How to Remove Water Stains from Fabric & Clothes: Easy Ways

Water is a gift that helps us in so many ways. When it comes to cleaning fabric, water reveals itself as the key element. But sometimes, it can form stains on soft fabric like clothes and furniture upholstery.

How to Remove Water Stains from Fabric

Everyone in the house struggles to remove that stains. And most of them come with this certain question how to remove water stains from fabric and clothes?

Wet the stained area. Keep that on the ironing board that is already covered with a white towel. Place the stained fabric upside down. Now heat the iron to a medium level. And finally, iron the stained fabric.

For eliminating stains from upholstery and shoes, you will need to apply other methods. No worries! We have covered all the necessary things for different fabric accessories so that you don’t face any trouble removing water stains from any type of fabric item. Keep reading.

What Causes Water Stains on Clothes and Fabric?

Water stains – the name is not that self-explanatory. Though it’s called water stain, the factor that causes water stain rings is not actually water itself; it’s the dissolved minerals in the water that cause water stains.

what causes water stains on clothes

This usually happens when you wash your clothes with hard water. And hard water means water that contains a lot of dissolved minerals like magnesium (Mg), calcium (Ca), manganese (Mn), etc. When you wash your clothes with this type of water, it does the opposite of cleaning; you get those dingy water stains as a result. Depending on the material, you may even notice yellowed stains too.

This can also happen if you are using purified water from the municipal system. Because that water contains chemicals and minerals which are used to clean the water and those minerals residue on your fabrics and ultimately leave dirty water stains.

If you want to get rid of them, make sure you use distilled water instead of tap water.

How to Remove Water Stains from Fabric and Clothing: Step by Step

If the stain on the garment is very light and hard to notice, you don’t need to follow the steps below.

how to remove water stains from clothes

You can simply use a small amount of regular laundry detergent with distilled water to wash off the stain. You can do it either by hand or by a normal wash cycle. But if the stain is heavy and very easy to spot, follow the steps below.

Things You Will Need:

  • Iron
  • Ironing board
  • White towel
  • Iron
  • Microfiber cloth
  • A steel-made spoon

Step 1:

Prep the ironing table by covering it with a white-colored plush towel. Colored ones are not recommended because your garment can get stained by the color of the towel.

Step 2:

Now, place the garment on the white towel and make sure you place the stained area facing down. For fabrics with prints, you need to turn them inside out to save them from getting damaged by the heat.

Step 3:

Set your iron and wait for a while until it reaches the appropriate temperature for the garment.

Step 4:

Now, take a microfiber cloth and submerge it in water. Using distilled water is better. However, tap water will do as well. Squeeze out the excess water. Wet the stained area thoroughly. After that, select a dry part of the towel and move the moistened area to that part.

Step 5:

It’s time to iron the wet garment until the stained area becomes dry and the stain vanishes. But don’t hold the iron in the same spot for too long and don’t use the steam mode. If you see the stain remaining, repeat steps 4 and 5.

Step 6:

Some traces of the stain can still be noticed. To remove them, turn the stained part of the garment facing up this time and clean the traces by rubbing the back of a spoon over the area. You can do it with your fingers too. Just rub for a couple of seconds.

How to Get Water Stain Out of Upholstery: Fabric Sofa, Car Seats Step by Step

The cleaning process of upholstery (sofa couch, car seats, etc.) is slightly different than the washable fabrics because you can’t just toss them into the washing machine!

how to remove water stains from upholstery

So, take a look at the method to remove the stains from upholstery properly.

Step 1: 

Make a cleaning solution using a ratio of 2: 1/2 cup of water and white vinegar respectively. You can apply the solution manually by hand or using a spray bottle.

If you are using a small bottle, make the appropriate amount of solution for it following the ratio. To be on the safe side, you can test the solution in a small area before you begin to apply.

Step 2: 

If you are using a spray bottle, spray it very lightly and don’t saturate the fabric. If you are doing it manually, first, submerge a microfiber cloth in the solution.

White-colored clothes are recommended. Now, wring out the excess water from it and press it directly on the stain to moisten the area properly. To avoid damaging the fabric, you should avoid excessive rubbing.

Step 3: 

You need to remove the excess moisture from the fabric upholstery using towels. Microfibers work fine but you can use paper towels too. Absorb the moisture by placing some paper towels over the wet portion of the fabric.

Now press them down to absorb the moisture properly, you can place a heavy object over the towels to make your work easier. Change the towels if they get soaked. Repeat until the area becomes dry.

You can speed up the process using a hairdryer. Repeat steps 2 and 3 if the stain remains.

