It seems like where there is a gathering, there is likely to be soda, and more often than not, soda or cola stains can find their way to your carpet.
The dyes within the drink cause the stain, but that is not the end of it. Most sodas are made with sticky, sugary syrups that attract dust, dirt, and grime. If not cleaned up, the stain can darken and get worse in appearance if left alone. Also, do not be surprised if creepy crawlies like ants or roaches hunt down the sugar-laced stain.
Removing a soda stain from a carpet—no matter the color of the soda, be it grape soda, orange pop, or cola—is easier than you think. Here's how to remove soda stains in five easy steps with items you likely already have.
|Detergent Type||Heavy-duty laundry detergent|
Click Play to Learn a Budget-Friendly Way to Remove Soda Stains From Carpet
Equipment / Tools
- 2 to 3 Clean white cloths
- Vacuum cleaner
- Carpet rake (optional)
- Liquid heavy-duty laundry detergent
- Carpet stain remover (optional)
- Vinegar/water solution (optional)
- Lemon juice solution (optional)
- Ammonia/water solution (optional)
- Oxygen bleach solution (optional)
Before You Begin
Test any detergents or cleaning solutions in an inconspicuous area to ensure they do not discolor the carpet.
Older stains will be harder to remove. You might need to repeat the cleaning process a couple of times before the stain disappears.
Blot the Stain
Using a clean cloth, blot the area to remove as much liquid as possible from the carpet. If the stain has occurred on a flattened or matted carpet, use a carpet rake to widen the spaces between the carpet fibers. Much like a leaf rake, its wide-spaced tines work like a wide-bristled brush to open the spaces between the carpet fibers.
Put Detergent Solution on Stain
Pour a mixture of 1/4 teaspoon of liquid laundry detergent and 1/2 cup cold water onto the soft drink stain and blot up the stained area again using another clean, dry cloth. Allow the area to dry thoroughly.
The enzymes found in heavy-duty laundry detergent are the main components that clean the mess. These enzymes allow you to use lower water temperatures and less detergent to get items clean.
Vacuum the Area
After the stain has dried, vacuum it thoroughly. You will suck any dry bits of residue away. Vacuuming also helps fluff the carpet fibers back to a normal appearance.
Use a Carpet Stain Remover
If the soda stain remains, try a carpet stain remover. Carpet stain removers have surfactants that make cleaners work better. Surfactants are compounds that are used in an array of cleaning products for their ability to lower the surface tension of water. This additive increases the molecules' ability to spread over and through a material (such as carpet fibers) and thus makes them more likely to interact with and remove stains, including oil and grease.
Follow the stain remover instructions, and be wary of using too much cleaner. An excess of cleaner is difficult to remove and can attract dirt in the future.
Remove Soda Coloring
Some stains from sodas like grape soda or red-colored soda may be more challenging to remove. Try diluting some white vinegar with water (about a one-to-two part ratio) and repeat steps two and three. The acid in the vinegar solution may be necessary to get rid of the colored stains. Instead of vinegar, you can also try a lemon juice solution, an ammonia/water solution, or an oxygen bleach solution.
For bright red artificial dye, like Kool Aid and Crush Soda, if the red stain still persists after treating it with all your other listed products, you may need to invest in a professional specialty stain remover specially formulated to lift red dye from carpets.
Never mix any cleaning product or natural ingredient with ammonia. Dangerous fumes can form.
If a lingering sugary stain has led to an ant trail in your home, the best thing you can do is disrupt the trail of ants. Borax or boric acid powder is an excellent low-risk pesticide (in homes without small children or pets) that kills ants or roaches that have found their way into your home. If your home includes small children or animals, consider calling a professional for pest control help.