Cleaning Guides

How to Remove Blood Stains from Upholstery

Blood stains appear on upholstery from time to time. Moreover, blood stains are among the most difficult ones to remove. It might seem like no matter what you do, the stain won’t come out. But don’t panic just yet – you can easily remove it with a little bit of know-how.

So, if you:

  • Had an unpleasant accident;
  • Are struggling to get blood out of a sofa or a mattress;
  • Are wondering what gets blood out of upholstery,

Then read on!

We’ve gathered everything you need to know about removing blood from fabric upholstery. Here, you will learn how to get rid of blood stains from your sofa, no matter if they’re fresh or dried.

Why is blood so difficult to remove from upholstery?

The haemoglobin in your blood, once exposed to the air, starts clotting. These clots help the body heal and stop major bleeding. Unfortunately, this clotting ability also binds blood to any surface on which it’s spilt, making it particularly difficult to remove from fabric. 

If the fresh blood stain isn’t cleaned immediately, it will dry, leaving very stubborn brownish stains. Because of that, the methods for cleaning dry blood stains will be different from cleaning fresh ones. 

Still, blood stain removal is not as hopeless as it sounds. To help you find the best solution for your situation, we have gathered various methods that you can choose from. 

A guide to removing blood stains from upholstery

Before you get started, there are a couple of important things to keep in mind when cleaning a blood stain:

What you should do:

  • Protect yourself from contact with harsh chemicals. Don’t forget to prepare simple protective equipment, like gloves and long-sleeved shirts. The gloves will also protect you from possible unwanted infections. Protection can never be too much.
  • Always check for care labels, if any. There are various upholstery materials. While some are resistant to water or solvent-based cleaners, others can easily get damaged and require professional upholstery cleaning.

What you shouldn’t do:

  • Don’t rub the stain too much. Blotting is the best cleaning technique for blood stains removal.
  • Don’t wet the area. It should only be slightly damp. Otherwise, you risk “pushing” the stain further into your sofa stuffing.
  • Don’t use hot water when cleaning. That way you will only help the stain set.
  • Don’t use coloured cloths or rags to clean. Unless you are sure that the cleaning materials you use will not leave transfer any dye once they come in contact with cleaning solutions, better use a clean white cloth. If you don’t have one, you can use paper towels or cotton balls.

Now that we’ve got the basics out of the way, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty. Each method is easy to follow and includes products and tools any household has. We’ll begin with the easiest method and work our way to the more difficult ones.

You may also like:
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How to Get Blood out of a Carpet

With that being said…

How to get blood out of fabric upholstery with cold water

You will need

  • An empty spray bottle;
  • A dry cloth.
  1. Spray some water on the area, but not too much. It shouldn’t be soaking wet;
  2. If it is a big stain, work on the edges first and move towards the centre;
  3. Use the cloth to blot out the stained area. Avoid rubbing at all costs! As an alternative, you can use a wet and dry vacuum (if you have one, of course) to fully suck out the moisture. The water stain should dry fully before you proceed further;
  4. Use a vacuum cleaner to collect the dried-up residue;
  5. If the stain is stubborn, repeat the above steps all over again until your sofa is clean as new.

How to remove blood stains from upholstery with isopropyl alcohol

You will need:

  • Rubbing alcohol;
  • A cloth or a cotton ball.
  1. Dampen the cloth in isopropyl alcohol and start applying the alcohol to the stain. Remember the surface should be damp, not wet;
  2. For stubborn stains, you might need to be a bit more persistent and rub the spot a little bit. However, be careful with it – rub only in one direction, avoid circular motions;
  3. Blot until no colour gets transferred onto the cloth;
  4. If the stain is still on your sofa, use the dishwashing detergent solution below.

How to remove blood stains from upholstery using dish detergent

You will need:

  • Any dishwashing detergent;
  • Cold water;
  • A bowl for mixing;
  • A clean cloth or a sponge.
  1. Once you have prepared all the tools needed, make a solution by mixing one teaspoon of detergent with two cups of water;
  2. Make sure that the stain is loosened and doesn’t have a dry crust. If that’s the case, gently remove it with the dry cloth or the abrasive side of the sponge;
  3. Dampen the cloth/sponge in the solution;
  4. Dab the solution onto the stain, until you see it starts transferring to the cloth;
  5. Wet the cloth again and repeat steps 3 and 4 until you are happy with the result;
  6. Let the upholstery dry to see if it requires more cleaning.

How to get blood stains out of a sofa using washing soda

You will need:

  • Washing soda;
  • Water;
  • Vacuum;
  • A cloth. 
  1. Make a thick paste by mixing three parts washing soda with one part water;
  2. Spread the paste all over the stain. It should cover it fully;
  3. The solution needs time to work, therefore, leave it at least for an hour. The best-case scenario will be to leave it to work overnight;
  4. After some time, the solution should dry. Use a cloth to wipe away the dried paste and see the result;
  5. If the stain is not fully gone, repeat the steps above all over again;
  6. Remove all the remaining baking soda with a damp cloth.

How to get blood stains out of the sofa with hydrogen peroxide

When dealing with blood stains on upholstery, try to test the mildest solutions first. If you are not able to remove the stain with those, you may have to turn to more powerful cleaners. Hydrogen peroxide is one of them. However, for upholstery with dark or vivid colours, this cleaning method might not be the best one, as its bleaching properties can permanently damage the colour of your furniture. If you are willing to give it a try, follow the next steps:

You will need: 

  • 3% hydrogen peroxide;
  • A cloth.
  1. Apply a small amount of hydrogen peroxide to the stain. It should only be enough to cover the blood, but not soak into the fabric;
  2. Let is stay for five minutes;
  3. Collect the excess hydrogen peroxide with the cloth. Rubbing the stain with an absorbent towel or cloth is acceptable, as long as you do not overdo it;
  4. Then, wash off the peroxide with a damp cloth. If the stain is on a cushion case, wash the case according to the instructions on the label.
You may also like:
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15 Cleaning Uses of Hydrogen Peroxide

Couldn’t get the stain off? 

Book professional upholstery cleaning with Fantastic Services! The technicians we send know everything about stain removal. Depending on the stain and the material of your upholstery item, they will apply the most suitable cleaning method. You can be sure that your furniture will look as fresh as new. Sounds too good to be true? Check it out yourself

Need a professional upholstery cleaning?

Find a cleaner to take care of your upholstery items.

Add a valid postcode e.g. SE1 2TH

Takeaways

  • Don’t put off blood stain removal. If you act immediately, the cleaning will be much easier;
  • Never use hot water and rub the blood stain; 
  • If the cleaning seems too hard to handle by yourself, don’t rush to throw away the stained item. Simply entrust the job to professional cleaners.

***

Were any of these tips helpful? Do you have a unique cleaning method that you want to share? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

Image source: Shutterstock / FotoDuets

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