It’s Friday night, you’re hosting a party, and someone spills red wine all over your carpet. What do you do? Don’t panic! We’ve got the answer.
In this blog post, we’ll teach you how to get wine out of the carpet and avoid permanent staining. We’ll also share some tips on preventing wine stains from occurring in the first place. And, don’t worry. They have nothing to do with never inviting guests over again.
First Aid: Pre-Cleaning Steps
When wine finds its way onto your carpet, there’s no time to waste! The spill typically gets harder to clean as it dries out.
You need to grab a few household items and immediately get that wine stain out of the carpet! But before you get down to it, there are a few things you should do:
Blot What You Can
Use a clean, white cloth (to prevent color bleeds) and try to absorb as much wine as possible. Avoid rubbing to avoid spreading the stain.
Choose a Suitable Cleaning Method
The materials you can safely use to get red wine out of a wool carpet aren’t the same as those you can use with synthetic rugs and carpets. Materials like leather, wool, silk, and burlap require a special cleaning method we discuss below.
Test the Cleaner
Apply the cleaning solution to an inconspicuous place on your carpet, and see how it works. This way, you’ll know whether it’s safe to use and avoid ruining the carpet.
How to Get Wine Stains Out of a Carpet: Fresh Spills
As mentioned above, the first step is to blot the spill with a clean white cloth. Press the cloth down firmly and lift it straight up. Avoid rubbing motions to avoid spreading the stain.
Once you’ve blotted as much wine as possible, cover the affected area with paper towels and weigh them down with something heavy. This will help absorb the remaining wine.
Now, it’s time to start treating the stain! Here are a few ways that guarantee an effective white and red wine stain removal:
Mix equal parts white vinegar and water In a bowl. Apply the mixture to the stain using a clean cloth, and blot until it’s gone.
2. Baking Soda
If the stain is still there, you can try mixing baking soda and water (three parts of baking soda and one part of water). Apply the mixture to the stained area. Let it sit for a few minutes before blotting it dry.
3. Hydrogen Peroxide
You can also get red wine out of your carpet with hydrogen peroxide and dishwashing soap:
- Mix two parts of hydrogen peroxide with one part of dishwashing soap.
- Pour it over the stain.
- Let it sit for a few minutes, and then blot it dry with a clean cloth.
You may need to repeat this process a few times to get the stain completely out.
Keep in mind that hydrogen peroxide may cause discoloration, so don’t forget to test the cleaning solution on a small, inconspicuous area first.
4. Club Soda
You can also try using club soda to get rid of wine stains. Pour club soda over the stain and blot until it’s gone. You may need to repeat the process a few times if dealing with tougher stains.
Try to get red wine out of the carpet with OxiClean or other brands of oxi cleaners. To do this, follow the instructions on the package. Usually, you only need to apply the cleaner to the affected area and let it sit for a few minutes before blotting it dry.
6. Elbow Grease
If you’ve tried all of the methods and the stain is still there, you may need a little Elbow Grease. Try scrubbing the area with a soft bristle brush or toothbrush. You may not be able to get it all out, but it should definitely lighten the stain.
7. Salt, Cornstarch, and Other Absorbing Agents
When dealing with a fresh spill, there’s an easier way to mop up the wine than the old-fashioned blotting. All you need to remove the red wine stain is a product that can absorb it in no time.
You can use salt, cornstarch, or baking soda.
Use the amount needed to sparingly cover the area and let it sit for 15–20 minutes. If you’re cleaning larger spills, you can leave the absorbing agents on your carpet overnight. Once the spot is dry, vacuum the area to remove the residue.
8. Commercial Wine Stain Remover or Enzyme Cleaner
If all this doesn’t work, you can also try using an enzyme cleaner. These cleaners are specifically designed to break down stains (those containing protease are specifically suited for wine stains), so they should do the trick!
Commercial stain removers usually come in the concentrated spray form and can be used both for fresh and set-in wine stains.
In addition to carpets, you can use these products to remove wine stains from all kinds of textiles, including clothes and even your quality reading chair upholstery.
How to Get White Wine Out of Carpet
As you might have guessed, white wine and champagne spills are easier to clean than red wine stains.
The only tools you need to deal with fresh white wine stains are water and some clean towels:
- Blot the spilled area with a dry white cloth or paper towel to remove as much of the wine as possible.
- Wash the area with a wet sponge or a water-soaked cloth.
- Blot the area with a dry cloth.
- Air-dry the carpet (away from direct sunlight).
Here’s what you need to do if you’re dealing with a dried white wine/champagne stain:
- Blot the area as soon as possible (use a white cloth, absorbent pad, or paper towel).
- Make a cleaning solution (pour a tablespoon of liquid soap into two cups of warm water).
- Work the solution into the stain.
- Soak the sponge with water and thoroughly rinse (make sure to rinse even the tiniest bit of soapy water — if any residue is left, it can become a dirt magnet and lead to other types of staining).
- Vacuum the carpet to raise the fibers.
