Area rugs are a great way to add comfort to a room, accent a space, and cover any imperfection in the floors. Because area rugs do so much for a home, it’s important to know how to properly clean them.
There are several different kinds of rugs and strategies for cleaning them, which we will detail below so you can feel well equipped to tackle for your next cleaning project.
Identify What Kind of Rug you Own
Identifying what color, size, and material the rug you own is essential for determining the best way to clean your area rug.
Large area rugs benefit from the same care you’d give wall-to-wall carpet. Vacuum them to remove dirt and grime which will age your rug prematurely. If your rug is reversible, make sure to thoroughly vacuum each side.
For small area rugs that aren’t too large to carry through the front door, you can vigorously shake and beat them outside. This will remove any dirt or large particles.
After vacuuming or shaking your rug, it’s a good idea to use a brush to comb out any pet hair. Vacuuming and shaking can often leave pet hair behind, which can cause allergies and wear out your rug prematurely.
Another way to avoid adding extra stress to your rug is to turn it once or twice a year. Turning your rug balances the wear on your rug from foot traffic and daily use.
How to Clean Your Rug Based on Material
Depending on the material of your rug, there are several different types of cleaning techniques to employ.
Rugs made from natural fibers are popular choices for entryways, foyers, and welcome mats. These rugs should be vacuumed frequently to remove the dirt and grime that often gets tracked inside the home.
To remove any stains from this kind of rug, simply scrub the stain with warm soapy water and rinse clean. After you complete this, place a dry towel over the wet stop to help dry the rug. You can even use a hairdryer or fan and face it towards the wet spot for a quicker drying time.
Hand-Knotted, Antique, and Oriental Rugs
Hand-knotted, antique, and Oriental rugs are common choices for living rooms, kitchens, and other high-traffic areas, so it’s a good idea to pay close attention to cleaning these rugs thoroughly.
Oriental rugs can handle vacuuming without any added protection, while antique and hand-knotted rugs can be quite delicate and vacuuming them can damage their fine threads. In order to protect them, you can place a nylon screen on top of the rug and then resume vacuuming as normal. Professional cleaning is a great option for these kinds of rugs and should be completed once a year.
Woven or Braided Rugs
For a small woven or braided rug, be sure to check any labels to determine if it is washable. If so, be sure to invest in a mesh laundry bag that will protect your rug’s delicate threads. Proceed to wash in cold water on a gentle setting and tumble dry with low or no heat.
For larger woven or braided rugs, place fabric beneath them, such as an old blanket, or put them on concrete or vinyl flooring. Use carpet cleaning foam on the surface and follow the included directions. Make sure the rug is completely dry before returning it to its previous spot.
Animal Skin or Fur Rugs
To clean fur, sheep skin, and hair-on hide rugs, simply pour unscented talcum powder, and let sit for several hours. Using a small brush, comb the talcum powder through the hair. Once you’ve combed it through the hair, shake it out. Repeat this process for as many times necessary until the hair is clean. To clean the backing of animal rugs, use a cotton towel dipped in warm soapy water and gently dab away any stains or spills. Use a cotton towel dipped in clean water and rub any area that was cleaned. Allow your rug to dry completely before returning it to its proper place.
Now that you’ve learned more about how to clean rugs depending on their material, lets learn about how to deep clean a rug, a process you may want to repeat once or twice a year, depending on how much daily wear your rug endures.
How to Deep-Clean Your Rug
Before you grab your cleaning supplies, first consult your rug’s care label. Here you will find all the information as to whether your rug should be washed, spot cleaned, or dry-cleaned. A dry-cleaning label may indicate that your rug should not be spot cleaned, because the colors may bleed. Always test rugs before spot cleaning them to ensure that your well-loved rug doesn’t bleed.
If your rug is washable, make sure to always wash it on a delicate cycle. Place it in a mesh laundry bag or zippered pillowcase to protect its fine threads and wash it in cool water. Once the wash cycle is done, hang your rug to dry. You can do this on a clothesline, porch, or table outside.
For rugs that are not washable, invest in a commercial rug spot cleaner. Make sure to always test it a small spot on the fabric before cleaning to ensure that the colors will not bleed. After spot cleaning, finish by rinsing the product clean and vacuuming.
Dry-cleaning is another option if your rug cannot be laundered, or spot cleaned. Check the care labels for more information.
Now that you’ve learned more about how to care for your fine area rugs, head to Home City Inc. to check out the wide arrangement of stunning area rugs here.