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Top Tips for Cleaning Mud, Rain & More

April showers may bring May flowers, but they can also bring a muddy mess. If you’re facing water stains on your wood floor from a wet umbrella or a trail of soggy paw prints across your living room carpet from a four-legged family member, the cleaning experts at Merry Maids® can help. Below, we share our tips for removing rain and mud stains from carpet, clothes, and wood floors.

We like to call it the real Spring Cleaning.

Erasing Water Stains from Wood Floors

When you can’t mop up rain or other water spills from wood floors right away, you may see a white ring or watermark left behind. Not to worry! Try this trick to get rid of water stains on wood floors.

  • Pour mineral oil onto a soft cloth or rag.

  • Rub the mineral oil into the water stain and let sit several hours or overnight.

  • If the stain remains, rub mineral spirits into the stain using a soft cloth or rag. (Wear gloves!)

  • If the stain still persists, apply a coat of furniture polish in a color that matches your wood floor.

For deeper, more set-in stains, you may want to call in a professional, like Furniture Medic, to restore your wood floors.

Cleaning Mud from Carpets

Dry dirt is enough of a problem, but adding water to the mix makes it that much more difficult to clean. Mud’s liquid component helps it settle deeper into carpet fibers, and the organic matter in soil means mud needs to be treated like a protein stain (eg. blood, sweat, etc.). What does that mean? Most importantly: No heat!

To clean mud from your carpet, follow these steps:

  • Let the mud dry. Don’t try to clean it up while still wet, or you may end up pushing it further into the fibers.

  • Once it’s dry, vacuum up as much of the dried mud as possible. Make several slow passes with the vacuum, more than you would normally do.

  • When you’re satisfied you’ve vacuumed up as much as you can, add a teaspoon of mild dishwashing detergent to one cup of cool or lukewarm (not hot!) water. Use a clean white rag or cloth to blot the soapy mixture onto the stain.

  • Continue to blot to remove excess moisture while watching the cloth to see that the stain is coming up. Switch to a clean rag or paper towels as necessary.

  • Once the mud is gone, blot with clean water to remove any leftover soapy residue.

You can use these steps to remove mud stains from upholstery, as well. Just be sure to minimize the amount of water you use, since moisture can sink further into upholstery, get trapped, and cause mold or mildew issues.

For more tips on carpet cleaning, check out our post titled “How to Clean Carpet.”

Removing Mud from Clothing

Mud stains on clothing may combine with sweat or other proteins, making them even more persistent than when found on carpet. Begin by removing any solid matter with the dull edge of a knife or spoon. Be careful not to rub, as this can push stains further into the fibers and make it that much more difficult to remove. Rinse the stain under cold running water, preferably from the opposite side of the fabric to help loosen the mud from the fibers.

If you can’t wash it right away, soak the garment in cold water until you can. Wash in cold water using an enzymatic detergent (most high-performance detergents on the market contain enzymes, but it doesn’t hurt to check). Before putting the garment in the dryer, check to make sure the stain is gone. Don’t forget: Heat will set the stain if it’s not completely removed. If the stain persists or has changed color, use an oxygen-based stain treatment and soak the garment, then launder again. Once you’re sure you’ve gotten out the stain, dry the clothing as usual.

Let Merry Maids® Clean Up after Rain, Snow, or Sleet!

When you schedule regular housekeeping services from our cleaning professionals at Merry Maids®, you’ll have peace of mind knowing you’re never far from a thorough clean. Spend less time cleaning and more time enjoying the season; request your free estimate today.