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Many people want to know how to apply Scotchgard yourself

What is it

Most people have heard of the name Scotchgard but most people really don’t understand what it is or how it works or even if it works. we just know that Scotchgard is some sort of “stain-resistant protection”.  We also know that people are trying to sell us this protection. if we have our carpets cleaned professionally they will want to sell us protection after the cleaning. We also see it on store shelves in spray cans.  but what is it what is it really do. over the years I’ve heard this question many times so in this post I’m going to sync to answer those questions.

the questions I get most are

  1. What is it and what does it do?
  2. does it work?
  3. do I need it?
  4. how long does it last?

and of course what does it cost?

So let’s look at  these questions in order

What is Scotchgard?

Scotchgard is what’s called a fluorochemical, And simply put this is a chemical that changes the surface tension of the Material it’s applied to. I know, what is this a science class surface tension, I haven’t heard that since high school. So to put a little more simply Scotchgard is going to make your carpet less likely to absorb spills. Now, this can be a spill from oil such as a salad dressing or possibly a drink such as wine or soda. These products also make dirt less likely to stick to your carpet. So when you vacuum your carpet you will be able to pull more dry soil out leaving your carpet cleaner.

Does Scotchgard work?

I could simply say yes it works but I’m sure you want a little bit more information than that so let’s take a look. These products work very well and what they’re designed to do however they are not here to make your carpet Bulletproof. Even if your carpet has been treated with a product such as Scotchgard it can still be stained.

What they are designed to do is to give you a buffer of time between when the spill happens and when you get to clean it out. So if you’re having a party at your house and somebody spilled a glass of wine on the carpet you have more time to clean it up before this will become a stain. If your carpet is unprotected typically the spill will immediately soak in and stain your carpet.  However, if that same glass of wine is spilled on a protected piece of carpet it’s going to tend to stay on the surface for a longer period of time giving you time to clean it up.

I need to qualify the statement in a couple of ways, first of all, some spills will stain nearly immediately even if it is protected. typically hot drinks such as coffee or tea have a very good chance of staining really quickly even on a protected carpet. Also if you have a newer carpet you have a second line of defense already built into your carpet. This is what’s called an acid dye resistor. What this is is a colorless die that’s applied at the factory in order to fill up any areas of your carpet fiber that would potentially accept a dye such as you would find in many food products. So when you see one of those pictures where it shows a bead of liquid on top of a carpet this really isn’t necessary anymore with the newer acid dye resistors applied at the factories because it doesn’t matter if the liquid soaks in it still isn’t as able to stain your carpet.

So when you’re applying stain protector to carpet the biggest benefit to you is going to be oil and soil resistance. With a second benefit of resisting liquid spills. This job Scotchgard does very well.

Do I need to apply Scotchgard on my carpet?

I have to answer this question with that depends. It depends on how old your carpet is. A new carpet has carpet protection on it from the factory and there is no need to apply more protectant until your current protection is worn off. Carpet protectants are worn off over years of use. You will need to check your carpet warranty in order to find out how long this period of time is. To check this on your warranty just look at your stain resistance warranty. It will give you a period of time such as 5 years 10 years 20 years. Typically if you have a 10-year stain resistant warranty I would start applying new protection about 3/4 through your warranty. This will ensure that you will always have a layer of protection on your carpet.

it depends on how much traffic is in your home. If you have 7 people living in your home many of those children then it will probably be a good idea to have your carpet protected. It depends on how many people in your home tend to spill things.  if two adults and six kids live in your home then it’s probably a good idea to protect the carpet. However, if there are just one or two people and you’re pretty easy on your carpet and you don’t spill a lot it may not be necessary.

I mean, of course, we don’t really have to have a carpet protector on our carpet. The carpet is going to perform the job it is designed to do. however, if you have a lot of traffic in your home, or your kids tend to spill drinks on your carpet, or you have pets in your home then yes you should apply protection to your carpet.

I have seen the result of Applied protectant over many years.  you will be able to go longer between cleanings. your spots and Spills will be removed easier. and your carpet is going to last longer.

Scotchgard can make your carpet last longer.

I’m going to explain that last one a little better. I said your carpet will last longer, How is that? You need to understand one thing that happens to the carpet when it gets dirty. First of all, dirt, if you break it down, is basically tiny bits of sand or silica. These bits are just tiny shards of glass that are stuck in the fibers of your carpet. Now every time you walk on your carpet these pieces of glass are going to scratch and cut your carpet fibers over and over again. As a result of your carpet fiber which when it was new was shiny and clear, is now scratched and dull. Therefore when you do clean your carpet and that dirt is removed the carpet is still going to look scratched and dull. It’s not going to reflect light as it should and is never going to look truly clean again. This is permanent damage and cannot be reversed. Carpet protectors make it easier for you to remove these dry soils and as a result, your carpet will last longer and look better.

