Whether you are enjoying a steaming cup of hot tea or a frosty glass of iced tea, spills can spell big trouble for your carpet. Teas are loaded with tannins, natural astringent compounds that can stain fabric, upholstery, fine china, and even teeth.
Removing tea stains requires dilution with water, a strong stain remover, and sometimes an acidic agent like household white vinegar. Most importantly, act fast to begin treatment as soon after a tea spill as possible. This will greatly improve your chances of completely removing the stain from your carpet.
|Detergent Type||Carpet stain remover|
Before You Begin
It is critical to act quickly when trying to remove spilled tea from a carpet—especially a white or light-colored carpet. Tea can leave dark brown or red marks that will be much harder to eliminate once the spill dries. Immediately after a spill, blot the liquid without rubbing per the instructional steps below.
If you are faced with a dry tea stain, begin with Step 2, repeatedly rinsing and blotting with cold water. The stain may not completely disappear, even with repeated efforts and the best stain removers, but it may fade a bit and become less obvious.
Equipment / Tools
- Sponge (optional)
- Clean, white cloths
- Carpet stain remover
- White vinegar (optional)
Steps To Remove Tea Stains From Carpet
Blot to Soak up the Stain
Blot up as much of the tea stain as possible by using a clean white cloth. Continue to blot until no more liquid is transferred onto the cloth and the area seems almost dry.
Rinse to Dilute the Stain
Pour a small amount of water onto the stained area and continue blotting up the liquid. This dilutes the remaining tea a little bit, but you will still be able to soak it up with a clean cloth.
Repeat until the cloth repeatedly appears clean after blotting and the area feels almost dry to the touch.
Apply Stain Remover
Apply a carpet stain remover according to the directions.
Air Dry and Vacuum
Allow the stained area to air dry. If you are satisfied with your results, vacuum the area to lift the carpet fibers and diminish any trace of the stain removal process.
If you still see traces of the tea stain after the carpet air dries, then try the next step, which employs the power of white vinegar.
Treat a Stubborn Stain With Vinegar
- Sponge a solution of white vinegar diluted with water (one part vinegar to one part water) onto the stain.
- Allow it to sit for five to 10 minutes.
- Rinse with cold water and blot up the liquid with a clean white cloth until almost dry.
- Allow the spot to air dry and then vacuum to lift the carpet fibers.
Additional Tips for Handling Tea Stains
Tea stains can reappear on a carpet, even after diligent cleaning, if the liquid deeply penetrates the carpet backing or padding. When this is the case, the stain can wick up through the fibers within hours, days, or even longer. Sometimes, a seemingly stainless area may get wet years later and suddenly draw up dark remnants of the original tea spill.
If the stain reoccurs, don't be too quick to ditch the carpet. First, check the padding underneath. If the stains in the padding are particularly bad, consider changing the padding, which is a much cheaper solution than replacing the whole carpet.