Quick Help Guide

  1. Get a towel, and blot as much coffee away, as quickly as possible. NO SCRUBBING!
  2. Mix 1 tbsp washing up liquid and 1 tbsp white vinegar into 500ml of water
  3. Dab the mixed solution into stained area of carpet with a clean cloth, blotting excess
  4. Dust the area with baking powder. Work in with a clean cloth, and let dry
  5. Vacuum the area. If stains or odours persist, apply cold water and dab away

Find out how this coffee stain cleaning process works

Americano, flat white, instant or coffee bag – whichever way you make it at the office, coffee is one of life’s simple joys, and one that just seems to make everything better. Until, that is, you knock a full mug of it over. All over the carpet.

Uh oh.

“That’s going to stain”, you’re thinking. And you’re probably right – if you leave it as it is! Don’t panic – if you have followed the steps above, you’ll be well on your way to getting coffee stains out of your office carpet.

But how, and why does this process work? And can it get old coffee stains out of carpets? We’ve got all the answers, right here.

We’re focusing on coffee spills at work, because that’s usually where they happen – but this process will work on carpets at home, too.

Can this method clean old coffee stains out of carpet?

It can help, but you might need to repeat it. It’s much better to get a professional carpet cleaner out to see if they can save a deeply coffee stained carpet, but if you’re adamant, you can certainly reduce the visibility of an old coffee stain with this method.

1. Blotting surface liquid

This is very important, so we’ll say it loud:


At this early and delicate stage, scrubbing will only work the coffee deeper into the carpet fibres, making the stain even harder to remove.

The very first thing you must do to get a fresh coffee spill out of the carpet is to blot up as much surface liquid as you can, as soon as you can. Kitchen towels are great for this, but office kitchens usually only have tea towels – and a clean, dry one will work just fine.

This process lifts liquid away, rather than letting it permeate deeper into the carpet. Just resist the temptation to scrub, and soak away the surface liquid only!

2. Cleaning solutions

Now that you’ve got as much coffee off the surface as possible, you have a little time for the next bit – treating the stain.

If you have a carpet stain remover in the cupboard, then this is what you should use. Just follow the instructions on the packaging, and go from there. But it’s far more likely that you won’t have a proper carpet stain remover lying around, especially at work.

No worries, though. You can actually make a pretty decent carpet cleaner with common items you’ll find around the office kitchen!

DIY carpet cleaner ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon of washing up liquid
  • 1 tablespoon of white vinegar
  • 500ml of water

Mix your ingredients together in a jug or tub, until fully combined, then head back to the stain…

3. Cleaning time

Now, it’s time to apply a little of your DIY mixture using a clean cloth – dabbing it onto the stain a little at a time. Blot the stain with a clean, dry towel regularly as you go.

This should visibly start reducing the stain. So, how does it work?

Well, it’s all thanks to our best friend in office cleaning: white vinegar.

Read more: White Vinegar for Cleaning: Better Than Cleaning Products?

Vinegar is a mild, natural acid that breaks down and dissolves the staining compounds in coffee. Combined with washing up liquid, which cuts through the oils present in coffee, you have an effective yet mild coffee stain remover!

Once you’ve blotted away the last of the cleaning liquid, you might still find that the stain is visible, beyond just looking wet. If it’s a stubborn one, then move on to phase four: the dry clean.

4. Baking soda

When the area is as dry as you can get it with blotting, dust it with baking soda – another magical cleaning ingredient that can save carpets from coffee-stained doom.

Baking soda is highly absorbent, and it is especially fond of soaking up oil. This means that it latches on to the most persistent staining compounds, and makes them easier to lift away. It also reacts with vinegar, causing a fizzing effect that can loosen up particles deep in the carpet fibres – areas you could never reach alone.

You can leave the baking soda on the surface, or lightly work it into the carpet fibres with a clean cloth. Let it go for an hour at least, or until fully dry.

5. Vacuum

The last stage is to vacuum away the baking soda, to reveal a stain-free patch of carpet! Well, hopefully anyway… If the stain (or smell) persists, apply some cold water with a clean cloth, and gently dab it away until it fades.

And if all else fails – give us a call for a professional office carpet clean!

Professional office carpet cleaners

The Abbey Cleaning Service is a professional team of commercial carpet cleaners in Cardiff, with specialist cleaning knowledge and experience. From emergency carpet cleaning to deep cleaning services, we help keep the workspaces of South Wales clean and stain-free. Call 029 2067 9323 to book your carpet cleaning appointment.