How to get tar out of carpet

Domestic dirt

Oh no! You’ve just discovered a pesky tar stain on your beautiful carpet. Don’t worry; spills happen. But what do you do now? If you’ve ever been in this spot (pun intended) and wondered how to salvage the situation, this guide is perfect for you. Getting tar out of carpet might sound daunting, but with the right approach and a sprinkle of patience, you’ll have that carpet looking spick and span in no time. Ready to dive in?

What You Will Need:

  1. A clean white cloth or paper towel
  2. Rubbing alcohol (Isopropyl alcohol)
  3. Ice cubes or a cold pack
  4. A blunt knife or spoon
  5. A gentle carpet cleaner or mild dish soap
  6. Warm water
  7. A vacuum cleaner

Method 1: Using Alcohol

  1. Blot, Don’t Rub: If the tar is still fresh, gently blot away any excess using a white cloth. Remember not to rub, as this can spread the stain.
  2. Apply the Alcohol: Dampen another cloth with rubbing alcohol. Make sure you test a small, inconspicuous area of your carpet first to ensure the alcohol doesn’t damage or discolor it.
  3. Dab the Stain: Gently dab the stain with the alcohol-soaked cloth. As the tar dissolves, move to a clean section of the cloth and continue until the stain is gone.
  4. Rinse and Dry: Once the stain is removed, dampen a cloth with warm water and blot the area to remove any alcohol residue. Allow it to dry naturally or speed up the process using a fan.

Method 2: Using Ice

  1. Harden the Tar: If the tar is still soft, place some ice cubes or a cold pack over it. This will harden the tar, making it easier to remove.
  2. Scrape Off the Tar: Once the tar is hard, use a blunt knife or spoon to gently scrape it off the carpet.
  3. Clean Residue: If any residue remains, you can use a gentle carpet cleaner or mild dish soap mixed with warm water. Apply this solution to the area and gently scrub using a cloth.
  4. Rinse and Dry: Rinse the area with clean water and allow it to dry. Once dry, vacuum the area to restore the carpet’s texture.

Commercially Suitable Cleaning Products

  1. Tar-Off Carpet Miracle: Specifically designed to tackle tar, this product can be a lifesaver for persistent stains.
  2. Clean & Green Tar Away: An eco-friendly option that doesn’t compromise on efficiency.
  3. ProClean Tar Terminator: A professional-grade cleaner that is both effective and gentle on your carpet.


There you have it! Two effective methods to get tar out of your carpet. Remember, the quicker you address the stain, the easier it will be to remove. With a bit of effort and the right approach, your carpet will be tar-free in no time.

Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use any type of alcohol for cleaning tar off the carpet?
It's best to use isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol as it's effective and safe for most carpets.
What should I do if the tar stain remains after trying both methods?
You can consult a professional carpet cleaner or try a specialized tar remover.
Is there any risk of damaging my carpet with these methods?
Always test a small, hidden section of your carpet first. Both methods are generally safe, but individual carpet materials may react differently.
Can I prevent tar from sticking to my carpet in the future?
It's hard to prevent accidents, but placing mats or rugs in high-traffic areas can reduce the risk.
How often should I clean my carpet?
Regular vacuuming is recommended at least once a week, with deep cleaning every 12-18 months.
Rate this article
Carpet Cleaning Tips