How to Remove Dry Paint From Carpet

It takes knowledge and patience to remove dry paint from carpet. The first step in solving is identifying what kind of paint is spilled. From there, we can start applying remedies according to their classification. We can identify it through reading the label of the can or consult an expert in the paint to identify it for you.

The procedure below approaches each type of paint using stronger tools or materials to get rid of it quickly. However, if the stain almost covered the carpet or have stayed longer than 2 years, consider buying a new carpet.


The Home Depot demonstrated in their video how to remove dry paint from carpet and here are the things you need:

  • Carpet cleaner machine/ spray
  • Dish soap
  • Utility knife
  • Nose pliers
  • Scrub brush
  • Cleaning cloth
  • Isopropyl Alcohol /Thinner/Acetone


Identifying paints are important. According to Clark, a writer in Hillis Brother Company which sells paints for over 25 years, defines latex, acrylic paint, and oil paint definitions below:

Latex Paint

Latex is a water-based paint. Latex paint is usually used on large surfaces because of its cheap price and quick-drying component. Since latex is water-based, it is easier to clean up using soap and water.

First, use the utility knife and lightly scratch the paint on the surface.

Then, mix ¼ of the dish cleaner with 1 liter of warm water and spray on the area and lightly scrub it using the stiff brush. Repeat the process until the paint is gone.

Acrylic Paint

Acrylic Paint is a chemical-based paint. Acrylic paint is used in arts and projects because it is durable. Since they are chemicals, they are more elastic and water-resistant.

Amy Kingston, a professional writer at SFGate, said that you need to scrape it off using the utility knife. You can also use the nose plier to help separate the carpet strands from each other.

Then, dab the carpet cleaner or thinner on the area and clean it with a cloth. Repeat this procedure until nothing is left.

Oil Paint

Oil paint is less used in house paint. It dries longer, produces harmful fumes and its color retention will likely fade away. This is usually used for painting and for finishing touches outside the house.

The procedure is the same with acrylic paint. If the stains remain, use isopropyl alcohol, thinner, or acetone and leave it 15 minutes on the stain then clean it with the cloth. If all is done, the carpet cleaner machine may wipe it all away.


Although the above procedure helps remove dry paint from carpet, it is best to prevent it from happening. If you are painting your apartment, keep all the things away from the painting area or cover the carpet with another cloth to protect it. Better yet, contact professionals to do it for you.


A passionate DIY home improvement enthusiast. With extensive experience in various renovation projects, including mold removal, painting, fence installation, and more, Jonathan brings his expertise to fellow DIY and gardening enthusiasts, sharing valuable skills and insights.