How to Get Rust Out of Carpet (8 Methods) + More!

Those rust stains on your carpet are an eyesore because the minute you look at them, you get stressed about having to clean them up. And you don’t know how to do it!

Rust stains may be difficult to wash away from carpets, and if you aren’t careful during the washing process, you can end up causing further harm to your carpet.

One thing to know about stains on carpets is that the quicker you attempt to remove them, the higher your chances of getting rid of them permanently. Therefore, when you notice a rust stain on your carpet, you should swing into action right away.

What Causes Rust Stains on The Carpet?

Rust stains can show up on your carpet due to one or more of the following reasons:

1) The legs of some of the metal furniture in the home, especially the very old ones, are usually rusty, and when they have been on the carpet for too long, they can stain the carpet. In this case, you may not be aware of the stain until you move the furniture from its resting position.

2) Another way rust stains get on carpets is through the placement of rusty items (such as old pans) on the carpet or moving rusty items across the carpet.

3) If there is water leakage, especially around the walls and ceilings in the home, water can wash down some of the rusts on the walls and ceilings down onto the carpet.

facts about cleaning
facts about cleaning

4) Rusty appliances like water heaters, water containers, and pipes can also cause rust stains if they get on the carpet.

How to Get Rust Out of Carpet (8 Methods)

These are some of the things needed to get rust stains out of carpets; Salt, water, a blunt object like a spoon, plastic ruler, or butter knife, White Vinegar, Lemon/Lemon Juice, Hydrogen peroxide, and baking soda.

After you have the needed items, the first thing to do is remove the object causing rust from the carpet, after which you can begin to scrape off part of the stains.

One or more of the following methods can be combined when you want to remove rust stains from carpets.

Common Preliminary Step

When trying to get rust stains out of carpet, the first thing you should do is to use a blunt object like a butter knife or a plastic ruler to scrape off as much of the rust as you can.

This step is necessary; especially the stain is pronounced.

METHOD 1: Using Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide, which is a bleaching agent, is a choice for eliminating rust stains from carpets. However, before using hydrogen peroxide on the carpet, apply it to a small area to see whether it causes any form of damage or discoloration to the carpet.

When you are sure that it is safe to use, follow these steps to remove rust stains from the carpet.


Warm water
Hydrogen Peroxide
Clean Rag


1) Mix three tablespoons of warm water with one tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide

2) Apply the solution to the stain and leave it for about 30 minutes. During this period, the solution should have removed the stains.

3) Use a clean rag to dab the solution and stains away from the carpet. Repeat this procedure until all of the stains are out.

4) Rinse the carpet with warm water afterward. This helps to remove any leftover hydrogen peroxide from the carpet.

METHOD 2: Using Vinegar and/or Salt

Since vinegar and salt are usually readily available in our homes, you can take advantage of their cleaning properties and use them to get rid of rust stains from your carpet.

OPTION A: Using only White Vinegar


Blunt scraper
White Vinegar
Clean Rag (2)


1- Scrape off any rust residue from the carpet with a blunt object.

2- Depending on the level of stain on the carpet, pour a suitable amount of vinegar directly onto the affected area of the carpet.

3- Using the same blunt object, work the vinegar into the carpet and leave for about 30 minutes to dissolve the rust stain.

4- With a clean rag, blot out the stain by pressing the rag firmly on the affected spot. You should see the rag soaking up the rust stain from the carpet.

5- Repeat this process until the stains are no longer visible and dry the carpet with another dry rag afterward.

OPTION B: Using Salt & Vinegar

Here’s the procedure:


Clean cloth (2)
Spray bottle
Vacuum cleaner


1) Sprinkle some salt on the affected portion of the carpet. Salt happens to be a good absorber of stains for a variety of textures.

2) Place a clean cloth soaked in vinegar on the affected area of the carpet for up to 10 minutes to enable the stains to break up and make the cleaning process faster.

Another option is to use a spray bottle, especially if the affected area is extensive. However, it is always best to tackle the stain spots in sections.

3) The next thing to do is to use the same clean cloth to dab at the stain, and you should observe the cloth soaking up the stains from the carpet. Repeat this process until there is no more stain on the carpet., change the fabric if necessary.

4) When there are no more visible stains on the carpet, sprinkle salt again and leave it for about 30 minutes. This time, the salt will absorb the residue moisture from the process.

5) Finally, use water to rinse the residual vinegar and salt away from the carpet to prevent damages to the carpet.

6) Use a clean cloth or vacuum cleaner to dry afterward.

METHOD 3: Using Baking Soda

Naturally, baking soda is an excellent stain remover; combining it with vinegar makes it more effective in removing rust stains from the carpet.



Spray bottle
Baking soda
Dry cloth
Clean rag


1) Pour vinegar into the sprayer bottle and spray it on the stain.

2) Apply baking soda to the same stained portion of the carpet after spraying. The chemical reaction between the alkaline property of the baking soda and the acidic property of the vinegar would result in a foaming effect.

3) The foaming removes the rust stains from the carpet. Use a dry cloth to wipe off the foam and the stain.

4) Rinse with water and dry it with a clean rag afterward.

METHOD 4: Using Dish Detergent & Warm Water

This method is effective, especially when the rust stain on the carpet is still very fresh. The first thing to do is remove as much of the stain with a blunt object before cleaning.

Always ensure that the dish soap you want to use is a non-bleaching one to avoid discoloration or damages to the carpet.


Dish Soap
Warm water
Clean cloth (2)
White cloth


1) Mix two tablespoons of dish soap with two cups of warm water.

