Most household spills and stains can be removed using this easy method. For best results, always clean up spots and spills immediately. Locate your stain on the chart below, and follow the appropriate cleaning steps until the stain is removed.

Water-Based Stains – Alcohol, Beer, Blood, Candy, Catsup, Chocolate, Chocolate milk, Clay, Cola, Cologne, Cranberry juice, Food stains (general), Fruit juice, Furniture polish (water based), Grape juice, Graphite, Gravy, Ice cream, Jelly, Latex paint, Liquor, Milk, Soft drinks, Soil spots, Syrup, Tomato juice, Vomit, Water, Water colors, Whisky, Wine

For these stains, start with Step 1. If the stain remains, proceed to Steps 2 and 3.

Special Water-Based Stains – Coffee, Tea, Urine

For these stains, start with Step 1. If stain remains, proceed with Step 3. Omit Step 2.

Greasy, Oil-Based Stains – Butter, Calamine lotion, Cooking oil, Cosmetics, Crayon, Felt tip marker, Furniture dye, Furniture polish (oil-based), Glue*, Grease (black), Gum*, Hand cream, Ink, Lipstick, Margarine, Mascara, Mayonnaise, Nail polish, Oil, Oil paint, Ointment, Rouge, Salad dressing, Tar, Varnish, Wax*

*Freeze and remove solid materials before using dry cleaning fluid.

For these stains, use dry cleaning fluid (such as Carbona or Energine.)
Follow directions on package. If stain remains, proceed with the 1-2-3 cleaning method.


  • Use a spoon or dull knife to remove solid materials.
  • For large stains, work from the outside of stain to the center to prevent spreading.
  • Blot up liquid spills with a white towel or paper towel.
  • Mix a solution of 1 teaspoon or mil, non-bleaching laundry detergent with 2 cups of water. Stir gently.
  • Apply detergent solution directly to a white cloth. Dampen the carpet fibers in the stained area with the cloth. Avoid saturating the carpet.
  • Wipe gently. Turn cloth frequently. Never rub, scrub or use a brush. This may damage carpet fibers.
  • If necessary, use your fingertips to work the solution of the base of the stain.
  • Wet the stained carpet fibers with clear, lukewarm water to rinse.
  • Cover the spot with an absorbent white towel and apply pressure to blot.
  • Repeat the rinsing and blotting procedures until you are sure all traces of the detergent have been removed.
  • If the stain is gone, place white paper towels over the spot, and weight towels down with a heavy, color-fast object, such as a weighted plastic wastebasket.
  • Change paper towels until carpet dries.
  • If the stain remains, proceed to Step 2. (For coffee, tea or urine, skip Step 2 and proceed to Step 3.)


  • Mix 1 tablespoon of non-bleaching, non-sudsing household ammonia with 1 cup of lukewarm water.
  • Do not use on coffee, tea or urine stains. Always follow with the vinegar/water solution from Step 3 to neutralize the ammonia.
  • Apply ammonia solution, rinse and blot as outlined in Step 1.
  • Do not dry with paper towels. Proceed to Step 3 to neutralize the ammonia solution.


  • Mix equal parts of white vinegar and water.
  • Apply vinegar solution, rinse and blot as outlined in Step 1.
  • If this process does not remove the stain, consult a professional carpet cleaner or call the Scotchgard Service Center for further assistance.