How To Get Motor Oil Out Of Carpet (6 Ways To Do It!)

How To Get Motor Oil Out Of Carpet

No matter how hard you try, it always seems like something gets spilled or tracked on your carpet. As clean as you try to be, sometimes things just get tracked into the house on someone’s shoes or your dog’s feet. Motor oil is one of those stains that make you want to panic. But you don’t have to.

Scoop the oil off of the carpet with a spoon and sprinkle baking soda over the remaining motor oil. Let the baking soda sit for 15 minutes and vacuum it to remove the top layer. Now, apply a few drops of dry cleaning agent to the stain to remove it.

There are many solutions you can find online to get motor oil out of the carpet. It really does not matter what kind of carpet you have either. It all soaks up the stain as fast as it can. These cleaning ideas are suggestions only and not a guarantee. And, like always, test the solution on a piece of carpet first to make sure it does not cause a worse stain.

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Using Dry Cleaning Solvent to Get Motor Oil Out of Carpet

The most effective way to get the oil out is supposed to be the dry-cleaning solvent, tetrachloroethylene (or bromopropane) so you will see it mentioned in several of these cleaning tips. You can get the solvent at most hardware stores or online.

1. Using Baking Soda to Get Motor Oil Out of Carpet

You know baking soda is great for all sorts of things from cooking to cleaning. In fact, you probably have a box in your fridge to soak up the random smells. Get a fresh box and follow these steps to get the motor oil out of your carpet.

  1. Put on your protective clothing, eye protection, gloves, and a mask.
  2. Use a spoon to scoop up as much as the oil off the carpet as you can. It usually sticks together pretty well and most of it may stay on top of the carpet if you are lucky.
  3. Sprinkle enough baking soda on the spot to cover it completely.
  4. Let it sit for 15 minutes and then vacuum it up.
  5. Drip about 10 drops of dry-cleaning solvent on a clean cloth and blot the stain with the cloth.
  6. If the stain is still there, put a few drops directly onto the stain and soak it up with the cloth.

2. Using Cornstarch to Get Motor Oil Out of Carpet

You may only think of cornstarch when cooking or baking. But cornstarch is similar to baking soda in how they both absorb liquids. It is also sometimes used as a paste to remove a difficult stain. Follow these simple steps to get rid of that oil.

  1. Put on your gloves and mask. You should not need protective clothing and goggles this time though.
  2. Use a spoon to scoop up as much as the oil off the carpet as you can.
  3. Make a paste of one tablespoon of cornstarch and a teaspoon of white vinegar.
  4. Apply the paste to the spot and wait for it to dry and harden.
  5. Use a wet/dry vac to get the paste out of the carpet.
  6. If the stain is still there, add a few drops of dry-cleaning solvent to the spot and soak it up with a clean cloth.

3. Using Dish Soap to Get Motor Oil Out of Carpet

Dish soap is mild enough to use for all sorts of cleaning jobs besides just washing dishes. From washing clothes to cleaning furniture, dish soap has a plethora of cleaning uses. Follow these steps to clean the motor oil out of the carpet.

  1. Blot the oil with a clean cloth or paper towel. Do not rub.
  2. Use a spoon to scoop up as much as the oil off the carpet as you can.
  3. Mix one tablespoon liquid dish soap, two cups of warm water, and one tablespoon of white vinegar in a spray bottle.
  4. Spray the area with the solution and let it sit for five minutes.
  5. Blot with another clean cloth or paper towel.
  6. Use a wet/dry vac to absorb any of the moisture left in the carpet.

4. Using Rubbing Alcohol to Get Motor Oil Out of Carpet

Rubbing alcohol works by lifting the stain out of the carpet because it is denser than other liquids. The good thing about using rubbing alcohol to clean carpets is that it dries and evaporates quickly. That means it cannot soak into the carpet padding and cause mold or mildew later. Here are the steps to cleaning motor oil out of the carpet with rubbing alcohol.

  1. Put on your protective clothing, gloves, mask, and goggles.
  2. Use a spoon to scoop up as much as the oil off the carpet as you can.
  3. Pour enough rubbing alcohol on the stain to cover it completely.
  4. Place a clean cloth on the alcohol and put a weight or another heavy object on it to keep pressure on the cloth.
  5. Let it soak for about an hour.
  6. Take the weight and cloth off the spot and let it air dry.
  7. Vacuum the spot to get the dried oil particles out of the carpet.

Two Lesser Known Ways to Get Motor Oil Out of Carpet

These last two ideas are not mentioned many times online like the others are. However, the aerosol brake part cleaner is made with the same component as dry-cleaning solvent, so it makes more sense than some of the others.

5. Aerosol Brake Parts Cleaner

  1. Put on your protective clothing, mask, gloves, and eye protection.
  2. Use a spoon to scoop up as much oil from the carpet as you can.
  3. Use a paper towel to blot the stain dry.
  4. Spray the cleaner on a dry cloth and blot the spot until the oil is gone, rewetting the cloth as needed.

Important tip: Do not spray the carpet directly as it can dissolve carpet adhesive.

6. WD-40

  1. Put on your protective clothing, mask, gloves, and goggles.
  2. Use a spoon to scoop up as much oil from the carpet as you can.
  3. Use a paper towel to blot the stain dry.
  4. Spray the WD-40 on the spot and let it dry.
  5. Rinse the spot with a wet cloth until all of the oil is gone.
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Related Questions

What if none of these methods work?

Unfortunately, some carpet fibers hang onto stains better than others. Or, if you did not get to the stain until has dried, it has probably already set in. In some cases, you may have already tried to clean it with a scrub brush and made it worse. If that happens, you are probably going to need to call a professional. Depending on the size of the stain and type of carpet, it should cost you less than $100. Or you can just cut the stained spot out.

How do I cut the stain out?

If the spot is really small or it is just a few fibers, you can cut them out with scissors or pull them out by hand. If that is not possible, go ahead and follow these easy steps.

  1. Put your gloves and mask back on.
  2. Outline the spot by placing a can or cup over the top of it with the spot in the middle. This will leave an indention for you to use as a guide.
  3. Use a utility knife or sharp razor knife, cut around the outside of the stain. Make sure you do not cut through the carpet padding.
  4. Cut a piece of carpet from the back of a closet or somewhere else that will not show. Shape it as close as possible to the shape of the hole.
  5. Cut a few slices of carpet tape to about three inches larger than the hole.
  6. Place the tape into the hole and then put the patch on top as careful as possible.
  7. Put something heavy on the spot for about 15 to 20 minutes to make sure it is firmly attached.

Patricia Oelze

I am a DIYer who loves writing about anything home-related. When I am not writing, you can find me studying for my PhD in Psychology, photographing nature, and swimming at the lake with my grandkids.

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