Upholstery Cleaning Is Crucial To Improve Air Quality In Your Home
How to Clean a Couch
Whether you’re trying to tackle a specific stain or want to give your entire couch a seasonal refresh, give this easy how-to a try:
- Use a handheld garment steamer or bursts from your steam iron to kill dust mites. Go over the entire sofa, allowing just the steam to touch and penetrate the fabric. If you don’t have a steamer or iron, skip this step and go straight to vacuuming.
- With your vacuum’s upholstery attachment, go over the entire sofa: back, arms, skirt, and cushions. If the cushions are removable, take them off and vacuum the fabric underneath, going as far under the back and arms as your vacuum can reach. With the crevice tool, go along the seams, around any buttons, and along the trim.
- Take a look at your couch’s care tag to see what’s safe to use on the fabric:
- Wis the easiest to clean and means water-based cleaners are okay to use.
- W/Smeans that either water- or solvent-based cleaners are safe.
- Smeans only solvent-based cleaning chemicals should be used.
- Xmeans do nothing more than vacuum or brush the fabric.
- For fabrics that can safely be cleaned with water, treat food and pet stains with an enzyme-containing formula like Bissell Professional Pet Stain & Odor Remover. In a pinch, mix together mild dish soap with warm water. Always test any cleaner in a hidden area first.
- If your cushions have removable covers, unzip them and place a paper towel between the fabric and filling to absorb cleaner. Apply the cleaner to a cloth and blot the stain carefully, working from the outside in. Once the stain is removed, dab the area with another damp cloth to rinse thoroughly and blot dry. For “S” fabrics, remove stains with a solvent-based product according to package directions.
- Clean dingy arms and headrests with a portable extraction cleaner like Bissell’s Little Green ProHeat Portable Cleaner. Simply dispense the cleaner and water mixture through the hose, agitate the fabric with the brush nozzle, and vacuum up the dirt into the tank. For solvent-only fabrics, it’s best to call in a professional for a safe and thorough cleaning.
- Once your sofa is clean and dry, kill any lingering germs and odors on water-safe upholstery with a fabric sanitizing spray like Tide Antibacterial Fabric Spray.
Remove Pet Hair from Upholstered Furniture
If your furry friends like to cozy up on the couch with you, try these tips for cleaning upholstered furniture. To remove pet hair from furniture, put on a pair of rubber gloves and run them over your furniture, says Leslie Reichert of Green Cleaning Coach. “The gloves create static that pulls the hair off to the edge of the piece, where you can easily vacuum it off,” she says. You can also create a DIY static spray by mixing water and a small amount of fabric softener. Spray the solution on the furniture and wipe off hair with a cloth. Other effective tools for removing fur from upholstery include furniture brushes and hand vacuums designed for pet hair.
How to Clean a Fabric Sofa If It’s Stained
If your sofa tag is marked with an “X,” you should only vacuum it with an attachment. And, as you now know, sofas tagged with “S” require solvent-based cleaners that should be clearly labeled with the directions you need for those particular products. The cleaning instructions below should only be used for sofas with tags marked “W” or “WS.”
You’ll need the following items and ingredients:
- A vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment
- At least three light-colored microfiber cloths that won’t bleed on your sofa
- A bucket
- Distilled water (The minerals in tap water can leave residue behind. A quick Internet search should yield plenty of DIY instructions on distilling water, or you can find an inexpensive jug at almost any grocery store.)
- Liquid dish soap
- Distilled white vinegar
Note: You should always spot test homemade solutions on a small, inconspicuous area of the material before you begin cleaning.
How to clean loose sofa covers
A lot of our fabric sofas have loose, removeable covers that can be taken off individually and cleaned. This means that you can access all the areas of your upholstery for more convenient maintenance, while also being able to machine wash each cover should the care label allow for it (always check beforehand to be sure). If you need to wash by hand, you can follow the steps above, and it’s a good idea to put them back on the sofa to dry naturally to avoid creasing.
Velvet upholstery needs regular brushing too
The majority of upholstery fabrics only require a regular cleaning regime, but velvet sofas require an extra step to keep them looking and feeling great. To preserve the material’s natural sheen, you will need to go over it with a clothes brush or a specialist velvet brush, which will help it develop an antiqued ‘crushed’ appearance that will only improve with age. The best time to do this is immediately after vacuuming or when dry after deep cleaning.
Choose a shady spot to avoid sun and heat damage
When your upholstery is left out in the sun, it can fade, bleach, and lose its natural qualities. In addition, heat from radiators, pipes, and fireplaces can cause the material to become dried out and warped. Take this into account when you are looking for the best spot for your sofa, as somewhere without too much sunlight and away from heat sources will cause the least damage in the long-run.
Plump your cushions to keep shape
Alongside a regular cleaning regime, it’s important to service your sofa’s cushions so they keep their natural shape and provide the optimal level of comfort and support. All you need to do is plump your seat, arm, and back cushioning after each long period of use, perhaps at the end of each day. This is an essential task if your sofa is filled with feathers, fibres, or a combination of both, as they do not have the same resilience as foam and won’t return to their original form.
While you’re plumping your cushions, don’t pass up the opportunity to do the same to your scatter cushions or wool throw so that they maintain their shape too.
Cleaning upholstered furniture : Leather
- Begin with vacuuming. Don’t forget to run the vacuum cleaner over seams and in nooks and crannies, where the dust particles get accumulated the most.
- Apply a small amount of leather cleaner on a dry cloth and gently clean the surface.
- If a leather cleaner is not available at your nearest store, you can also opt for the good old white vinegar as a substitute. Take a dry cloth and dampen it with vinegar and wipe off your furniture to achieve the same result.
- Since any kind of moisture will create a fertile ground for mildews, try using leather cleaner and solvents to a minimum. Instead, make do with vacuuming on a regular basis.
- To remove stains on leather furniture, spray upholstery cleaner on the stains and keep it for some time. After ten to fifteen minutes, gently blot with a damp cloth. Use a hair dryer or let it dry on its own.