We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t spill something at home every once in a while. It doesn’t stop it being annoying though. Especially as some spills are harder to clean up than others. That’s where we’re here to help. We’ve put together a list of the 5 most common household spills and the secret to cleaning them up.
1. Red wine
It’s good for our hearts (apparently), it’s good for our soul (sometimes) but it’s definitely not good for our carpets. Especially light-coloured ones. Have no fear though because it is actually possible to clean it up:
First and foremost, act as quickly as you can. Preferably before the stain has dried.
If there’s broken glass, make sure your feet are covered. Use tongs or tweezers to pick it up safely. Don’t put it directly into the bin, wrap it in newspaper first, ensuring that no-one will get injured through the bin bag.
- Mix 4 cups of lukewarm water with ¼ teaspoon of dishwashing liquid. *
- Pour the homemade solution onto the stain.
- Using a sponge, and working from the outside in, blot until as much of the liquid is absorbed as possible.
- Finish by wiping the area with a damp cloth – always use lukewarm water.
*If you don’t have dishwashing liquid then cover the stain with salt, and use a cloth soaked in lukewarm water to scrub.
2. Cooking oil
Whether you were trying to impress with your best Gordon Ramsey impression, or channeling your inner Nigella for a sumptuous surprise for your loved one, spilling cooking oil is really going to flatten your sponge (do you like where we’re going here?). Here are some simple steps to follow to clean up the spill:
If there’s broken glass make sure you’re wearing enclosed shoes, don’t use your hands to pick it up if you can avoid it, and always dispose of it safely (see red wine spill).
Now, you need to soak up the oil first. This can be done using baking soda, flour, salt, sand, or even clean cat litter. Leave this for at least 15 mins.
After you’ve left it for a good amount of time, use a paper towel to wipe it up. Then, voila, you’ve cleaned up the oil spill.
In Australia we’re renowned for our love of coffee. But there’s no love for it when it’s out of your cup and on the floor. Quick simple action can avoid a nasty stain on your carpet or rug:
- Soak up as much of the coffee as you can, using paper towels. You could also use towels or tea towels but that will double your stain busting workload, as you’ll have to treat them afterwards.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of washing up liquid, 1 tablespoon of white vinegar with 2 cups of warm water.
- Use a clean, dry, cloth to blot the stain frequently with the mixture. One little bit at a time until the stain disappears.
4. Household paint
With all the DIY shows that go on, it’s no wonder we can get a little over zealous with the paint brush. Paint, however, is a little unforgiving when it gets spilt. Especially when it dries. If you’ve spilt oil-based paint you need to act as quickly as possible, as once it dries you’re in a lot of trouble:
You have a choice of 2 cleaners – turpentine or paint stripper. Both are harsh and strong-smelling so have to ability to ruin your carpet or floorboards. Proceed with caution and try to use a little as possible. The lesser of the 2 evils is turpentine or “turps”. We would suggest trying this first, and only moving to paint stripper if it doesn’t work.
5. Harsh chemical cleaners
It’s kind of ironic when you think about it – having to clean the very thing you’ve been using to clean your house. But it happens. And, like all spills, it’s important to act quickly:
- Put on the thickest pair of rubber gloves you have available.
- Cleaners are corrosive and the longer they’re left, the more corrosive they become. If you’ve spilt it on yourself, wash under running water immediately. Don’t use soap or moisturizer.
- Open all windows to allow the harsh chemical fumes to leave the air in the room.
- If you’re cleaning tiles, either use a mop and bucket, cloth, sponge or just a paper towel. The rubber gloves are especially important if you choose the last 3.
If the spill is on the carpet or rug, rinse it with cold water and then absorb with a cloth or tea towel.
Article provided by SpillPro