How many times each week or day do you find yourself cleaning the upholstery in your home? This can get quite frustrating, especially if it is an old stain that just won’t come out. Some stains are harder to get out than others, and these are usually the ones that require different or specialized techniques to remove.
It doesn’t matter if you need to remove a purple crayon stain from your family room sofa, or it may be a purplish red wine stain from your bedroom chaise lounge. There are simple ways to remove these stains without pulling your hair out. The following are just a few tips that may make the cleaning upholstery process much simpler for you in the end.
Clean on a regular basis. Don’t wait until you get a stain to clean your beautiful upholstery. It may look clean, but dust piles up if you fail to clean frequently. Not only can this discolour your upholstery over time, but it can also aggravate allergies and other medical conditions.
Dust can also smudge and look very dirty when water or sweat touches it. Many times all it takes is a quick use of the vacuum to properly clean your upholstered furniture so that dust does not get out of hand. This will make your home look and feel cleaner overall.
Read the Cleaning Labels
What is the fabric made of, and what are the manufacturer’s suggested cleaning instructions? This is the main thing that has to be determined first.
Should it be cleaned with water only? Can you clean it with regular detergents? You may find that it should be vacuumed only, or that it needs to be professionally cleaned only.
Save yourself some time and heartache by reading the cleaning instructions first. If the labels are no longer present, then test your chosen cleaning product in a hidden area to see it if causes damage, or take it to be professionally cleaned and skip the DIY process.
Treat Stains Immediately
Do not let stains sit. They are much easier to remove when they are new and fresh. The longer that a stain sits, the harder it will be to remove it.
Older stains have more time to damage your upholstery. Even when they are removed, they can sometimes discolour the upholstery. Try to remove them as quickly as possible so that it causes the least amount of damage to your upholstery. This is usually one of the most important tips when cleaning upholstery.
Understand that Not All Stains are Alike
There are different types of stains such as food, protein, oil, grease, ink and chemical. This means that they need be handled on a case by case basis.
Use cleaners that are designed for each type of stain. Not all cleaners will clean all types of stains. It is all about reading and understanding what method of cleaning and which cleaner is right for your particular stain.
Remove the Covers First
Remove upholstered covers first before treating a stain. You don’t want to get the inside cushions wet because this makes it harder to dry them out.
Not only can this lead to bad smells, but it can also encourage mold and mildew growth. It can also damage upholstery. Put a protective barrier such as plastic between the cushion and upholstered fabric before cleaning it, if you can’t remove the cover before cleaning.
Consider Using the Following Solutions
As stated above, only use cleaners and equipment that are right for cleaning upholstery, and this can be determined by reading the labels. But consider using the following items to clean your items. They are true and tried old solutions that are known for providing great results.
Water, Detergent and Vinegar
One of the simplest ways to clean your carpet involves using water and detergent mixed with Cleaning with vinegar. It is an easy and traditional way to remove stains, but it works. Apply a generous amount of the mixture to the stain, and use a hard brush to get down into the stain. Allow the mixture to sit for about a half hour, and then blot it dry with a thick towel.
Remove ink stains from upholstery with hairspray. Spray it on, and let it penetrate the stain. This may require the spray to stay on the stain for a while. Once the spray is absorbed into the upholstery, just brush it off. Continue these steps a few times until the stain is completely gone.
Use a small dab of baking soda and water for cleaning upholstery. Get a slightly damp towel and dip it into baking soda. Rub the mixture on the stain to lift the dirt. Then take a dry towel to get rid of any baking soda residue. Make sure that the stain spot dries thoroughly.
According to This Old House.com, Vodka, yes Vodka, will remove stains that are caused by grass, ink and some foods. Stains can be tough to remove, but Vodka is strong and it carries a punch. Just make sure that you use more of it to clean than you drink, or you’ll never get the rest of your cleaning done for the day.
All in all, when it comes to cleaning upholstery, you can’t make any assumptions. The methods used, the cleaning products and even the stain must be researched before starting the cleaning process.
Always read the cleaning labels, clean frequently, treat stains immediately and understand that not all stains and cleaning products are alike. Know what type of upholstery and stain that you have, and clean according to the manufacturer’s recommended suggestions.