Can I Put Bleach in My Carpet Cleaner?

Have you ever wondered if you can put bleach in your carpet cleaner to remove stains from your carpet? Bleach works great on removing stains, so it will work on your carpet, right? Before you use bleach on your carpet, you need to consider many factors. Bleach should only be used as a last resort and under specific circumstances.

Can I put bleach in my carpet cleaner? It is not recommended to use bleach on your carpet cleaner because bleach is hazardous, and can damage the backing and subfloor. Bleach is not even a great cleaner. Do not use bleach on wool and any carpet that has a colored dye because it will strip away the color of the carpet. In worst-case scenarios, bleach can fade away the color of the carpet and leave yellow stains.

Is bleach safe for your carpet? Why is bleach not ideal to be used as a carpet cleaner? How do you clean a carpet with bleach? We will discuss these questions below. Learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of using bleach for your carpet by reading the rest of the post below.

Can I put bleach in my carpet cleaner
Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

Is it Safe to Use Bleach in a Steam Cleaner?

It is not recommended to use bleach in a steam cleaning machine. Most steam cleaning manufacturers do not recommend it. In case the manufacturer recommends the use of bleach in a steam cleaner, see to it that you work in a well-ventilated area and do not operate the steam function with the bleach in the tank.

Can I Add Bleach to a Cleaner?

Adding bleach to your cleaner should be your last option. Take note that mixing many other cleaners with bleach can produce toxic results that will not be only harmful to your carpets but the people and your pets as well. Moreover, bleach can damage surfaces and remove color. While bleach is an excellent disinfectant and stain remover, it is not recommended for a general cleanser.

Why Using Bleach to Clean Carpet is a Bad Idea?

Using bleach to clean the carpet is a bad idea because it can damage the backing and subfloor. Bleach is also hazardous and not a great cleanser. Using it the wrong way can further damage your carpet and cause yellow stains that are hard to remove. Below are some of the reasons why you should not use bleach on your carpet.

Can Damage Backing and Subfloor

The main reason why you should not use bleach on your carpet is that it can damage the backing and subfloor. Some of the bleach solutions can migrate down the deepest part of the pile. While some fibers can be tolerant to string chemicals, bleach can cause damage to the underlay and backing.


Bleach is a dangerous household chemical. The problem with using bleach on your carpet is that the chemical remains active which can cause skin irritation and is also dangerous to kids and pets. You also need to consider chemical burns that can result from getting in contact with a carpet that is treated with bleach.

Furthermore, you will also breathe the bleach solution as you clean and scrub the stains. The chemical will continue to circulate the room after it is applied. Bleach can be dangerous when inhaled and its side effects can include headaches, migraines, asthma flare-ups, and vomiting. This can also be hazardous to your pets who are lounging on your carpet.

Not a Great Cleaner

Bleach removes stains very well and is an excellent disinfectant, but it does not have natural detergency. This means that it is no more effective at cleaning than some good water.

Can I Put Bleach in My Carpet Shampooer?

Do not use bleach on your carpet shampooer unless the manufacturer specified that it is okay. Take note that bleach can degrade plastic and rubber components in the machine. This will burn and damage the shampooer causing it to malfunction.

How to Bleach Clean Carpet?

To bleach clean the carpet, you first need to vacuum to remove dust and dirt before spraying the bleach solution and rinsing. Make sure to take the proper precautions when cleaning with bleach. Bleach is a potent chemical and dangerous to the respiratory system and skin so you need to wear the proper protective gear.

Vacuum the Carpet

Remove any solid substances and embedded dirt from the carpet by vacuuming. You can also bring the carpet outside and shake it to dislodge smaller debris that is stuck and to release as much dirt as possible.

Prepare the Bleach Solution

Make sure that you wear protective gear like masks, gloves, and goggles to protect yourself from direct exposure to bleach. Bleach is a potent chemical and can cause skin irritation and respiratory damage. The area where you will clean the carpet should be well ventilated to prevent the smell of the bleach from lingering in the room.

