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When you planned your redecoration, you didn’t expect to spill paint on the carpet. Don’t panic! It’s frustrating, but accidents happen to us all. I won’t sugar coat what you already know, ‘paint is difficult to remove.’ But the good news is that with the right carpet stain remover and a little persistence, it might be possible to get the paint out of your carpet.
However, the success in restoring your carpet will largely depend on what products you use, how quickly you take action, and your technique. While you will get better and faster results on paint spills that you treat straight away. Even dried-on paint can sometimes be removed from the carpet to some degree.
If you are wondering what will remove paint from your carpet, then read on. In this article, I am sharing five effective solutions to remove paint and get your carpets back to how they should be
The Best Products to Remove Paint from Your Carpet
If you don’t fancy the idea of purchasing a new carpet, then you can try to preserve your carpet by removing the stain yourself. There are so many products that claim to help that it can get pretty confusing to know which one will do the best job.
The first step to choosing the right product is knowing the paint base of the paint that needs to be removed. Most paints are water-based, but oil-based paints are also frequently used.
Knowing the difference can save you lots of time and can be the difference between getting the paint stain out or having to buy a brand-new carpet.
Here are 5 carpet stain removing products that can help you with your paint removal.
Folex Carpet Spot Remover – Best for Homes with Kids and Pets
Folex Carpet cleaner is a strong stain remover that is tough on stains but gentle on the skin. This stain remover is water-based, so it isn’t flammable, or toxic, and there’s no awful odor to deal with. Folex can only be used safely on colorfast carpets. So if you are unsure about the type of carpet that you have, test it on a small unseen area first.
What I Think About Folex
This stain remover removes a wide range of stains, including some water-based paint stains. The manufacturer doesn’t advertise it for paint removal though, so it can feel like a bit of a risk buying it, and it isn’t cheap.
While some light stains like grease and dirt are removed almost instantly without much effort. Paint stains tend to take a bit more work, and you may need to leave it to soak in a bit. If you repeat the process a few times, you might get better results, especially if the paint is already dry. This might be a great stain remover to try if you have kids or pets at home.
- It comes in an easy-to-use spray bottle.
- The liquid doesn’t stink and is safe around kids and pets.
- You don’t have to wash it out of the carpet.
- Safe on colorfast carpets.
- You don’t need to rinse or vacuum the carpet afterward.
- Folex manufacturers say that paint that has dyed the carpet may not be removable.
- A bit pricey when compared to other brands.
Spot Shot Professional Instant Carpet Stain Remover – Best Universal Stain Remover
Spot Shot is a product made by the WD-40 company. That works on eliminating stains and odors by breaking them down. You could expect to see great results on new stains and old ones. But for really challenging stains you might not notice instant results with just one application. Make sure that your carpet is colorfast as it may remove the original color from your carpet otherwise.
What I think about Spot Shot
This product worked well to remove some paint stains and even dried on paint stains. It wasn’t instant on all stains but letting the remover sit on the for 5 minutes between applications helped. I like that it didn’t leave a soapy feeling on the carpet either or make the fibers go hard after it dried. A bottle of this lasts for a long time, has a pleasant smell, and is very easy to use. I think this could be a great product to try if you want the dual benefit of freshening and cleaning the carpet.
- This product has a low price point.
- Spot shot not only cleans but also deodorizes the carpet.
- Safe for most carpet types.
- It removes both old and new stains.
- This works on both oil-based and water-based stains.
- It is environmentally friendly and non-toxic.
- It is advertised as removing stains instantly, but paint stains are not removed immediately and tend to need a bit more time.
Blue Magic 900 Carpet Stain & Spot Lifter – Best Multi-Purpose Cleaner
Blue Magic 900 comes in an aerosol can and works on any kind of carpet, so you can use it in your house or in your car. It’s easy to use, you just spray the stain, let it soak in for 30 seconds, and then blot. Although the manufacturers don’t specifically say that this works on paint, it can lift paint out of carpets and rugs.
