Like grapes, tomato stains are classified as a tannin and can be treated similarly. Here a tips and recipes to bring your carpet back to life.
Performing the Pretreatment Blot Test
Before ever starting any stain removal procedure, you should first check your carpet for colorfastness. In an inconspicuous area, blot your carpet with a dampened white absorbent cloth. Check to ensure that the dye from the carpet is not present on the cloth.
Following the colorfast test, perform the same procedure with any product that you intend on using in your stain removal efforts. Check to ensure that the carpet does not discolor or fade.
Cleaning the Spill
Before attempting any stain removal procedure, clean up as much of the spill as possible without spreading the mess. If the spill is solid, such as tomato sauce, use a spoon to carefully scoop up the spill from the outer edge to the interior to avoid spreading the stain.
If it is a liquid spill such as tomato juice, gently blot the area until all the liquid is absorbed. Don’t scrub the carpet as this can damage the tuft and send the stain further into the carpet fibers.
Stain Removal Procedure
Different carpets have varying levels of stain resistance so a stain removal method that works for one carpet owner may not work as effectively for another. Continue to work your way through the stain removal methods until the stain has completely vanished.
Club Soda: Club soda is great for removing a variety of water-soluble stains. Using an absorbent white cloth, pour a small amount of club soda on the stain and begin gently blotting. Do not soak the carpet.
Detergent: Use a detergent-water solution and allow to sit on the stain for a few minutes. Do not use soap.
Ammonia: If the stain still has not lifted by using club soda and detergent, it may be time to get more aggressive. Try a solution of one part ammonia to three parts water and begin blotting. Ammonia can cause some carpet dyes to lighten.
Hydrogen Peroxide: As a last resort, make a solution of one part hydrogen peroxide to three parts of water. If you are going to let the solution soak on the stain for a few moments, cover the stain to block the sunlight as it can have a bleaching effect.
Following stain removal, rinse the carpet with clear cold water in a spray bottle to remove any excess solutions remaining. Dry completely and vacuum.
“Remove Tomato Sauce Stain- Tampa flooring for Carpet, Wood, Ceramic Tile, Laminate, Stone, Vinyl, etc..” Tampa flooring for Carpet, Wood, Ceramic Tile, Laminate, Stone, Vinyl, etc.. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Sept. 2010. http://www.wolfeflooring.com/Maintenance/Carpet/How_to_Remove_Tomato_Sauce_Stain.asp.
“Quick ‘n Easy Stain Removal.” Ohioline. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Sept. 2010. http://ohioline.osu.edu/outside/stainrem.html#cos.
“Tannin concentration in tomato fruit at different stages of its development.” REFDOC. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Sept. 2010. http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=1417912.