Home Diagnosis and TroubleshootingInterior Trim and Upholstery Water Stain On Car Seat – 3 Quick Ways To Remove It

Water Stain On Car Seat – 3 Quick Ways To Remove It

by Jordan Harris

Have you spilled water on your seat and now you have a water stain on car seat? Well, if that is the case, then you are at the right place because there will be a lot to cover when it comes to removing hard water stains on car seats.

Staining the seats is something that nobody wants. And cloth seats are one of the easiest to stain and make them look terrible. And in most cases, you don’t even have to spill something sticky like a soda or drop some food. You only need a few water drops to create stains that will be a pain to remove.

Water stain on car seat is probably something that you don’t want when it comes to this aspect. It is much better to protect the seats than to clean them off. Because cleaning is expensive and also costs money. Later on in the article, we are going to teach you how to protect the seats from staining.

But first, we are going to learn what are cloth seats and why most cars are using cloth seats. Then we will cover the pros and cons of having cloth seats in your car as well as the advantages of cloth in comparison to leather. Then we will jump to the problem of water stain on car seat and discuss about the problem and the best methods to clean the seat, as well as how to protect the seats from staining. So, if you want to learn more, follow along.

What Are Cloth Car Seats

Now before we start learning about water stain on car seat and how to clean car seat stains. Let’s start with the basics first and learn more about cloth seats in general.

So, this chapter is dedicated to them. If you want to, you can jump to one of the following chapters where we discuss more about the problem of water stain on car seat and the best way to clean cloth seats. Now let’s jump into the topic.

Now let’s see what are cloth seats. Well, cloth seats in general are seats that implement a cloth material as the top layer of the seat. And this material is really durable and can withstand countless cycles of you going in and out of the car.

When it comes to cloth seats, we can say that modern cloth seats are not like cloth seats back in the day. Back in the day, cloth seats were really fragile and often torn apart after 20,000 miles. But this does not happen in modern cars. Modern cars implement a highly durable polyester cloth fabric that is almost indestructible.

Cloth seats are often combined with leatherette. As you probably know, leatherette is faux leather or fake leather. Carmakers use leatherette on the bolsters while the seat is usually made out of cloth. So, you get the idea about cloth seats. Now let’s take a look at why cloth seats are often the way to go before we start discussing water stain on car seat.

Why Most Cars Use Cloth Seats

Now let’s cover another interesting topic before we dive into how to remove water stain on car seat. And this is the topic of why most cars are using cloth seats, instead of something else, like leather or possibly leatherette.

Well, there are a lot of reasons behind this. But the main reason is probably the price. Cloth seats are dirt cheap to make instead of leather seats. Why is this the case?

Well, when it comes to leather, you probably know that this material is harvested from cows. So, in order to look like a leather seat. The cow skin has to go through a ton of different processes that will give the leather that real leathery look.

Water Stain On Car Seat

And as you probably know, labor is quite expensive. And not only labor but there are also a ton of different machines and chemicals used throughout the whole process. Which increases the cost of leather seats even more.

And when you put the cloth on the other end of the spectrum which only costs a few dollars per square foot, you get an idea why cloth is still the number one choice for a lot of car automakers when it comes to installing this material on their cars.

They save a ton of money in the process and also, you can get the same product for far cheaper than with leather. Also, real leather is often perceived as a luxury item. So, if you add leather seats on all cars, trim levels would lose their purpose. But what about water stain on car seat? What you can do about it? More on that, we are going to cover in a bit after we discuss the pros and cons of cloth seats.

Pros And Cons Of Cloth Car Seats

Since we covered the cloth seats and why they are widely used in cars nowadays. We can now move on and start learning more about the pros and cons of cloth seats.

As you probably know, everything has its pros and cons. And so is the case with the cloth seats. This is why before we start looking at how to remove water stain on car seat, it is a good idea to cover the positives and negatives. We think that this is needed because there are people who never used cloth seats and want to learn more about the positive and negative sides.

So, if you are one of them, follow along, if not, jump right to the chapters where we cover how to tackle the problem and we learn how to clean car seat stains.


Now let’s start with the pros of having cloth seats before we start discussing more about water stain on car seat. Are there any positive sides to having cloth seats? Let’s elaborate on them.

First and foremost, it is important to mention cloth seats and their durability. We mentioned that cloth seats back in the day were cheaply made with springs and these seats often failed after 20,000 miles or so.

The fabric simply was tearing apart and then people just covered them with blankets or whatever they had at home to prevent further damage and squeeze at least 60,000 miles before a need for a new seat was needed.

