Accurate genome-wide detection of somatic mutations with low variant allele frequency (VAF, <1%) has proven difficult, for which generalized, scalable methods are lacking. Herein, we describe a new computational method, called RePlow, that we developed to detect low-VAF somatic mutations based on simple, library-level replicates for next-generation sequencing on any platform. Through joint analysis of replicates, RePlow is able to remove prevailing background errors in next-generation sequencing analysis, facilitating remarkable improvement in the detection accuracy for low-VAF somatic mutations (up to ~99% reduction in false positives). The method is validated in independent cancer panel and brain tissue sequencing data. Our study suggests a new paradigm with which to exploit an overwhelming abundance of sequencing data for accurate variant detection.