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Guide to Cleaning Rugs at Home

Sep 19th, 2013 By

An area rug accentuates a decor’s ambiance and protects floors in a room. Unquestionably, this versatile accessory too requires care. The appearance and life of your floor covers much depend upon its maintenance and the methods used.

With numerous types of fabrics, cleaning floor covers is challenging when one is unsure of the right technique and more importantly of the means to execute it. There are many professional carpet-cleaning services available; however, one does not often require them. Not if you, yourself, know how to clean them. Here is a guide on cleaning rugs made of various materials at home.
 

Dos and Don’ts

Fabric
Dos
Don’ts
WOOL
  • Regularly vacuum wool rugs 2 to 3 times a week.
  • For intense cleaning, use a vacuum with a rotating beater bar But only on the back of the carpet.
  • Opt for neutral cleaners, which are easy to prepare at home.
  • Remove spills by blotting using a clean and dry towel.
  • To dry wool rugs hang them or enforce a hair dryer or electric fan.
  • Deep clean wool rugs only once a year. Rent a steam-cleaning machine or call for professional assistance.
  • Irregular vacuuming collects soil, which sits within the pile.
  • A nonfunctional or no beater bar means only surface cleaning, excluding all hidden dirt and dust mites.
  • Do not use oxygen cleaners and carpet shampoo for it washes out the dye.
  • Avoid rubbing or scrubbing as it can damage the pile and its texture.
  • Do not sun dry or put it in a clothes dryer.
  • Restrain from using powder deodorizers for it can cause Pilling.
SILK
  • Clean silk rugs only with a dry cleaning process.
  • For detailed information on cleaning silk rugs, consult a carpet specialist.
  • Do not use oxygen detergents.
  • Never expose its fibers to natural and synthetic acids, nor sunlight since they can be damaged.
COTTON
  • Almost all available methods for cleaning floor covers are applicable for cotton rugs.
  • Avoid excessive drying to prevent shrinkage and browning.
  • As with wool, here to keep away alkaline products.
JUTE/SISAL
  • Vacuum frequently, once or twice a week employing only the vacuum suction.
  • Clean all natural fibers using only neutral-home made cleaners.
  • Dry immediately to avoid any growth of mold using a hair dryer.
  • Never use the beater bar with the vacuum, as it will negatively affect the fibers.
  • Do not use laundry detergents or carpet shampoo.
VICOSE/POLYESTER/ POLYPROPYLENE
  • Use the rotating brush on a vacuum to clean the front and back of synthetic rugs.
  • For spot and stain treatment, apply carpet shampoo or oxygen cleaners.
  • Rinse well when using shampoo.
  • Keep away from using laundry detergent, for it will alter the rug’s color tone.

 

General Guidelines

1) Vacuum rugs to keep them clean. It is necessary and should be done at least once a month. However, this varies depending on fabrics. Incorporate a good quality vacuum for effective cleaning.

2) Prevent matting by vacuuming the carpeting both directions equally.

3) Do not vacuum rugs having fringes or tassels on the sides, it will most likely cause damage. Instead, fluff them by hands.

4) Prior to vacuum cleaning, dust each floor covers to remove any accumulated dirt and soil. Dust them outside the house. Make sure they are dry and not wet or damp.

5) For liquid spills, blot immediately. Do not scrub; blotting is better as it absorbs stains. Implement a clean dry cloth or roll of paper towel to curb the spillage. Always dry both sides of the rug.

6) Never rub stains, as this pushes spills deep into the pile, mat the fibers, and damage the rug’s fibers. The aim is to extract the stain and not rub it in.

7) Treating stains largely matters on the nature of a stain as well as the rug’s material.

8) Employ neutral cleaners for removing spots left by stains. Natural cleaners such as vinegar, peroxide and liquid dish washing soap are highly recommended.

9) Rinse the floor fabric with warm water after the cleaning process, and blot it again.

10) Be quick to air dry and avoid any formation of mold. Hang it in a shade or place it on a flat surface and dry with the help of an electric fan or hair dryer.

11) Post cleaning, sprinkle baking soda over the carpet (avoid on deep pile rugs) and leave it for about an hour to remove any prevailing odor. Follow it by vacuuming.

12) Deep cleaning is recommended only once a year; you may either do it yourself by renting the needed machine or request for the services of professionals.

In general, cleaning floor covers involve vacuuming, sweeping, beating, rotating, and removing spills and stains. Nonetheless, certain fibers require special consideration and method to clean, which differs from each other. Maintain the quality and life of your floor covers by following a simple list of Do’s and Don’ts while cleaning.
 
Carefully read and follow all instructions before you begin the cleaning process to sustain your rug’s quality. Improper use of equipment and methods mentioned above can cause damage and discoloration.

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