Carpet Stains: Definitions
‘Spot’ and ‘stain’ are often used interchangeably, but for those in the know, there’s a slight but distinct difference. A spot adds substance or texture. These are things like flecks of food or dirt clods that get stuck in the carpet. A stain, meanwhile, adds color or dye. Common culprits are liquids like juice, coffee, and wine.
A discoloration, on the other hand, is the absence of color. Discoloration can often come from sun fading caused by ultraviolet light exposure or bleach. Yes, we call them ‘bleach stains,’ but they’re not really stains at all, based on our previous definition. Instead of adding color, bleach removes it entirely, which makes the affected area appear stained. Unfortunately, that means you won’t be able to get the bleach stain ‘out’ because there’s simply no color there to get out.
In other words, spots are (relatively) easy to remove, while dye stains are tough to lift and are sometimes permanent. On the other hand, discoloration means that part of the carpet’s dye is gone, and spot dying the affected area is the only solution.