How to Clean Dried Paint Stains From Fabric

Removing paint from fabric can be difficult enough if you catch the spill while it is still wet. It's a tougher task when you're dealing with a dry paint stain. If you're lucky, a simple treatment just might remove the stain and restore the clothing to its original state. Before you begin treating the stain, try to remember where it came from to determine if the paint is water or oil-based.

Water-Based Paint

Step 1

Rub heavy-duty liquid laundry detergent onto the paint stain to saturate the fabric. You can also apply a liberal amount of a pretreatment stain remover. Wait 60 seconds to give the cleaner time to soak into the fabric.

Step 2

Wash the paint-stained clothing immediately in hot water with heavy-duty laundry detergent.

Step 3

Remove the clothing from the washer and inspect the stain. If it has disappeared, dry the clothing as you would normally. If the stain persists, continue to step four.

Step 4

Mix 1 gallon of water and 1 cup of bleach. Use liquid chlorine bleach for white or color-safe clothes and color-safe bleach or oxygen bleach for other fabrics.

Step 5

Soak the garment in the mixture for no more than 15 minutes. Bleaching the clothing longer than that might damage it.

Step 6

Wash the clothing again in hot water with heavy-duty detergent. If the stain persists after this second wash cycle, it is probably permanent.

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