Cleaning tea stains from carpet is a common and persistent issue in the world of professional carpet cleaning. From the comforting warmth of a morning cuppa to the bustling energy of an afternoon tea service, spills and splashes are inevitable. Yet, when those beloved brews find their way onto carpets, they leave behind stubborn stains that require precise attention and expertise to remove effectively.

Understand the Challenge: Tea Stains on Carpets

Tea stains are no joke when it comes to cleaning carpets. They’re among the toughest stains you’ll face, especially if the tea was piping hot. And if it’s spilled on a wool carpet? Well, get ready for a real challenge. When tea is hot, it opens up the fibers, letting the letting the tannins soak in deep. And once it cools down, those stains are locked in tight.
It’s important to manage expectations with clients before diving in. So, while we’ll give it our all, it’s essential to understand that complete removal isn’t always guaranteed. Sometimes, we work magic; other times, we just do our best.


  • White terry towel – Minor spills can be blot treated with the aid of a terry towel. By using a white towel, no other pigment will bleed onto the carpet.
  • Wet Extraction Machine – Larger spills should be treated using a wet extraction machine. This will minimise the risk of wick back and ensure an effective solution.
  • Spotting Chemical – As tea is made up of natural tannins, you will need a chemical formulated to tackle this. We highly recommend using Actichem CTR, which is a high activity formula for neutralising and removing coffee and tannin stains. This professionally researched formula includes a special blend of low pH compounds and reducing agents, proven to remove tough tannin staining, coffee marks, cellulosic browning discolourations, water marks, and many dye and beverage stains.
  • Spotting Brush – When agitating a carpet, don’t use the brushing motion as it will damage the carpet fibers. The best method is to tamp or firmly roll the brush over the stain as demonstrated in the video.
  • PPE – All the necessary PPE needs to be use when working with chemicals.

The Process


1. Apply CTR

2. Agitate

3. Dwell for 5 Mins

4. Extract


  1. Application – Liberally spray the Actichem CTR onto the stain, making sure the fibers are completely wetted out.
  2. Agitation – Agitate the stain by tamping up and down with a spotting brush to maximize penetration.
  3. Dwell – Allow 5-10 minutes dwell time.
  4. Extraction – Ideally, rinse and extract the carpet with a wet extraction machine.
  5. Repeat – Treat any remaining stain using this same procedure but with Conquer O2.
  6. Shadow Removal – If a stain shadow still remains, apply the Conquer O2 to the affected area. Blot to remove excess moisture and allow to air dry. The residue Conquer O2 will continue to remove the stain.


  1. Delicate fibres and fabrics 
    Do not spray the spotting solution directly onto the surface, but dampen a clean white absorbent towel and blot onto the surface. 
  2. Conquer O2
    Conquer O2 should be used in step 1 if blotting only is used (no wet extraction. 
  3. Wick back 
    The chemical must penetrate right down to the base, as that is where the tea would have gone. If you don’t fully wet it out, as it dries the moisture will pull the stain back up to the surface, this is called wick back. Additional care in the rinse extract step will also prevent wick back.

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