Getting candle wax on to your carpet really is easy to do but lifting it off is not so easy. If you are not careful, you can make a right mess.
Often, when people do it themselves, they generate more issues than they resolve. At best they leave some wax in (which can be unsightly when it is colored) or worse still, set fire to the carpet (yes, this HAS happened!).
Disclaimer: This guide shows how professionals carry out this work. Our advice is always to call in a professional rather that tackle it yourself. As we will not be present we cannot accept any responsibility for damage caused. Bear in mind that synthetic carpets are effectively, fibres made out of some type of plastic. Heat can lead to distortion, discolouration or burning.
In my carpet cleaning career, I’ve seen quite a few ruined carpets. This example is common with rental properties where by most seem to have an iron shaped burn on the carpet somewhere. You must have seen one of these “iron” outline singe marks at sometime or other?
Carpet cleaning professionals, though skilled and experienced, still approach these situations with care. It’s best to proceed with care than to jump right in and wreck things. These cut down the job time and significantly reduce the risk of damage to carpets.
There are a couple of “insider secrets” that will help a lot. Just remember though, we’re not there to look over your shoulder, so please practice first and if in doubt leave it well alone. Please be careful. Remember if you have any doubts, don’t proceed.
Carpet cleaners use various things to help remove wax from carpet fibres.
An iron with adjustable temperature control, aluminium baking foil, a roll of white paper kitchen roll, Some water, a wooden spatula (or a very blunt knife) and a drop sheet (to protect the carpet) and something heat proof (to stand the iron on).
This is the procedure for removing wax from carpets.
1/ Make sure you practise on an old piece of carpet first. In this way you can run the risk of damage on a piece that does not matter (rather than the real thing).
First, `work out how much heat to use. You must be very careful with man made fibres such as polypropylene and nylon. Cool is the way to go.
WARNING; If you have the iron set too hot, not only will you damage the carpet but you can permanently set stains as well. If the wax is coloured, you can separate the wax from the dye. You’ll remove the wax but leave the dye (heat set into the fibres).
2/ Melt some wax and drip it on to the test piece. Make sure it has set hard and cooled down.
Scrape off the excess wax with the wooden spatula or spoon (no sharp edges – not too hard or you will pull threads out).
3/ Wrap a piece of aluminium foil around the bottom of your iron.
If you do not place this foil here, then wax will spread all over the base of the iron. Not only will it burn but it will leave dirty deposits on the next thing to be ironed. This could be the next carpet or maybe someone’s best,expensive blouse or shirt!
Here’s the main secret.
4/ Take your paper towel and fold many sheets together. You need to wet them through (this is a very important component in the process. Wrap them in another couple so the whole package is wet but not dripping.
Why do we do this? Here’s why.
When wet, these squares of towels conduct the heat of the iron quickly so that the iron is in contact with the carpet for far less time. The towel that is not under the towel remains damp (and much cooler) which minimises potential damage to the adjoining carpet.
As the middle bit dries out it absorbs the wax. Overall, the iron is in contact with the carpet for a far shorter time.
Place it on top of the wax.
5/ Again, this is important. Start with the heat switch on the iron set to it’s lowest setting. Make sure the towels are centered over the wax and then lay the iron on top of them for a maximum of eight seconds only, then lift it off.
6/ Check the paper towel. Check that the middle is hotter than the outside.
Repeat 5/ If there is no change, turn the heat up slightly.
Try number 5 again and you should see some wax being absorbed by the towel.
If the paper towel dries out too much (or absorbs too much wax, change it and start again from 4/. Repeat 5/.
Do not be in a hurry to wreck the carpet! Increase the heat slightly each time. You can avoid most problems by doing a few trial runs on an unwanted piece of carpet. It is better to damage an offcut than destroy the real thing.
Just keep repeating the process gently. Once you’ve got the right heat setting you’ll be most of the way there.
The key here is patience. Going too fast at this stage will probably result in a damaged carpet. Like most carpet / fabric cleaning jobs, it’s a case of a little bit at a time. You cannot go back a few steps once you have started.
If all of this succeeds, try the same procedure on the actual wax deposit on your carpet. With a bit of luck (and a “following wind”) you should be able to move the wax completely. you should also receive applause and plaudits from onlookers!