Removing tannin stains may sound like a tough ordeal. But, the good news is that tannin stain removal is very much possible as long as you use the right products and follow the correct procedure.
What does tannin consist of
Tannins are a group of astringent and bitter compounds abundantly found in nature. You can find them in the bark, fruit, wood, and leaves of plants including grapes, cacao, cranberry, oak, rhubarb, walnut, and tea.
Plants contain tannins for them to become unpalatable. The purpose of tannins in nature is to prevent animals from eating the seeds or fruits of a plant before they are ripe.
Tannins are also responsible for the mouth-coating and astringe feeling you experience when you bite into an unripe plum or pear. Mankind has been using tannins from different tree barks for many centuries to make leather and tan animal hides.
There are also foods prized for their tannin content. When managed properly, the astringency and bitterness of tannins can be very pleasant. Good examples of these include dark chocolate, coffee, and wine.
Do tannins stain
Sadly, tannins stain. Tannin in itself is a type of natural vegetable dye present in plants like grape skin and bark. Common examples of tannin stains include wine, tea, and coffee stains. Other popular tannin stains also include fruit juice, soft drinks, and washable ink.
What are tannin stains
Tannin stains or tannin staining is the overall term that is used for describing the stains from the plants and trees that contain tannin compounds.
Do tannin stains fade
Yes, tannin stains can fade with the use of the correct cleaning methodology, particularly if you deal with the stains right after they occur or within several days.
What can remove tannin stains
There are different products available on the market that can remove tannin stains. The very thing you have to do is to determine the specific kind of stain, whether it is juice, wine, tea, coffee, or other types of spill.
The second step is to identify the type of surface where the stain appeared since different stain removers can only work best with the intention of the product. For instance, there are stain removers that can only remove coffee stains from clothes while others are exclusive formulas for removing tannin stains from carpets.
How do you get rid of tannin stains
Tannin stains are usually more difficult to remove if they are hot and warm beverages or have additional substances. For instance, it might be tougher to get rid of black coffee with additional substances such as sugar and cream compared to removing plain black coffee that doesn’t have anything added to it.
How to remove tannin stains from concrete
- Put several teaspoons each of glycerin and tea tree oil in bucket.
- Fill the bucket with several quarts of hot water.
- Mix and brush this solution on the tannin stains. Let it sit for 20 up to 30 minutes.
- Scrub the tannin stains again.
- Use fresh water to rinse the surface.
How to remove tannin stains from porcelain
- Pour several drops of ammonia and 35% strength hydrogen peroxide directly on the tannin stain. Let it sit there until the bubbling stops. Avoid using ammonia on its own since it can make the tannin stains set in permanently.
- For persistent tannin stains, you can also try applying a poultice. The poultice ingredients should include a dry ingredient such as diatomaceous earth, flour mix with 35% hydrogen peroxide, or poultice powder.
- If the tannin stains persist, you can poultice with mineral spirits and a dry ingredient.
How to remove tannin stains from tea cups
You can try using baking soda to remove tannin stains from your tea cups:
- Use cold water to wet the inside of the cup.
- Sprinkle a thin baking soda layer inside so that it will cover all the brown marks. The baking soda will easily stick to the damp areas of the cup. Let it sit for several minutes.
- Use a sponge or cloth to wipe the cup. You need to give it some good scrubbing.
- Wash your tea cups as usual with dishwashing detergent.
Vinegar and salt can also be used for removing tannin stains from tea cups:
- Wet the inside of the cup with white vinegar.
- Sprinkle regular table salt inside. Salt is a mild abrasive that works at lifting tannin stains without causing any damage.
- Wash the cup thoroughly using dishwashing detergent.
How to remove tannin stains from wood
- Find the source of moisture and correct it right away.
- Use a wire brush or scraper to remove any loose paint.
- Use an oxalic-based solution or oxalic acid to get rid of the stains.
- Rinse it off with a pressure washer.
- Let the surface dry completely for a minimum of 48 hours.
- Apply a stain-blocking and top-quality wood primer to prime the stained spot.
- Apply two layers of primer coating for existing severe stains.
- Repaint with high quality paint.
How to remove tannin stains from tiles
- Soak some paper towels or cleaning cloth with hydrogen peroxide.
- Apply this on the tannin stains on the tiles.
- Rinse everything off thoroughly.
How to remove tannin stains from teeth
- Mix diluted hydrochloric acid and baking soda to remove tannin stains from teeth. Just remember that the mixture may not be comfortable for the mouth and might also put your gums’ health at risk.
- Alkaline-based stain removers containing hypochlorites can successfully remove tea stains from both teeth and dentures. Just make sure to consult your dentist before using these stain removers.
- Use active stain removing agents and a toothpaste rich in fluoride for brushing your teeth regularly. Doing this on a regular basis will ensure that you won’t have to worry about tannin stains that can ruin your white and bright smile.
However, instead of going for these DIY tricks that might be risky for your oral health, it will always be better to schedule an appointment with an orthodontist. Professional tooth polishing and scaling can generate excellent results that cannot be achieved at home.
