top of page
  • Writer's pictureMcCartin's Services

Treating a Urine-Stained Carpet

Pet accidents happen. Here's what to do...

Pet urine on a carpet

Anyone with pets knows that pet urine on rugs and carpet is common and bound to happen at some point. The two most prominent issues your carpet endures from pet urine are the stain and the odor. Unfortunately, some carpet cleaning services are unsuccessful in getting one or both out of your rug.

The truth about pet urine and your carpet.

Pet urine can cause permanent damage to your carpets and rugs. When urine is first deposited, it has a pH of about 5 or 6, which is on the acid side of the pH scale. It is easier to remove right then when it is fresh. Once it dries, it turns alkaline or to a high pH between 10 to12 on the scale and becomes more difficult to remove.

Why is the color so hard to remove?

Urine, in its initial acid state, begins to immediately oxidize and react with the carpet to create a color change (color loss). As it moves into the alkaline stage, it then stains yellow, which will become permanent.

Why is pet urine odor so hard to remove?

There are two sources of odors associated with urine. The first comes from bacteria. The waste materials and gases from the decomposing urine create an unpleasant odor. When dried urine is remoistened, it gives off an ammonia gas.

The second source of odor is chemical odor that is present even when the bacteria have been killed. This explains the reason that more than sanitizing is necessary to neutralize odors from urine. Urine also presents additional odor problems when the relative humidity is high. The salts and crystals that are left behind as the urine dries are hydrophilic and draw water to them. Dried urine is often easy to smell in the humid months because the salts attract the moisture, the moisture evaporates, putting out a greater proportion of odorous ammonia gas. You must get rid of the urine salts in and under the carpet to get rid of the odor. That's why cleaning existing urine spots WILL NOT remove any associated odor. In fact, it could INCREASE the odor in the air space for a temporary period of time.

Depending on when the accident occurred, you may be able to mitigate damage and lasting odor to your rug or carpet. The longer the urine has to penetrate to carpet, the more likely your carpet can lose color and also be stained, not to mention the lasting odor.

How do you tackle that pet accident yourself until you have a professional carpet cleaning service visit?

For fresh stains (within 24 hours), follow these simple steps.

You'll need:

  • a gallon wet-dry vac. (If you don't have one, then clean, dry towels will work too)

  • weight (anything heavy such as books or a brick)

  • clean spray bottle

  • hydrogen peroxide

  • Water

  • Enzymatic cleaner (over-the-counter brands such as Rocco & Roxie or Nature's Miracle)

Step One

If the urine has just been deposited within the last 24 hours, start by taking the wet vac and sucking up as much of the urine as possible. Or use a clean towel and blot the urine spots getting as much of the liquid out of the rug as you can. Never scrub or rub the carpet. This will distort the face fiber and break down the fiber protection and allow for easy staining.

Step Two

Then place a dry towel over the spot and place a weight on top of the towel and let it sit for an hour.

Step Three

Fill an empty spray bottle with hydrogen peroxide, remove the towel and weight from the area and gently spray the stain. Do not over-saturate the rug. Extract wet vac or blot

Step Four

Flush spot with water and extract or blot

Step Five

Apply enzymatic cleaner per instructions

How to Remove Pet Urine from Carpet

If the urine spot is older than 24 hours

  1. Apply an enzymatic spotter.

  2. Then rinse the carpet with warm water and wet vac or blot.

  3. Mix 1 part white distilled vinegar with 2 parts water and apply it to the spot.

Rinse with warm water, and wet vac. Do not use the vinegar on fresh spots as the acid from the vinegar cannot counter the acid from fresh urine. The vinegar works best after 24 hours when the urine has become alkaline. Removing the odor means that all of the alkaline salt deposits that the urine leaves behind must be completely removed. This is almost impossible for you to do yourself. We recommended that you not wait too long to schedule your carpet for professional cleaning or schedule your rug to be sent out for a professional carpet cleaning. Depending on how severe the stain, McCartin's residential carpet cleaning services can provide any of the following:

  • Pull up the carpet

  • Remove affected padding

  • Clean back of the carpet

  • Treat floor with an enzyme treatment

  • Treat back of carpet with enzyme treatment

  • Install new padding

Re-install carpet

  • Clean carpet

  • Color correction may also be recommended if the urine has faded the fabric. See how we restore color loss

Call us for a consultation (215) 860-6955

Get our monthly coupon

26 views0 comments


bottom of page