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Time is of the essence when your carpet, rug or upholstery becomes stained. Remember to BLOT - not rub - the stain and remove moisture from spills as quickly as possible.


Alcohol and soft drinks: Use a solution of 1 teaspoon liquid dish detergent, 1 quart of warm water and 1/4 teaspoon of white vinegar. Apply to the stain, rinse, then blot dry.


Coffee or tea: Using the detergent mix above, apply to stain, rinse and blot. If stain remains, use a commercial spot carpet cleaner.


Fat-based stains: For foods such as butter, margarine or gravy use a dry-solvent spot carpet cleaner.


Gum: Peel off what you can, then put ice-cubes in a plastic bag and place it on the gum until the gum hardens. Scrape the gum off with a spoon or dull knife. Vacuum and use a dry-solvent spot cleaner if needed.


Paint: For acrylic and latex paint - while the stain is still wet, spot-clean with the detergent solution. If color remains, dab with rubbing alcohol. For oil-base paint- sponge with odorless mineral spirits, being careful not to soak through to the backing.


Tomato sauce: sponge with cool water, dab with detergent solution or a citrus-oxygen cleaner. Rinse with a solution of 1 cup white vinegar and 2 cups of water and blot until dry.


Urine, feces and vomit: Apply detergent solution or a citrus-oxygen cleaner, rinse and blot until dry.


Melted wax: Use the same treatment as gum, hardening it with ice-cubes in a plastic bag and scraping. Dampen a clean white cloth or cotton ball with rubbing alcohol and blot to remove any remaining wax.


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