How to Clean an Area Rug

June 10, 2021 11:46 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Area rugs can tie your décor together, keep your feet warm on cold winter mornings and muffle sound—but they can also collect dust, grime, stains and pet hair over time. How’s your area rug looking these days? If it’s crying out for cleaning, read on. Here are our best tips for area rug cleaning. Remember, if you can’t get your rug looking like-new, the team at Valley Carpet Cleaning would be happy to take over!

Before you begin

The type of area rug you own will dictate how to clean it: woven, hide, antique and natural fiber rugs all require different techniques. One great way to stay on top of care instructions is to file the tags away in folders once you get your rug home. Then you’ll never be left trying to read the instructions on a well-worn care tag.

Your rug’s care tag will let you know whether it can be laundered (this is for smaller rugs only), spot cleaned, dry cleaned or even carpet shampooed. Read the instructions before you get started to find out what you’re dealing with.

General area rug cleaning tips

Area rugs should be cleaned at least once every 12 to 18 months. Always test commercial products on a small patch first—this will help determine whether the rug is colorfast or if you need to seek professional care.

Try to remove any stains as soon as they happen. The longer they’re left to sit, the more likely they’ll become a permanent feature. For most stains, commercial carpet cleaners and mild detergents will do the trick, but look up specific information so as not to damage your rug.

If your rugs are small, you may be able to put them in the washing machine. Use the delicate cycle and hang over a large rack to dry naturally. Be careful, however, as rugs with long fringe can become tangled and knotted in the machine.

Commercial carpet cleaning foam is a good choice for most large rugs—follow the directions on the product, spreading the foam out across the rug. Vacuum or rinse the rug, then allow to dry over a large rack.

If you have an antique, oriental or hand-knotted rug, you’ll need to be extra careful. Slip a nylon mesh bag over your vacuum hose and use that to remove dirt, dust and small debris. For deep cleaning, see a professional.

Natural fiber rugs are good for welcome mats and entryways—their loose weave allows dirt to pass through. Vacuuming and shaking out these rugs will take care of the majority of the maintenance, but if you have stains, grab a brush and some soapy water. Give the stain a scrub, rinse and then allow to air dry.

For hair and fur rugs, simply shake unscented talcum powder over the rugs, let sit to absorb odors, then brush out. Repeat as necessary.

Want to rely on an expert for your area rug cleaning needs? Get in touch with Valley Carpet Cleaning today to schedule service.

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