How to Clean Up Spilled Laundry Detergent in 3 Ways

Firstly, remove all the spilled laundry detergent from the hard floor or the carpet thoroughly. Then clean the floor using warm water or vacuum the affected area. Keep the detergent in a safe place and ensure that this doesn’t happen again!

Once you accidentally spill some laundry detergent, it appears to be a very easy cleanup task. However, as we all know, appearances are always deceptive.

Whether you spill detergent on the carpet, or on a hard surface, like concrete or linoleum, a little spilled detergent goes a long way. 

That’s all from the bad news side. The good news is that you can easily clean up the spill and have sparkling, clean surfaces again in no time!

how to clean up spilled laundry detergent

How to Clean Up Spilled Laundry Detergent

Cleaning up spilled detergent is a messy affair, surprisingly. The way you go about the cleaning process depends on whether it is a hard floor or carpet. Moreover, it also depends on whether the detergent is in powder or liquid form.

Let’s take a look at the cleanup process keeping these factors in mind one by one.

How to Clean Up Spilled Liquid Detergent from Carpet

When dealing with liquid spills on carpets, you have to take quick and timely action so that the stains will not set in and ruin the entire carpet.

Things You Will Need:

  • Warm Water
  • Spray Bottle
  • Towels
  • Steam Cleaner
  • Small Cup
  • Spoon


  • The first step is to scoop up as much of the liquid detergent as possible from the carpet. Use a small cup, preferably the one that comes with the detergent, or a large spoon to do this. 
  • The next step is spraying the carpet with lukewarm water. This will help you separate the soap from the fibers. Take a spray bottle and fill it up with warm water. Spray it all over the spill thoroughly. 
  • Let the water soak in for 5 minutes. A soapy solution will be formed that you can now easily remove.
  • Take a clean cloth and remove as much of the soapy liquid as possible. You will need to put in some elbow grease but it will be worth the effort. Once the carpet dries, it will feel slightly hard. This is all right since there is still some soap inside the carpet fibers that are making the carpet all hard.
  • Once you have gotten the soap out using towels, it is time to use the steam cleaner. If you don’t have a steam cleaner, there is no need to worry. You can rent one from your local home improvement store.
  • Run the steam cleaner all over the area. Make sure that there are no suds left. Once you touch the carpet, it will feel like the right texture. 
  • If you don’t have a steam cleaner and can’t get your hands on one either, you can use water and your hands to get the soap out.
  • Apply water, scrub thoroughly, and repeat. To speed up the drying process, you can use a fan.

How to Clean Up Spilled Liquid Laundry Detergent from Hard Floor

If you spill laundry detergent on the hard floors, such as concrete, wooden flooring, etc., you can easily clean up the mess using household cleaning items. Let’s see how.

Things You Will Need:

  • Clean Rags
  • Mop
  • Lukewarm water


  • Take some clean rags and wipe up the spilled detergent with them. If you don’t wipe up the soap completely, it will leave a sticky, slippery residue on the floor.
  • The residue will be a fluff and dust magnet as well. Therefore, remove the spilled detergent using clean cloths as quickly as possible.
  • Take a mop and soak it in lukewarm water. Any soap that you haven’t been able to remove, will form suds with the water. Mop the area thoroughly until there is soap on the floor.
  • Once you have wiped the soap away and mopped the area, take a clean rag and dry the area with it thoroughly.
  • This will not only keep someone from slipping on the wet floor, but it will also keep the floor from getting dirty.
mopping the floor

How to Clean Up Spilled Powdered Laundry Detergent

The danger from laundry detergent spills is the formation of permanent stains due to the dyes in the products. A quick, timely action is your best friend in such a case. Let’s see how you can prevent permanent damage to your luxurious carpets and floors.

Things You Will Need:

  • Dustpan
  • Vacuum Cleaner
  • Broom


  • Take a dustpan and lightly scoop up as much of the powder as you can, without grinding the powder into the carpet. Keep scooping until there is no detergent left on the floor.
  • Vacuum the powdered detergent from the carpet or the hard floor.
  • If you don’t have a vacuum cleaner, you can use a broom instead. This is slightly more time consuming but is equally effective.
  • Make sure that you don’t use any water as it will create a huge mess for you to clean up. 
  • Moreover, go over the entire area very thoroughly as it is likely that your pets or children will be tempted to eat the powder if they see any lying around.

How to Prevent Future Detergent Spills

We all have heard that prevention is better than the cure, and rightly so. Instead of having to clean up messes on a regular basis, why not follow a few, simple steps and ensure that the mess doesn’t happen in the first place, right?

Let’s see how you can prevent future detergent spills.

  • Keep the detergent in a better place. If you are spilling the detergent, again and again, you should stop and take a look at your storage options. Place the soap in an area where there is no chance that you will bump into it or kick it.
  • Instead of keeping it on the floor, keep it in an easy to reach place. If you don’t have any shelves to keep the airtight container, install a couple of shelves in your laundry room to prevent spills.
  • Don’t leave the detergent on top of a dryer or a front loader. Once the machine runs, the detergent will spill all over the floor.
  • If you are using boxed detergent, transfer the washing powder into a sealed container to prevent future spills.
  • Seal the box or container tightly after every single use.
  • Switch to white or clear detergent to avoid large stains. This way, even if the laundry detergent spills, you will only have to clear up the suds, and not worry about removing the dyes.

FAQs for How to Clean Up Spilled Laundry Detergent

Can I Use a Kitty Litter to Clean Up Spilled Laundry Detergent?

Yes, you can use kitty litter to clean up the hard surface or carpet detergent spills. Cover the spill with a layer of kitty litter and wait until the soap is absorbed.

Can a Laundry Detergent Spill Ruin Your Carpet?

If you take care of the spill immediately, it is very likely that you will prevent any permanent damage to the carpet. 

Can You Get Laundry Detergent Stains Out Of Carpet?

Yes, you can get laundry detergent stains out of the carpet very easily. You can use rubbing alcohol, baking soda, and warm water to get the stains out.

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