9 DIY Carpet Cleaner Options to Remove Odors and Stains

Updated June 9, 2022
Person Wearing Gloves Cleaning Stain Of Carpet

The time has come to clean your carpets. But the cost of carpet cleaner is starting to put a dent in your wallet. Create your own DIY carpet cleaner with simple ingredients in your pantry. Get recipes for homemade carpet cleaners for the entire rug and to spot clean specific stains.

Homemade Carpet Shampoo for Machines

When it comes to homemade carpet cleaning solutions for your steam cleaning machine, you have a few different options you can choose. These recipes will help you remove the stains and leave your carpet looking fresh and clean. As with any cleaning solution on your carpet, it's important to test it on a hidden area first to ensure it doesn't cause any issues.

DIY Carpet Cleaner Solution With OxiClean

When you have a patterned carpet or colored rug, you want to steer clear of any recipes with hydrogen peroxide or bleach because they can lighten the carpet. In this case, you can use OxiClean to get your carpet clean and deodorized. To get started, you need:

  • 2 tablespoons of detergent
  • 1 scoop of OxiClean
  • 1 teaspoon of fabric softener
  • Gallon of water

Now that you've got your ingredients, it's time to get started.

  1. Set a gallon of water to boil.
  2. Combine the detergent, OxiClean, and fabric softener.
  3. Gently add the boiling water to the mix. Adding slowly works to help it mix better.
  4. Stir with a wooden spoon until the OxiClean is completely dissolved.
  5. Allow to cool and add to the machine.

DIY Hydrogen Peroxide Carpet Shampoo

If you are looking to clean a white carpet, you can reach for a cleaner with hydrogen peroxide. This mixture will not only remove stains but help to brighten and soften your carpet. To create this DIY carpet cleaner, grab:

With your hydrogen peroxide ready to go, it's time to create your mixture.

  1. Add a gallon of water to a pot and heat it to nearly boiling.
  2. Put it in a container.
  3. Add the white vinegar, dish soap, fabric softener, and peroxide.
  4. Gently move the container back and forth to mix.
  5. Try to avoid creating bubbles.
  6. Add to machine and clean carpets as usual.

Best Homemade Carpet Cleaners for Stains

Sometimes you don't need to use a machine. So what is the best homemade carpet cleaning solution? Well, it depends on the stain in a lot of cases. Create a DIY cleaning solution for your carpet, depending on the type of stain you are working with.

DIY Deodorizing Carpet Cleaner With Baking Soda

Reach for baking soda when it comes to cleaning up bodily fluids and giving your carpet a general deodorizing of pet smells. First, grab:

  • Several cups of baking soda, depending on the area
  • Favorite essential oils

Creating a baking soda carpet cleaning solution is super simple. This works well for urine stains and vomit.

  1. Add the baking soda to a jar or container.
  2. Sprinkle in several drops of your favorite essential oil.
  3. Mix it together well.
  4. Blot up as much as you can of the stain.
  5. Sprinkle the solution on the area.
  6. Pat it down.
  7. Allow it to sit until the baking soda is completely dry.
  8. Vacuum up.

Homemade White Vinegar Carpet Cleaner for Food Stains

Hands of female cleaner using spray stains remover

Removing messes on your carpet is a breeze with a homemade white vinegar solution. The acetic acid in white vinegar works as a great cleaner for both synthetic and natural fiber carpets. Creating your solution is super simple, just grab:

  • 1 cup of white vinegar
  • 1 cup of water
  • Spray bottle

Now that you've grabbed everything you need, it's time to create your multi-purpose cleaning solution.

  1. Mix 1 cup of white vinegar with water in the spray bottle.
  2. Shake to mix.
  3. Spray generously on food stains.
  4. Press a white cloth on the stain.
  5. Repeat until gone.

DIY Detergent Carpet Cleaner for Mud and Dirt

When kids or dogs track mud into the house, it's annoying. Typically, you can wait until it dries and vacuum it up. However, if you have mud residue left in the carpet, you need a detergent-based carpet cleaner. For this cleaner, you need:

  • 1-2 tablespoons of dish detergent (Blue Dawn recommended)
  • 1 cup of water

With your Dawn and container at the ready, you can easily vanquish that mud stain.

  1. After vacuuming up as much dirt as you can, mix the dish soap with a cup of water.
  2. Dip a cloth in the mixture.
  3. Blot at the stain until gone.

Cornstarch and Milk Cleaner for Grease and Oil Stains

Someone got grease on your carpet. After a good sigh and necessary eye roll, it's time to grab the milk and cornstarch. In this case, a bit of spilled milk works in your favor.

  • 1 cup of cornstarch
  • ½ cup milk

Gather up your ingredients; it's time to create a cornstarch paste.

  1. Mix the cornstarch and milk together in a container.
  2. Add the cornstarch mixture on the stain.
  3. Allow it to dry completely.
  4. Vacuum up.
  5. Blot the area with a bit of water to rinse away any lingering milk.

Salt and Rubbing Alcohol Cleaner for Greasy Food and Drink Stains

Did a bit of fried chicken fall right out of fingers and onto your carpet? No worries! You just need to grab some rubbing alcohol and salt. This DIY carpet cleaning solution works great for ink stains, too.

  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 4 tablespoons of rubbing alcohol

Acting fast for grease stains is going to work in your favor.

  1. Mix the salt and rubbing alcohol.
  2. Apply it to the stain.
  3. Rub gently with a toothbrush.
  4. Allow it to sit for 10-15 minutes.
  5. Vacuum up.

Borax DIY Cleaner for Old Stains

It happens to the best of us. You go to move your couch and find that old carpet stain you didn't even know existed. Rather than just moving your couch back, you can try out this DIY carpet cleaner with Borax.

  • ¼ cup of white vinegar
  • ¼ cup of borax
  • ¼ cup of salt

You have the ingredients. It's time to get to work removing that old stain.

  1. Mix all your ingredients together to create a paste.
  2. Apply the paste to the old mystery stain.
  3. Work it into the fibers with a spoon or scrub brush.
  4. Allow it to sit until completely dry.
  5. Vacuum away.

DIY Carpet Cleaner for Pet Stains

Looking for a DIY carpet cleaner for that pet stain? Look no further. A bit of white vinegar and baking soda are perfect for getting your carpet clean and odor-free. To create this simple mixture, you need:

  • 2 cups of white vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 2 cups of water

This DIY cleaner for carpets is super easy to use.

  1. Mix the white vinegar and water in a spray bottle.
  2. Spray down the stain generously and blot.
  3. Apply the baking soda over the cleaner and allow it to dry.
  4. Vacuum up the baking soda.

How Often to Clean Carpets

When it comes to cleaning carpets, you want to shampoo your carpets about every 12 months. But this can vary a lot depending on traffic, pets, etc. Additionally, you want to spot clean carpets immediately to avoid having lasting stains.

Benefits of Homemade Carpet Cleaner

Many traditional commercial carpet cleaners are rather costly and are not great for the environment. Most contain harmful toxins that are released into the air when sprayed on carpets or absorbed into the ground, as in the case of carpet shampoos. Conversely, homemade carpet cleaning solutions offer an affordable and safe alternative to store-bought chemical-based cleaners. Homemade versions can be environmentally safe, and using them can help reduce the number of toxins you and your family members are exposed to during the course of a normal carpet cleaning routine.

Simple Recipes for Cleaning Carpets at Home

Carpet cleaners are all over the stores. But do you have to fork out the cash when you can create one at home? Nope, you don't. Try one of these affordable recipes for getting carpet stains up fast and easy.

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9 DIY Carpet Cleaner Options to Remove Odors and Stains