How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet: 9 Methods to Try Right Now

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Stains on the carpet are a huge nuisance anyway, but splattered blood is difficult to remove from practically every fabric out there. It goes without saying that getting it off your favorite rug isn’t going to be a walk in the park. Fortunately for those eager to learn how to remove bloodstains from carpet — there are a whopping 9 methods to try out!

You’ll soon see that it’s not always about what kind of carpet you have but how old the stain is. The freshest ones are the easiest to obliterate, and you’d do well to start removing them as soon as you spot them.

Still, there’s no need to despair even if some stains have been left for a while. There’s stuff you probably already have at home that you can make use of!

But let’s get one thing straight first — why does blood love sticking to carpets so much?

Why Is Blood So Tricky to Remove Anyway?

Before learning how to remove bloodstains from carpet, you do need to find out more about the enemy itself. These aren’t your run-of-the-mill stains that can be removed with just a few wipes of a cloth. Once the stains are set, they won’t be so easy to budge!

But why do bloodstains cause such a headache to carpeting enthusiasts all over the globe?

Well, as it turns out, not every bloodstain out there will make you pull your own hair. Provided that it’s a fresh stain, you could actually remove it with some cold water. If you react fast, it ought to be gone in mere seconds.

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However, how many of you have noticed bloodstains a little too late? Since blood can start pouring out of you even if you’ve just got a small cut, stains are somewhat inevitable, not only on carpets but on other fabrics too.

And that’s where the main issue is — dry bloodstains are challenging to remove and may require the use of various chemicals to lighten them. That’s all thanks to the red and white pigmented cells found in the blood, as well as hemoglobin.

The cells mix with ionized plasma proteins, which allows them to stick to different surfaces, in this case, carpets. Hemoglobin, on the other hand, acts as a binder when it comes in contact with oxygen.

In essence, when exposed to air, the water in the blood will evaporate, causing it to bind to the surface like glue. The result? You are now dealing with sticky set-in blotches and have to opt for more efficient methods!

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet: Top 9 Methods to Try

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Fortunately, science (and housewives!) have gone the extra mile to figure out a few mixtures that ought to help lift the blotches, even if they’ve already set. Here’s how to remove bloodstains from carpet with water, chemicals, and your own two hands!

1. Using Cold Water

Those wondering how to remove bloodstains from carpet when they’re still fresh can rejoice — cold water is all you really need. Since the stains haven’t set into the fibers yet, simply applying a generous amount of cold water should take them off.

Still, to make the whole process a bit quicker and more effective, you may want to get a wet-vac too and even a fan. These aren’t a must by no means — it’s recommended to use them if you’re in a bit of a hurry and need express results.

Keep in mind that when you see bloodstains, your first thought may be to dip a cloth into some hot water or pour the water directly over the stain. No matter how annoyed you are at that moment, DON’T use hot water at all. Bloodstains are protein stains, so you’ll only “cook” them in that case and make them a pain to remove later on.

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Cold Water

  1. Grab a spray bottle and fill it with cold water. If you don’t have a bottle, you can also use a cloth.
  1. Apply the water generously and make sure the stain is saturated. If you’re dealing with a larger stain, try to spray (or dap the cloth) from outside in, not in the center of the stain. That should help you avoid spreading it around.

If you have wooden floors beneath the carpet, it’s best to move it onto an area that water cannot damage. Alternatively, you can place something absorbent underneath the carpet while you’re treating it (towels, for instance).

  1. It’s time to suck out all the moisture, and the best option, in that case, is to use a wet-vac. If you don’t have one, however, you can use a dry cloth instead. Keep blotting until the carpet feels drier to touch.

Another option here is to use a fan to dry the (now removed) stain faster. Point it directly toward the carpet and wait until there’s no more moisture.

  1. Get rid of any blood residue by vacuuming the carpet thoroughly.

In case the stain is still there, keep going through the same steps until you get it off completely.

2. Using Salt Paste

Now, salt paste bloodstain removal is one method that may not work so well on every carpet out there. In general, it’s best used on fresh stains — fresh as in the blood was spilled about 15 minutes ago.

Cold water should do the trick if the stain is fresh, but it doesn’t hurt to add some salt to up your chances. Keep in mind, though, that timing is of the essence. If the stain is already semi-dry, the salt paste may not work.

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Salt Paste

  1. Mix cold water and salt in a bowl. Make sure the mixture has a paste-like consistency.
  1. Spread the paste all over the stain, covering it completely. Leave it to dry for about five minutes (or longer if you have the time to wait).
  1. Blot the area with a clean towel or cloth. Once it’s all dry and the stain is no longer visible, vacuum to remove any salt residue.

3. Using Potato Starch

The number of methods you could use to remove blood from carpet sometimes depends on what you have in your cupboards. And luckily, if potato starch is one such compound, you could put it to good use and eliminate any bloodstains you encounter.

