Along with the cold and threat of snow in winter, you also have to deal with the salt and ice melt used to keep sidewalks, drives and streets free of ice. That salt can find its way onto your clothing and definitely onto your shoes where you then track it into your home and across your carpets and rugs. Salt can damage and stain all sorts of materials, so it’s important to know how to clean it from your clothing and home.
Cleaning salt stains from clothing
As an abrasive substance, salt can cause permanent damage to your clothes and footwear. Permanent stains, rings of salt residue and faded colors on clothing and shoes can all result from exposure to salt. You need your winter coats, boots and heavier clothes to last and the best way to protect them is by promptly cleaning any salt stains with warm water. Dampen a clean cloth with warm water and blot at the area to dissolve and remove the salt. For dry salt stains, brush surface residue gently off with a soft hairbrush to avoid working the salt deeper into the material. For delicate fabrics and stains that won’t come out, take the garment to a professional cleaner for care.
Cleaning salt stains on leather items
Pretreating leather clothing and shoes is always a good idea to protect against the damage of wetness and salt. Salt is especially harmful to leather, so it’s important to wipe it off immediately, even on pre-treated items. Use a damp, clean cloth to wipe off all the salt from the leather and blot dry. For suede items, follow the same technique but blot until completely dry and then brush the material in a circular motion with a dry, clean, soft towel.
Cleaning salts stain from rugs and carpet
Salt tracked in on shoes can get ground into carpets and rugs and begin to damage the material. It’s a good idea to vacuum up any salt you see as soon as possible to prevent permanent stains and damage. To remove hardened salt crystals and stains from your carpeting, mix ¼ cup liquid dishwashing soap (not laundry detergent or automatic dishwashing detergent) with 1 cup of warm water to better dissolve the salt. Apply the cleaning solution to the stain with a clean cloth in a gentle, sponging motion to work it in. After you’ve removed the stain, thoroughly rinse the area with warm water to eliminate any remaining salt residue that could make the spots resurface.
If you’re dealing with salt on your clothing, footwear and carpet and feel unsure about proper cleaning, contact Embassy Cleaners for dry cleaning pickup and delivery and professional carpet cleaning.