How do I get rid of brown water stains on my ceiling?

Ceiling stains are caused by dirty or rusty water. That brownish stain is most likely a mixture of iron and manganese with mildew or mold growing on top of it, making it very difficult to remove. We will show you how to get rid of the stains without too much trouble, no matter if they have been there for a short time or a long time. First, we will share some advice from experts at home improvement websites; then, we’ll tell you what products you can use in your effort to clean up the mess.

How do I get rid of brown water stains on my ceiling?, Zazzy Home

Please keep in mind that this technique has been tested on ceiling stains only and may damage the paint on walls! Also, be careful when working around electricity! Make sure power is off before starting any repairs. Advice from ‘The Family Handyman’ website:

Stubborn stains on a ceiling are best tackled with a safe and simple solution of 1/2 cup Clorox bleach in a gallon of water. If the stain isn’t too bad, scrub it with a nylon-net brush dipped in the bleach solution. Then let it dry overnight. The stain should be gone (or at least fainter). If not, repeat until satisfied. This is also an excellent cleaner for hardwood floors that pick up occasional dirt or stains.

Surface Preparation: A clean surface assures greater adhesion and longer life for finishes; wipe down surfaces before painting with TSP (trisodium phosphate) using the following mix:1 quart water, 1/4 cup TSP, and two teaspoons detergent. Rinse thoroughly with clean water before painting.

Supplies – These are the supplies you will need to make your own cleaning solution:

Latex or another water-based primer (optional)

After removing the ceiling fan (if you have one), first, remove any insulation that may have accumulated behind it by pulling it out through the fixture hole. Now you’re ready to tackle the stains themselves. Using a stiff brush, scrub away at them until there’s nothing left but discolored wood. When the surface is clean enough for your liking, let it dry completely overnight. Next, apply primer if necessary to achieve uniform color; you can finish up by repainting the room as well if you wish.

Now that you’ve fixed the problem, read on for some tips from ‘Family Handyman’ on removing stains from laundry:

Stubborn brown water stains can be removed from white clothes by pretreating with a paste made of powdered oxygen bleach (brand names are sodium percarbonate or hydrogen peroxide) and cream of tartar, an acid. Then wash as usual. This trick also works to reduce yellowing in towels caused by hard water-just soak them overnight before washing.

Procedure – The procedures to follow are very similar to each other, but please note that there is one important difference, depending on if your stain is new or old! For new stains, it is always best to try and remove them as soon as possible before they settle in too deeply. For old stains, the general idea is to act fast, but because it’s already dried, you may need to apply some heat (with a hairdryer or heat gun) first to soften the stain up for easier scrubbing.

How do I get rid of brown water stains on my ceiling?, Zazzy Home

Supplies – These are the supplies you will need:

– Goggles – Work gloves – Stiff bristle brush (a toothbrush will work fine here) – Large bucket or container filled with warm water – Heavy duty cleaner like Comet or Spic n’ Span (If using Comet, make sure it doesn’t also have any bleach added!)

Directions for powder stains on new stains: 1. The first thing you’ll need to do is remove any excess stain that may be on the surface by brushing it off. 2. Next, mix some warm water with your cleaner in your bucket (You can use one part cleaner to 10 parts water).

Directions for old stains: If the stain has been there for a while, chances are it will have dried up, so you will want to first apply some heat with a hairdryer or heat gun before scrubbing.

Make sure the stained area is completely dry!

Now apply directly onto the spot and let sit for at least 15 minutes but no longer than 30 minutes. After that, the stain should start to bubble up, which means it’s working its magic!

Once time is up, scrub the area with your brush or toothbrush. If the stain is stubborn, apply more of the powder mixture to the area and let sit for another 5-10 minutes before scrubbing again.

Apply directly onto the spot

Rinse using cold water by dabbing it on a rag until all cleaner is removed. Finally, if needed, use a towel to dry up the remaining moisture after rinsing with cold water (You may also skip this step).

Then you can inspect your handiwork! After doing so, be sure to let the stained ceiling completely dry overnight before putting back in place! This is just an example of one type of water staining that plagues ceilings everywhere, but most stains are easily cleaned similarly.

How do I get rid of brown water stains on my ceiling?, Zazzy Home

The biggest variable will be how old your stain is and if other cleaners have applied to it already, so take caution when using a homemade cleaner as it could damage the surface below. Well, I hope this article has helped you learn how to remove stains from your ceiling! Good luck!


Meet Jeff. For the last 10 years, he's been repairing and fixing problem homes - from leaky roofs to faulty wiring. He started blogging about his experiences as a way to help others who might be struggling with home repairs, and he's become something of an expert in the field. Jeff is always up for a challenge, and he loves sharing his tips and advice with others. When it comes to home repairs, Jeff knows what he's talking about. So if you're looking for some help and guidance, be sure to check out his latest guide!

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