How to Remove Four Common Stains From Paper

An article that offers Do-It-Yourself (DIY) techniques and solutions on how to remove stains on paper without resorting to a professional to get the job done.

Stain on Paper, Image via Wikipedia

Stains can blemish a valuable document or a precious printed material at any time and any place. There are several kinds of substances that can cause paper stain, and removal depends on the severity of the spot. All stains are either water-based or oil-based. Know some techniques on how to remove four common stains from paper and preserve your document in the process.

Grease Stain

Use an absorbent powder such as chalk to draw out fresh grease spots on the surface of the paper. Use a brush to dust plenty of powder into the stain.  Enclose the powdered sheet between two pieces of paper, and then press the surface with hot iron. Refrain from using very hot iron to prevent scorching the paper. To remove old grease stains, use white benzene, instead of powdered chalk.

Mud Stain

Wet a piece of cloth or sponge and apply onto the mud stain on paper using a dabbing motion. Use soap jelly if the paper is rough and absorbent. If a dark trace remains, sprinkle a small amount of cream of tartar on the stain, and dab it off with a cloth or sponge until the spot is gone.

Ink Stain

Blot fresh ink stains with a tissue or paper towel right away.  For harder to remove stains, dab acetone directly onto the stain. This solvent dissolves most types of inks better than alcohol. You can also try wiping the spot with a cotton swab dipped in powdered pumice.

Coffee Stain

Prepare a vinegar solution by mixing ¾ cup vinegar to ¼ cup water.  Dip the portion of the paper with the coffee stain into the solution for about 30 seconds or until it saturates the section with the stain. Remove the paper and lay it flat between two sheets of dry paper towels. Press together to blot out the liquid.  If the coffee stain is still present, mix 2/3 cup water with 1/3 cup bleach. Dip an old toothbrush into the solution and gently brush the stained section until the stain is completely removed. Allow the paper to dry.

Tips:

Fresh stains are much easier to remove than older ones.  It’s best to blot out the stain right away as soon as it happens.

Warnings:

Improper handling of some chemicals used in the removal of stains can cause irreparable damage to the document, and can also inflict injury to the person. Caution is advised.

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