How to Get Red Wine Out of Carpet for Good

Don't Panic: It's Possible, but Timing Is Important

How to Remove Red Wine Stains From Carpet illustration

The Spruce / Kyle Fewell

Project Overview
  • Working Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hr
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $0-$15

Red wine stains on clothing can be tricky, but red wine on carpet can be harder to get out. So how do you get that spilled red wine out of carpets? Most often you can't just pick it up and put the carpet in a washing machine. However, as long as you act promptly, you can usually prevent the red wine from permanently staining the carpet. You can afford to wait a couple of hours, but do not wait until the next day. Time is your enemy where tough stains are concerned.

Here's what you need to know about the red wine stain removal process.

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Watch Now: How to Remove Red Wine Stains From Carpet

Stain Type Tannin-based 
Detergent Type Stain remover
Water Temperature  Cold (hot, if old or dried stain)
Red wine carpet stain
The Spruce / Danielle Holstein

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Paper towels or white cloths
  • Vacuum cleaner

Materials

  • Water
  • Baking soda
  • Salt (optional)
  • Stain remover or carpet stain remover (optional)
  • Oxygen-based cleaner (optional)
  • Dishwashing liquid (optional)

Instructions

Carpet wine stain cleaning supplies
The Spruce / Danielle Holstein

Before You Begin

If you can't attend to the red wine stain on your carpet right away, at least blot it with paper towels and sprinkle salt on it. The salt will remove some of the wine that wasn't blotted up by absorbing it, and it can be vacuumed away later.

If you don't notice the red wine spill until after it has dried, the cleanup becomes more difficult. In this case, saturate the stain with hot water, apply a pre-treatment spot remover or carpet stain remover, and then apply any oxygen-based cleaning product (such as OxiClean) on the stain for two to 10 hours.

How to Remove Red Wine Stains From Carpet

  1. Blot the Stain Immediately

    Use a clean white cloth or paper towels to blot up as much of the red wine as you can right away. Alternate parts of the cloth to always blot using a fresh spot.

    Blotting red wine carpet stain
    The Spruce / Danielle Holstein
  2. Add Water to the Stained Area

    Pour a small amount of cool water onto the red wine stain on the carpet, and continue blotting. The water dilutes the red wine, which makes it easier to blot up. Do not pour too much water at a time, and switch out the blotting cloth for a dry one as you work. Continue blotting until no more stain can be removed using this method.

    Adding water directly to red wine stain
    The Spruce / Danielle Holstein
  3. Make a Baking Soda Paste

    Mix a paste with a 3-to-1 ratio of baking soda to water. Apply the paste directly to the carpet stain, and wait for it to dry completely before vacuuming up the dried paste.

    Applying baking soda paste to wine stain
    The Spruce / Danielle Holstein
  4. Apply a Carpet Stain Remover

    If any stain remains, apply a carpet stain remover according to the manufacturer's instructions. Typically, the process is to wait until the cleaning product dries and then vacuum.

    Applying carpet stain remover spray
    The Spruce / Danielle Holstein

How to Remove Red Wine Stains From White Carpet

Because white carpet doesn't have color dyes, you can try to bleach the stain using a hydrogen peroxide solution. Don't use this method on a colored carpet, as it can bleach out the dyes.

Tip

Test carpet stain removal techniques on a hidden area of your carpet to make sure of the results. This is true of carpets that have dye and even white carpets. Sometimes the stained area can become too clean and brighter than the surrounding area, which will make it stand out.

  1. Make a Cleaning Solution

    Mix 1 part dye-free dishwashing liquid with 2 parts hydrogen peroxide in place of using a commercial carpet stain remover.

    Cleaning solution using dishwashing liquid and hydrogen peroxide
    The Spruce / Danielle Holstein
  2. Apply and Remove the Solution

    Sponge on the solution. Allow it to work for several minutes, and then blot off with a clean cloth. Dip a clean cloth in plain water, and blot the area to remove any soapy residue.

    Use a sponge to apply cleaning solution
    The Spruce / Danielle Holstein

If everything you try fails to remove the stain, it is time to call in the pros. They can use industrial products to return your carpet to its pre-stain condition.

Watch Now: 5 Secret Stain-Busting Fixes for Red Wine Stains