How to Remove a Red Wine Stain from Carpet

Published on Jul 26, 2018 | Updated - Nov 9, 2023

how to remove red wine stain from carpet

This author (like most people) loves a glass of red and knows first-hand just how hard a big red wine stain is to treat if it's not attended to quickly and effectively. 

Removing wine stains from clothing is usually not a big issue. If you spill red wine on your clothing, you can usually soak the garment and then stick it in the wash, and there's good chance you'll remove the stain. However, if you spill red wine on your carpet, it is not as simple as picking up your carpet and putting it in the washing machine. 



Why do you need to treat red wine stains as soon as they happen?

When you have a red wine spill on carpet, it is imperative that you act quickly. The reason for this is that the tannins in the wine will be quickly absorbed into the carpet fibres and may cause permanent staining. 

A dry red wine stain is a lot more difficult to remove and conceal from the average eye. 


How to remove red wine stains from carpet 

While it may not be practical for you to tend to the stain immediately, it is important that you at least get to it within an hour or two. You cannot leave the spill overnight. 

carpet cleaning supplies

If you don't happen to have any carpet stain removers or wine stain removers handy, don't fret. There are some simple home remedies you can use to help you with any spills on your carpet. 

So, with all of this in mind, please see below for some cleaning tips for tackling a red wine stain on carpet. 


What you'll need 

  • paper towels
  • 75ml container of white vinegar
  • non-scented dishwashing soap
  • lukewarm water
  • thick towel


Step 1 - Get onto the red wine carpet stain early

blotting red wine stain on carpet

As mentioned earlier, it is important to act quickly before the red wine stain dries out. The sooner you act, the better. 

To begin with, blot the stain with a white paper towel or a clean, dry cloth. A full glass of wine usually means a fairly large spill, so in this case, we suggest using a large towel. 

Place the towel over the affected area and apply even downward pressure. Do not scrub or wipe from side to side, as this will only spread the stain. 

Continue to use dry sections of the towel, folding it double and then standing on the towel to draw up as much of the wine as possible. 

When there's no further transfer of colour from the stain to the towel, then you can move to the next step.


Step 2 - Apply white vinegar solution

spraying white vinegar solution on red wine stain

One of the most effective ways to get red wine out of carpet is to mix 75 ml of white vinegar with 150 ml of water in a misting spray bottle. 

Adjust the nozzle of the spray bottle to make sure the spray is misting, and then spray the cleaning solution onto the stain and blot with a clean cloth. 

Continue to repeat this process as long as the stain continues to transfer to the cloth (this is also the first step for an old red-wine stain). 


Step 3 - Rinse, dry and blot

rinsing and blotting red wine stain on carpet

The next step in the red wine removal process is to combine a few drops of non-scented dish soap or washing detergent with 1 cup of lukewarm water. Apply the rinsing solution onto the stain with a sponge or a spray bottle. 

Repeat the blotting process with an absorbent cloth or paper towel until there is no further colour transfer. Personally, I find it easiest to use a towel and stand on the stain for greater absorbency. 


Step 4 - Remove excess water and cleaning solution

sponging off excess moisture on carpet

Sponge an even, heavy amount of fresh water onto the stain to rinse out the remaining vinegar solution. Once that is done, apply heavy pressure through a thick towel to dry the area. Repeat until the smell of vinegar is no longer present on the carpet. 



What to do with Dried Red Wine Stain on Carpet

spraying dry red wine stain on carpet with cleaning solution

If you were not fortunate enough to remove the red wine stain before it dries - don't worry; not all is lost. 

Although a dry red wine stain can be much more difficult to remove than one that still contains some moisture, there are still various methods you can use to try and remove the stain, such as the salt method! 

The great thing about salt is that it not only helps remove moisture from your carpet but also draws out the pigment from the wine, removing the stain and other discolourations in the process. 

This is a quick and easy 3-step method that you can use to try and remove a red wine stain after it has dried: 


Step 1 - Apply water and salt

Firstly, apply some water to the stain and make sure that the area is moist but not too wet, as the moisture could seep too far into the underlay. Then, all you need to do is spread a generous amount of salt over the wet area. 


Step 2 - Leave overnight

We recommend that you leave the salt to sit overnight and let it work its magic. As the salt absorbs the water from the carpet, it will make the salt turn pinkish as the residue of the wine is absorbed by the salt. 


Step 3 - Scoop and vacuum

The next day, all you need to do is scoop up the remaining salt and then vacuum any remaining residue. You should notice a considerable difference in the intensity and size of the stain. As mentioned earlier in the article, when cleaning up the remaining salt and residue, it is important not to scrub the area, as this may affect the fibres of your carpet. 



You may have heard people recommending the use of hydrogen peroxide to remove wine stains. However, be aware that hydrogen peroxide is a bleach and may cause some discolouration on your carpet, particularly if your carpets are dark in colour. So, if you do choose to use this method, you need to be very careful and make sure you test it on an inconspicuous area of your carpet first. 



Wine Stain Removal for Solution Dyed Nylon Carpets 

Here's the great news: if you have a solution-dyed nylon carpet, which has only been available for 5 or 6 years, you can probably remove a dry red wine stain yourself. 

We recommend using a bottle of Electro 3 stain remover or a mild solution of liquid soap in water to treat the stain. If the stain doesn't lift, you'll need to call the professionals. 



How does a professional treat red wine stains?

using a hot water exctraction process on a red wine stain

As mentioned earlier, it is important to try to treat your red wine spill as soon as possible. We have also given some tips on how to do this for both fresh red wine spills and when the spill has dried and formed a stain. 

However, if you have had no success with either of those two approaches, then it is best to seek professional carpet stain treatment if you wish to restore your carpet back to its former glory. 

A professional carpet cleaning service has all of the necessary equipment and specialised cleaning products to remove the stains efficiently and effectively without causing any further damage to the fibres of your carpet. If you want the best results, it's best to seek professional assistance, particularly if your carpet is still fairly new and valuable. 


Final Thoughts

Today, we have shared with you some basic home remedies you can employ to try and remove fresh and dry red wine spills and stains. However, just be mindful that there is no guarantee you will be able to completely remove the stain, whether it is fresh or dry. 

As mentioned earlier, it is important to act quickly and not leave the stain to sit overnight if possible. Although it may be inconvenient at the time, especially if you are entertaining guests, you really cannot leave the stain sitting for more than an hour or two before applying the tips mentioned above to achieve the best results. 

However, failing this, we have also shared with you some methods that you can employ to try and remove the red wine stain even if it has dried. So, with all this in mind, we hope you found these tips helpful and wish you all the best in your endeavours to remove these pesky stains from your carpet. 


Why Choose Electrodry for Your Professional Carpet Cleaning and Stain Treatment Needs

Electrodry Professional Carpet Cleaning

If you can't remove the entire stain, call your Electrodry carpet cleaning technician for professional carpet cleaning services. With specialised cleaning products on hand to treat all types of stains, Electrodry is able to remove almost all red wine stains. 

Electrodry is Australia's most trusted and reliable carpet and home cleaning service. We are a family-owned business and have been around since 1983. Electrodry's exclusive cleaning systems, innovative cleaning products and expert technicians ensure that we always provide the highest possible level of service to our clients. 

If you have any red wine stains on your carpet, do not hesitate to get in touch with us. 

Please call Electrodry today on 13 27 13 or make a booking online

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