How to Clean Stains from Car Carpets?

How to Clean Car Carpet 

When was the last time you cleaned the stains from car carpets? Dirty car carpets can stink, especially on hot summer days. Fortunately, cleaning stains from car carpets isn’t as difficult as one might think. We’ll show you how to clean your car carpet stains.

How to Clean Filthy Car Carpet

1. Organize the mess

Clearing a cluttered space can be tricky, especially if it’s a small space like a car. So start by clearing the floor and cupholders of possible junk. Also, removing small items like coins, toys, etc. will make cleaning easier.

A great way to keep your car organized is to use a car organizer. There are many options depending on the size you need. Some can be hung around the seat and have multiple pockets of different sizes.

Newer models may have dedicated compartments for organization. These are usually found in family cars.

2. Remove The Mats

If you have floor mats in your car, remove and put them aside. We’ll be cleaning these later. You can, however, prepare the mats by giving them a rough shake to loosen dirt and dust.

3. Vacuum the interior

After decluttering the car, use a strong handheld vacuum, such as the Black + Decker Dustbuster. A cordless vacuum is the best choice to clean a car. This will give you more freedom to move around.

If you don’t have a handheld or cordless vac, try to park the car near an outlet or use an extension cord. Make use of the various attachments, such as the crevice tool to easily vacuum the carpet and get under the seats.

4. Choose a shampoo

Choose a good car carpet shampoo or cleaner to clean the carpet effectively. We highly recommend using a specialized cleaner such as this one from Chemical Guys.

If you can’t get your hands on a commercial product, laundry detergent can also do a thorough job.

5. Clean the carpet

Start by reading the instructions provided by the carpet cleaner manufacturer. If it’s a spray, spritz the area directly. Concentrations should be diluted as required — do this in a spray bottle for easy application.

Allow the product to sit for as long as directed. Then use a stiff brush to work the cleaner into the carpet. Circular motions are best to bring out stains, dirt, and grease.

If your carpet is particularly dirty, you can use a steam cleaner or carpet cleaning machine to get an extra deep clean. Alternatively, use a portable carpet cleaner, such as the Bissell SpotClean, with a small attachment to fit inside the car.

These will apply water and shampoo deep into the fibers of the carpet. They will then use a strong suction to remove excess water and leave you with a nearly dry finish.

Clean Stains from Car Carpets

Clean Stains from Car Carpets

No matter what kind of stain you have on your car carpet, you always want to remove the debris and grime from the carpet first. But the next steps will depend on the type of stain you need to spot clean and the cleaning method you choose.

Just find the steps for the specific stain you need to spot clean, choose a cleaning method, and follow them carefully.

1. Remove the car carpet

The correct way to start is to remove the car carpet first. This will make it easier for you to clean as nothing will get in the way. This will also prevent dirt and stains from spreading to other areas, which will be extra work and make the process more difficult.

When removing the carpet, be careful to roll it up to prevent any dirt from the carpet from falling into the car, and then remove it. But with non-removable rugs, you have no choice but to wash inside. Just make sure it’s completely dry after cleaning.

2. Cleaning the car carpet

Often, the next step in cleaning your car carpet is to vacuum it. But since you don’t have a vacuum cleaner, you can use a broom and dustpan to sweep dust and debris off the carpet.

3. Prepare the carpet cleaner solution

This step depends on what cleaner you will be using. If you are using a commercial vehicle carpet cleaner, follow the product directions for preparation and use. Some are ready to use, while others must be diluted first.

If you want to DIY with your own solution, you need to combine some ingredients. Here’s how to create a spot cleaner based on stains on your carpet, as well as two general-purpose carpet cleaner options.

  • For spot cleaning:

Stubborn stains and odors: Mix ¼ cup baking soda with 1 cup warm water. This turns into a runny, foamy paste.

Clumpy stains: Make a paste-like mixture with equal parts 3% hydrogen peroxide and regular foaming toothpaste.

Oil stains: a little paint thinner and some salt or cornmeal

Coffee Stains: Glass Cleaner

Bloodstains: Use just a little laundry detergent and cold water to make a paste-like mixture.

  • Completely clean the carpet

Method 1: Mix a cup of white vinegar, a little soap, and a gallon of hot water. This can be adjusted according to your cleaning needs.

Method 2: Mix two tablespoons of borax, two cups of boiling water, three tablespoons of ground soap, and one tablespoon of essential oil of your choice.

4. Remove visible stains

You can get all kinds of stains on your car carpet. Find the DIY spot cleaning process below to remove any stains from your carpet:

  • stubborn stains and odors

Apply a paste mixture of baking soda and warm water to the stained area. Then scrub the stained area with a nylon brush. You can let the paste sit on the stained area for 30 minutes, then wipe it off with the stain with a rag.

  • clumping stains

Dab a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and toothpaste onto the caked-on stain. Let the paste sit on the stain for a few minutes, then wipe off the stain. After scrubbing, wipe off the moisture with a rag.

  • Oil stains

On the oily area, rub a little paint thinner and cover with some salt or cornmeal. Let them sit on the stained area for a few hours to remove the grease. After letting them deal with the oil stain, sweep the mixture away.

  • coffee stains

Removing coffee stains is as easy as soaking the stain in a glass cleaner. Leave the cleaner on the stained area for a few minutes, then wipe away the cleaner and the stain.

  • bloodstain

Apply laundry detergent and cold water cream to the bloodstain and let it sit until dry. Once it’s finally dry, sweep it off the carpet. Repeat the process until there is no more blood.

5. Clean the car carpet with detergent

Cleaning your entire car carpet without a machine can be done with two DIY options. You can use vinegar, soap, and hot water in a simple but effective way, or borax, soap, and essential oils.

The only difference between these methods is the ingredients used for the solution; the same steps are used in the cleaning process as follows:

Spray the solution on the carpet. Then scrub the carpet in a circular motion. This technique is best for removing dirt.

After scrubbing, dry the carpet with a towel. If moisture remains, allow the carpet to air dry.

Instead of exposing the rug to direct sunlight, place it in a windy location so it dries quickly without discoloration. As for non-removable carpets, you can leave the doors open and let them air dry.

If you find that there are still stains on the carpet, repeat the cleaning process until it is completely clean.


No need to buy, rent a machine or hire a dealer to clean your car carpet. You can clean your car carpet yourself.

You just need to grab something from the cupboard at home. In addition to being cheap, cleaning carpets yourself requires only simple steps. Some DIY cleaners will even do all the work for you once applied.

Tina Jones

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