How to Remove Coffee Stains From Car Seats? – Quickest Ways

how to remove coffee stains from car seats

Having coffee is a good way to start your day, unless it gets accidentally spilled on your car seat. If you had that unfortunate experience spoil your morning, this article will save your day with a tutorial on how to remove coffee stains from car seats.

You should follow the steps and tips carefully, and act fast. It’s not only more difficult to get old coffee stains out of upholstery, but an unpleasant odor can also result from spilled coffee left uncleaned.

Guide to Remove Coffee Stains From Car Seats

First thing first: Blot Out the Coffee Spill Immediately

You need a cloth, paper towel, napkin, or baby wipe for this step.

Don’t leave the coffee spill on car seat to dry, as it’d take more effort to remove later. Quickly grab whatever absorbent thing you have, such as a cloth, paper towel, napkin, or baby wipe, and blot out the coffee spill immediately.

If the coffee stains persist, you would need to undergo a couple of other steps. The steps would depend on what material your car seats are made of, so just find the procedure on how to clean coffee out of car seat below.

Deep Clean the stains

1. On Cloth Car Seats


What to Prepare:

  • 2 options for the cleaner: Commercial upholstery cleaner or a DIY cleaner: vinegar, water, and dish soap
  • Towels
  • Hair dryer

Step 1: Clean off the Stains With a Commercial Upholstery Cleaner or DIY Cleaner


Apply your commercial car seat cleaner on the affected areas. Gently work it on the coffee stains with a towel.

Alternatively, for your DIY cloth seat cleaner, create a mixture composed of vinegar and water in a 1:2 ratio, plus a few drops of dish soap.

Once your cleaner is ready, gently work it on the stains with a towel to remove the coffee stain on car seat.

Step 2: Rinse and Blot the Affected Areas


With a damp towel, wipe the surface thoroughly but carefully without soaking the seat too much. Then with a dry towel, blot out the moisture.

Keep repeating this step until you completely remove coffee stain from car seat. Just wait until no more coffee appears on the towel.

Step 3: Dry the Areas

When you’re done with your coffee stain removal car seats have to be dried. You may use a hair dryer or air dry the surface. The former method will work quicker and suit days when the weather is cold.

2. On Leather Car Seats


What to Prepare

  • 2 options for the cleaner: Commercial leather cleaner or DIY cleaner: linseed (or olive) oil and vinegar.
  • Towels
 01 Commercial Leather Cleaner Method

It’d be best to use a pH-balanced commercial leather cleaner to not only effectively clean coffee stains from leather car seats but also to keep them protected. Apply the cleaner on the affected areas, and gently work it on the stains with a towel.

Finally, use another towel to get rid of the stains along with the cleaner.

 02 Linseed (or Olive) Oil and Vinegar Method

Combine the following ingredients to create your DIY cleaner for removing coffee stains from car seats that are leather:

    • 2 parts linseed (or olive) oil
    • 1 part vinegar

Gently work your DIY cleaner on the coffee stains. Rub the areas gently as well, making sure no part is left untouched. Let the solution sit for a while before wiping the surface clean with a towel.

3. On Vinyl Car Seats


What to Prepare

  • 2 options for the cleaner: Commercial vinyl cleaner, or DIY cleaner: vinegar, water, and dish soap
  • Towels
 01 Commercial Vinyl Cleaner Method

If you opt for a commercial cleaner to clean coffee stain from car seat, avoid oil or mineral-based cleaners. They can make the vinyl seats brittle and ruin their appearance.

Apply the vinyl cleaner on the affected areas, then gently agitate the stains. Finally, wipe off the residue with a towel.

 02 Baking Soda, Water, and Dish Soap Method

You can also use a DIY cleaner to get coffee out of car seats that are vinyl, particularly a baking soda paste. To create one, combine one part of water and thrice as much baking soda. Add in 5 to 10 drops of dish soap to complete the mixture.

Apply the cleaning paste on the affected areas.

After scrubbing off the stains, dampen a towel with warm water and use it to wipe away the residue on the surface.

Helpful Tips


Apply Conditioner on Your Leather or Vinyl Car Seats After Cleaning

There’s one important additional step you have to do to keep your car seats in good condition. It’s applying a leather or vinyl conditioner after you get stains out of car seats.

The chemicals and agitation from cleaning may contribute to the drying, fading, and cracking of the leather or vinyl. So, you’d need to condition the material to prevent those adverse effects.

Plus, it’d also help prevent or minimize staining on your seats in the future. Most leather conditioners are actually also suitable for vinyl seats.

Moreover, they also come in various forms such as sprays, wipes, etc. Whatever type of conditioner you have, just follow the instructions on its back label, and always make sure to apply it evenly on your seats.

Remove the Coffee Smell With Baking Soda, Coffee Grounds, or Odor Absorber

If the spilled coffee on car seat smell remains even after cleaning, don’t worry, as there are three ways you can remedy it.

  • Leave Baking Soda or Coffee Grounds in Your Car Overnight

You can spread baking soda around your car, leave it overnight, and vacuum it the following day. Or you can leave an open can of coffee grounds in the vehicle from night till morning.

  • Use a Commercial Odor Absorber

A more simple way to eliminate the coffee smell is to use a commercial odor absorber. You just have to open its lid and leave it in your car, and it will take care of the smell.

Use a Steam Cleaner on Stubborn Coffee Stains

If you find it hard to remove dried coffee stains on your car seat, you can reinforce your cleaning solution with a steam cleaner. Go over the spilled coffee in car seat with the steam cleaner before and after scrubbing to help break down the stains.


How to remove coffee stains from car seats may be an effortful task, but it is a must for overall cleanliness. After all, your car exterior is not the only area that needs maintenance.

Once the coffee stains are off, you’ll be back on the road with a pristine, more pleasant-smelling car that contributes to a more comfortable drive. But after getting rid of the coffee stains, try to be more careful with your drinks, so you won’t have to go through all that blotting, agitating, wiping, etc. again.

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