A wise man once described French fries as “edible utensils designed for eating ketchup”. But we also find it to be tasty on hot dogs, burgers, chicken nuggets, hash browns… some people even put it on their eggs. Hey – it’s a versatile condiment that appeals to many people in many ways, so no judgments. But one place that ketchup is never appealing is on your carpet. But before we discuss how to remove that bane of a stain, let’s address the burning question:
Ketchup or Catsup?
From the 1700s, a few different pastes and sauces made their way to the European palate – some from China, and others from India. Most historians believe today’s ketchup comes from one of these two places, though the true origins of the condiment are still debated. But they were nothing like the ones today. Most had ingredients like pickled or fermented fish parts, vinegar, cloves, meat by-products, or even shellfish. In fact, it wasn’t until 1801 that an American cookbook offered a version with tomatoes added. Most books called it ketchup, whereas a Jonathan Swift poem referred to it as catsup.
Back in 1837, the Heinz Company originally called their final concoction catsup, like their competitors, but they switched to ketchup in the 1880s to stand out. When marketing and supply became involved, ketchup became the popular term – although you can still find diehard catsup distributors sprinkled throughout the United States. Nevertheless, ketchup has become the most accepted term today.
And Now, To the Cleaning!
- As usual, remove the excess with a spoon, dull knife, or another straight edge. Be careful not to scrape hard, as you could push it further into the pile.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of clear household ammonia with ½ cup of water in a spray bottle. Saturate the stain, but take care to avoid wetting the backing of the carpet.
- Use a clean white paper towel to dab and blot the area, removing excess moisture. This will help to break up the mixture and likely remove some of it.
- Mix ¼ teaspoon of clear hand or dishwashing detergent with 1 quart of water. Remember, bleach and Lanolin are not carpet-friendly. Make sure your detergent is devoid of them. From the outside inward, dab and blot with a paper towel or clean white cloth to work the detergent into the stain. Repeat until there is no more transference from the stain to the cloth.
- Rinse with water from a spray bottle, and add a stack of paper towels, weighed down, to absorb the moisture.
- Last resort: apply a small amount of 3% hydrogen peroxide and let it sit on the stain for about an hour, then blot the stain and soak up the moisture using more weighed-down paper towels.
Depending on your favorite flavor of ketchup, the stain might have some resilience to it. But that’s perfectly okay – you have Preferred Carpet Care on your side! We’ll use our expertise and awesome equipment to take out the stain. Then you can “catch up” on eating whatever you choose to put your ketchup on.
- Posted by Rod Barth
- On June 4, 2020