What I Think About Blue Magic
This product is smelly, but strangely the smell gives me confidence that it can lift impossible stains like paint. Thankfully after a short time, the smell does go away as do most of the stains that this works on. For older stains leave it to soak in a bit longer and repeat if the paint hasn’t lifted. I wouldn’t use it indoors around kids, pets, or without proper ventilation. But I think it could be a great product to try if you want one product for all of your outdoor and indoor carpets.
- This product comes with a guarantee and is very efficient.
- Works on both oil and water-based stains.
- No need to vacuum afterward.
- The bottle is smaller than other brands at 22oz.
- This is one of the most expensive cleaners on the list.
- You can’t control how much product you are using.
- The aerosol smell is strong.
Goo Gone Adhesive Remover – Best for Fresh Stains
Goo Gone gets a thumbs up for removing fresh stains like paint from carpets and other surfaces. It prides itself on removing any gooey, gummy, and sticky issues off your carpet. If you thought paint was troublesome, Goo Gone boosts the ability to clean up tar, candle wax, and glue off carpets. While most stains are cleaned up quickly, more challenging stains need time and a potentially repeated process.
What I Think About Goo Gone
This is a great product with a lemony smell, but the pour bottle is a weak point and makes the application messy and imprecise. However, the results when this product gets to work are impressive if you leave it to soak into a stain for 10 minutes it might be able to lift it.
The results with old paint were a bit hit and miss, but it works quite well with wet paint and new spills. This could be a good product to consider if you only have a small area to clean, as it does leave a greasy residue behind, which can be hard to clean off the carpet.
- Has a lovely citrus smell.
- The manufacturer lists paint as one of the stains to remove.
- A little goes a long way.
- Tiny 2 oz pour bottle.
- Expensive for the size of the bottle.
- It has a greasy feeling, so you have to clean it afterward with soap and water.
- This contains petroleum distillates, so it has toxic properties.
Forpro Professional Acetone – Best for Dissolving Hard to Shift Paint Stains
Acetone is a very efficient flammable solvent that is best known for its use in nail polish remover. As well as dissolving old dried paint acetone will remove wet paint, dirt, and grease. But while this product is effective, it stinks badly and is toxic for your health. It should only be used when windows are open and when wearing full protective gear.
What I Think About Acetone
Acetone can definitely get paint stains out of carpets, the issue is that it isn’t limited to only affecting the paint. If used incorrectly, acetone can also ruin the backing of your carpet. It is important not to pour acetone directly onto the stain because it will affect everything it touches. However, if you know how to use acetone, it could be a great cleaner to help you with stubborn stains.
- Truly a multi-purpose cleaner.
- Makes light work of dried paint.
- Great on oil and acrylic based paints.
- Guaranteed to soften old paint.
- It’s cheap and easily accessible.
- This is highly toxic and flammable.
- This can be bad for the health if used in close environments.
- Acetone can damage the things that you want to restore.
- It has a very strong smell.
What to Use to Remove Paint from Carpet – Buyers Guide
The process of choosing the right product to remove the paint from your carpet can be a stressful one. There are so many solutions and so much information that it can be easy to get lost. But remember, while you are deciding, your paint is drying, and once dry it will be harder to remove.
To save you some time, here is the top need-to-know advice for how to best restore your carpet.
Guidelines for Selecting A Product
The Type of Paint
Most household paints are made from latex, which is water-based. Water-based paints are some of the easiest types of paints to remove. However, some household paints can be oil-based or acrylic-based. The cleaning process for oil-based and acrylic based paints require much more effort and time to get the stains out.
- Water-based paints, acrylic-based paints, and oil-based paints sometimes need different kinds of cleaners. Try to work out what kind of paint is staining the carpet, or try using a universal stain remover.
- Tip: If the instructions say to soak brushes in water, it is likely a water-based paint. If the instructions say to soak brushes in turpentine it is probably oil-based paint.
The Kind of Carpet Fibers.
Each carpet is made from fibers that determine how well it reacts to stains and how easily it can be cleaned. Being aware of what type of fiber your carpet is made from. Can help you to pick the best cleaning product to remove the paint without damaging the carpet.
