How I cleaned charcoal dog vomit off my white carpet

My husband and I had cooked steaks over a wood fire on the patio one evening for dinner.  We often do this as the flavor of steaks, chicken and burgers cooked this way, just can't be beat.  The next day when the dogs were let out to do their business outside, they took the opportunity to sniff out the wonderful smells left around the fire pit. 

While they were poking around, one of the dogs had (unknowingly to me) ate a bit of the wood that had burned itself out previously and was little more than a piece of charcoal, but I image smelled pretty good from the juices that had dripped on it from the meat.  I didn't know this until I had left the house to run an errand and returned later to find a spot of dog vomit on the carpet... black, smeary, charcoal. 

If you've ever used charcoal for drawing, or cooked with charcoal, or cooked with a wood fire and dealt with moving the burned logs or ashes, you know charcoal smears something awful and it so very difficult to get off!  Do NOT rub it! 

I paused, thought about the situation a bit, and realized my first step was to get the liquid portion of the dog vomit up, as it was still quite 'wet' when I found it.

I grabbed a box of regular old corn starch from the pantry and sprinkled it on to soak up the liquid.

As tempting as it is to touch it, pat it or do something with it.  Don't.  You will smear it into the carpet and make it worse.

After an hour or two I checked to see how dry the spot was.  It was fairly dry on top so I CAREFULLY used a vacuum attachment to suck up the corn starch and have a look.

The underside was still damp of course, but I got a good look at the stain.  I added more corn starch and use my finger tips to gentle 'wiggle' the corn starch deeper into the carpet fibers.  Then the waiting game begins again.

After about 3 hours I used a brush attachment from the vacuum to gently wiggle the corn starch deeper into the fibers to soak up any charcoal farther down.   Again, a little more corn starch and a couple more hours.

Finally, I turned the vacuum on and started to remove the corn starch (still using only the brush attachment).

MOST of the spot came out!!!  A little more sprinkled deep into the fibers, a little more brush action and vacuum and I had a mere shadow left on the carpet. (SEE BELOW)

And I had not even "cleaned" the spot at all at this point.  This was JUST using a sprinkle of corn starch and the vacuum.

The spot was a mere shadow after JUST corn starch and vacuum - this is BEFORE cleaning the spot!

The spot was down to merely a shadow, which I left like that for a couple more days.  By the time it was completely dry down to the fibers, and I had vacuumed a couple more times, the shadow faded even more.  I knew it was there and would look for it, but if you didn't know it was there, you didn't see it.

Because we planned to purchase a carpet cleaner anyway, and I had been 'looking' at them for a number of years, we decided now would be a good time to purchase one.  The next weekend we did indeed purchase one (we bought a BISSELL from Best Buy) and after a quick once-over to the carpet, the spot existed no more.

You might also be interested in;

BISSELL SpotClean Professional Portable Carpet Cleaner, 3624


This site is hosted by Blogger. You can check out their privacy terms on their site. The person that blogs on this site collects, stores and processes absolutely NO personal information.