Be The MacGyver of Stain Removal

Published on Oct 15, 2018

stain treatment hacks

MacGyver was well known for his quick thinking, chemical knowledge and creative problem-solving.

MacGyver was all about using common objects around him, and his trusty swiss army knife, to disable bombs, free hostages and save the world.

With the kids home a lot more, you’re probably finding a lot more stains appearing on the carpet and lounge. Here’s our tips to become the MacGyver of stain removal. Armed with the right tools and products, you’ll be able to get most stains out in a jiffy.


The MacGyver Guide to Stain Removal Success

The first rule: Always remove as much of the spill/stain as possible, taking care not to spread it. If the spill is solid, use a butter knife or spoon and scrape up the excess. For liquid spills, place an absorbent towel on the spill with gentle downward pressure to soak up as much as possible. This will stop the stain from spreading.


What You'll need

With the below products tucked away in your cupboards, you can treat most stains before they become permanent. This is what you need.

  • neutral dishwashing detergent

  • rubbing alcohol, such as Isocol

  • lots of absorbent towels (old beach towels or bath towels work well)

  • ammonia
  • Electro 3 stain remover

  • a 500 ml spray bottle


How to Clean Fat/Sugar Stains Such as Milk and Beer

spilled milk on carpet

If the stain contains a lot of fat or sugar, such as milk, chocolate or beer, after removing the excess:

  1. Sponge the area with a little dishwashing detergent in warm water then blot dry.

  2. Spray the area with Electro 3 Spot and Stain Remover, wipe one way with a towel then back the other.

  3. If you don’t have Electro 3, mix one tablespoon of ammonia with one cup of water (not suitable for wool carpet). Pour the mix into a spray bottle and mist onto the stain. Blot gently with an absorbent cloth. Rinse thoroughly and blot dry again.


How to Clean Oily Stains Such as Grease and Makeup

make up stain on carpet

Oily stains require a solvent to dissolve the stain. Rubbing alcohol such as Isocol is a safe and effective solvent and can be purchased at any chemist and most supermarkets. I've found it to be really handy around the home.

  1. Place rubbing alcohol onto a clean, colourfast cloth and blot the stain, rolling the cloth over the stain. Do not rub back and forth or in a circular motion as it will only spread the stain. Repeat until there’s no further transfer of colour from the stain to the cloth.

  2. For wool carpets, mix a quarter tablespoon of dishwashing detergent with one cup of warm water and spray onto the stain. Lightly agitate then blot dry. For non-wool carpet, mix one tablespoon of ammonia with the dishwashing detergent and warm water.

  3. Rinse the area with clean water and blot dry with a towel, using downward pressure.

  4. If a stain remains, spray with Electro 3 Spot and Stain Remover, wiping in one direction, then re-apply and wipe 90 degrees to the previous direction.


How to Clean Tannin Stains Such as Red Wine, Tea and Coffee

red wine spill on carpet

These stains require an acid to treat and we recommend white vinegar. It’s the safest option and is really effective on coffee, tea, red-wine and rust stains. After you’ve blotted the excess, follow the below steps:

  1. If the stain is fresh, sponge it with lukewarm water then blot dry, placing downward pressure on an absorbent towel.

  2. Mix 75ml of white vinegar with 150ml of water in a spray bottle and apply to the stain in a mist. Blot with a clean cloth or paper towel. Continue until there is no further colour transfer to the cloth. Rinse with cold water and blot dry.

  3. If the stain remains, use Electro 3 Spot and Stain Remover. If you don’t have it, use a dash of dishwashing detergent in warm water. Rinse and blot dry.

  4. For a rust stain, apply lemon juice to the stain and blot before trying the above steps.


How to Remove Ink and Texta Stains

ink stain on carpet

Unfortunately, the enemy can sometimes be your own flesh and blood - if your beloved child has used a washable texta to make their mark on the carpet, we recommend Electro 3 Spot and Stain Remover or warm water with a little dishwashing detergent.

  1. Blot the stain with rubbing alcohol, rolling your finger over the stain.

  2. When there’s no further colour transfer, use Electro 3 Spot and Stain Remover.


You don’t need to be a scientific genius or badass super spy to make light work of removing stains from your home.

Stains can be frustrating and costly but you can take back control.

Just remember that this article is a rough guide to stain removal. Do some further research before treating stains yourself. If you’re unable to remove the stain or require further advice on a stain you've encountered (or made yourself), visit our website or call Electrodry on 13 27 13.

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