Cleaning Household Upholstery Furniture
The smell of new upholstery furniture is an absolute delight! Not to mention the look and feel of it too. It’s soft, comfortable and more importantly, 100% clean! But then the weeks and months roll by and your brand new upholstery now smells dusty, looks dingy and feels dirty. It’s true; upholstery ages quickly if not cleaned or maintained regularly; and when that happens, it makes the whole room look rather drab. No one wants that, so if your upholstery furniture needs cleaning, you’ve come to the right place!
Vacuum Upholstery Thoroughly
Dust is the enemy! Unless vacuumed properly, dust gets smeared across your sofa and cushions when cleaning, making a much bigger mess of things. Hence, it’s never a good idea to skip step 1 when cleaning upholstery furniture. Use a soft brush attachment (or a specially made upholstery cleaning attachment) to vacuum the entire couch, removing all surface dirt and dust. Be sure to vacuum between crevices or cracks for any hidden dirt or particles. Here’s a good tip for thoroughly cleaning these hard to reach spots: take an empty toilet roll and attach it to the vacuum nozzle; then flatten the other end of the roll and start vacuuming nooks and crannies!
Attack Obvious Stains First
If you find stains or patches of discolouration due to dirt and dust accumulation over time, spot clean these areas first. Much like the process of removing carpet stains, we’ve found vinegar to be quite effective; however, you can also purchase a special upholstery cleaning agent for stain removal. Remember to specify what type of material your upholstery is made of when purchasing a cleaner as certain types of material demand specially made cleaning agents. Also, before you use vinegar or any cleaning product on your upholstery, test it out on an inconspicuous area just to be on the safe side. Allow it dry completely before checking for any damage. Once you’ve got the all-clear signal, begin spot cleaning by pouring the cleaner onto a clean microfibre cloth and rub the stain away as gently as possible.
Let the Deep Cleansing Begin!
Again, you can purchase a suitable cleaning product for your upholstery material, or make your own cleaning solution using a mild laundry detergent mixed with warm water. Soak and wring a clean microfibre cloth in this solution and gently wipe the entire surface of the upholstery, allowing some of the soapy solution to penetrate the fabric for a deep cleanse. Be careful not to let too much water soak into the sofa; wring the cloth properly each time you dip it into the solution. You may require more than one microfibre cloth (Alternatively you can rinse the same one under running water and reuse it). It’s important that the cloth is clean at all times as you wipe so that no dirt from the cloth is transferred back onto the upholstery.
Drying Your Freshly Cleaned Upholstery
To dry your sofa out, get as much air into the room as you can. Open all the windows in the room, regulate the fan to top speed (push the sofa directly under the fan if it already isn’t) and leave it there until all the dampness has dried up. To speed up the process, you could also use a hairdryer but frankly speaking, air drying upholstery is the best option. You’re your upholstery dries up naturally, it allows the detergent smell to air our and fade just enough so that it isn’t overbearing when you sit down on the couch
Easily clean your car seats with these great tips!
How to Clean Car Seats with Household Products
Spills happen. But when they happen, your car seats can become quite messy and stained. So, to help you keep your car clean and mess-free, we have some useful and easy-to-do tips on how to clean car seats with household products. You’ll notice that the cleaning items needed are linked so that you can easily purchase them.
Cleaning Cloth Seats
Instead of taking your car in to a cleaning service, there are several ways that you can clean your cloth seats on your own
Use club soda. Lightly spray it on the stained area and use a brush to scrub away the stain, then wipe it away with a clean towel.
Use a baking soda solution. Mix ¼ cup of baking soda with a cup of warm water, then use a light layer of the solution and a toothbrush to scrub away the stain. If the stain is difficult, let the solution sit for around 30 minutes.
Use a vinegar mixture. Mix a cup of vinegar, a few drops of dish soap and about a gallon of hot water in a bucket. Then dab the mixture into the stain and use a brush to scrub it out of the seat, use clean water to rinse the seat off.
Use laundry detergent. If you don’t have a specific upholstery detergent/cleaner, you mix some laundry detergent with hot water and dampen the stains with it. Use a towel with cold water to rinse the detergent off the seat and scrub the stain away.
Cleaning Leather Seats
Leather seats need extra care compared to cloth upholstery because of the premium quality of the material.
To clean messes and stains off of leather, try one of these do-it-yourself ways:
Use nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol. Blotting the stain with a cotton ball that dipped in the alcohol will slowly lift the mess from the leather. And once the stain is lifted, clean the alcohol off the seat with warm water and dish soap.
Use a non-gel toothpaste. A more unique technique, dab a bit of toothpaste on the stain and then use a clean toothbrush to gently scrub away the stain.
Use a lemon juice and cream of tartar paste. Mix an equal portion of lemon juice and cream of tartar into a paste and apply to the stain. It should sit for about 30 minutes and then you can wipe it away with a damp sponge. The paste has a bleaching effect, so it should only be used on light-colored seats.