Modern cloth seats are completely the opposite. They come built with high-quality foam that is extremely durable and can last forever. Also, the fabric from which these seats are made is produced out of polyester and other durable materials that last for a lifetime.

There are cars with 300,000 miles and they don’t have any tears in them. Unlike leather seats with the same mileage which can look really bad and unpresentable.

The second pro of having cloth seats is that they are cheap to replace. Since most of the cars out there come with cloth seats. It is really easy to harvest a seat from your local junkyard for $100.

And the last pro that we are going to cover in our list is comfort. Although cloth seats can look cheap and unattractive, they actually allow your body to breathe.

You will not sweat in the same manner as you would when sitting on a leather seat. Leather and especially faux leather, does not breathe at all. But how to remove the water stain on car seat? More on that in a moment.


Now let’s move on and start discussing the cons of having water stain on car seat. Are there any cons to these types of seats at all?

Well, there are a few to mention. First and foremost, we can say that they are not built particularly well as the leather seats are.

This means that there’s enough foam to consider this as a seat and not to seat your body in a really comfortable position like the leather seat.

So, if you drive a lot on the highway, you will start to experience a lot of fatigue. Even though the body will breathe better with this material and you will not experience a lot of sweating. Driving on these seats can be detrimental to your back in the long term. Especially for the people who drive daily for many miles.

The second con and most important topic for us are the stains that you will get with this type of seat. Cloth seats love to stain a lot.

Later on, in the article, we are going to explain why is this the case and why even water stains these seats, and how to remove water stain on car seat. But for now, what is the most important thing for you is to know that these seats tend to get dirty. And also, when they get dirty, they are a true pain to clean.

This is why you should consider this factor if you have kids and they love to create a big mess in the car. You will need to consider some precautions that we are going to discuss later on.

Should You Opt For Cloth Or For Leather

Now let’s discuss another topic before we dive into the water stain on car seat. And this is a good topic for people who want to purchase a new car and are considering between clots and leather seats. Is it worth the upgrade from cloth to leather, or just go for the standard trim level?

Well, this is a difficult question if you have a limited budget and if you need to borrow more money only to get leather seats. In this situation, I would say to go for the cloth seats because it is much better to spend a bit less than spending on luxury items such as leather seats.

On the other hand, if you have the budget, you should definitely opt for a leather seat interior. Especially nowadays, there are perforated leather seats. So, what does this mean?

Water Stain On Cloth Seat

Well, this means that this type of leather seat has tiny holes. So, when you observe this type of leather from the distance it will resemble a pattern with black dots. But in reality, this leather has tiny holes.

And these holes will allow your body to breathe and you will not sweat a lot in the summer. So, I can say that modern leather technology is frankly one of the best right now.

So, if you can afford it, then you should definitely get leather seats. But what about water stain on car seat? Well, with leather seats, you will not have to worry about any of that. You just wipe it off with a towel and it is gone forever. But not the case when it comes to cloth seats. Still, there are some advantages of cloth seats over leather, and more on that we are going to cover next.

Advantages Of Cloth Seats When Compared To Leather

Another topic that we would like to cover before we dive into the water stain on car seat is the topic of the advantages of cloth seats in comparison to leather. It couldn’t be all good and leather is always the clear choice, right?

Well, yes. Not a lot of people want to use animal products. And the leather seats are precisely that. Leather is harvested from cows if you didn’t know.

Cows first end up in the meat industry. And then the leather is a by-product that is left over. So, it is used as an upholstery material.

And frankly, it has always been seen as something luxurious. Mainly because of its looks and also because of its softness. There is simply no cloth material that can simulate leather. Except for leatherette, which is faux leather, or fake leather.

So, if you are one of those people who would much prefer to get something that doesn’t come from animals. Cloth or leatherette are the perfect options for you, to be honest.

Another advantage of cloth and leatherette is the cost. So, it is quite more affordable in comparison to real leather and also, cloth lasts for a very long time. But what about water stain on car seat? Well, more on that, we are going to elaborate in the following chapter.

What Is A Water Stain On Car Seat

Now let’s discuss more about what is a water stain on car seat. And also how to remove it. But first, let’s elaborate more on the problem itself.

As we mentioned a few times previously in this article, cloth seats tend to get dirty. And by this, I mean a lot.

Especially if you pour some water or soda on them. But why water is a problem? Isn’t water clear? It shouldn’t leave anything on the seat, right? Well, wrong.

