How To Remove Water Stains From Fabric?

Water stains on fabric can easily become a headache if you do not remove them properly. The stains are not caused by the water itself but rather by the minerals present in the water. The key to removing such stains is to use the right equipment and follow the procedure. There are various kinds of furniture fabric, and each requires a different way of removing water stains from it. Without further ado, let’s find out the best ways to remove water stains from fabric.

How To Remove Water Stains From Fabric

Supplies You’ll Need: Equipment/Tools and Materials

The first step to getting rid of water stains is having the proper cleaning tools and materials. Here is a list of equipment and materials you’ll need.


  • Small White cloth
  • Hairdryer
  • Washing machine
  • Small bowl
  • Spray bottle
  • Iron
  • Ironing board


  • Vinegar
  • Distilled water
  • Laundry detergent

Removing The Stain on Fabric

If you reside in an environment where the water has a high mineral composition, that is, the water is hard, you are more likely to discover water stains on your fabric sofa as you do your laundry or cleaning.

Removing water stains from furniture fabric is relatively easy, especially if the stain is still damp. Older dried stains could be a bit more stubborn. However, the trick is to use vinegar and water to dampen it and then blow-dry the affected area. Begin with making a solution of vinegar and water in a small bowl.

Next, you take a small white cloth, dip it into the solution and squeeze out the solution till the cloth is damp. Gently dab the damp cloth across the affected area. Do not rub or smear. Once the stain is removed, you will be left with a damp spot on your fabric. Using your hairdryer, blow hot air over the damp area to dry it.

If your stain was originally damp or lightly spotted, you could simply use laundry detergent and distilled water to remove the stain. Rewash the fabric in the washing machine, and the stain will be gone. Ensure you use distilled or tap water only.

Ways To Prevent Water Stain

There are plenty of ways to prevent water stains on your fabric. Whether it be a fabric sofa, doll fabric body, or fabric shoes, doing all you can to avoid water stains on them is the best alternative. You can do this by –

  1. Purchase a waterproof covering for your furniture fabric. This way, you wouldn’t have to worry about spills of any kind.
  2. Buying a water shield spray. This option is the best if you still want to show off your beautiful fabric sofa while protecting it.
  3. Install an iron filter system for your home. If you reside in a place with hard water, chances are you’ll be dealing with many fabric water stains. Installing a whole-house iron filter that cleans out the rust in your heater will help prevent water stains.

How To Remove Water Stains From Washable Clothes

If your clothes get stained by water, you can easily remove them by rewashing the cloth using regular laundry detergent and distilled water. You could also get rid of the stain in these 5 simple steps.

  • Set up your ironing board and adjust your iron temperature to suit the stained fabric.
  • Pour distilled or tap water into a clean bowl and carefully dip a clean white cloth into the water. Squeeze the cloth until it is damp but not dripping.
  • Thoroughly dab the damp cloth on the watermark area of your fabric.
  • Place your stained fabric on the iron board and iron the damp area until it is completely dry. Ensure that the steam setting of the iron is turned off.
  • If there is still slight evidence of the stain, lay the fabric flat on the side and use the back of a stainless steel spoon to rub the water spot.

How To Remove Water Stains From Fabric

There are various methods to remove water stains from fabric. The first and most popular is simply to rewash the fabric. Whether it’s a furniture fabric or fabric blinds, your regular washing machine laundry will take care of it as long as it is washable. The steam method is another way of getting rid of watermarks on fabric. You can use either a cloth steamer or steaming iron for this method. Spread the fabric on a flat surface and direct the steam to the stained spot. Repeat the process until the stain is gone, then leave the fabric to dry.

How To Remove Brown Water Stains From Fabric

Brown stains on your fabric are typically caused by hard water. Removing it involves the use of a rust remover laundry product when washing the fabric. Be sure to wash with only distilled water and avoid using bleach. Using bleach could make the stain more visible. You could also use a laundry product that softens the water when placing the fabric in the washing machine. Wash and rinse fabric as usual.

How To Remove Old Water Stains From Fabric

When a water stain gets dry on a fabric, it leaves a nasty spot behind. Removing it can be done via any of the following methods. For dry clean only fabrics, simply place the spotted fabric into the washer, add mild detergent and run through a gentle wash cycle. Remove fabric immediately after and dry. Another way to get rid of old water stains is by using vinegar.

You can follow these steps to remove old water stains from fabric using vinegar.

Before applying the vinegar, check that it doesn’t have an adverse effect on your fabric type. You can do this by testing the vinegar on a conspicuous part of the fabric first.
If there are no effects, place a clean microfiber cloth in a small bowl of water and squeeze until damp.
Use the damp cloth to wet the affected area.
Place another clean cloth in vinegar, squeeze till damp and rub the cloth over the water stain.
Repeat the first process using clean water and allow the fabric to dry.

