How to clean stains on pool table felt

Updated July 17, 2018

Pool tables are often the centre of social gatherings at your home, and as a result, spills and messes can occur on your table. The first thing you should always do, even if it interrupts a game, is clean up the mess as soon as possible. Letting a beverage or food stain sit on the felt is the best way to ensure that the stain will be difficult to remove, if you can remove it at all. When you purchase a table, buy all the necessary cleaning supplies so you have them on hand when an “oops” moment happens.

Absorb as much of the spill as possible if the stain is fresh. Use a white cloth to blot the stained area of the felt until the spilt substance is no longer lifting from the table. If the stain is dry, proceed to Step 2.

Mix 240 ml (1 cup) white vinegar with 240 ml (1 cup) warm water. Dampen a clean white cloth with the vinegar solution and blot the stain until it is completely removed. Always blot and never rub the felt on the your pool table--rubbing can cause permanent damage to the felt.

Mix a paste of 36 ml (2 tbsp) water and 18 ml (1 tbsp) baking soda if the stain is still visible after using the vinegar solution. Apply the baking soda paste to the stain, and let it sit for 5 minutes. Gently work the baking soda into the stain with your fingers and allow the baking soda to dry.

Vacuum up the baking soda using an attachment for your full-size vacuum or a hand-held vacuum. Brush the felt from one end of the table to the other to remove any residual baking soda or other dirt and debris.


Cover your table with a pool table cover when you're not using it to protect the felt from stains, dirt, moisture and sunlight. If the vinegar and baking soda methods do not work, call a pool table retailer to ask about other methods to remove stains from the felt.

Things You'll Need

  • White vinegar
  • Warm water
  • White cloths
  • Baking soda
  • Vacuum
  • Pool table brush
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About the Author

Jess Jones has been a freelance writer since 2005. She has been a featured contributing writer for "Curve Magazine" and she teaches English composition at a small college in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her Master of Arts in English language and literature in 2002.