up and becoming visible again.
Want another way to hit at those stains? Check out this funny clip to learn more about removing red wine from carpets.
Don’t cry over spilled beer. Spills happen because life happens! Be prepared for them with natural cleaning solutions to remove beer and wine fast.
What are your beer stain tips and tricks? Let us know in the comment below!