As fun as it might be to play with Silly Putty and homemade slime if you aren’t careful your floor and carpet can end up looking like the set of a ‘90s Nickelodeon show.
When it’s time to clean up, you’ll need to know how to get slime out of a carpet. We’ve got you covered with a few methods you can use to get your carpet looking nice and clean again.
You can either take a DIY approach or a professional cleaning approach, but we’d advocate trying to use simple household materials if possible.
What is Slime?
Although it may seem like we’re referring to the messy children’s toy compound, these cleaning methods can likely work for any semi-gelatinous sticky mess that ends up on your carpet.
However, the slime you’re likely wanting to know about is a compound made out of Elmer’s glue, borax, food coloring, and water at home. It was made popular by Nickelodeon, who only recently released information about what was in it. Suffice to say; the homemade slime is easier to deal with.
Cleaning Up Large ClumpsIf you have large clumps of slime in your carpet, the first thing to do is scoop as much of it up as possible. Use a spoon and gently begin scraping at the bottom of the slime, spooning into a separate container for disposal. If you’re not squeamish, you can also pick it up with your hands if the spoon isn’t dextrous enough to do the job.
Even after you pick up the bulk of the slime from your carpet, you’re still going to have to get the rest of it up. Here’s where you can start using some of those household cleaning and cooking products.
First, pour some white vinegar mixed with water over the spot of leftover slime. Allow it to soak into your carpet for about five minutes. This should give the vinegar enough time to start a chemical reaction and loosen the slime from the carpet fibers. Don’t use undiluted vinegar because it could bleach a non-colorfast carpet.
Next, use an old toothbrush or a scrub brush and vigorously scrub at the carpet until all the slime comes up. You may have to reapply the water/vinegar solution during this process if the carpet has a lot of foot traffic; the slime may have been ground more firmly into the carpet. If not, then one session of scrubbing should get all of it out.
Next, you should pour some water on the stain and allow the water to soak in. Then, blot it up with a paper towel or towels. Repeat the process as needed. The reason for the last step is to prevent a vinegar odor from forming.
Alternatives to Vinegar
You may not have white vinegar on hand. If this is the case, don’t worry; odds are you have another chemical that will do just as well. Try one of the following substitutes:
- Dish detergent
- Laundry detergent
- Nail polish remover
Generally, you only need a tablespoonful or so dissolved in a cup of water. As with all stain removers, test the effect on a secluded corner of the carpet.Strong chemicals can damage carpet fibers. You can also use baking soda with vinegar to create a foaming effect that draws leftover slime to the surface. This way you can remove it more easily.
Do not combine chemicals without knowing the kind of reaction they will produce. Things that are safe on their own can create deadly vapors when combined. Ammonia, for example,should never be mixed with bleach.
You’re safe using water as a solvent. With its neutral pH, it makes both acids and alkalis milder and less likely to damage your carpet in the process of cleaning it.
If you’re desperate or don’t want to bother with cleaning, you can hire a professional service. Carpet cleaners usually charge you by the square foot and bring heavy cleaning equipment, so it’s best to only hire a carpet cleaning service if you were already planning to do so anyway, not to handle a specific stain. They can cost hundreds of dollars, so it’s probably better to clean it yourself.
If you do hire a professional, your carpet will look like new afterward, but it should be your last resort.
You might find that buying a home carpet cleaner will be a better investment if this sort of thing happens often. It is also a great way of prolonging the life of the carpet with regular cleaning. Prices usually range from $100 to $400 depending on the power of the carpet cleaning machine, and the size.
Slime might look difficult to remove from a carpet, but just like most stains, you can handle it. It takes effort, time, and the right supplies.