Last Updated on 1 month by Susan Mayrich
Food dye can add a colorful twist to your holiday recipes. Unfortunately, if you spill food coloring on your carpet it may be tricky to clean up. The good news is that food dye stains are usually easy enough to remove.
If food dye is spilled on your carpet, blot up as much as possible with paper towels or a clean rag. Then, soak the area with a mixture of liquid hand dishwashing detergent and vinegar. After letting it sit for a few minutes, gently rub it out with a sponge or cloth.
If you’re looking for a way to remove food dye stains from your carpet, we have some great tips and tricks that will help you get the job done. Food dye stains can be difficult to remove and can damage your carpet if not treated properly.
There are many different types of food dyes, so let’s take a look at some easy ways to clean up.
Does Food Dye Stain Carpet?
Yes, food dye stains can be a challenge to clean. Food dye stains are caused by the dyes in food colorings like Kool-Aid and Gatorade. These can be challenging to remove because they often contain several types of dye colors.
This type of stain is best treated with an enzyme cleaner, which breaks down the dye molecules.
Does Dye Come Out of Carpet?
It’s a question that comes up often, can food dye come out of the carpet? The answer is yes, but it depends on how much is spilled and what kind of dye you have.
Food dye can be oil-based or water-based. The oil-based dyes tend to be more difficult to remove because they penetrate deeper into the carpet fibers. Water-based dyes are easier to remove because they don’t penetrate as deeply into the carpet fibers.
The most effective way to get food dye out of your carpet is by using an enzyme cleaner. These cleaners contain bacteria that digest the organic compounds found in food dyes.
Cleaning the stain as soon as possible is the best way to prevent a permanent stain. If you wait too long, it will be much harder to remove the food dye from your carpet.
How to Get Food Dye Out of Carpet
You may be tempted to grab the carpet cleaner and spray it away, but that could do more harm than good. Instead, follow these steps to safely clean up the stain:
#1. Remove As Much As Possible
If you want to get rid of food dye stains, you’ll need to act quickly. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to remove them. First, scrape up as much as possible with a plastic spoon or butter knife. Then, use cold water to soak up as much of the remaining stain as you can.
#2. Remove Food Dye from Carpet with Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is a safe and effective household cleaner that can be used to remove food dye from carpets. It has a long history of use as a disinfectant and stain remover and is found in most medicine cabinets. It’s also easy to find at grocery stores, pharmacies, and even some dollar stores.
Hydrogen peroxide works by oxidizing stains and then reacting with water to produce oxygen gas. This gas helps break down the stain into smaller particles that can be flushed away by cleaning water and soap.
Steps to follow:
- Fill a spray bottle with 3 percent hydrogen peroxide (about 1/3 cup). Do not use any other kind of hydrogen peroxide or a stronger solution than 3 percent as this may cause discoloration or damage to your carpeting.
- Spray the hydrogen peroxide on the stain and allow it to sit for about five minutes before blotting up excess liquid with a clean towel or cloth.
- Repeat until you have removed all remaining colors from the carpeting.
- Blot up any remaining hydrogen peroxide using a clean towel or cloth until no more moisture remains on the surface of your carpeting.
#3. Remove Food Dye from Carpet with Ammonia
Ammonia works well for removing most stains from carpets because it has an alkaline pH level that helps neutralize acids found in many types of stains, including those caused by food dye.
If ammonia is applied to the carpet and left there too long, it can cause discoloration or damage. If your carpet has been stained by acid dyes in food coloring and you wish to remove these stains with ammonia, be sure not to let the solution soak into the fibers for more than a few minutes at a time.
Steps to follow:
- First, clean up any spilled food dye with mild soap and water. Blot up as much of the mess as possible with towels or paper towels.
- Then apply a small amount of ammonia directly to the stain, using a cotton swab or clean rag.
- Allow it to sit for several minutes.
- Next, blot up any excess liquid with paper towels until no more liquid appears on the towel when wiped over the stained area.
- If more than one color stain remains after blotting up excess liquid, repeat this process for each spill separately until all stains are removed from your carpet.
#4. Use Dish Soap and Shampoo
Dish soap and shampoo can be used to remove food dye from the carpet as long as you act fast.
Shampoo works better than any other cleaning product because it contains surfactants that break down dirt particles and lift them off the carpet fibers so they can be rinsed away with water.
Dish soap is a good stain remover for carpets. It can cut through the grease that food dye creates, as well as remove any color from your carpet. The dish soap will also help to lift the dye off of your carpet if it’s been there for a while.
Steps to follow:
- First, mix one part dish soap with two parts shampoo in a spray bottle.
- Then, saturate the stained area with this solution.
- Let it sit for five minutes, then scrub it with a toothbrush or sponge and rinse it off with warm water.
- Repeat as necessary until the color is removed; if any remains after rinsing, repeat the process until all traces are gone.
All in all, you shouldn’t have to worry about how to get food dye stains out of your carpet, even if it’s after drying. If you follow the tips above and use these methods, you should be able to clean up your carpets with ease next time there’s a spill.
So, next time your kids or pets get their hands into the food coloring and you end up with that unsightly stain on your carpet, you know what to do.