2) Dip a clean cloth into the solution and apply it to the stained surface. Leave it for ten minutes to allow the mixture to penetrate the carpet to dissolve the stain.

3) Use another clean white cloth (to see clearly if the rust stain is being absorbed) to absorb the soap and the stain from the carpet. Repeat this process until you have removed most of the stain.

4) Rinse with water and use a clean cloth to dry.

Sometimes, soap can get stuck in carpet and dries off after a while. So getting that soap out of your carpet is necessary. You will need to pour water and keep drying with a towel until the bubbles start to vanish.

METHOD 5: Using Ammonia

However, if the rust stains are not thoroughly cleaned off after this method, you can consider adding household ammonia to the mixture of dishwashing liquid and water.

You need to be careful when dealing with Ammonia (1). For safety purposes, use your gloves, safety glasses, and a respirator or a mask.


Safety Gear: Gloves, glasses, nose mask
Dish detergent
Household Ammonia
Dry cloth (2)


1- Mix two cups of water with two tablespoons of dish detergent and one tablespoon of ammonia.

2- Pour the mixture directly over the rust stain and allow it to sit for about 5 minutes. Ammonia evaporates quickly; therefore, leaving it for longer may render it ineffective.

3- Press a clean, dry cloth on the stain to blot the rust away.

4- After the stains are completely gone, dip a dry cloth in water and use it to rinse the carpet to remove any residue of the mixture.

5- Allow the carpet to dry out naturally.

METHOD 6: Using Lemon Juice & Salt

Lemon is a natural bleaching agent that can remove stains and lighten stained surfaces. The quantity of lemon juice you will require for this process depends on how pronounced or extensive the stains are. But on average, two to three lemons should be enough.


Container / cup
Clean Rag (2)


After slicing the lemons into a container, proceed to do the following:

1) In the container or cup, add two teaspoons of salt to the lemon.

2) Using a clean, dry rag, apply the mixture to the stained surface and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

3) At this stage, the mixture will have weakened much of the stains. To remove the stain, blot it with a clean wet rag. The rag starts to absorb the stains from the carpet as you use it to dab the surface.

4) Finally, use water to rinse away the mixture from the carpet.

METHOD 7: Using Commercial Rust Remover for Carpet

Using a commercial product will definitely be one of the stronger methods to get those rust stains out of your dear carpet. The only downside is that you have to spend a few bucks.


Rust remover


1- Spray the rust remover directly over the stain.
2- Let it rest for about 30 seconds.
3- Wipe the surface with a damp cloth.
4- Immediately rinse the carpet surface thoroughly.

NOTE: Different products may have different directions for use so always check the manufacturer’s instructions on how to go about it.

METHOD 8: Using Cream of Tartar

cream of tartar

Cream of tartar is a cleaning agent, but it might not be effective on its own when it comes to removing rust. However, you can combine it with baking soda and hydrogen peroxide for better results.


Baking Soda
Cream of Tartar
Hydrogen Peroxide


1- Make a paste-like mixture using one spoon of cream of tartar powder, one spoon of baking soda with a few drops of hydrogen peroxide.

2- Apply the mixture to a small portion of your carpet to check if there is any form of discoloration that occurs due to the presence of hydrogen peroxide.

If no side effects are observed, apply the paste to the rust and leave it for about 30-40 minutes to penetrate and dissolve the stain.

3- Repeat the process until all the rust stains are no longer visible.

4- Rinse the carpet afterward and allow it to dry naturally.

What Happens When You Leave Rust Stains on the Carpet?

Leaving rust stains on the carpet for too long usually results in difficulty when you eventually want to clean it off. Ultimately, the stain may become permanent, and depending on the extent of stain caused by the rust, and you may need to replace your carpet

Will CLR (Calcium Lime Rust) Remove Rust From the Carpet?

There are two products that confuse people. One is STAIN-FREE CARPET, FLOOR AND FABRIC CLEANER and the other one is CALCIUM, LIME, & RUST REMOVER.

For the first one is safe to use on carpets and other fabrics for normal stains. The company, however, does not specify anywhere that it can be used for rust stains.

For the second product, which is surely used for rust stains, the official CLR website asks you to avoid contact with carpeting and a few other things. However, it is often seen that CLR can remove rust stains from fabrics which include carpets as well. But it has the potential to bleach some kind of dyes.

Therefore, if you want to use CLR on your carpet, test it out on an inconspicuous portion of it. This way you’ll get to know if the product has the possibility of damaging the color or fibers of your carpet.

The following steps will help you:

1- Apply CLR mixed with an equal amount of warm water over a test area of your carpet with an old toothbrush.

2- Let the solution penetrate the carpet and stay there for 2 minutes.

3- Use water to drench the area.

4- With an old towel, soak up the wet area of your carpet.

5- Repeat the process until you get the rust stains out completely.

Use the above steps in removing the actual rust stains from your carpet.

A Few Important Things

1) Do not scrape the stain too roughly or with a sharp object.

2) Rust stains are easily removable if they are cleaned as soon as they appear.

3) Before using methods that involve the use of chemical or industrial cleaning agents, test them on a small portion of the carpet to ensure they are safe for use.

4) Read the manufacturer’s instructions on how to use cleaning agents.

5) After cleaning, ensure you rinse the carpet to get rid of residues of any cleaning product used.


Rust stain over your carpet is surely not the most pleasant thing to see but it’s not that hard to clean it, after all. I have shown you almost all the ways that are used for getting the job done.

Apply any one of these and you will have a clean carpet again.


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