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Can your carpet and furniture survive the potty training years? Upstate Parent spoke with two cleaning professionals who provided tips to avoid stains and odors.

“Use an absorbent cloth to soak up any excess liquid to keep a stain from forming,” said Jessica Swanson, owner of Merry Maids of Greenville.

Work fast, allow the area to air dry if possible, and spray with a disinfectant and odor neutralizer, she said.

Jen Greene of Jen Greene Clean suggests standing on old towels to soak up a mess. She even places sofa cushions on the floor and stands on them. Greene said many sofa covers, such as microfiber, are safe for the washing machine, but consult a manual first.

“Neutralize odor with baking soda,” Greene said. “Sprinkle on a generous amount and let it stand for as long as you can. Overnight is best. Then vacuum it away.”

For further stain removal, Greene recommends a method that should first be tested on an inconspicuous piece of fabric, such as the back of a sofa or under a cushion. She advises a spray of rubbing alcohol or vodka to soak the stain. Then, scrub with a white sponge and air dry.

The alcohol and vinegar are quick-drying and won’t create additional stains, she said. Once dry, she uses a hard bristle brush to fluff the fabric.

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