Cleaning pet stains: avoid alkaline-based products
Thomas started Carpet Pros 15 years ago and says he takes a customer driven approach to every job. “My passion is providing the most outstanding experience possible for each and every client — that’s why we are in business,” Thomas says.
How do I get rid of pet stains and odor in my upholstery?
Darrell Thomas: "There's a difference between cleaning the stain and treating the odor. Just cleaning the spots may not remove any associated bacteria or the odor. We use an enzyme solution to eliminate any unhealthy odor-causing bacteria.
"For heavy urine contamination, I recommend a three-layer odor treatment, which involves treating the backing of the carpet, replacing the padding, and treating the subfloor. This treatment is absolutely guaranteed to eliminate all odors as well as any associated bacteria.
"Being able to get to the stain quickly is very important and using the correct cleaning chemistry is vital. Most household stains require an alkaline based cleaning solution, but pet issues are the opposite, they require an acid-based product.
"Most severe pet messes are tough to remove because they get into the carpet padding. We solve this issue by using an extraction system that can wash through the carpet, as well as through the padding, right down to the subfloor. This way, we can eliminate 100 percent of the mess without the additional expense of pulling the carpet up, which saves the client money.
"Since upholstery is more likely to be made of natural fibers, such as cotton or silks, it's extremely vulnerable to permanent stains. Urine can cause staining issues such as yellowing, dye loss, color bleeding or fading, all of which are difficult, if not impossible, to correct.
"Some synthetic upholstery can be safely cleaned at home. However, other types can be challenging to safely clean without the proper equipment and knowledge. If not properly cleaned, some types of upholstery can develop cellulose browning - cotton is particularly vulnerable.
"If pet stains are not properly cleaned, treated and eliminated, the bacteria will continue to grow until they eat the backing materials, ruining the carpet or fabric. The bacteria will never go away on its own and will only get worse, creating an unhealthy home environment.
"The best cleaning method for upholstery is mainly dictated by the type of fabric. There's no one method for cleaning upholstery. Make sure you use a professional cleaning firm that offers multiple cleaning processes based on the type of fabric that you own. Upholstery is expensive and the cleaning is usually best left to the pros."