Bleach to Water Ratio

Bear in mind that 100% bleach should not be used on the carpet because it can worsen the stain. You can prepare a solution by mixing a cup of bleach with a gallon of water. Pour the mixture into a spray bottle. Do not use bleach with other cleaning products because it can result in a hazardous solution. For instance, mixing bleach with ammonia is deadly and should be avoided.

Spray Bleach Solution

Spray the stained area on the carpet with the bleach and water solution. Make sure to spray the whole area evenly to avoid spotting since bleach will lighten the color. Do not let the bleach sit for too long on the carpet because it can damage the backing. It is best to leave it up to 30 minutes.

Rinse and Dry

Carefully rinse the solution from the carpet. You can use a spray bottle and a wet/dry vacuum to remove the excess bleach from the carpet. You can also use a clean cloth towel or paper and stack heavy objects like books on the top to absorb moisture. Do not scrub the carpet because it can spread the bleach residue to the other untreated areas. Did you accidentally spill water on your carpet? You can check out this article that we have written titled, what to do if I spilled water on carpet? We have shared tips on how to clean and remove water from the carpet.

Homemade Carpet Cleaner with Bleach

There are different types of bleach that you can use for cleaning. The most common is oxygen bleach and chlorine bleach. Oxygen-based bleach is milder and will not remove the color from the carpet. On the other hand, chlorine bleach is harsher and can cause stains in colored carpets. Oxygen bleach is also less toxic. You can mix it with vinegar to remove the smell from your carpet.

  • Carefully measure the ingredients for the solution.
  • Add the measured oxygen bleach, vinegar, and water to the bucket.
  • Stir the mixture until the oxygen bleach is thoroughly dissolved.
  • Spray the carpet with the mixture especially in the heavy stained and soiled areas.
  • Add fresh water to the carpet cleaner and run it over the carpet to remove any residue.

✅ Video – How I Deep Clean my Rugs | Carpet Cleaning | Bleach Method

Chelsea Brickell shared the video below on her YouTube channel. She demonstrates how she deep cleans her carpets using the bleach method. She advises checking the carpet and its material before putting the bleach on. Take note that some carpets are not suitable for cleaning with bleach. Check out the video below for more tips and information.

Lighten Carpet with Bleach

White carpets are easier to clean with bleach as compared to colored ones. Bleach can be sprayed only in the area that needs to be cleaned. On the other hand, if the carpet is colored, you will need to spray the entire carpet lightly to keep the color uniform. Allow the solution to sit for 30 minutes and flush it with water with the use of carpet shampoo and brush. Rinse the carpet and let it dry. You can also use a carpet cleaner vacuum to make sure that all of the bleach solutions are removed.

How to Bleach Clean Carpet

The only carpet where it is safe to use a bleach mixture is on a 100% polypropylene carpet. Make sure to check the manufacturer of the carpet to find out if it is safe to clean with bleach. Most carpets should not be cleaned with bleach because they can lift the color and sometimes leave yellow stains that are hard to remove. Below are some tips on how to bleach clean a carpet.

  • Wear gloves, a mask, and goggles to protect yourself from the chemical.
  • Make sure that the room is well ventilated.
  • Mix 50% thin domestic bleach with 50% tap water to create a solution.
  • Use a spray bottle to evenly cover the carpet.
  • Let the solution soak into the carpet for 30 minutes.
  • Rinse thoroughly and dry.

Using Color Safe Bleach in Carpet Cleaner  

Bleach will stain a carpet so it should only be used to clean white or near-white carpets. Using bleach on a colored carpet will destroy its color. You can also use color-safe bleach but there is no guarantee that the color will not fade from the carpet. It is best to check with the carpet manufacturer for the best cleaning advice. We have also written this article that discusses if it is safe to put a computer tower on the carpet. Check out the article for an in-depth discussion about the topic.


You have reached the end of this post that discusses if you can put bleach in a carpet cleaner. Bleach should be the last resort when it comes to cleaning your carpet. We have learned that while bleach is a good disinfectant, it does not do much as a cleaner. Bleach is hazardous and can damage the carpet and the machine that you are using. In case you have no choice but to use bleach, we have shared tips above on how to properly clean your carpet using bleach. Thank you for reading!

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