How to Get Soot Out of Carpet and Rugs: Tutorial

Winter is a great time to bond with family as you sit around the fireplace to keep warm. Sadly, it's also the season when carpet soot stains happen more.

If you're wondering how to get soot out of carpet, look no further.

To remove fireplace soot from carpet:

  1. Remove the large chunks using your kitchen tong
  2. Vacuum the loose particles
  3. Apply an absorbent
  4. Vacuum again
  5. Apply hydrogen peroxide or alcohol
  6. Blot the soot residue using a damp microfiber cloth
  7. Allow the carpet to dry

Keep reading because we will also guide you on how to get soot residue out of carpets, regardless of their construction or depth. Dive right in.

How to Get Soot Out of Carpet

Soot is a deep black, flaky, or powdery substance made of amorphous carbon. It is a product of organic matter that hasn't burned completely. It's also sometimes called black ash, carbon black, or just ash.

Removing soot may be tiring and frustrating, mainly because it is magnetic and clings to the fibers. You can remove soot from the carpet or area rugs with the right equipment, products, and skills.

Here's what you need to do the job:

Step-by-step guide on how to get soot out of wool carpet and other carpet fibers:

1. Pick the Soot Chunks Using a Kitchen Tong or a Paper Towel

A kitchen tong picks up the big chunks without pushing the loose particles deeper into the carpet. If you don't have a tong, use a paper towel or a spoon to pick them up.

2. Vacuum the Loose Particles

Vacuum the affected area to remove the loose particles before applying any cleaning solution to prevent further spreading.

Adjust the vacuum's height to the maximum and go over the carpet so that the suction removes the loose particles from the affected area.

Keep lowering the height down one setting as you vacuum the carpet to remove all loose particles.

3. Apply an Absorbent

Sprinkle a generous amount of an absorbent, such as corn starch or baking soda, on the carpet, ensuring the affected area is thoroughly covered to ease the stain removal process. Gently brush it into the carpet fibers, but without scrubbing it in.

Leave the absorbent to sit for about one hour or more (if you're not in a rush) to allow it to absorb all the soot.

4. Vacuum Again

After one hour or more, the absorbent will be bound to the stain, making it easy to remove using a vacuum cleaner.

Using a HEPA vacuum cleaner and a high setting, gently and repeatedly vacuum the absorbent.

Next, use the hose nozzle attachment to suck all the absorbent on the surface.

Avoid the brush head; it pushes the soot deep into the carpet fibers.

5. Apply Hydrogen Peroxide or Rubbing Alcohol

If your carpet isn't colored, use hydrogen peroxide; otherwise, use rubbing alcohol, as the latter has a bleaching agent that may interfere with the carpet dyes.

Soak a cloth in either hydrogen peroxide (1 tbsp. diluted with 3 tbsp. of warm water) or rubbing alcohol (1 tbsp.).

Do a quick test by soaking a clean microfiber cloth in hydrogen peroxide or alcohol and applying it to an easy-to-hide carpet area, such as by the side of the skirting boards.

If there's no damage to the carpet, blot out the stain out of your carpet. Avoid rubbing, as that pushes the soot deeper into the carpet.

6. Blot the Soot Stain Using Warm Water

Dampen another microfiber cloth with warm water and blot the soot stain, removing any excess hydrogen peroxide solution or alcohol from the carpet.

Avoid overwetting the microfiber cloth, which could wet the area, allowing mold to grow.

7. Allow the Carpet to Dry

Avoid walking on the wet carpet until it has dried completely. Walking on it, especially pets with soiled feet, could stain the carpet again.

Open the windows and door to quicken the process, or place a handheld fan near the previously stained areas.

8. Assess the Area

Once the carpet has dried completely, assess the area to know if it's soot stain-free.

Repeat the process if it's still there; otherwise, hire a specialist like Zerorez®!

Zerorez will professionally clean your carpet and thanks to our proprietary technology, your carpets will stay cleaner, longer.

How to Prevent Future Soot Stains on Your Carpet

After spending an entire afternoon cleaning out soot and probably eventually hiring a professional to help you after numerous unsuccessful attempts, you want to ensure you'll never have such a scenario again—ever!

Here's what you need to do:

  • Protect the carpet around the fireplace with a premium carpet fiber protector.
  • Hire a professional to sweep and clean your chimney.
  • Invest in a gas log insert or fire glass doors to prevent soot from falling on your fireplace carpets.


How to Get Candle Soot Out of Carpet

You should deal with candle soot the same way you do with fireplace soot, except that there are no large particles this time, so you won't need a kitchen tong.

  • Apply cornstarch or baking soda generously until it covers the area
  • Wait until one or more hours and then blot out the soot
  • Apply alcohol to blot the stain
  • Rinse the area using a damp microfiber cloth
  • Allow to dry, and then access the area

What Removes Coal Soot Fast?

An oil-based cleanser or a dry cleaning solvent quickly removes coal soot from carpets and upholstery. A HEPA vacuum can also help remove the soot particles to prevent them from going deep into the fibers.

Don't use water or water-based cleansers, as they only spread the soot on the carpet's surface, worsening the situation.

If you don't know how to remove soot stains from carpets, you could use the wrong method, causing the stain to penetrate deeper into the carpet fibers, making the situation more frustrating.

Zerorez knows how to clean soot out of carpet with Zero Residue®. We offer commercial and residential carpet cleaning services. We have the necessary equipment, products, and knowledge to do an excellent job. Schedule carpet cleaning online for a quote!

Book a Cleaning with Zerorez Today!