How To Remove Yellow Water Stains From Fabric

Yellow water stains can make the most elegant fabric look ugly. It is usually caused by rust in hard water and can be removed using either of two methods; washing the stained fabric using regular laundry detergent or applying the vinegar method. Whichever way you use, ensure the water is distilled and free of rust.

How To Remove Mouldy Water Stains From Fabric

Often your fabric shoes, fabric couch, or desk cubicle could get stained from moldy water. The best way to remove this stain is by using a mold stain killer such as white vinegar or laundry soap. For non-washable fabric items, start by carefully scraping off the mold from the fabric using a vinegar solution in a spray bottle and a sponge or toothbrush. Soak washable fabrics in vinegar solution for some time before washing. You could opt for a hot water solution depending on the fabric. Wash the fabric with vinegar and laundry detergent and spread out in the sun afterward.

How To Remove Hard Water Rust Stains From Fabric Shower Curtains

Fabric blinds can also get stained by hard water rust. When this happens, you can get rid of the stain by washing either with a mild soap, vinegar, or baking soda. Ensure you get a water softening product for the hard water or use distilled water while washing. Create a soap or vinegar solution and soak the shower curtains for a while. After some time, take out the fabric curtains and lay them flat in your bathtub or any other convenient place. Pour the solution over the fabric and use a clean cloth to wipe the affected area. The stain will come off effortlessly. Thoroughly rinse the curtain and hang out to dry.

How To Remove Water Rust Stains From Fabric

Depending on the fabric, water rust stains can be removed either by washing the fabric with distilled water and regular detergent or using the vinegar solution method. You could also add a water softening product to reduce the effect of the hard water.

How To Remove Water Stains From Linen Upholstery Fabric

The vinegar solution method is most appropriate for removing water stains from upholstery. Use only distilled water and test if the furniture fabric reacts to vinegar first. Prepare a solution in a spray bottle and lightly spray over the stain. Use a clean microfiber cloth to dab on the spot as you spray the solution. Repeat the process until all traces of the stain are gone. Use your hairdryer to quickly dry the now damp area.

How To Remove Water Stains From Upholstery Fabric

Water Stains on upholstery fabrics can also be removed using laundry products like the fabric OxiClean versatile stain remover. Spray the cleaning solution onto a clean white cloth and use the cloth to dab the water spot gently. Repeat the procedure until all the stain is blotted out. Afterward, take a clean white microfiber towel, damp it with distilled water and use it to rinse the affected area. Dry quickly with a hairdryer.

How To Remove Water Stains From Cotton Fabric

Water stains on cotton or light-colored fabric can simply be removed by washing the fabric with laundry detergent and distilled or tap water. Place the cloth in the washer and run it through the regular washing cycle. Once done, take the fabric out and dry it under the sun.

How To Remove Water Stains From Delicate Fabric

Prepare a vinegar solution, lightly spray over a white microfiber towel, and dab gently on the affected area. Do this until all the stain is blotted out, then use distilled or non-hard water to rinse. Ensure you test beforehand if the fabric can withstand vinegar. Dry as quickly as possible with a hairdryer.

How To Remove Water Stains From Sunbrella Fabric

It can be drab when your Sunbrella fabric gets stained by water. However, do not fret. You can easily clean it with household materials you already have. Prepare a solution of regular soap and distilled water in a spraying bottle. Spray the solution over the fabric and use a soft brush or sponge to scrub the stained area gently. Repeat until all traces of the stain are gone. Rinse the fabric thoroughly and then spread it to air dry.

How To Remove Water Stains From Motorhome Ceiling Fabric

With the help of baking soda and Hydrogen peroxide, your motor home Ceiling can be free of water stains. Whether it’s your ceiling or car seat fabric, this method applies to all. Mix baking soda and Hydrogen peroxide to form a thick paste and apply the paste to the affected area of your ceiling. Allow it to air for some time before using a damp sponge to wipe it off. Repeat the process until all evidence of the stain is gone. Use a dry towel to dab the ceiling and get rid of moisture in the fabric. Open the windows and doors of your motor home to allow the affected area to air dry.

How To Remove Water Stains From Antique Fabric

Antique fabrics such as fabric lampshades, wall coverings, and fabric headliners are really valuable, and so water stains can be disastrous for them. The key to removing water stains from antique fabrics is to use the vinegar method. Use a soft white cloth dipped into the vinegar solution to blot out the stain. Rinse with distilled water and leave it out to dry.

Bottom Line On How To Remove Stains From Fabric

Water stains can be bothersome but are not all that difficult to get rid of. Whether it’s on a delicate fabric, linen upholstery, or antique fabric, simply by using any of the methods highlighted above, you are sure to get your fabric looking good as new. In cases where the water in your home is hard, consider getting a water softening product or whole house iron filter system.

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