Removing Ballpoint Ink Stains From Carpets

No matter what kind of rug, these treatments will get the spot out.

  • Jennifer Jafarzadeh
Follow the steps using the instructions that suit your carpet type―whether it's made of a synthetic material (such as nylon, polyester, or polypropylene) or a natural fiber (such as wool, sisal, seagrass, or coir). If you have wall-to-wall carpeting, it's probably synthetic. An area rug should list the material on its tag. In either case, rule number one: Treat a spot right away; don't let it dry. And before attacking a large stain, test the solution in a small, inconspicuous area to make sure it won't damage the fiber or the dye.

Synthetic-Fiber Rugs

1. Apply a small amount of solvent (use an oil solvent, such as Carbona Carpet Wizard Carpet Cleaner) to a white cloth, then blot. Wait 15 minutes to dry; repeat if necessary.

2. Rinse by blotting with a cloth soaked in lukewarm water.

Natural-Fiber Rugs

1. Spray the stain with detergent solution. (Mix 1 teaspoon of translucent liquid dishwashing detergent, such as Dawn or Joy, into 1 cup of lukewarm water.) Then blot with a dry white cloth.

2. Spray the stain with ammonia solution. (Mix 1 tablespoon of clear household ammonia with 1/2 cup of lukewarm water.) Then blot with a dry white cloth.

3. Spray the stain with vinegar solution. (Mix 1/4 cup of white vinegar with 1/4 cup of water.) Then blot with a dry white cloth.

4. Reapply the detergent solution, then blot with a dry white cloth.

5. Spray the stain with water, then blot with a dry white cloth.