How To Remove Chewing Gum
From Carpet

If chewing gum has you stuck for a solution, then follow these procedures and tips for easy gum removal.

Gum is a non-water soluble stain which does not respond to water based cleaning solutions. This stain is considered a surface stain that is only present on or between the carpet fibers.

Gum is a sticky substance that may contain chicle, flavoring, coloring and a sweetener. If not removed, it hardens, attracts dirt and can become part of the carpet making removal more difficult.

Procedures to remove chewing gum

  1. Fresh gum may be hardened with a bag of ice cubes until brittle enough to scrape off with a bone scraper or spatula. Blot any remaining traces with a volatile dry solvent such as dry cleaning solvent.

    The volatile dry solvent will evaporate quickly on its own, however, the area of gum removal may be rinsed with an alkaline cleaning solution (pH 9-10)
  2. Gum removal for older more difficult stains should begin with a non-volatile dry solvent such as a Paint, Oil & Grease Remover (POG).

    Always pretest any stain remover on an inconspicuous area of the carpet.

    Apply a small amount of the cleaning agent to a white bleach-free cloth and then blot to apply to the stain. Do not pour cleaning agents directly on the stain, particularly solvent spotters as they may reach the carpet backing and cause damage.

    The non-volatile dry solvent needs dwell time to soften the gum for easier removal.

    An alternative to a liquid POG is a "gel" POG which is smeared on the gum stain and allowed to dwell with less chance of reaching the carpet backing.
  3. As the POG reacts with the gum to break the bond with the carpet fiber, gently agitate or scrape away the stain using a spoon or blunt end of a bone scraper. Never use a knife as it's sharp edges could harm the pile fibers.
  4. Repeat step #2 and #3 until gum can be released from the carpet fibers.
  5. Rinse the POG from the carpet with an alkaline cleaning solution.
  6. Blot with dry clean bleach-free cloth to remove and dry any moisture from the rinsing procedure. When most of the moisture is removed, you may use clean, dry towels weighed down by flat, heavy objects like a book or brick on the damp area to absorb any remaining moisture. This helps prevent wicking of any deep staining material not removed that will move to the surface as the carpet dries.

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