How To Clean Area Rugs

Area rugs provide many excellent functions in your home. They add color and texture to a room, provide soft padding when placed over hardwood floors, and save your carpet underneath from getting stained. However, the rugs will still need to be cleaned. Here are some tips for cleaning area rugs of all types of sizes.

Vacuum the Rugs Regularly

Your rugs should be vacuumed on a regular basis, just like your carpets. They get a lot of foot traffic and can quickly fill up with dirt, debris, pet hair, dander and dust. When vacuuming, be careful not to vacuum up the fringe, or it may get stuck and look odd when you pull the fringe out. If you think you have pet hair or dirt in the fringe area of the rug, use an attachment to vacuum that section of the rug. If your area rugs are small enough to lift, take them outside and shake the excess dirt before vacuuming.

Brush the Rugs

While vacuuming and shaking can get out a good amount of pet hair, there is some hair that might be sticking to the rug. Before cleaning your rug, you want to make sure all pet hair is removed. Once you have vacuumed, take a stiff brush and brush with the direction of the rug's nap. This allows you to remove any stubborn pet hair from the rug. Vacuum over it once more after you have brushed away the pet hair.

How to Clean Different Types of Rugs

When it comes to cleaning the rugs, the type of rug you have will determine the best method of cleaning. Here are tips for cleaning the most popular types of rugs:

Oriental and hand-woven rugs – Oriental, handmade and hand-woven rugs are more delicate than other rugs, so taking them to a professional carpet cleaner or rug cleaner is highly recommended. If you want to wash them yourself, never put them in the washer or dryer. They must be carefully hand washed with a gentle carpet cleaning product and soft sponge.

Braided and woven rugs – These are some of the most commonly seen area rugs to clean. Before you clean the rugs, make sure there are no breaks in the stitching and check the labels to see if they can be put in the machine. Small braided rugs can often be placed in the washer on gentle cycle and washed in cool water. Check the label to see if they can be placed in your dryer on the low setting. If they can't be put in the machine or they are too large for the machine, wash with a sponge and carpet cleaning product, making sure they are rinsed and dried thoroughly.

Grass, sisal or rush rugs – If you have stains on your grass, rush or sisal rug, start by using a soft brush and soapy water to scrub at the stains. Rinse with water and put a dry towel over the wet area. This will help remove stains from the natural fibers. These rugs do not do well in conventional washers or dryers.

Occasionally, consider getting your rugs professionally cleaned by trusted cleaners, such as KC Carpet and Upholstery Cleaners.