If you act fast, you can completely blot out that bloodstain
We’ve all been there: an accidental cut or collision, and suddenly you have a drop of blood on your white carpet. You’ve got to act fast—within 10 or 15 minutes—to have the greatest chance of getting that stain completely out, returning your carpet to its once-pristine appearance.
Thankfully, there are several ways to remove blood from your carpet, and what you need may already be under your kitchen sink or in your laundry room.
How to Remove Blood From Carpet
Most methods to remove blood from your carpet are inexpensive—if you act fast. But if you don’t have the necessary supplies, the blood can dry and bind to the carpet, becoming embedded. This makes it much more difficult to get out. In this case, you’ll need to rent a carpet cleaner or hire a local carpet cleaner to tackle that stain for you.
If you choose to DIY, you’ll need to attack that spot of blood within 15 minutes of it hitting the carpet.
Pro Tip: No matter which of the following methods you choose, be sure to blot, never rub, the area—or you risk sending the bloodstain deeper into the carpet. Use a clean, preferably white rag or towel, and never walk on the area until it’s completely dry.
1. Water and Detergent
Brush or scrape the area to loosen the blood. Vacuum up the loosened particles and apply cold water. Blot with a clean white rag (never use paper towels because they can leave bits behind) until the stain fades or disappears.
If the stain is especially stubborn, apply a small amount of dish detergent, more cold water, and keep blotting. Then dry with a hairdryer set on cool. Be sure to blot up all of the detergent, as any left on your carpet can attract dirt.
2. Water and Ammonia
If the water and detergent didn’t go your way (or left a faded stain), try mixing water and ammonia.
Pro Tip: If you have wool carpet, skip this tip. Ammonia and other high alkaline solutions can damage the wool’s natural fibers.
Mix 8 ounces of warm or cool water with two tablespoons of ammonia in a spray bottle. Apply the solution to the stain and allow it to dry for at least five minutes. Blot the blood stain until it disappears. Repeat as necessary.
Coincidentally, water and ammonia also work great for removing hair dye from the carpet.
3. Baking Soda
Baking soda can separate the proteins in blood from the carpet fibers. Mix some together with water until you form a paste. Spread it over the bloodstain and leave it to sit for at least an hour.
Blot the stain with a clean rag until the blood lifts out. To remove any leftover baking soda, add a little water and blot again. Vacuum and you’re done!
4. Hydrogen Peroxide
Before you use this method, know that hydrogen peroxide might slightly bleach your carpet. If you have a darker carpet, you may want to try another method first—or a big piece of furniture to test an out-of-sight area.
If you have an eyedropper, use it to apply a small amount of hydrogen peroxide to the bloodstain. It may start to fizz, but don’t panic—that means it’s working! Put a couple of paper towels over the stain and place a heavy book on top of the paper towels. Again, don’t rub—just let everything sit for about 10 minutes.
Remove the books and paper towels and blot the area until the stain is gone. Repeat the process if necessary. If you notice the area has been discolored, mix one-part water and one-part vinegar, spray on the spot, and dry with a fan.
If all else fails, pour a bit of water in a large bowl and add salt until it becomes a paste. Apply the paste to the stain and let it sit for at least five minutes, but ideally longer. Blot up the paste without rubbing. Repeat if the stain isn’t completely gone.
Tips for Removing Blood From Carpet
Always use rubber gloves when cleaning up blood stains as there can be microbes in someone’s blood. Also, never use bleach, acetone, or nail polish to get the blood out of your carpet, or it might leave something worse than a stain.
If nothing has worked and there is still evidence of the blood on your carpet, consider consulting a professional carpet cleaner.
DIY vs. Hiring a Pro
If you hire a professional carpet cleaner to clean your carpet, you might pay anywhere from $120 and $230. Most cleaners charge by the square foot or offer flat rates by the room. Expect to pay $0.20 to $0.40 per square foot or $25 to $75 per room.