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Bleach spill calls for haste

January 26, 2006|Nancy Yoshihara

QUESTION: I accidentally spilled bleach on our carpet, which is a light green color. I tried to wash it off with water but it left a mark. Our landlord sent its agent and was able to remove the spot, but we had to pay $50 for this service. We wonder if you would suggest the best way to get rid of such a spot caused by bleach so that we would not have to pay such an exorbitant price in the future.

BHUPENDRA H. SHARMA

Anaheim

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ANSWER: The key to sparing your carpet of a bleach blight is to act quickly -- and properly, according to the how-to website eHow (www.ehow.com). First, protect your hands by donning a pair of rubber or latex gloves. Use a white absorbent cloth or a paper towel to blot up excess bleach. Blot-rinse with water.

Mix a detergent solution of one-fourth teaspoon of mild dishwashing liquid and one cup of warm water. Gently blot the mixture into the stain with a clean cloth or paper towel, working from the outside edge to the center. Let the detergent sit for at least five minutes. Repeat the process with a clean white cloth until the bleach no longer transfers to the cloth and the bleach smell is nearly gone. Rinse thoroughly with cold water.

The process may take time, but remember, once the stain sets and discolors the carpet, you'll have to call a professional carpet cleaner.

-- Nancy Yoshihara

Submit questions to Ask Us, Los Angeles Times Home section, 202 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, CA 90012, or e-mail home@latimes.com. Include your city of residence and phone number. Only select questions can be answered.

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