Water as you probably know has some minerals inside. So, when the water evaporates, the minerals will stick on the cloth seat and this will become a true nightmare to remove.

And all these stains can have a really bad impression on you as a car owner. People will start to think that you do some weird stuff in your car. And that is probably what you don’t want to have since people who don’t know you usually believe in what they see. And if they see some uncleanliness by your side, they will start thinking that you are a person with bad habits.

So, you want to avoid this I guess. And how you can remove water stain on car seat or water spots that won’t come off (or if you want to learn how to get rid of water spots on car)? Let’s elaborate more on that in the following chapters.

Methods Of Cleaning Water Stain On Car Seat

Now let’s discuss some of the methods to remove water stain on car seat. We are going to start with the most effective and move to the ones that are less effective. Some of these methods are cheaper while some are more expensive. Usually the more expensive work better. Now let’s cover this briefly.

Cleaning Water Stain On Car Seat #1: Wet Vacuum Cleaner/Extractor

The first method to remove water stain on car seat that you can try is the wet vacuum cleaner also known as an extractor. You have probably seen some professional detailers who use these vacuum cleaners (and pair it with a regular vacuum cleaner if you need to figure out how to remove dog hair from car).

This is the most effective method to remove stains from any car seat, which will 100% remove the stain from the seat. But is also quite expensive to purchase a wet vacuum cleaner that uses water to clean.

This is why we would advise you to try some of the other methods first before you decide on this step.

Cleaning Water Stain On Car Seat #2: Upholstery Cleaner

The second method that you can try to remove water stain on car seat is to use upholstery cleaner. And there are a lot of these products that are sold out there on the market.

This is a special cleaner that you spray on the seat. Then you can rub it well with a microfiber towel and wipe it off. This type of cleaner should work most of the time when it comes to water stains since these stains do not contain sugar or coloring. They should come off easily.

Just beware that you want to spray the whole seat in order not to have one part clean and the other part is still dirty.

Cleaning Water Stain On Car Seat #3: Vinegar, Distilled Water & Brush

And the third way to clean water stain on car seat is to use a mix of vinegar and distilled water. You just mix 50% white vinegar with 50% distilled water.

Spray the whole seat with this mixture and get a brush. Brush off the whole seat and then leave it to sit like that and dry off.

After you are done, most of the water stains will be removed and you will not have any stains on the seats. If the stains are from dirt or soda, this method might not be the most effective.

Is Using Seat Covers The Way To Go

Another topic that we would like to discuss besides the water stain on car seat is the question of whether it is a smart idea to use car covers.

And the answer to this is definitely yes, if your seats are dirty and you don’t want to do a full detail, using seat covers might be a smart move.

They are dirt cheap and also they are washable in a washing machine. Just remove them from the car and put them into the washing machine. Then you have perfectly clean seats again and again. Best investment in my opinion. So, grab a set of seat covers and don’t even bother with water stain on car seat and other unwanted stuff.

Water Stain On Car Seat: In Conclusion…

In this article, we have covered quite a bit when it comes to car seats in general. First, we learned what are cloth seats and the pros and cons of having cloth seats.

Then we learned what to choose when it comes to cloth vs leather depending on your budget. After that, we moved on to solving the problem of water stain on car seat and learned three methods for cleaning this water stain. Lastly, we learned how you can protect your seats.

F.A.Qs On Water Stain On Car Seat

Now let’s answer some frequently asked questions

How To Remove Water Spots From Car

Removing water spots from cloth seats can be really a menacing task. The first thing you will want to do is to get an upholstery cleaner and try to clean the seat with this solution. If doesn’t help a wet vacuum will be needed.

How To Clean Cloth Seats

Cloth seats are best cleaned with wet vacuuming. There are special vacuum cleaners that clean seats with water. But these vacuums can be rather expensive. So, you might want to try an upholstery cleaner first.

Does Water Ruin Leather

Water does not ruin the leather. You should not worry if your leather seats get wet at all. Just wipe off the water with a microfiber towel and you will have no issues.

How To Get Stain Out Of Leather Car Seat

You can try using a wet microfiber towel. I’m sure that in most cases, it will clean the stain from the leather. If not, you might want to try a special leather cleaning solution.

How To Get Moisture Out Of Car

Getting moisture out of the car can be a daunting task. You need to be aware of what is causing this moisture. Whether you have a leak, your car was flooded, or your heater core is leaking. Then approach the problem and then get rid of the moisture in your car. The best thing is to leave it to bake in the sun with the windows open.

You may also like

Leave a Comment