How To Remove Orange Water Stain From Washable Fabrics

January 27, 2023

Are you tired of dealing with unsightly orange water stains on your washable fabrics? Look no further, as we have the solution for you. Learn the simple and effective steps to remove those stubborn stains and restore your fabrics to their original condition




These stains appear as discoloration of the fabric that is usually orange or yellow in color. They can be dry or slightly damp to the touch and may have a metallic or slightly musty smell. These stains are often caused by exposure to iron in water, such as iron found in well water or other sources, which can cause orange or yellow discoloration on clothes and fabrics. They may also be caused by the presence of iron minerals in the water which can react with detergents and leave discoloration on clothes after washing.


Hot (120° to 140°F)


Hot water helps to dissolve the minerals in hard water and make it easier to remove.

The Science Behind Orange Water Stains

Iron is a naturally occurring mineral that can be found in water sources. When iron is present in water, it can cause discoloration and staining on clothes. The iron particles in the water can attach to the fibers of the clothing and create a rust-like stain. The orange color of the water is likely due to the presence of iron oxide, which forms when iron is exposed to oxygen. As the iron oxide particles attach to the fibers of the clothing, they create a stain that can be difficult to remove.

What You'll Need To Get Rid Of Orange Water Stains

  • White vinegar
  • Lemon juice
  • Borax
  • Oxalic acid
  • Stain remover spray or laundry detergent

Step By Step Process To Remove Orange Water Stains

  1. Blot the stain with a clean cloth to remove any excess liquid.
  2. Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spray the solution onto the stain.
  3. Allow the solution to sit on the stain for at least 15 minutes.
  4. Mix 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of borax in a small bowl.
  5. Apply the mixture onto the stain and gently rub it in.
  6. Let the mixture sit on the stain for another 15 minutes.
  7. If the stain is still present, mix 1 tablespoon of oxalic acid with 1 cup of warm water and apply it to the stain.
  8. Allow the oxalic acid solution to sit on the stain for 5 minutes.
  9. Rinse the garment thoroughly with warm water.
  10. Launder the garment in the washing machine on the hottest water temperature recommended for the fabric, using a stain remover spray or laundry detergent.
Note: It's important to test the solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the garment before applying it to the stain to ensure it doesn't damage or discolor the fabric. Oxalic acid is a toxic substance and should be handled with care, make sure to wear gloves when handling it and make sure to keep it away from children and pets.

In Brief

Iron stains on clothes are caused by iron particles in water. The orange color is due to iron oxide. To remove iron stains, use a mixture of white vinegar and water, lemon juice, borax and oxalic acid. Rinse the garment thoroughly and launder it on the hottest water temperature recommended for the fabric. Be careful when handling oxalic acid.

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