How to Get Dried Red Wine Out of the Carpet
If the wine has already dried, you’ll need to pre-treat the stain to make it easier to remove or use a more powerful cleaning agent:
Method 1: Lemon Juice and Table Salt
- Apply ice-cold water to the stain to soften it. If you’re lucky, water will dilute much of the red wine stain on your carpet. Never use hot water to get red wine out of the carpet — this promotes the stain setting.
- Try to blot as much wine out of the carpet as possible.
- Pour non-diluted lemon juice generously over the affected area so that it’s entirely soaked.
- Add some table salt to the front and back of the affected area and massage it in.
- Let it sit in for a few minutes.
- Rinse with cold water.
- Blot dry with a towel.
Method 2: Hydrogen Peroxide and Dish Soap
You can get out dried red wine stains the way you would fresh ones — by mixing two cleaning agents you certainly have in your home — hydrogen peroxide and dishwashing liquid:
- Combine three parts of hydrogen peroxide and one part of dish soap.
- Apply the mixture to the stain.
- Allow it to sit for 20 minutes to an hour.
- Blot as much wine as you can.
- Rinse the affected area.
Method 3: Club Soda and Vinegar
Using club soda is an excellent way to get a red wine stain out of the carpet since it can remove the red pigment from the carpet fibers in no time.
All you need to do is pour some club soda on the stain, wait for a minute, and blot it away. You can also add some vinegar to boost effectiveness.
Method 4: Commercial Cleaning Solution
The easiest way to get rid of dried red wine stains from clothing, carpets, and other fabrics is by using a commercial cleaner. Take your oxi cleaner or a specialized wine stain remover and follow the instructions on the product.
Always try these products on a small area of your carpet first to avoid damage or discoloration.
How to Remove a Wine Stain From a Delicate Carpet
Removing a wine stain can be tricky if you have a light-colored carpet or a carpet made of delicate fabric (e.g., leather, wool, silk, burlap, etc.).
But with a bit of know-how, it’s definitely possible.
Method 1: Wet Spotter and Vinegar
- Blot up as much wine as possible.
- Use a wet sponge on the stain.
- Apply a fabric-friendly spotter and a few drops of white vinegar to the stain.
- Dampen the absorbent pad with the spotter and cover the stain with it.
- Wait until there’s no trace of it (keep the pad moist and occasionally change pads if necessary).
- Rinse with water (and repeat the process if necessary).
Method 2: Rubbing Alcohol
You can also use rubbing alcohol and absorbent pads to dampen and raise a red wine stain:
- Apply the rubbing alcohol directly to the stain.
- Cover the stain with the absorbent pad.
- Wait until the stain disappears (keep the pad and the stain moist by occasionally adding more rubbing alcohol to them).
- Change pads as soon as they become saturated.
Method 3: Liquid Laundry Detergent
Liquid detergent can be an excellent wine stain remover, especially when it comes to cleaning old, stubborn stains on carpets made of delicate fabrics:
- Pour a tablespoon of wool- and silk-safe liquid laundry detergent into a cup of warm water.
- Dampen the affected area with the cleaning solution you’ve just prepared.
- Soak the absorbent pad with the cleaning solution, wring it well, and place it on the affected area.
- Let it sit for at least 30 minutes.
- Rinse with water and air-dry.
For more tips, you can check out our guide on cleaning a wool rug.
How to Prevent Wine Stains
There are a few things you can do to prevent wine stains:
- Don’t drink wine on your carpet! This may seem like an obvious thing, but it’s worth mentioning.
- Don’t let kids run around the serving table. We know they’re cute, but those little guys can be quite clumsy.
- Don’t use white wine as a cleaner. This is a myth! You can’t get red wine out of the carpet with white wine.
- Use spill-proof coasters and a tray to prevent any accidental spills.
- Open the wine in the kitchen and then pour it into a glass before bringing it into the living room. This way, if you do spill, it’ll be on your tile or hardwood floors which are much easier to clean than carpet.
- Use a tablecloth made from absorbent materials! It’ll soak up the wine and prevent it from getting on the floor.
We hope this guide helped get that pesky wine stain out of your carpet! Remember, if all else fails, you can always call a professional. They’ll know how to deal with the stain and get your carpet looking as good as new.
If you have any tips and tricks regarding getting rid of wine stains, make sure to share them in the comments below! We’d love to hear from you. Thanks for reading!
Will baking soda remove red wine from the carpet?
You bet! When combined with water and turned into a paste, baking soda will effectively absorb the wine and lift the stain due to its slightly alkaline and abrasive properties.
Does salt get red wine out of the carpet?
Like baking soda or cornstarch, salt can also eliminate red wine from your carpet.
Generously sprinkle salt on the affected area and let it sit for as long as possible, preferably overnight. Then, vacuum it up, and that’s it!
Are wine stains permanent?
They don’t have to be!
Wine is very difficult to remove once the stain sets, but there are still a couple of things you can do to get it out. Check out our guide above to find out how to get wine out of the carpet after it’s dried.