How to Remove Gum
from your Carpet
Sometimes having carpet makes you feel like everything finds its way into your home and onto your floors. The truth of the matter is that carpets face a lot of issues — and that's why One of a Kind Pros is happy to help you through even your worst carpet dilemmas.
Gum is a billion dollar market — a 5 billion dollar market to be more accurate. With such high demand, the likelihood of gum finding its way into your home is, unfortunately, highly possible. Add the dilemma of the gum becoming embedded into your carpet's fibers and it can feel like a cleaning nightmare.
Even if you don't chew gum yourself — your friends, your kids, or even your shoes can bring the unwanted guest into your home and onto your carpet.
Regardless of the circumstances, our years of dealing with carpet challenges have given us some insight on the best ways to tackle even the most difficult situations.
Here's how we would recommend removing gum if it finds its way onto your carpet:
Note: We cannot guarantee that any DIY method will work. We provide this information as a courtesy for our clients.
First of all, if the gum has freshly found its way to your carpeting, it is crucial to resist the urge to manually remove the gum by prying it from the carpet fibers. When you do this, you are not fully removing the gum from the fibers, but stretching the gum and leaving behind a chunk of sticky residue.
If you're at home or even at work, the simplest solution is to use ice.
Using Ice Cubes To Remove Gum
The ice cube method works by using gum's temperature sensitivity to our advantage. Gum is very receptive to temperature changes and will solidify quickly if exposed to the cold.
Note: This method works best on fresh gum. Gum that has been ground into the carpet may not see the same results.
Step 1: Gather ice in a plastic bag (a ziplock bag or a plastic grocery bag, for example)
Step 2: Place the bag of ice firmly on the gum - wait a few minutes until the gum has solidified.
Step 3: Remove the gum from the carpet with a spatula or dull utensil (avoid sharp tools as it may fray the carpet fibers.)
Step 4: Remove the gum slowly — start at the edges and lift towards the center. The cold gum should crack and break into smaller pieces. Take your time and avoid any yanking or pulling as it may cause damage to the carpet fibers.
Most of the gum should be removed by this point. You can vacuum any small remaining pieces if needed.
Rinse the area with warm water and blot dry (do not rub or scrub! - only blot!). Avoid using decorative paper towels or colorful rags when blotting to prevent the colored dyes from being transferred to your carpet.
This process takes time, and it is important to be patient while trying to remove the gum. If any residual gum remains, you can repeat the process again a few times.
Eventually, all the gum should come out!
Unfortunately, there are going to be some situations in which the gum has found itself fully embedded into the carpet. These situations are going to be much trickier to handle, and they will require alternative solutions. Fortunately, there are still viable methods we can go over in order to restore your carpet to its intended, gum-free, state.
What about the WD-40 method?
The second most common method for removing gum stuck in your carpet would be the WD-40 method. This method can prove to be highly effective — even on the toughest of situations.
Simply spray the solution onto the underside of the gum — as close to the entangled carpet fibers as possible. Allow it to set for a few minutes.
After the WD-40 has set, use a (completely) white rag or paper towel to begin swiping the gum in one direction. Keep swiping the gum until it has fully lifted from the carpet. Repeat the process as necessary.
That's it, but now the clean-up begins.
If you do choose to utilize WD-40 as a means to remove gum from your carpet, please ensure that a household degreaser (such as a mild, clear dish soap) is used to clean up the area. If the WD-40 is not entirely removed from the carpet strands, it can attract and hold in dirt, causing discoloration and potential stains.
The Vinegar Method
You might prefer to use a natural cleaner, such as white vinegar, which can produce the same results without the additional oily strain of WD-40 on your carpet.
Yes — you read that right: plain white vinegar.
The use of vinegar around the house has been a cleaning staple for generations. Its disinfecting qualities and natural cleaning power also makes it a helpful solution for removing gum from your carpets without any harsh chemicals or potential stains. In fact, not only can vinegar remove the sticky residue from your carpet, it can also kill any foul-smelling odors trapped in the fibers as well.
First you'll start the process by heating up a quarter cup of white vinegar in the microwave.
Once heated, use a white cloth to gently blot the affected area, effectively saturating the gum and carpet fibers surrounding it.
Once adequately covered in vinegar, you can use a dull spatula or butter knife to slowly remove the gum from your carpet, just as we explained in the ice method above.
Again, it is important to work slowly and be patient during the removal process.
After your patient effort, the gum should be removed!
If you have a challenging gum stain, and none of these methods seems to work, please feel free to give us a call. We'll help you assess your situation and make specific recommendations to ensure your carpet finds a mess-free solution.
We're always here and happy to help!
If you are in doubt about tackling gum removal yourself, give us a call, we'll be glad to help.
For any type of stubborn stains, you might need a professional carpet cleaner with the tools, pro solutions, knowledge, and experience to remove stains of all kinds.
To arrange for a professional carpet cleaning, contact us today for a free estimate.
We're here to help!
Thank you for reading our article.
We hope you find it to be helpful.
If you have any questions about this article, or suggestions for another article — anything related to cleaning carpet, upholstery, tile and grout, and maintaining a healthy home — please feel free to contact us.