Skip to content
tough carpet stains
Floor & Surface Cleaning

Cleaning Carpets and Rugs: How to Remove Stubborn Stains

Do you want to get rid of those tough carpet stains like shoe polish, ink, and rust? This article provides some useful solutions for the toughest stains!

Carpet stains can give even a tidy home the appearance of being disorderly and messy. Many homeowners, therefore, find themselves asking how to get stains out of carpets so that rooms can look clean and fresh. But tackling carpet stains can be a difficult task, as certain types of spills stain carpet fibers more severely than others. This article will suggest solutions for some of the hardest carpet stains to remove. While these methods will work in the majority of cases, bear in mind that effective carpet stain removal also depends on your type of carpet. Always be sure to follow your carpet’s care instructions to prevent any damage.

Removing Rust Stains from Carpets

Rust stains can be particularly difficult to remove from carpets because of their unique chemical composition. Rust is made up of iron oxide, and certain store-bought chemical stain removers can actually set, rather than lift rust stains. Be sure to apply a carpet stain remover made specifically for rust stains to prevent them from getting worse. Rust stain removal gets the best results when you mix carpet stain remover with all natural ingredients to help break down the rust:

  1. First apply the rust carpet stain remover liberally over the stain with a sponge.
  2. Let it settle for about five minutes, then, rub with a sponge soaked in warm water. You should see immediate results.
  3. Next squeeze a generous amount of lemon juice over the stain and pour salt granules on top. Let the mixture sit for about 24 hours.
  4. The next day, rinse the area by blotting with a wet towel and repeat if necessary.

Removing Shoe Polish From Carpets

Shoe polish stains can leave a thick, sticky and unsightly residue on your carpet if you do not act quickly. To eliminate shoe polish stains follow these steps:

  1. Remove all loose shoe polish by scraping the stained area first. Remember not to rub the stain, but use a firm scraping motion to lift the top layers of shoe polish off the carpet.
  2. Sponge the area with water and carpet stain remover.
  3. Rinse the sponge in a bucket of warm water whenever you see that it begins to pick up the shoe polish.
  4. Continue until the stain has faded.

Removing Oil Stains From Carpets

Oil stains are quickly removed from carpets in this easy process:

  1. Place a paper towel on the stained area and blot continuously. Keep blotting until the paper towel is no longer picking up any oil.
  2. Mix a small amount of dishwashing liquid with water and sponge directly on the stain
  3. Rinse and let dry.

Removing Ink Stains From Carpets

To remove black ink from your carpet, you can try the following method:

  1. Dab the spot with a dry cloth to remove any obvious ink. Cover the stain with a layer of salt, and allow it to sit for about 8 hours or overnight. Fully vacuum the area the next day, and the salt should lift much of the ink with it.

Top Tip


Swift action is important when removing tough carpet stains. Determine the correct method for the type of spill and act as soon as possible to get the best results.

Key Steps:

  1. Act as soon as possible to remove the stain.
  2. Blot with a paper towel or clean cloth.
  3. Use the recommended stain remover for the type of spill.