How to remove muddy stains from a mat or carpet

The autumn months are perfect for outdoor walks, hikes and runs. But they may mean bringing in a little more than a chill when you return. Boots, shoes and paws can be magnets for mud, leaving your carpets and mats in a state when you get home. 

But, not to worry. We’ve done some research and rounded up simple tips and advice on how to restore muddy mats and carpets. 

Muddy stain removal tips 

The key to tackling carpet and upholstery stains is understanding what you’re working with and the material you’re cleaning. Mud stains are tough to remove as they contain decomposed organic matter such as leaves. 

How to get mud out of carpets 

  1. Remove excess dirt – Use a spoon, dull palette knife or the edge of a credit card to gently remove solid clumps of mud. Take care not to crush or rub them into the carpet to avoid creating extra stains.  
  2. Let the mud dry – Wait for the mud to dry completely, then vacuum up the remaining dried mud. 
  3. Make a cleaning solution – Create a cleaning solution by mixing two teaspoons of washing up liquid into half a litre of cool water. 
  4. Conduct a patch test – If you’re not sure about using the cleaning solution on your carpet, test it out on a small or inconspicuous area first or check with the manufacturer. 
  5. Clean the area – Dab the solution onto the stain using a soft-bristled brush such as a toothbrush. Work inwards from the edges of the stain. Use kitchen roll to blot the stain, which should now lift from the carpet. Finally, blot the spot with a microfibre cloth dipped in cool water to draw the soil and cleaning solution out. 
  6. Wait for the carpet to dry – Once dry, give the carpet a final vacuum to lift the fibres. 

How to get mud out of mats and rugs 

  1. Find a suitable work surface – To avoid damaging your wood floor or car interior, move your rug or mat to a suitable work surface that you don’t mind getting wet. 
  2. Follow steps 1-4 as noted above 

Tips for removing muddy, set-in stains

  1. Always follow manufacturer guidelines for rugs and upholstery 
  2. Use cold or cool water to avoid setting protein-based stains 
  3. Oversaturating carpet or upholstery may result in larger stains or mould growth 
  4. Work from the outside, in to avoid spreading stains further 
  5. Avoid applying cleaning solution with spray bottle as spraying fabrics can cause stains to spread 
  6. Be gentle and never scrub – this may cause mud to penetrate deeper or damage fibres 
  7. Consult a professional for vintage, leather or other materials 

Removing mud stains the easy way 

Getting mud, set-in stains and other muck out of your carpets can be easy if you have the right tool. Our StainStrikers instantly remove stains, with no need to pre-treat. They’re also portable, able to tackle stains just about anywhere, from muddy car interior mats to stairs.  

Shark carpet cleaners are not always suitable for use on wool carpets and upholstery. Please refer to your carpet manufacturer’s recommendations for guidance.