How to Clean Water-based Paint out of Your Carpets

pink paint stain from a paintbrush on carpet
What You'll Need
Hot water
Empty spray bottle
Vacuum (optional)

If you’ve ever painted anything in your home with a roller or paintbrush, you likely know how easy it is to accidentally knock over a paint tray or get paint splatters on your carpet. Luckily, water-based paint is easy to clean when dry, and it’s easy to remove when wet. To clean water-based paint off your carpets, follow the steps below.

Step 1 – Pretreating the Area

Wet Water-based Paint Stain

You don’t need any chemicals to remove water-based paint, and if the paint is still wet, you do not need to pre-treat the area. Instead, get ready for the next step by saturating a towel with hot water and wringing out the excess.

Dry Water-based Paint Stain

If the water-based paint has had time to dry, don't fret. Just like removing dried water-based paint from your walls, removing it from your carpet it easy.

First, fill a spray bottle with hot water and saturate the area where the paint is located. Leave the water on the area for approximately 20 minutes before continuing on to the next step. Prepare a towel with hot water, wringing out the excess, while you wait.

Step 2 – Removing the Paint

Whether your paint is wet or dry, you should never scrub the stained area. If you scrub the area, the paint will spread and go deeper into the carpet’s fibers.

Instead, blot the area with your warm, damp towel you prepared earlier. Continue dabbing the area, making sure the carpet and towel are always damp. Periodically rinse the towel out to prevent redistributing paint. Repeat this process until the paint has been removed from the carpet.

Step 3 – Finishing Up

Now that you’ve cleaned up the paint by blotting the carpet, you can now get a fresh towel saturated in clean, warm water and scrub the area. Finally, allow the carpet to air dry for a few hours. You can use your fingers or a vacuum to fluff up the carpet fibers back to normal.