How to Clean a Fresh Milk Spill
No Tears Over Spilled Milk with These Cleaning Tips
Maybe crying over spilled milk is about more than just being sad about the fact that you have no milk to drink. Maybe some of that sadness is worry about the stain on the carpet. Have no fear, we have some simple ways to clean up those milk spills so you will not be crying over spilled milk.
Milk Can Be Difficult, But Why?
If you have ever left a bit of milk in a cereal bowl and let it sit on the counter or in the sink for a while you have probably noticed that the milk hardens and is more difficult to clean. This same thing will happen if milk is allowed to dry in the carpet. This is due to the proteins in milk. Protein hardens as it dries out and when it does its difficult to rehydrate. The dry proteins make it more difficult to scrub away.
How to Clean a Fresh Milk Spill
Start by soaking up as much of the liquid from the carpet as possible. Grab a few clean plain white rags/cloths or several plain white paper towels. Lay it over the spill and allow it to soak up as much of the milk out of the carpet as possible. If the cloth or towel is full and can’t hold any more liquid, grab a new cloth or towel and keep soaking up the milk until it no longer is coming out.
Now that the excess moisture is out of the carpet, it is time to tackle the remaining stain. Get some new plain white cloths or towels and some COLD water. Make sure you are using cold water not hot or warm water as it can make the proteins more difficult to work with. Take a cloth and dip it in the water then gently dab the milk stain. Be careful not to rub/scrub as this may push the stain further into the carpet. Use new clean areas of cloth and continue to dab with cold water until the stain is completely gone. If you have been dabbing and the stain is no longer progressively lifting move on to step three. If the stain has come out completely just using cold water grab a new dry towel and soak up as much water as possible.
If the cold water is no longer helping to remove the stain add a small amount of ammonia or laundry detergent to the water and start the dabbing process over again. Once the milk has been removed rinse the area with clean water and then soak up all of the excess liquid with a dry towel.
How to Clean Dry Milk Stains
To remove milk that has dried and now hardened, it will need to be softened. You can break down those crusty proteins by applying a wet compress to the stain. If just water is not working try adding some detergent or apply baking soda and vinegar. The fizz should help to break down the proteins. Sprinkle the baking soda over the stain first and slowly pour some vinegar over it and let it sit for a little bit.
Rinse out the softening agent with clean water. If there is still some milk remaining take a toothbrush and some more water and detergent and gently scrub at the stain. Make sure to use very gentle strokes. You do not want to fray the carpet fibers or push the stain further into the carpet.
Once the stain has lifted rinse out the detergent by blotting the area with a clean damp cloth making sure all of the soap is removed. Follow with a dry cloth to remove as much moisture as possible.
If the milk stain has been removed but a funky or moldy smell is left behind you can lift the odor from the carpet by using:
Baking Soda: simply sprinkle some baking soda over the stain and let it sit overnight to soak up the odor, then vacuum it up.
Bowl of Vinegar: place a bowl of vinegar next to the spill area to absorb the odors being careful that no one knocks it over. Leave the bowl overnight.
Powdered Detergent: sprinkle an enzyme-based powder detergent on the stain and let it absorb odors overnight then thoroughly vacuum.
If the milk stain will just not go away no matter what you try, consider calling a professional carpet cleaner to treat the stain and freshen your carpets.
For carpet cleaning in Arlington and surrounding areas make an appointment online or over the phone with All Kleen.