The good news here is that you can use this method for both fresh and dry bloodstains. In case the blood is fresh, you should use some dry towels to absorb it as much as possible first.

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One of the best options for a dry-to-touch stain is to use a mixture of dishwashing liquid and water. To make the process all the more effective, you can get a soft brush too or a toothbrush to break up the stain a bit.

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Dishwashing Liquid

You can start off by going over the stain with a soft brush to loosen it up a bit. Alternatively, you can hydrate the stain first and then use an old toothbrush to scrub it away.

  1. Mix in one tablespoon of liquid dish soap (scent-free) into two cups of water. Adjust the measurements depending on how large the stain is.
  1. Get a white cloth, as it will be easier to see how much of the blood has gone off. Soak it into the mixture and gently sponge the liquid onto the stain.
  1. Keep sponging the stain until it disappears. If you haven’t scrubbed it with a soft brush, you can now use a toothbrush to try to lift it off the carpet. By (very) gently scrubbing the stain, you’ll work the solution deeper into the carpet.
  1. Once you’re done, use a wet cloth and some cold water to “rinse” the stain. If you’ve managed to remove it, blot the area until fully dry. Repeat the whole process if you can still see the stain.

2.1. Laundry Detergent May Work Too

In case you don’t have any dishwashing liquid on hand, there’s always the option of using laundry detergent instead. Though you probably won’t be able to find an unscented one, the results should be more or less the same, and the stain should disappear quickly.

The method is the same, although it’s best to use the toothbrush, later on, to work the detergent into the carpet fibers better. Keep scrubbing gently until the stain lightens, and then simply rinse and dry the area.

5. Using Baking Soda

The main problem with blood is that it clots and sticks to the carpet fibers. If the stain is old, baking soda may help you out, though. This compound acts as a protein separator, meaning that it will loosen up the stain and then eradicate it.

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Baking Soda Paste

  1. Make baking soda paste by combining some of the powder with water. It shouldn’t be too liquidy as you’ll have to spread it over the stain.
  1. Once the paste is ready, get some gloves and spread it all over the blood-stained area. Make sure to cover it entirely, but try to be gentle — there’s no need to rub it in.
  1. For the best results, you should leave the mixture on the carpet overnight. However, if you’re in a bit of a hurry, wait one hour before blotting it away. Again, you shouldn’t scrub or rub. Just keep blotting with a cotton rag to remove the mixture.
  1. Once you’ve blotted most of it away, add some water (a tiny bit!) and blot some more. Try to remove as much as possible before leaving it to dry.
  1. Vacuum the remainder once the area is dry.

4.1. Add Some Vinegar If the Stain Doesn’t Budge

Baking soda by itself should help you lift the stain and disinfect the area. However, if you want to go a step further, you could opt for a vinegar mixture instead. Here’s what you’ll have to do:

  1. Get a spray bottle and mix together some baking soda, vinegar, and cold water.
  1. Locate the stain and start spraying the mixture from the outside, making sure the stain doesn’t “run” and spread all over the carpet. Wait until the carpet absorbs the solution.
  1. Grab an old toothbrush and work the stain in. There’s no need to be rough — some gentle scrubbing should do the trick.
  1. Get a dry cloth or paper towel and blot the area to dry it. Alternatively, you can suck out the moisture with a wet-vac. Repeat if you can still see the stain.

6. Using Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is a fantastic stain remover, not to mention that many people use it to clean their home as well. This magnificent compound removes grass, chocolate, and even armpit stains. You can even use it to sanitize your toilet.

What matters most today is that it’s also possible to use hydrogen peroxide to remove bloodstains from your favorite rug or carpet. However, the method isn’t as safe as some of the other ones mentioned here.

Since it may bleach your carpet a bit, it’s best to first try this method on a small, inconspicuous part of your carpet before dealing with the stain. If the mixture discolors the carpet, you should just opt for another method.

Remember to use 3% hydrogen peroxide. If you have a higher percentage, dilute it with some water first to avoid damaging the carpet.

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Hydrogen Peroxide

  1. Pour some hydrogen peroxide directly onto the stain. There’s no need to saturate it; instead, use an eyedropper to apply just enough of the substance onto the stain without compromising the rest of the carpet.
  1. The mixture will fizz and bubble once you apply it. Don’t be alarmed — this is supposed to happen! Once you’ve poured it, get some dry towels and place a couple of them on top of the stain.
  1. You’ll need something heavy to place over the stain so that the mixture goes into it. Some books (like a large encyclopedia or a dictionary) would be a good choice. Leave the books to sit on the towels for about five minutes or longer (depending on how much time you’ve got).
  1. Once some time has passed, remove the books and the towels. Get a dry cloth and blot the area until the stain is no longer visible.

