Reoccurring Carpet Stains
Carpet Cleaning Specialist – Have you ever seen stains disappear when you had your carpets professionally cleaned and then reappear once the carpet dried? This is called a recurring or reappearing stain, and it is different from other types of stains. This article explains how they happen and what, if anything, can be done about them.
Sometimes a spill on carpet will soak through into the backing of the carpet and perhaps into the carpet padding underneath, as well. Proper professional carpet cleaning thoroughly cleans the carpet’s surface only, not the backing or padding. While the stain may have been removed from the carpet, as damp carpets dry, the carpet fibers can act like a wick, absorbing and transporting stains from the carpet backing and/or padding to the surface of the carpet. This phenomenon is called “wicking” and is the cause of recurring stains.
Sometimes further cleaning achieves the desired results. Accelerating the drying process by setting up fans and cranking up the HVAC system can keep stains from wicking through to the surface. We may also try cleaning or treating the area with encapsulation products, which can retard or prevent the wicking process.
Although you can certainly check your carpet warranty to find out whether recurring stains are covered, it has been our experience that wicking stains are not included with stain guarantees. Many of them say, “No carpet is absolutely stain-proof.” The warranty specifically “excludes any residual stains or wicking that may occur,” with food, beverage, and other types of stains.
The best way to deal with recurring stains is to prevent them from happening in the first place. To learn more about the proper way to quickly and thoroughly clean up after spills, which can help prevent recurring stains, see our website for more articles.
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