Having to remove blood stains from a carpet may seem like an unusual task. Little accidents can happen to anyone. Be it a papercut, an accident during cooking, or hitting your calf against the edge of the coffee table – blood may end up on the carpet quite easily.
The problem with blood stains is that they are very visible, and also not that easy to clean without leaving a permanent stain. However, there are ways to get rid of them even from light-colored carpets.
Check out our handy methods below, and restore your carpet to its former glory.
Before you begin
Please read our safety tips and tricks before you attempt to remove blood from your carpet.
- This is important: if the accident happened to someone else and the blood is not yours, make sure you wear gloves when cleaning. Direct contact with someone else’s blood may be harmful to your health.
- If using any type of detergent, please do not clean around children and pets.
- Before you try to clean your carpet using any type of substance, you need to test it first. Apply a small amount of the detergent to a hidden patch of carpet and leave it to sit for a while. If it comes off and doesn’t stain, you can proceed.
- If you will be using detergent, you will need to air out the room properly. We recommend opening the window right before you start cleaning.
- Silk and wool carpets are extremely easy to damage. Be extra careful when trying to clean those.
- Ammonia cannot be used on wool carpets, and hydrogen peroxide should not be used on dark-colored carpets.
4 easy methods to remove blood stains from your carpet
When attempting to clean blood from the carpet, it’s important to make the distinction between fresh blood and dried blood. We provide methods for getting rid of both. In general, it’s better to act fast rather than let it dry, but with a little patience, both types are entirely possible to get rid of.
Remember our safety tips and get to work – with some patience, you will clean your carpet using things found in your home!
Method #1: Using cold water
Time: >20 minutes
Required items: white cloth or paper towels, spray bottle, cold water
This method is recommended for fresh blood and may not be as effective on dried blood.
- Blot the stain with a clean white cloth or paper towel. If the stain you are dealing with is large, start at the edges and work your way to the center. This keeps the blood from spreading.
- Do not rub or scrape at the stain, as you will only push it further into the fibers of your carpet.
- Spray the stain with cold water. It’s crucial that the water is cold and not warm. That could actually set the stain permanently. Also, don’t use too much water – the stain should be damp and not soaked.
- Leave it to sit for about 10 minutes.
- Wet the stain again and keep blotting in an up and down motion. Use a clean cloth to absorb the moisture, then wet the affected area again.
- You will need to repeat these actions several times. If they don’t help, proceed to the next method.
Method #2: Using a salt paste to remove blood stains
Time: >30 minutes
Required items: salt, cold water, clean cloth or paper towels, liquid dish soap, spray bottle,
This method is an optional continuation of method #1 and it is recommended for fresh blood stains.
- Mix salt in a small bowl with cold water until you create a thin paste.
- Pour some of the paste over the stain and leave it to sit for 10 minutes.
- Blot again with a clean cloth or a towel. If you see residue on the towel but the stain remains, repeat steps 8-9.
- Wet the stain again with diluted liquid dish soap (stir 1-2 teaspoons of dish soap into 1 cup of cold water). Soak a white cloth in the solution and apply it to the stain.
- Rinse by spraying plain cold water, then blot dry.
- If you can turn on a fan or a blow dryer to speed up the drying process. If you have neither, place a few paper towels over the stain and weigh them down with something heavy. Leave to dry.
- As soon as the carpet is dry, vacuum thoroughly.
- If the stain remains, it is time to move on to methods that cover dried blood removal.
Method #3: Using ammonia to remove blood stains
Time: >20 minutes
Required items: ammonia, cold water, spray bottle, clean cloth or paper towels, a blunt kitchen knife
Ammonia is strong and effective at removing blood stains. Keep your windows open, and be careful not to inhale fumes. Do not use this method on a woolen carpet.
- Begin by mixing two tablespoons of ammonia with a glass of cold water.
- Pour the solution into your spray bottle. Perform a test on a small, hidden patch of carpet and wait for it to dry.
- Spray the stained area generously, but don’t let it soak through.
- Leave it to sit for 5 minutes.
- Using a clean cloth or a paper towel, blot the spot.
- If the stain is not gone, you can try to scrape it off using a blunt kitchen knife, or proceed to our next method.
Method #4: Using hydrogen peroxide & more
Time: >1 hour
Required items: dull kitchen knife, cold water, unflavored meat tenderizer (it has to be unflavored), clean cloth and paper towels, liquid dish soap, 3% hydrogen peroxide, hair shampoo, vacuum cleaner. Optional: ammonia, room temperature water, clean cloth or paper towels, enzyme cleaner.
This is a very thorough method that should only be used on the most stubborn stains. It involves many steps, as well as the use of several detergents.
- Before you begin, read the following steps and test each one of them on a small area first. If anything stains, do not proceed.
- Next, scrape the stain with a dull knife. Be gentle so as not to damage your carpet.
- Mix unflavored meat tenderizer with an equal amount of cold water. Dab it lightly onto the stain. It will break down proteins in the blood, which will, in turn, make it easier to clean.
- Leave it to sit for 30 minutes.
- Blot with a clean towel and rinse off with water & a drop of liquid dish soap.
- Wet the carpet with 3% hydrogen peroxide. Leave it to dry in a well-lit room.
- Soak the stain once again using hair shampoo. Mix two teaspoons of shampoo or liquid dish soap in 1 cup of cold water. Spray it on the carpet and let sit for five minutes.
- Blot the shampoo dry.
- Optional for difficult stains: mix 1 tablespoon household ammonia in 1 cup of room temperature water. Spray the stain. Watch out for fumes.
- Leave it to sit for five more minutes, then blot dry, rinse with cold water, and blot dry again.
- Optional for difficult stains: use an enzyme cleaner. If you don’t know where to get one, they are often sold as pet urine removers and can be found in pet stores. Apply according to the label.
- Dry the carpet. Keep your windows wide open for good airflow.
- Vacuum the carpet thoroughly.
The methods listed above are almost certain to get rid of blood from your carpet. The last method especially is extremely thorough, and as such, it is bound to be of help.
It’s hard to prevent bloodstains on the carpet, as they happen during our regular daily lives. The key to never getting stuck with a stain is to act as quickly as possible. Fresh blood can be cleaned with cold water alone, but once it dries, the stain may set and become near-permanent.
Don’t rub too hard and don’t use a circular motion – you may damage your carpet. Instead, use up and down motions and simply take your time with it. If all else fails, please consult a dry cleaner. Some carpets have delicate fabrics and may be easier to damage.
Lastly, we recommend purchasing an enzyme cleaner and keeping it at home. It’s helpful for removing all sorts of stains and odors. If you don’t have one yet, pick one up and keep it for emergencies.
Be gentle, but patient. With a little time and hard work, your carpet will be back to normal, and you will be glad to be rid of the stains.