Read Next: How to remove nail glue from clothes and fabric

How to Get Rid of Water Marks on Fabric Blinds: Step by Step

how to remove water stains from fabric blinds

Fabric blinds got water marks all over them? No worries. Take a look at the step-by-step process to remove water marks from them.

Things You Will Need:

  • Bleach
  • Bucket
  • Sponge
  • A soft & clean cloth
  • Blow dryer
  • Detergent or vinegar (optional)

Step 1: 

This is a preparation step. First, check how much the fabric blind is stained. If you notice larger stains, you should remove the blind from the headrail and then wash it. But if the area is small, you can simply clean it without removing it from the blind headrail.

Step 2:

You need to measure the ingredients first. Measuring it by hand and guesses is enough, no need to use scales. Take four parts of clean water for one part of bleach in the bucket. Now, mix them well.

If your blind has a dark color the measurement will be slightly different. You will need to take ten parts of clean water for one part of bleach. Mix until you find the bleach evenly mixed with the water.

If the stain is caused due to dissolved minerals in the water, you need to use vinegar. And if you don’t want to use harsh products on the blind fabric, you need to make a solution of vinegar and water, or regular laundry detergent and water. The rest of the process remains the same.

Step 3: 

Before you begin to clean the blind, you can make a test on a small area to see if the bleach solution damages or leaves discolored stains on the fabric or not.

Though it’s not necessary, you can do it just to be on the safe side. If you really find your fabric getting discolored, stop the cleaning process and seek help from an expert.

Step 4:

Dip the sponge in the bleach solution. You should squeeze the sponge to get rid of the excess water from it. Now, blot the sponge on the stained areas.

Make sure you don’t overdo it because you want just to moisten the blind fabric not necessarily saturate the area.

Step 5:

Now use another dry sponge to remove excess moisture by blotting on the dampened area. You can even use a soft cloth for this.

Step 6:

You need to remove the excess moisture from the fabric as soon as possible. So, you can use a hairdryer on low heat to make it quick. Regular fans will do as well. To make sure it’s completely dry, hang the blind outside and let it air dry.

Step 7:

After the stained area dries, check if the stains have vanished or not. If you see stains remaining just say “O boy, here we go again” and repeat the process!

Guide on Removing Water Stains from Fabric Shoes: Step by Step

Fabric shoes are made of cotton, nylon, wool, polyester, and many other synthetic fibers. Each of the fabrics comes with a unique look and provides an exclusive fashion statement.

how to remove water stains from fabric shoes

To maintain the original quality of your fabric shoes, you need to clean them regularly. A water stain is one of the pesky items that can spoil the look of the shoe. Let’s check how to remove water stains from your fabric shoe.

Step 1: 

First of all, create a mixture. Add 1/2 cup of bleach to 1/2 cup of water. Stir to mix them properly.

Step 2:

Take a piece of clean cloth. Dabble it with the mixture. Make sure the cloth is not too wet.

Step 3: 

Smear the water stain. Wipe out the whole shoe with the wet cloth. Don’t overdo it.

Step 4:

The bleach mixture can leave some residues. To clean the shoe aptly, make a mixture using 1/2 cup of white vinegar and an equal amount of water.

Step 5: 

Take another clean cloth. Soak that into the vinegar mixture. Wipe the shoe carefully to remove all the residues including the bleach mixture.

How to Avoid Water Spots on Fabric?

How to Avoid Water Spots on Fabric

The fact is that you can’t completely avoid water spots on the fabric. However, the following tips can be beneficial.

  • Use distilled water instead of hard or purified water. Most of the time, normal tap water cause water stains on the fabric.
  • If water stays on cloth for an extended period, it can form water stains. Therefore, take steps to dry the cloth soon.
  • Wring your clothes as much as possible and remove all possible water from the fabrics.
  • To dry out faster, you can use a hairdryer or fan. Make sure to set them on a minimal level.
  • To avoid water spots on fabric upholstery like sofa, you can buy a waterproof cover. Some covers are available that can be cleaned directly with water, pick them to avoid many hassles.
  • If you don’t prefer to use a waterproof cover, consider buying a water shield spray. This will make the fabric upholstery waterproof and you will not notice any water stains on the furniture.

Final Words

We already know that water itself is not the cause for forming stains on the fabric. The inner elements make the water spots.

So, changing the water type can prevent water stains when washing your clothes. You can follow the section ‘How to Avoid Water Spots’ from this guide.

However, water stains on fabric are a common scenario. Better keep the idea about different methods to remove the spots from different fabric items.

The above guide is detailed and we hope it will be handy when you need to dispel water stains from clothes and other fabric accessories.

Hello there! I’m Jessica, I'm a textile engineer and mom of two little boys. When I’m not playing with my kids, you’ll find me researching and writing for Fabrichow.

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