- Always do a spot test on a hidden area of the carpet, this ensures that the product won’t ruin the carpet fibers.
- Check your carpet care guide to understand the most suitable products for your carpet.
- Be especially careful on wool carpets if using strong cleaners.
While some carpet stain removers are water-based and non-toxic. Others are made with toxic chemicals that can be dangerous to the health and are highly flammable. Chemicals like acetone, turpentine, and similar solvents all come with a strong smell and potential warnings. If you choose to use a chemical product, open your windows, and doors to let the fresh air in. You should also consider wearing protective gear like gloves.
- Read the guidance on the bottle.
- Use protective gear like masks, gloves, and goggles.
- Ventilate the area well by opening windows and doors.
As soon as the paint has dropped on the carpet you should clean it up. The faster you clean up the spill, the less dried-in paint you will need to deal with later. If the paint has already dried, then scrape away any large loose chunks.
Tips for Wet Paint
- Scoop up paint in an inward motion to avoid spreading the paint to clean areas of the carpet.
- Soak up any surplus wet paint with white cloths.
- Do not press the paint into the carpet because this will make it harder to remove. Use light pressure with a blotting motion.
- Scrubbing will drive the paint deep into the carpet and make it harder to remove. Blot gently do not scrub.
- If you can’t clean it up right away, then cover the paint with a damp cloth to make sure it won’t dry out.
Tips for Dry Paint
- Scrape as much paint off as possible and continue to scrape until all excess paint chunks are removed. You can use a putty knife, a blunt knife, or pliers.
- Check the paint can, the paint manufacturer may have suggested a product to thin and soften the paint for removal.
- Warm water and dish soap might also help to soften the paint so that it can be treated afterward with the stain remover.
- Using a hand steamer or a wet rag and an iron; steam the stain while scraping to soften old paint. Whatever you do, don’t touch the carpet with the iron because it will burn the carpet.
- Only use white cloths or paper towels as the remover may transfer color from the cloth and further stain the carpet.
- Work into the center of the stain to avoid spreading it onto the unaffected carpet.
- You should only use a wet vacuum to suck up paint or excess liquid on the carpet.
How to Use Stain Removing Products to Remove Paint
The process of removing paint from your carpet differs slightly depending on what kind of paint it is, if the stain is wet or dry and what kind of carpet you have.
- To avoid damaging the color of your carpet, test a small unseen area of the carpet. By spraying the product on that area and leaving it to dry for 12 hours, if the carpet is colorfast there will be no change in the carpet color.
- Use the carpet stain remover on the stain, leaving it to soak if required. Tip: don’t over saturate the carpet as this may spread the paint as it liquefies.
- Working from the outside in, blot the stain carefully, reapplying the remover, and blotting until the stain fades.
- Once the stain has gone, blot dry until the carpet is restored.
Common Questions Answered
- It’s an old stain, how do I know what kind of paint was used?
If you are unsure about what kind of paint it is, start the removal process with a water-based solution. If this doesn’t work, then you can try an oil-based solution.
- Why do I have to blot the stain, won’t scrubbing work better?
While scrubbing may feel more satisfying, you are damaging the carpet by pushing and spreading the paint deeper into the carpet fibers. Please blot the stain until it is gone.
- What tools do I need to remove paint from my carpet?
The tools that you will need will depend on if the paint is wet or dry. But you won’t go wrong in either case by having:
- A pile of white cloths or paper towels.
- Your preferred carpet stain remover.
- A bowl filled with warm water and some dish soap.
- Some pliers or a putty knife to scrape the dry paint.
Yes! There is hope for your carpet if you would prefer to rescue it rather than splash out for a brand new one. First, you need to know what kind of paint is staining your carpet and what your carpet is made of. Armed with your preferred stain remover, a great blotting technique, and dealing with the stain as soon as possible. You should be able to restore your carpet to the condition it was in previously.
Let me know which product you tried and if it worked for you.
Richard Jenkins is a 33-year-old Professional Painter that applies paint on the interior and exterior surfaces. Qualified in painting technology knowledge, physical fitness, stamina, teamwork, and attention to safety. Read More.