How to remove tannin stains from pavers
- Use a power washer first to remove any debris before you proceed to removing tannin stains from pavers. Make sure you use the nozzle with wide spray and keep its tip at least one foot away from the pavers. The standard spray nozzle and garden hose are also good alternatives.
- Prepare a bleach solution. Make sure to follow the recommendations on the product label when using an outdoor cleaner. You can also add 2 to 3 tablespoons laundry bleach for every gallon of water.
- Apply the solution using a plant sprayer or pour this on the tannin stains. Let this soak for a few minutes to give it some time to work.
- Wear your rubber gloves then use a stiff scrub brush for scrubbing the stains until they are removed.
- Rinse the spot with lots of clean water.
- Repeat the process as needed.
How to remove tannin stains from bathtub
The dry cleaner method is the first option you can try for removing tannin stains from your bathtub.
- Prepare a paste of water and dry cleaner. This must be thick enough so you can spread this on the stains on the tub’s sides with just minimal dripping.
- Put the paste on the stained spots and let it set for a few minutes.
- Use clean water to moisten the Magic Eraser then scrub this on the soaked areas.
- The dry cleaner and Magic Eraser combo can remove the stains and mineral deposits.
- Rinse the area using clean water after you remove all the stains to ensure that you also get rid of any cleaning residue.
The peroxide and baking soda method is another technique you can try:
- Prepare a paste of one part hydrogen peroxide and two parts baking soda.
- Spread the thick paste over the areas with tannin stains and let it set for a minimum of 30 to 45 minutes.
- Once the paste had set enough to soften all the mineral deposits, use a nylon scrubber to scrub them off.
- Rinse the area thoroughly using clean water after you remove all the stains.
How to remove tannin stains from fabric
Getting some tannin stains on fabric can be annoying but there are a few simple steps you need to follow to eliminate these pesky marks.
- Rinse out most of the tannin stains from the fabric as much as possible. Work from the back portion of the fabric to flush the stain out and way from the fabric surface.
- Rub some liquid detergent carefully on the stain. Let this stay on the stained part for at least 5 minutes. As for old or dry stains, you can rub some detergent on the site and allow it to soak for half an hour in cold water. Rinse the fabric thoroughly. Rub some liquid laundry detergent on the area if there are lingering stains and let the fabric soak for 10 to 15 minutes in warm water.
- Dab a thick baking soda coating directly on the affected area while the stain is still damp. Baking soda will soak up the stain as it draws the brownish color away from the fabric to the powder. Let this sit overnight before scraping off the powder. Most of the tannin stain must be removed at this point. Put the fabric in the washing machine to complete the cleaning process.
- For stubborn tannin stains or those found on thicker fabrics, soak this in the solution of oxidizing stain remover and cold water. For lingering traces of stain, dab a stain remover stick, spray, or gel and allow it to set for 5 minutes then wash as usual.
- Repeat the above steps as necessary.
How to remove tannin stains from carpet
- Clean the tannin stains on the carpet first using a detergent. Work the detergent into the stained area using a carpet brush then let it sit there first.
- Extract the stained spot using water.
- Put a mildly acidic carpet spotter them perform the same steps above. These mildly acidic products help dissolve the tannins to make it easier to remove them. They can also contain peroxides than help get rid of the discoloration.
How to prevent tannin stains
You can prevent and correct tannin stains.
- One of the best methods to prevent bleed-through is applying either an alkyd or oil-based shellac or primer. However, it is important to remember that tannin bleed may still happen even if you use an alkyd or oil primer. Shellac can be a much better preventative choice since many painters discovered that it is less likely for stains to appear after they have painted over it. Whatever sealing method you choose, always stay on the safe side and apply a couple of coats.
- If there are already existing tannin stains, you will need to look for the moisture source, fix it, and allow the wood to dry for a minimum of 48 hours. In case the paint has already peeled off the surface of the wood, use a wire brush or scraper to remove it.
- You can also use oxalic acid to deal with the tannin stains. Oxalic acid can break down the stain to make it easier to rinse away. Use a pressure washer to wash it off afterwards. Make sure that you allow the wood for about 2 days first. Once you are done with this, you can use two coats of shellac or oil or alkyd primer to prime the wood before painting it again.
Tannin stains can really be very frustrating, especially if this is the first time you encountered the problem and you might have no idea what is happening. The positive side of it is that tannin stains are only a surface problem and not an issue in the wood itself. Now that you know how to prevent tanning stains, hopefully, you can save yourself from this problem.
Tannin stains FAQs
Here are a few more things to know about tannin stains:
Is tannin bad for you?
Yes and no. The truth is that tannins are neither bad nor good for you. When taken in moderate amounts, tannins can help the human body to stay in good health. These can even help prevent certain diseases. It is because tannins are some kind of antioxidants as these are the oxidized cathecins often found in tea.
On the other hand, too much tannins may also disrupt the health of a person and anemia is among the side effects cited often.
Just like anything, tannins must only be taken in complete moderation.
What is a tannin stain remover?
A tannin stain remover is a type of spot remover with low pH that is effective against the stains from tea, coffee, blood, rust, and oxidized organic residues. It contains a certain grease-removing agent that eliminates oily soils.