How to clean cooking oil from the carpet

Written by kate bruscke
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How to clean cooking oil from the carpet
Remove oily carpet stains by first blotting up the spill. (feet and carpet image by jimcox40 from

Oily, greasy cooking oil spills do not have to permanently stain and mar rugs or carpeting. The rule of thumb is that the sooner that you can treat the stain, the easier time you will have removing all evidence of a cooking oil spill. However, older stains can usually be removed as well, using similar techniques and materials, although it may take repetition of the stain removal process in order to get the stain entirely out.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Paper towels
  • Baking soda or cornflour
  • Vacuum
  • 1/4 tsp washing up liquid
  • Old toothbrush
  • Clean rags
  • Citrus carpet-cleaning solvent
  • 2 tbsp household ammonia in solution with 237 ml (1 cup) water
  • 237 ml (1 cup) white vinegar in solution with 474 ml (2 cups) water

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  1. 1

    Mop up as much of the cooking oil as possible from the carpet immediately using paper towels.

  2. 2

    Spread baking soda or cornflour generously onto the stain to absorb the oil. Allow it to stand overnight, then vacuum up the oil-soaked powder.

  3. 3

    Mix washing up liquid in 237 ml (1 cup) of warm water and apply it to the stain, if necessary. Scrub it in with old toothbrush or work it into fibres with your fingers, rinse, then pat dry with clean rag.

  4. 4

    Apply a citrus-based carpet-cleaning solvent to the oil stain if it remains after Steps 2 and 3. Follow the manufacturer's directions for treating carpet with solvent.

  5. 5

    Douse the stain in the ammonia-water solution and allow it to stand for 10 to 20 seconds. Neutralise the ammonia solution by then applying the vinegar-water solution. Blot well with clean rags and allow to dry.

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