It's not often that the answer to a household problem is 'buy some beer'. And yet, as it turns out, in the case of removing stains from carpets, beer may well be the unsung hero of home cleaning ingredients.
We've all been there. Learning how to clean a carpet isn't difficult, but removing a stain, especially if it's old, is a different story. If you've tried the usual suspects like vinegar and baking soda and aren't getting anywhere, it may be time to turn to less orthodox methods that are actually surprisingly effective.
And the ingredient in question, folks, is...beer. Yes, it sounds counterintuitive, especially if you're dealing with food or alcohol stains, but you may find that beer is surprisingly good at removing stains you thought were too ingrained to bother trying to remove.
Of course, trying on the best carpet cleaners may do the job, but if you don't have a good tool to hand, a bit of your pint may work just as well.
Beer carpet cleaning hack
'A lesser-known life hack for removing stains from rugs is beer!' explains Nick Acaster, Managing Director of Rugs Direct (opens in new tab).
'Beer can literally lift the stain out if you pour a small amount of it on top and rub it lightly, the stain should then disappear. As with all these methods, you may need to repeat this process to make sure all traces of the stain have gone.'
How does it work? Beer is acidic, with larger ranging between pH 4.00 and 5.00, and ale going down as low as pH 3. This is good news if you're trying to tackle organic stains. And, because beer is a liquid, it is likely to penetrate better than a powder agent.
As with all DIY carpet cleaners, it's always a good idea to test the beer on a small inconspicuous area first, especially if your carpet is very light. You should also think carefully about which beer type you'll be using. Pale ale is less likely to leave behind stains of its own, so don't reach for Guinness!
All you need to do is carefully blot the beer into the stain until saturated, leave for a few minutes, then blot out with a clean cloth. And if you still haven't had any luck, try one of the best upholstery cleaner products instead.