How long does Scotchgard last?

if you’re talking about new carpet, that was covered in the last section you will need to check your warranty.  a new application of Scotch Guard will typically last several years. However, Scotchgard is best to be applied in traffic areas more often. That being said you don’t have to guess if you need Scotchgard there is a very easy way to test for this.

All you need to do is get an eye dropper and some baby oil. Get a small amount of baby oil in the eyedropper, and put one drop of baby oil on the carpet you would like to check. I suggest you check several areas in your home. Those areas should be the hallway, bedroom next to the beds, and the living room main area And in front of the sofa.  You will also want to check an area of your home that’s not heavily trafficked. Checking all these areas will give you an idea of where your protection is still active and where it is not.

When you apply a drop of oil in an area that has sufficient protection still active it will tend to bead up on top of the carpet fiber. However, if the area is in need of a new application of Scotchgard it will immediately soak into the fiber.

How much does Scotchgard cost?

again that depends, if you’re having a professional apply the Scotchgard for you it’s going to set you back between 20 to 40 cents per foot. so if you’re applying it to 500 square feet it will cost you between $100 and $200.

Can you save money by applying Scotchgard yourself? absolutely positively yes.

this is one of the easiest products to use. If you can use a pump up sprayer you can apply this product there is nothing to it.

So this is how to apply Scotchgard yourself.

things you will need to do this job

  1. Scotchgard
  2. A clean pump up sprayer with a teejet 8004 tip
  3. clean broom (push broom is best)

One thing before you start applying Scotchgard to your carpet. Scotchgard is meant to be applied at the time of a cleaning. so whether you clean it yourself or have somebody clean it.  After the cleaning process is finished then it is time to apply Scotchgard to your carpet. Carpet protection should not be applied to any uncleaned carpet.

One thing that you will need to check if you already have a pump up sprayer is that you can change the tip.  Protectants are to be sprayed with a 8004 tee jet tip which will spray a fine mist and give you the best distribution. This tip will also spray in a fan pattern in order to make it easier for you to apply, You don’t want to use a sprayer that has a cone tip it will be very difficult to get an even application with it.  If your sprayer does not take teejet tips then you will either need to get a new sprayer or change the wand.  Here is a link to a good sprayer that is able to change tips. If you have a sprayer already you can usually find a kit to change your spray wand to one that is able to change tips at your local home center.

Remember one gallon of Scotchgard concentrate will make 5 gallons of ready-to-use spray. that amount of product will cover around 1000 square feet. Depending on your carpet. a thicker carpet takes slightly more than a thinner carpet.

Keep in mind when you’re figuring out how much product you need you are only going to apply it to areas that you found lacking when you tested them earlier. If you only need it in the hallway and the living room in front of the sofa then that’s where you apply it. There is no need to apply any Scotchgard to an area that is already protected.

What you need to do before mixing the product is to measure the square footage of the area you’ll actually be applying to.  You then only want to mix enough product to cover that particular area. One ready to use gallon of mixed solution will cover around 200 square feet.

To mix the product simply mix 1 part Scotchgard with 4 Parts warm water. You can apply the mix directly into the pump up sprayer. So if you want to Cover 200 square feet mix a gallon of product.  just put four cups or product to one gallon of water, that will give you slightly more then you need but you’re not going to waste any product.

After it’s mixed you’re ready to apply the Scotchguard.

depending on the area it may be easiest to remove or pull back any furniture that you will be close to. this will ensure that nothing gets in your way as you’re walking around your room spraying.

This technique will ensure that you get an even application Of Scotchgard.  

Pump up the sprayer until it is fairly tight with pressure.

  1. Walk at a slow pace in One Direction holding the spray pattern perpendicular to the direction you are walking. Make sure when you are spraying that you are moving the spray nozzle before you pull the trigger so you don’t spray too much in one spot. When you get to the end of the area you’re spraying turn around and walk the other direction overlapping your spray 50%. Continue in this manner until you’ve covered the entire area that you’re trying to treat.
  2. Next, change your direction 90 degrees. Then using the same technique spray the same area. If you are doing a small area such as the area in front of a sofa just walk slowly forward then slowly back over the same area.
  3. Finally, take a clean broom and sweep back and forth over the entire area that you treated. This will ensure that the product is distributed well over the entire carpet being treated.

After you apply Scotchgard to your carpet you want to make sure that you stay off of it as much as possible. also turn on any fans that may be in the area to aid in drying.

well as you can see you can apply Scotchgard to your own carpet. It’s not even that difficult. Plus once this application is finished it will last several years. Applying Scotchgard to your carpet is truly a great investment. You will notice next time you clean your carpet that it will clean easier and leave you with a better result.

I hope this article was helpful to you.  always clean like a pro.