How to Take a Water Stain Off Wallpaper

Updated February 21, 2017

Wallpapers are a great and interesting alternative for common, painted walls. No matter if they're textile, vinyl or paper, wallpapers are a good way of changing the feel and the look of a room. Wallpapers come in a variety of styles, patterns and textures and are easy to apply. If you have water stains on your wallpaper, there is no need to scrape the whole sheet off and replace it with a new one. You can remove the stain yourself using household items.

Prepare the stain-removal solution in a medium-sized plastic bowl. Pour two parts cold water and one part bleach in the bowl. Do not to spill the solution on furniture or the floor. Bleach is a strong chemical and can permanently damage some materials.

Test how the wallpaper will react to bleach. Dip a cotton swab in the solution and gently touch the edge of the stain. If the stain is still damp, dab it with a kitchen towel before you apply any solution. Leave the solution on the stain. Check if the wallpaper becomes discoloured. If the stain dilutes and the wallpaper colour is intact, the solution is safe to use.

Dip a cloth into the solution to absorb some of the liquid. Carefully rub the cloth over the stain, starting from the darker edges. Continue dipping the cloth in the solution and rubbing it over the stain until the whole stain is neutralised.

Let the wallpaper dry. The stain should be gone when the wallpaper has dried.


You can also use a cleaning solution of mild detergent and warm water to get rid of the stain. Dip an old, clean toothbrush into the solution and gently rub the stain. Too much soaking can cause the wallpaper to detach from the wall. Make sure that you only damp the stain.


Wear rubber gloves when working with such a strong chemical as bleach.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic bowl
  • Bleach
  • Water
  • Cotton swabs
  • Kitchen towels
  • Cloth
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About the Author

Tzvi Raphael has worked with Fortune 500 companies helping them to maximize their online brand exposure through innovative Web design, content, and marketing. Additionally, Raphael is a writer for multiple high-traffic blogs and websites including eHow and Weight Ladder.