How to Remove Coffee Stains From a White Carpet


Stains can make even the best carpeting look old and worn. Coffee spills and drips are a common occurrence in most homes. They leave a brown, dingy mark on white carpet, and scrubbing at the coffee can make the problem worse because it spreads the stain and drives it deeper into the carpet fibers. Cleaning the coffee stain from the carpet as soon as you notice it makes cleanup simpler, but you can remove even older coffee stains if you treat them correctly.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper towels or clean white cloths
  • White vinegar
  • Spray bottle
  • Bleach-free, powdered dish or laundry soap
  • Blot up the liquid from a fresh coffee stain with a paper towel or clean white cloth, absorbing as much moisture as possible. Avoid rubbing, as this spreads the stain. Replace the towel as needed as you blot, and continue to blot until no more liquid is moistening the towel.

  • Mix 1/3 cup white vinegar with 2/3 cup water. Place this solution in a spray bottle and set the nozzle to the mist setting.

  • Mist the stain with the vinegar solution until it is saturated. Blot up the vinegar liquid with a new towel, replacing the towel as needed until the liquid is completely absorbed. Repeat a second time if necessary. Vinegar works to neutralize the stain but may not remove it completely.

  • Combine 1/2 tsp. bleach-free, powdered dish or laundry soap with 2 cups lukewarm tap water. Dip a towel into this mixture and rub it gently into the carpet with a blotting motion. Use a second clean towel to blot out the excess moisture. Repeat the process until the stain is removed.

  • Spray the area with clean water and blot it up with a towel. Repeat two or three times until all the detergent is removed from the carpet. Allow the spot to dry completely before walking over it.

Tips & Warnings

  • Vinegar neutralizes the odor, which is vital if there was cream or milk in the coffee. You can substitute a purchased enzyme cleaner for the vinegar.
  • Do not use bleach on white carpet. Bleach weakens the carpet fibers and it may also discolor them.

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  • Photo Credit sweeten coffee image by Radu Razvan from
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