How to remove oil stains from carpet

how to remove oil stains from carpet

Carpets are prone to getting all sorts of stains, and you can’t exactly put your entire carpet inside the washing machine for a quick fix when you encounter them. Fortunately, there are several ways you can get rid of stubborn stains on your carpet, including oil stains.

You can remove oil stains from carpet using dish soap, baking soda, and cornstarch. These techniques are easy to do, and can also help maintain your carpet in its best condition. Read more to see how each technique can help.

A simple dish soap solution

Carpets are prone to stains because of their absorbent fibers that suck up any form of liquid that you may accidentally spill on them. One way you can remove these stubborn stains is by using dish soap. This method is straightforward, cost-effective, and can help you bring back your carpet to its former glory. 

The following are the steps to remove oil stains from your carpet using dishwashing liquid.

  1. Get a paper towel and start blotting the stained area of the carpet. Continue until the stain visibly lightens or when the paper towel is no longer absorbing the stain.
  2. Grab a clean cloth and soak it in alcohol. Start blotting the stained area again. Never wipe the stain since it may spread it more.
  3. Before the stained area completely dries up, create a solution of dishwashing soap and water. Do this by mixing three cups of water and five tablespoons of dish soap inside a pail or container.
  4. Grab a sponge and soak it in the dish soap and water solution. Start blotting the stained area until they’re completely gone.
  5. Once there is no visible stain left, dry the formerly stained area using a clean cloth.
  6. When the carpet fully dries, vacuum it to get rid of residue and bring back your beautiful carpet, minus the stains.
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When choosing a dish soap to use in this method, ensure that it doesn’t contain any bleach or lanolin as these chemicals can damage your carpet’s fabric.

Using baking soda and dry-cleaning solvent

Oil stains can come in many forms, including motor oil, cooking oil, or essential oils, and once these come in contact with your carpet, they can leave unsightly stains. One of the best items that you can use to remove oil stains is baking soda because it’s an alkali, meaning it can easily dissolve oil. Pair it with commercial dry-cleaning solvents, and you’ll have a stain-free carpet in no time.

Here’s how you can remove oil stains from your carpet with the help of baking soda and commercial dry-cleaning solvent.

  1. Using a butter knife, start scraping the oil residue from the carpet to help you get rid of the stains faster. Be gentle when scraping because pressing too hard can damage your carpet.
  2. After scraping most of the oil stain, put a generous amount of baking soda powder on the stained area and leave it on the stain for 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. After the allotted time, vacuum your carpet to remove the baking soda residue. At this point, you’ll see that the stains have visibly lightened.
  4. Remove the stains completely with the help of a dry-cleaning solvent. Place three drops of the solvent on a clean cloth and start blotting the lightened oil stains.
  5. Once there are no visible stains left, rinse the formerly-stained area using a damp cloth.

Cornstarch can also be helpful

Like baking soda, cornstarch is an alkali, making it a perfect stain removal agent for oil stains. It can quickly absorb oil from your carpet, allowing you to get rid of these stubborn stains with ease. You can find cornstarch at your local grocery stores, or you may already have it in your kitchen pantry.

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Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to remove oil stains using cornstarch. 

  1. Start by blotting the stained area using a paper towel or an old cloth. Doing this helps in preventing the stain from spreading further.
  2. After blotting the oil stains, put a generous amount of cornstarch on the stained area.
  3. Once you’ve placed enough cornstarch on the different stained areas, quickly brush those areas gently to help the cornstarch absorb the oil faster.
  4. After brushing all the areas, let the cornstarch settle on the carpet for an hour for the best results.
  5. After an hour, vacuum your carpet to remove the remaining cornstarch residue.
  6. Once there is no visible stain left, rinse your carpet using a damp cloth and let it air dry.

Common questions about oil stains

What is the fastest way to remove oil stains from my carpet?

The fastest way you can eliminate oil stains from your carpet is using a commercial carpet cleaner. But if you don’t have the time to go to the store and buy this product, you can also use rubbing alcohol. You probably have it at home already and all you need to do is apply small amounts of it on the stained areas. You can also follow the methods above to help you solve your stain problem with ease.

Does salt get rid of oil stains?

Yes, salt can help remove oil stains because of its absorbent nature. Salt’s absorbency can soak up grease or oil, making it easier for you to eliminate these stubborn stains. It works on most surfaces, and you can even sprinkle some salt on fresh spills to prevent them from leaving stains on your carpet or clothes

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Can I use vinegar in removing the oil stains on my carpet?

You can use it, but it’s not advisable. Vinegar and bleach have high acid content that can discolor the fabric of your carpet. If you overdo it, there’s no other way to undo the damage. However, you can use vinegar as long as you test it first on a hidden part of your carpet. If no discoloration occurs, you can use it to remove the oil stains from your carpet.

If you accidentally bleach your carpet, read here to find out how to remove bleach stains from carpet.

The bottom line

The oil stains on your carpet can be an eyesore, especially if you have an important event or occasion. Fortunately, removing these stubborn stains isn’t an impossible task. With the techniques and methods above, you can now remove these annoying stains from your carpet.

how to remove oil stains from carpet

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