Bleach on carpet – is it a stain?
Bleach on carpet is a real problem. Firstly, let me clear up a common misconception. Bleach does not stain carpet, instead, it removes the colour from the fibres. Bleach causes colour loss, whereas other substances stain by adding colour to the carpet.
We specialise in carpet stain removal, so while we can remove most stains, bleach spots, are not actually stains. This doesn’t mean we cannot fix colour loss, but it is not something we can fix using “stain removers”. We actually need to put the colour back, not remove colour caused by a stain.
How to restore bleached carpet
I have watched all sorts of YouTube Videos recommending strange ways to fix bleach on carpet – anything from vinegar and dish washing detergent, to painting the fibres! Do not try any of these recommendations! The best first step you can take is to call a professional carpet cleaner or carpet restoration specialist. Ultimately you will need someone who can redye the bleach spot and put the colour back into the fibres.
Professional Bleach Repair
A colour restoration specialist will, inspect the bleach damage to determine if bleach is till present. Then they will neutralise the bleach with a professional strength neutralising agent and rinse and extract the area thoroughly. Once the bleach has been removed, the technician will use a chart or even an App to determine what colours to mix to get a good dye match for your carpet. They will then apply the dye, rinse and extract excess water.
Is re dying the only option?
Generally re dying is the best option for repairing bleach spots, however sometimes a patch can be applied instead, depending on the location and size of the damage. Usually the carpet repairer cuts out the section of bleached carpet and replaces it with carpet which is left over from installation or cut from an inconspicuous area such as inside a wardrobe.
Who do I call?
This is a very important question! There are many, many carpet cleaners out there, so it can be confusing. Not all carpet cleaners can remove stains and very few can repair bleach spots. In fact carpet cleaning cannot repair this type of damage, only a trained and qualified carpet restorer or repairer can help you with this.
We recently completed a carpet colour restoration course here in Melbourne. Chris Howell from Colorful Carpets in the USA traveled to Australia for a series of training workshops and taught us how to repair bleach spots on carpet. We are currently completing our training and will soon be offering this service. In the meantime you can call us for a recommendation or simply search for a colour restoration professional.
Some final advice
Many household cleaning agents contain bleach, so be very mindful of this when attempting to clean your carpet or soft furnishings. Never use store bought cleaning sprays without first testing them on an inconspicuous area of carpet and waiting at least 24 hours to see the result. Better, still contact a professional carpet cleaning and restoration service for help and advice.