What Shade of Pink Can You Settle For?

Wendy’s Blog
pink stain on carpet, pink vomit stain, red cheetos throw up on carpet
Pink and red spills on carpet probably will stain the carpet

Pink or red based carpet spills often stain carpet!

Major spills happen, it is part of life.  What you do and when you do it may affect the outcome. And when you do have one of these mishaps sometimes you can become your own worst enemy when trying to fix it!

If you have a significant or major spill, calling a professional before touching it can in fact increase your odds of removing it! Conversely, if (usually in a complete panic) you immediately grab anything and everything under the sun for cleaning products you are vastly decreasing the odds it will come out.

Each time you touch it with a certain cleaner product (or whatever comes to mind you think might help), you are changing the chemistry of the problem. Sometimes we could get the problem out if left, but you could cause it to set permanently by mixing different chemicals together.

Another thing is, time is of the essence. If you call immediately it may be the golden moment that it can be reversed and or cleaned out. Once you let it sit, let it dry, etc, you could be out of luck. For example, spill a court of water-based paint. CALL IMMEDIATELY! We can flush it out, if you wait days, weeks or months, the spill becomes permanent. And, instead of flushing it out with cleaning, you are (or we) are likely going to have to cut it out with scissors instead of cleaning it out.

Child meltdown results in a carpet catastrophe!

Returning home from a long day of coast to coast travel, with delays all things relating to traveling, our client’s 5 year old was completely exhausted and apparently had a melt down of epic proportions!

All due respect to her, apparently it was one of those flights from hell, and her mother relented that her poor daughter had had it.

However, however it happened, after ingesting red cheetos and gatorade he daughter began to get sick, but never made it to the bathroom. The carpet was the target right in front of  the door to the bathroom.

What does the mother do next (after getting her daughter calmed down) she panics and runs to the kitchen.

Can’t quite remember what she grabbed, or in what order, but she grabbed 3 different products to try on the red spots on the carpet (after getting the majority off the carpet that she couldn’t hold in her hands (sorry for the visual.)

The first thing didn’t work, so she tried 2 other things, to no avail.

Client calls us the following morning, still exhausted herself from the long day before.

Now realizing she can’t get it out, she hoped that a professional cleaner could. Well, I made no promise about that, especially after hearing that she used at least 3 products to try and remove it. I mentioned that we could re-section the carpet from a closet and insert it in to the hallway after cutting out the damaged area.

We set the appointment to get out to her quickly.

Before going I explained to Chris about the pink spot, and told him what happened.

As he heard about the mishap he said he doubted it would come out. Now honestly, something that has pink dye in it and acidic body fluids as well, is probably NOT going to come out. (Probably knowing that I did prepare our client for the unlikely success. But hey, there are some fiber type carpets that would be more tolerant of something like this encounter!)

Odd facts about Red Dye No 4 and body fluids and why it is unlikely to come out with cleaning

Odd fact, carpet is acid loving, and manufacturers dye carpets with acid based dyes. And also (as I have mentioned before at times on our website) manufacturers use Red Dye No 4 to dye red carpets. So the same Red Dye No 4 that is used in Hawaiian Punch™ drinks is also used to dye carpet. Why, you ask? Because it is really effective in dying carpet.

When you dye carpet the dye is added either during the liquid stage of the manufacturing process, or the yarn is dipped into a vat with red dye to coat the outer surface. BUT, when a carpet is stained it is actually dyed from a foreign or unwelcome dye. So in this case the carpet was stained by the Red Dye from the cheetos.

Now combine the dye and mix it with acidic body fluids, well you have a ‘perfect storm!’

pink or red spill stained carpet
Pink or red spills often stain carpet, especially nylon carpets

Actually the red dye mixed up with acidic fluids is like kicking up a chemical reaction by placing it over a bunsen burner!

First I, then Chris tee’d it up that it was doubtful that it would come out. 

While I was at the customer’s home she told me that she was a biomedical engineer. Well when I am discussing carpet and soiling with engineers, particularly those who are chemical engineers, they get the technical explanations I sometimes share. She did.

In this case I was mentioning that it is best, when the mishap occurs to call a professional carpet cleaner right away. Usually a phone call to describe the situation doesn’t hurt, and a professional cleaner may even advise when something can be treated by the homeowner without having a professional. We do that all the time.

So when talking with her I explained that as she added different cleaning solutions she was modifying the chemistry of the spot involved, and she could have in fact “set” or caused the discoloration to permanently stain the fiber. If on the other hand a professional was called before it was touched, it might have responded.

If a stain is permanent, the area often can be fixed with a carpet re-section!

As I did, Chris also confirmed that we could probably have a carpet repair person “re-section” a piece of carpet from a closet somewhere, and replace the stained area in the hallway to get rid of the stain that was prominent. That way, a donor piece is inserted so you can barely tell it is there, as opposed to the ugly pink stain. As a trade off, most people can manage having a piece of tile in the closet if it solves the stain problem in a more obvious location such as the hall, in this case.


Have a bad carpet spill? Stop-breathe, then call a professional. We may even be able to guide you, or we might try to schedule an emergency visit. Call 609.953.0472Contact Us on line and we will reach out to you!