How to fix a burned carpet

How to fix a burned carpet
(Image credit: Getty Images)

All it takes is placing an iron down for one second too long to have you searching for how to fix a burned carpet. It can be caused by many things around your home, from cigarette ash to forgotten hair tools, resulting in unpleasant marks. Unfortunately, it's not a stain that can be easily cleaned up, but there's no need to panic. It will require a little bit more care to get your carpet back to in its best shape, however, some clever tricks can help you to remove any evidence that a burn ever happened.

While you target burns and stains, it's likely you'll also want to find out how to clean your carpet (opens in new tab) thoroughly so that the flooring in your home is as spotless as can be. There are a number of different methods to try, from using one of the best vacuum cleaners (opens in new tab) to homemade vinegar solutions to calling in the professionals, that will sanitize your space as well as give it a fresh look. 

So regardless of whether you've scalded a small spot of carpet or a larger area that may need replacing, we've rounded up some handy instructions to let you repair it at home.

How to fix a small patch of burned carpet

What the expert says...

We spoke to Mallory Micetich, Home Care Expert at Angi (opens in new tab), who says, "One way to fix a burn is by replacing the damaged area with unscorched carpet from somewhere else in the house. The carpet behind a door or inside of a closet is a perfect choice since it's not as visible."

Left your hair straightener resting on the floor? The good news is accidents like this that cause smaller burns are relatively easy to fix, without replacing a huge chunk of carpet. If the burn has only affected the fibers, and not worn down to the pad, you can do a quick patch-up. 

Mallory Micetich, Home Care Expert at Angi (opens in new tab), recommends "cutting and removing the burned carpet fibers" before using a glue gun to stick down new fibers, cut from an inconspicuous area in your home. This acts as a surface-level operation as opposed to a larger job and will mimic the look of a brand new carpet without the hassle of fully replacing a significant portion of flooring. 

For really small burns, such as those caused by falling ash, you can target the spot with some sandpaper in the following method. 

1. Smooth the area

Using medium-grit sandpaper, sand the burned patch of carpet until it has been smoothed down. 

2. Vacuum any dust

Create a clean work area and remove any sandpaper dust by vacuuming the debris away.

3. Snip the scorched fibers

Using some scissors, cut off any lasting scorched fibers to get the area prepped.

4. Comb the carpet

With a soft brush, blend the fibers together until the damaged area has been disguised. 

How to fix a large patch of burned carpet 

Large areas of burned carpet are likely to require significantly more attention to get them back into their pre-accident state, however, there is an at-home fix. Mallory commented that "If the burn made its way down to the carpet pad, you’ll want to either replace it with a new patch of carpet or replace the entire carpet." This can be a costly job, so where possible, we recommend finding a hidden piece of carpet that you can cut and switch out. 

Alternatively, she says "If it’s a bigger burn, you’ll want to call in a carpet repair specialist. They’ll be able to assess the situation and provide an expert opinion on whether or not the carpet can be saved or if it’s time to replace it." 

1. Vacuum the area  

Clean up the area so it's easy to work in by vacuuming up any dirt or dust.

2. Cut around the burned spot

Using a carpet knife, carefully cut around the burned area. Avoid slicing all the way through to the carpet underlay, instead, just remove the top layer. 

3. Trim around a new patch of carpet

Line up the cut-out burned piece of carpet with the area of unscathed flooring you want to use. When this is aligned, use the carpet knife to cut around the pattern.

4. Apply carpet tape 

Stick carpet tape to the underlay of the area you want to replace, ready for the new piece of flooring to go down. 

5. Stick down the new carpet 

Line up the new piece of carpet and press it into place until it's stuck down on the tape.  

6. Clean up

Vacuum the area again to remove any dust and brush the new fibers so that they blend with the surrounding carpet. 

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Holly is the Features Editor at Top Ten Reviews where she focuses on creating informative, how-to advice. She has a degree in English Literature and previously worked as a copywriter at Howdens, specializing in kitchens and trend-led interiors. When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her exploring the best London bars and brunch spots, or planning the next budget-friendly city break. 

With contributions from