The vinegar mixture works on leather seats as well!
How To Clean Your Sofa
Couch potato or not, you need to clean your sofa – all the crumbs and chips from last year’s World Cup could be turning green in between the cracks and cushions. That coffee stain from last week is starting to look like an outbreak on the sofa, what would your friends say?
Keep your most frequently used furniture clean and hygienic to last many more movie nights. Although you should be getting your sofa professionally cleaned every 6-12 months, giving your sofa a good DIY clean in between can prevent stubborn build-ups that could potentially damage the upholstery material.
Vacuum All Over
Vacuum everything – the cushions, in between the cracks, and all over the surface of your sofa. Remove any large debris, coins, pens, paperclips, crayons or keys from the sofa (did we miss anything?). You can cover the vacuum nozzle with an old stocking or pantyhose and secure it with a rubberband to stop coins from being sucked up while you’re vacuuming.
Identify Your Fabric
Your sofa should come with a care tag that gives instructions about what to do and more importantly, what not to do! Read the cleaning instructions carefully and identify what cleaning products you should use for your fabric to avoid permanent damage
As a general guide, most tags would indicate this as:
“W”: It’s okay to use water to clean, or a water-based detergent if you’re using a steam vacuum
“S”: Use only a solvent-based cleaner or a dry-cleaning detergent
“SW or WS”: You can use either water or a solvent cleaner/dry-cleaning detergent
“O”: Indicates the material is ‘Organic’ (natural fibers) and should be washed with cold water
“X”: Only vacuum or use a brush to clean, get a professional upholstery cleaner if it needs shampooing
How to clean a sofa
Whether you ban food and drinks from your sofa or eat your dinner on it every evening, here’s some advice to keep it looking spick and span. We asked almost 2,000 Which? members how regularly they cleaned their sofas; a quarter of them cleaned their sofa once a month and the same number cleaned their sofa roughly once every few months.
If, despite your best cleaning efforts, your sofa is looking grey around the edges, it could be time for a new one. Head to the best sofa retailers page to find out which store tops the table for best customer service, value for money and range of sofas
The most common sofa stains
Sofa stains are incredibly annoying, especially if your sofa is covered in a light fabric. But what are the most common causes of stains? We asked our Which? members
Sofa cleaning tips
If disaster strikes and your sofa ends up splattered with red wine or curry sauce, attend to spills immediately using plain water first. In the case of small spills on a fabric sofa, it’s important to avoid the instinct to rub at the stain. This only pushes the spillage deeper into the fabric, which of course makes it harder to clean.
Prevention can be easier (and cheaper) than cure – top tips to keep your sofa looking showroom-fresh include:
To maintain your fabric sofa, it should be vacuumed or brushed weekly as dirt accumulating on it can lead to the upholstery wearing and its colour dulling.
To avoid fading, place furniture out of direct or prolonged periods of sunlight, and away from heat sources.
Avoid cosmetic products such as sun cream or body lotion coming into contact with your upholstery.
Beware of sharp objects like studs, belt buckles and toys snagging fabric. Velcro is also best avoided.
The Right Way to Clean Velvet Furniture
Choosing velvet furniture is choosing to make a bold style statement in your space—there’s no ignoring its soft sheen, rich color, and innate elegance. But velvet’s commanding presence also means that any discoloration or stains are that much more visible. No more hiding a dusty apartment…once the sunlight hits a velvet couch, there’s no hiding those annoying, allergy-inducing particles.
Anthropologie’s website has pages of swoon-worthy velvet sofas and chairs to peruse, so who better to ask for advice on how to clean velvet? According to Anne White, the brand’s head of home interiors personal styling, the first thing you should think about is actually completely unrelated to the furniture. “If you’ve opted for a bright, richly pigmented color, like navy or chartreuse, we recommend avoiding direct sunlight, which can cause the fabric to fade,” she says. “Consider window coverings substantial enough to protect your piece but lovely enough to catch the eye. The technology for window films, which block the sun’s rays without blocking your view, has improved and may be another avenue to explore.” Craving more velvet cleaning tips? Read on to learn how to clean velvet furniture and protect it from wear and tear and those inevitable spills.
Vacuum the fabric
Remember those pesky dust particles we were talking about? Well, in terms of regular maintenance, all you need to do to the item itself is give it a good dusting. “We recommend regular vacuuming,” says Anne. “A soft brush can also loosen surface dirt and brush it away.”
Tackle spills the right way
If a friend does happen to spill their cocktail on your couch, White suggests blotting the area immediately with a clean, dry absorbent cloth. We then recommend mandating said friend to a different spot in your home. No one likes a party foul.
Test cleaning products
If a dried stain is staring you in the face and you just can’t help but do something about it, test any cleaning product (even basic soap and water) on a hidden spot to ensure it doesn’t ruin the fabric. Mix soap and water to create a sudsy solution. Use a soft cloth to blot the stain with the suds, then let the fabric dry completely.