It is almost impossible to avoid accidents happening to a carpet but before you rush out to buy a new one, look carefully at the damage to see if you can repair it yourself.
While many of us do have home insurance, we are often loathe to apply for a pay out, as we risk increasing our premiums and often have to find an excess out of our own pockets.
Major accidents to carpets may necessitate such action but for smaller occurrences, why not have a go at carrying out repair work yourself?
Stains and spillages may be the easiest form of damage to deal with – it really depends on what has been tipped on to your carpet.
Any kind of paint or other liquid that is water-based may well come out with a little gentle care and some warm soapy water.
Put on a pair of rubber gloves and remove as much of the product as possible first, picking it up with a piece of paper towel or a clean cloth. Then soak another cloth in your warm water, wring out and gently dab at the mark.
Do not rub at it as you may well damage your carpet. Take particular care not to soak the carpet if it is made from a natural fibre as you may cause shrinkage.
If your stain is not water-based read the packaging or even call the manufacturer to see if they can suggest another product that may help remove it from your carpet.
Tougher Stains or Burns
For tougher stains you may have to take more drastic action. For this repair job you will need a spare piece of carpet. Ideally this will be from an off-cut or section of unused roll that you have been left with after a fitting. If not, you are going to have to be creative.
Think about where you could remove a small piece of carpet without it being noticed – perhaps from under the sofa, beneath a cabinet or behind a door that always remains open.
Wait until the spillage has dried completely so you have a clear idea of its size and outline. This will also prevent you from inadvertently spreading the stain further as you carry out your repair.
Then equip yourself with a Stanley knife or other blade capable of cutting carpet. You will also need some carpet glue or other adhesive that is suitable for the use.
Carefully pull back the fibres of the carpet around the stain and cut through the backing. Follow the outline of the stain, ensuring you are cutting a good two of three millimetres around it.
Then ease the stained piece up and away from the main carpet.
Take your damaged piece of carpet, position it on top of a piece of card and draw round it with a pencil. Then cut out your template with scissors and lay it on top of your new piece of carpet.
Using your sharp knife, cut around it to make a piece of carpet that is exactly the same size as the damaged section. Once again, pull back the fibres and – using your glue on the backing fabric – very carefully stick it into place.
Press down on it well and then leave to dry. This new piece of carpet may well have a brighter colour than its older, more exposed surroundings but with time it will weather in.
Pile can be trimmed a little if it is not as worn as the rest of the carpet.
Tears or Rips
For large rips you may well need to carry out the same steps as when repairing a carpet that has been burned or had a heavy stain.
If, however, your carpet has a simple tear in it, then before you attempt to fit in a whole new piece of material, try gluing it back together.
Once again, use special glue and ensure you are pulling it together at the backing fabric depth rather than at the pile.