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Q: How do I remove an oil stain from a brown leather couch? ( Answered,   2 Comments )
Subject: How do I remove an oil stain from a brown leather couch?
Category: Family and Home > Home
Asked by: kow-ga
List Price: $4.00
Posted: 28 Apr 2003 23:02 PDT
Expires: 28 May 2003 23:02 PDT
Question ID: 196914
Baby oil was spilled on my brown soft leather couch and has stained
the area a darker brown and I need to get some advice on how best to
clean/remove it. The amount spilled was not all that great, but it was
enough to leave a spot the size of the bottom of a soda can. I am sure
that some of it has soaked in, although not enough to make it down to
the filler or anything like that. I blotted it with a dry cloth right
after the spill, but it did nothing to remove the stain that is darker
brown than the rest of the couch. I am not certain of the grade of
leather, but I do know that it is not heavily treated and I know that
it also is not untreated. I believe it is medium grade... a $2000
couch, if that helps. It is soft to the touch and looks somewhat
natural. Should I try using ivory soap, over the counter leather
cleaner, palmolive, another type of oil, or what? Will the stain fade
at all in time, and if so, how soon? I am looking for very confident
and thorough advice... a list of options (try this first, try this
next if that doesnt work, etc.) would be great too. Thanks in advance!
Subject: Re: How do I remove an oil stain from a brown leather couch?
Answered By: feilong-ga on 30 Apr 2003 13:30 PDT
Hi Kow,

There are many types of leather finish used for furniture. Since your
problem is a sensitive case, we can not rely on mere descriptions
alone, we need to see the type of leather and feel it as much as
possible. I am not an expert on leather furniture but I can readily
advice you not to go immediately to the counter to buy a leather
cleaner nor do a trial and error procedure (try this first, try this
next if that doesnt work, etc.) as you implied in your question --
unless you are prepared to ruin that $2000 couch. That would be a
definite no-no and you don't want that of course. The suggestions in
the comments section were given to you free and yours to follow at
your own risk. It's your decision.

Since you need confident and thorough advice I believe that you need
to talk to people who are in the business of taking care of leather
furniture. I found this for you:

Stainsafe Companies
Leather Care and Protections Products

Products and Prices

You can communicate with a company representative by contacting them
through the following links. Read the details and I'm sure you'll be

Customer Service
Toll free number 1-800-521-0555 
Monday - Friday, 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM Eastern Standard Time
Saturday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time

Profile - About Us

Aside from those given in the comments below, her'es another solutions
that may be applicable to your problem. But like I said, there are
many types of leather and the following are provided for informational
purposes only.

Miscellaneous Household Items
Leather Gloves -- To erase stains, rub with an art gum eraser. To
remove an oil stain, cover with cornstarch. Leave it on overnight then
brush it off. To clean white kid leather, massage flour into the dirt,
then brush it off

Again, with regards to the source I have given you, including the
product descriptions, application, etc., the information came from the
product itself and I'm in no way representing any company I
mentioned in the answer. The material I've presented is intended for
informational purposes only.

You can probably find other information through the link below.

Search strategy:

remove "oil stain" leather

I hope this helps you. Should you have any comments/questions, please
feel free to post your clarification before rating this and I'll
attend to you as soon as possible. Thanks for asking.

Best regards,
Subject: Re: How do I remove an oil stain from a brown leather couch?
From: serenata-ga on 29 Apr 2003 00:58 PDT
Hi Kow ~

I am posting this as a comment because I cannot find any reliable
source of information for removing an oil stain from leather once the
oil has had the chance to soak in. None of the suggestions was
particularly optimistic once the oil has had a chance to 'set'.

The old saying, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure is
very true in caring for fine leather, whether it is shoes, clothing
and especially if it is furniture that gets used regularly. There are
leather care products which, if used regularly, will prevent the
accident you described.

As for removing oil stains, there are a few suggestions available on
the Internet for using corn starch  to absorb the oil before ...
emphasis on *before* the oil has a chance to soak into the pores of
the leather. The suggestion is to run the spot briskly with the
cornstarch til you can feel the warmth from the friction to see if
that will absorb the oil and then to wipe it off with a damp cloth.

The use of harsh chemicals and detergents is definitely NOT
recommended (scratch the idea of dish soaps, etc.); although a couple
of sites suggested trying an application of saddlesoap (made
specifically FOR leather) to see if that might work.

Most of the sites (7 out of 8) recommended consulting an expert in
leather cleaning if the oil stain has soaked into the leather.

Sorry the information wasn't more helpful,
Subject: Re: How do I remove an oil stain from a brown leather couch?
From: cheshireboo-ga on 30 Apr 2003 07:13 PDT
Baby powder also works.  I don't have a source but I have used it
before.  Sprinkle baby powder on the site and leave it on overnight. 
It, too, soaks up all of the oil.

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