by Tim

I am intrigued by the science behind some of the carpet stain solutions (Stain Remover Characteristics) on your great site.

For tea, coffee,urine etc it is suggested to use an acid based solution.
On the other hand for acidic based stains you suggest an alkaline based solution.

Are not tea, coffee,urine not acidic by nature?

Is there a correlation between the pH of the stain and the pH of the solution to remove the stain and therefore,perhaps you "break-up" a stain with something opposite on the pH scale?
Or perhaps not!

Really appreciate your help.

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Oct 13, 2011
pH of stain removers


To answer your question, many stain removers and carpet cleaners alike are formulated to be the opposite pH as the stain or soil in question. Using the opposite pH in effect neutralizes the stain/soil for easier removal.

You are correct in that tea and coffee are on the acid side of the pH scale whereas urine is excreted on the acid side and as it dries, it turns alkaline.

Many coffee and teas contain tannin dyes to give a rich color to the beverage and these dyes must be dealt with a acid sided treatment.

The acid side treated coffee stain can then be cleaned with an alkaline side carpet cleaning product such as Procyon as found on this website.

The problem with removing coffee and tea is that they usually hit the carpet hot and penetrate the fiber dye sites more deeply than a cold beverage would. As a result a "reducing bleach" is often needed to completely remove coffee or tea stains.

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