7. Using OxiClean

If you’re not so eager to make your own mixtures, getting your hands on some OxiClean should help obliterate any bloodstains found on your carpet. Granted, the sooner you spot them, the better — it’s easier to remove them if they’re fresh or at least a bit dry to touch.

OxiClean is a versatile stain remover that deals with bloodstains on pretty much any fabric imaginable, including clothes and carpets. Still, you ought to be careful with it — use too much, and your carpet may get damaged (if the material is too sensitive).

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With OxiClean

  1. Make the mixture by following the instructions on the packaging. You have to dissolve OxiClean in warm-ish water. If the stain is fresh, try treating it with cold water first.
  1. Saturate the stain with the mixture and let it sit for about a minute up to five minutes. Don’t let it dry, though, and don’t pour too much!
  1. Once five minutes have gone by, get a white cloth, and press down onto the stain, blotting the excess moisture away. Repeat the process if the stain is still there.
  1. Once the stain is gone, rinse the area with some fresh water and blot again, using a dry white cloth or towel. Vacuum to remove any residue.

If there are some other stains you want to remove or want to see OxiClean in action before going with this method, check out the video below.

8. Using Water and Ammonia

You probably already know that ammonia is an incredible cleaning agent you can use all over the house. Got some grimy tubs to take care of? How about your countertops — are they smeared with all sorts of cooking stains? Ammonia can deal with all of those in no time at all!

And that’s precisely why you can use it to remove tough bloodstains from your carpets. In case you’ve left the stains to cook for a while and tried a bunch of methods already, this one ought to obliterate them.

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Ammonia

  1. This time, you’ll use some warm water. Mix one glass of it with two tablespoons of ammonia. Try to use a spray bottle for easier application.
  1. Saturate the stain with the mixture and let it sit for a while. About five minutes should do the trick, but you can leave it on for longer.
  1. Once some time has passed, blot the stain until it lifts completely. As always, repeat the steps if the stain is still visible.

In case you’re one of those people who swear bleach can deal with any type of grime out there, remember that you should never mix ammonia with chlorine bleach. The mix of these two compounds may result in dangerous fumes that will jeopardize the health of the whole household.

Also, don’t use ammonia on wool carpets and rugs. In fact, opt for this method only if none of the other ones have helped you out. Even if the carpet isn’t real wool, ammonia can still degrade carpet fibers and cause significant damage to synthetic materials.

9. Using Meat Tenderizer

If you’re a big fan of meat, it’s likely that you have some meat tenderizer in one of your kitchen cupboards. In that case, you’re in luck — this substance also contains some protein-destroying enzymes that ought to remove bloodstains in mere minutes!

The process is relatively simple, as you’ll soon see. Just remember not to use a flavored kind of tenderizer, as it might stain the carpet further.

Also, don’t use this method on silk or wool carpets. There’s animal protein in those, so you’d cause further damage!

How to Remove Bloodstains From Carpet With Meat Tenderizer

* For tough, old stains, you can use a dull knife to scrape the dried blood off a bit first. This isn’t recommended for valuable carpets, though.

  1. Mix equal parts of cold water and tenderizer. Once the mixture is homogeneous, gently dab it onto the carpet stain.
  1. With the stain fully saturated, you should let the mixture work its magic. Wait for about 15 to 30 minutes for it to remove the stain.
  1. Blot the area to remove the mixture. Use a clean towel for this part and check to see if the stain is coming off.
  1. Mix some dishwashing detergent (a drop will do) with cold water and use the mixture to rinse the carpet. Blot with a new towel to dry the area thoroughly.

Bonus Idea: Use an Enzyme-Based Cleaner

Organic stains, such as those left by blood, are no match for enzyme-based cleaners. If you own pets, you probably already have one of these at home.

Rather effective at removing urine stains (and smells!), enzymatic cleaners can also break down the chemicals found in the blood into smaller, soluble chunks. However, for the cleaner to be effective, it ought to contain protease, the specific enzyme that helps lift protein-based stains from clothing, carpets, upholstery, etc.

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The cleaning method here varies, as it depends on the type of enzymatic cleaner you’re using. In general, though, you’ll have to rinse the stain with some water first and blot it. Then, you’ll spray the cleaner and let it sit for some time (about 15 minutes — depends on the strength). The final step is to blot the area until it’s all dry.

Final Thoughts

And there you go— if you’ve been wondering how to remove bloodstains from carpet, now you’re sure to accomplish your goal and finally obliterate spots and blotches. Though it’s better to treat fresh stains, it’s evident that even baked-in ones can be eliminated with a bit of elbow grease.

Just remember not to rub too hard (or at all) and always take into account the carpet material. Don’t let hemoglobin beat you — make your carpet spotless once more!