The ensuing silence was concerning. It was clear something had happened in the other room.
“Uh…mommy? I dropped it.”
I peeked around the corner. And there on the carpet were splotches of neon green, pink, blue, and orange. My daughter had been painting, and accidentally knocked her paint palette off of the table and face-down onto our light-colored carpet.
I sprung into action. I scooped. I blotted.
When nothing else worked, I scrubbed. I sprayed carpet cleaner and stain remover. Still nothing.
I brainstormed ways to explain to my husband that we were going to have a permanent, noticeable neon-blue stain on our dining room carpet.
But then I remembered.
Right after we moved into our house a couple years ago, we painted every single wall in the house. And in the middle of that project, we spilled an entire gallon of paint onto the carpet. And we cleaned it up.
Assuming the same strategy that worked on a large-scale mess would work on this smaller scale, I quickly gathered up the supplies I needed. And, sure enough, I got the paint out of our carpet.
So if you’ve got a mess on your hands and nothing is working, try this. Or pin it for when the next accident happens. 😉
(It’s important to note that both of these accidents involved water and latex-based paints. I can’t promise it will work as well with oil-based paint as I haven’t tried it.)
- Shop vac (filter removed)
- Pitcher (or bucket)
- Hot water
- Paper towels
- Laundry or carpet stain remover (optional)
What to do:
1. The first rule is work fast. You don’t want the paint to dry. You need to get it up before it does.
2. Scoop up any paint that is sitting on the top of the carpet and hasn’t soaked in. Blot up as much as you can with a paper towel.
3. If you have some, spray the area with either carpet stain remover or laundry stain remover. This isn’t critical if you don’t have it.
4. Fill a pitcher or bucket with hot water. Dump the hot water directly onto the paint spot to saturate it. Don’t be too conservative with this step.
5. Make sure the central filter on your shop vac is removed. Turn it on and move the hose back and forth vigorously over the stain (see video below for demonstration). Pour more hot water over the spot. Vacuum it vigorously. Repeat these steps until the paint is removed from the carpet.