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Does Steam Cleaning Remove Urine On Carpet & Upholstery?

Updated: Nov 23, 2023

steam cleaning a carpet to remove urine

Having a steam cleaner is a tool in your cleaning inventory when dealing with carpet and upholstery stains, it has so many uses.

Because of its versatility, people often wonder can steam cleaning remove urine stains and get rid of the odour with a steam cleaner?

If your dog, cat, or someone else has had an accident on your carpet you might be tempted to try the steam cleaning method.

Let's take a look at this question in a bit more detail.

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Can Steam Cleaning Get Rid Of Urine On Carpet?

The short answer is: No, not on it's own. Steam cleaning may help to lift the urine stain but it will also bring the smell out even more if used on it's own. There is a process for removing urine smells on carpet and it requires more than a quick fix.

OK, so how do you remove urine stains on carpets?

Don't get me wrong, having a steam cleaner will make the removal process a whole lot easier and you should definitely consider getting one.

We highly recommend that you do if you have carpet and upholstery, it makes removing stains 10x easier, and they're not as expensive as you might think. You can get a good one such as the Karcher SC2 Steam Cleaner for £138.00 (£27 for just 5 months payment plans available.)

Let's take a look at the step-by-step process of removing urine from carpet:

  1. Allow the urine stain to dry out. Blot with kitchen roll to help assist with this

  2. Once it has dried out, Apply an enzyme cleaner generously

  3. Gently work the cleaner in with a soft-bristled brush and let sit for 20 minutes

  4. Grab your steam cleaner and use it, going forwards and backwards. Change angles a few times

  5. Don't let the steam cleaner sit on a particular spot, keep moving it

  6. Apply baking soda to the stained area, and allow to sit until the area dries

  7. Vacuum away the baking soda

If you follow these steps, the urine stain and it's odour will be gone. While steam cleaning on it's own won't remove the stain, it makes the process a lot easier and less likely that you need to repeat the process too.

What about steam cleaning upholstery such as couches To Remove Urine?

Steam cleaning a couch for urine removal

It's pretty much the same process here. If you're worrying about whether or not you can steam clean a couch, don't worry it's perfectly fine

You may need to use different attachments to reach those nooks and crannies. Also, baking soda may not sit where the stained area is so air drying will take longer.

Also, when it comes to upholstery couches, you may need to remove the pillow since it's possible that urine has gotten into the foam cushion.

Can You Steam Clean Car Seats?

It's generally safe to use a steam cleaner on car seats but will it help remove urine stains? No, we don't think so. If someone has urinated in your car seat, it will have almost certainly entered the cushion inside.

This is because car seat upholstery is very thin so there's not much protection. For urine removal from a car seat you will need to hie a professional. They will be able to use specialist equipment such as a water claw to draw the urine out of the seats.

Can you steam clean rugs to remove urine smells and stains?

For many rugs, you can safely use a steam cleaner for cleaning them and removing stains such as urine. However, there are some rugs that cannot be steam cleaned.

Never use a steam cleaner on:

  • Silk Rugs - They are too delicate and you can easily ruin the colour too.

  • Wool Rugs - Shrinkage will almost certainly happen if you steam clean a wool rug, don't risk it.

  • Other Natural Fibres - Some rugs are made out of seagrass and other such materials. Do not steam clean these as they may be overly sensitive to moisture and heat.

For these materials, always ask for the assistance of a professional carpet and upholstery cleaner. They are often more expensive and require more care.


While steam cleaning is an effective way of speeding up the cleaning process, it won't remove urine stains or it's odours without the assistance of the right chemicals and process.

If you are unsure of how to steam clean your carpets, or if you own materials which cannot be steam cleaned, always hire a professional to safely clean your carpets and upholstery.

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