Simple household products can serve as powerful carpet stain removers. Nonbleach detergent, white vinegar, ammonia, chlorine bleach and alcohol can all aid in the removal of carpet stains. Different types of stains require different solutions and techniques for effective removal.
The first step in carpet stain removal is to blot the stain working from the outside in. Be sure not to ruin carpet fibers or allow the stain to sink in deeper by scrubbing. Next, rinse the stain with water and blot again.
For water-soluble stains, use a solution of 1/4 teaspoon of nonbleach detergent or white vinegar mixed with 32 ounces of water. Water-soluble stains include stains such as colas, ice cream, food dye, jelly and mud. For tougher water-soluble stains, use a solution of 1 tablespoon ammonia mixed with 1 cup of water. Ammonia, however, should not be used on wool carpeting. A solution of chlorine bleach and water, 1 part bleach to 5 parts water, can be used for stubborn stains on solution-dyed carpets.
For oil-based stains, iron a paper towel over the carpet on warm setting. The oil becomes stuck to the paper towel and removed from carpet. Glue can be removed from carpet with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. Use ice to freeze wax or gum on carpet, which can then be shattered and removed. Remove nail polish by blotting with a rag soaked in nail polish remover.