Upholstery Cleaning – What You Need To Know

What is Upholstery Cleaning?

Whether it is your favourite leather couch or a sofa handed down by your grandfather, upholstery furniture needs thorough cleaning to make sure it holds up well for a very long time.

Most of us are used to doing laundry on a regular basis and just like that cleaning furniture regularly is also necessary. 

Upholstery fabric can accumulate dirt over time, especially materials like velvet, silk, etc.

If your dog or cat or your other pet has an incident on your upholstery furniture or your friend spills red wine on your favourite cream coloured couch, there is no need to panic.

Upholstery cleaning is easy to do at home, although calling professional help is always a better idea.

There are various DIY methods of cleaning upholstery furniture but you must have full knowledge of what you are dealing with. 

Cleaning tags

Cleaning tags are little tags attached to your furniture indicating how they must be cleaned.

They might be located on the side of your chair or couch and if you can’t find any, you can always go to the manufacturer’s website and get the cleaning information. Cleaning tags can be of many kinds.

To name a few:

1. S: This stands for ‘Solvent’
If your tag says ‘S’, you must clean your fabric with a dry, clean solvent.

Using water-based cleaning agents can leave a mark on your fabric or cause it to erode.

Make sure you are using the right solvent, as some dry cleaning solvents contain harmful chemicals which might harm your body if inhaled.

2. W: This stands for ‘Water’
In this case, use water-based cleaning liquid. Water-based cleaners are especially good for leather-based furniture.

They offer hassle-free cleaning and wipe off the dirt easily. This is definitely a good option for DIY cleaning at home.

3. WS: This stands for both ‘Water’ and ‘Solvent’
In the case of ‘WS’, both a water-based liquid cleaner and dry-cleaning solvent can be used. Again, this is a good option for DIY cleaning.

However, it might pose some challenges in terms of spotting and fabric degradation.

It is suggested that you use the cleaning liquid on a different, hidden area before using it on the actual stain.

4. X: That is, it cannot be cleaned with either a water-based solution or dry-cleaner solvent.
This poses a problem for DIY cleaners as well as professionals since it cannot be cleaned with either of the two products mentioned above. 

How often should a piece of upholstery furniture be cleaned?

To make sure that your upholstery furniture’s life is prolonged to its maximum, you must deep clean them every eighteen months.

Apart from that, regular vacuuming and treating stains immediately are very important.

If the food spills are solid, use a spoon or other piece of cutlery to scoop up the mess as soon as the incident takes place.

And in case the stains were caused by a liquid, use a blotting paper and dab on the wet area to soak up the liquid.

Do not spread the stain even more by rubbing on the area.

Lastly, if your furniture is under warranty, cleaning it yourself might become a hassle for you later, as your warranty might become null and void.

To make sure that does not happen, call a professional to clean the fabric for you. If you are still unsure, we suggest that you call the furniture company directly for all warranty and cleaning related queries.

Upholstery furniture is beautiful to see and use, and it also adds aesthetic appeal to your interior decoration.

Therefore, regular cleaning and taking care of such furniture become all the more important.

Why is upholstery cleaning important?

Upholstery is a big part of the décor in most of our homes.

Whether it is a gourmet leather couch, an exquisite piece of old furniture passed down from generation to generation, or your favourite velvet sofa, sometimes we can be very attached to our furniture because that is what ultimately makes our house feel like home.

But cleaning your furniture regularly, just like we clean our clothes on a daily basis, is very important and crucial for your family’s health.

There are several ways to clean your upholstery.

The first step is to look at the cleaning tags attached to your furniture or the packaging.

These tags indicate whether these materials should be cleaned with water-based cleaning agents or dry cleaning solvents.

However, some of these materials cannot be cleaned at home.

It might be good to call a professional for thorough cleaning and the removal of tough stains which otherwise cannot be cleaned.

But keep in mind that experienced cleaners sometimes use organic chemicals that might be harmful to your body and may pollute your home.

Preferably, go for cleaners who use green products which are safe for your body.

Why is it important to clean your upholstery regularly?

There are several reasons why you should. Read on to find out about some of them.

1. Health
If your furniture is too dirty and is kept unclean for a long period of time, they can cause the growth of bacteria and other moulds.

Sometimes, bacteria get deep within your furniture and grow, which poses a serious risk to the health of you and your family.

Apart from bacteria, lice, fleas, and other insects can make a home in your upholstery furniture and convert your lovely comfortable home into an uncomfortable one in a second.

Not only do they irritate the skin but can cause long-lasting infections as well.

Too much dirt can also cause allergies and more serious diseases like bronchitis and asthma. These diseases take a lot of time to treat and heal and are also an unnecessary expenditure that can easily be avoided.

2. Appearance of furniture
One of the most important parts of cleaning your upholstery is to maintain its longevity.

It helps keep the furniture looking new and fresh and improves its appearance. When dirt and grime are prevented from building up on your furniture, it helps make sure that your furniture lasts longer.

Keep your furniture clean and shiny and you are bound to get lots of compliments from your peers!

This also helps in saving money for the future, as you don’t need to spend on furniture again and again for no reason.

A good piece of upholstery furniture can last you a lifetime if cleaned and maintained properly.

Instead of replacing your old furniture with a new one, it is better to invest in a good upholstery cleaner that you can use to easily clean at home.

3. Pleasant environment
If the upholstery furniture in your office is left unclean, not only does it give off a bad appearance and untidy surroundings, but also repels your employees from having a comfortable place to work in.

If the furniture, like the couch and the chairs, are cleaned regularly, it will put the workers at ease and increase work efficiency and performance. Believe it or not, it also improves body posture!

Upholstery is a perfect way to decorate your old furniture and increase the aesthetic beauty of your house.

Therefore, cleaning it becomes an even more important task. Make sure you use the right kind of materials to clean so that it does not harm your furniture or you.

How to choose the best upholstery cleaners?

The likelihood of your furniture getting cleaned is minimal unless you take off the covers physically.

Even if you do so, there is no point of taking the fabric to the dry cleaners to remove a single stain or mark.

Additionally, you will also have to lift the furniture. With this being the case, one popular way to clean your furniture is to make use of upholstery cleaners.

It does not really matter if your upholstery is modern or traditional; you will need a good upholstery cleaner to keep your furniture and furnishings hygienic and fresh.

While your armchair might look very clean from far away, you will notice that dirt has embedded itself into the fibres if you move a bit closer.

This is the reason why you need an upholstery cleaner machine; it will work its way deep into the roots of the fibres and give your furniture a fresh and brand new look.

Today, you will find a wide range of upholstery cleaners on the market. You can find that choosing a single upholstery cleaner out of the whole bunch can be quite a daunting task.

To help you choose the best ones, here are some key points that you should consider before settling on one:

How deep can the upholstery cleaner work?

When you are shopping for an upholstery cleaner machine, you need to determine how deep the device can go while cleaning your upholstery.

There are some forms of dirt that need deep cleaning techniques since the embedded dirt can remain hidden from regular cleaning machines, deep inside the fibres.

If you have an expensive set of furniture, this does not guarantee that it will not store under its fibres.

This is because the more you use the furniture, the more dirt is pushed into the fibres.

This is the reason why you need an upholstery cleaner machine that can reach and clean deep into the fibres.

Initial purchase cost
The cost of the cleaner machine will determine its appropriateness for use either in your business premises or home.

You can also hire a professional upholstery cleaning service to get first-hand experience before settling for one.

One added bonus of hiring a professional cleaning service is that some offer you gift hampers like a litre of upholstery cleaner detergent.

Just like everything else, the more costly your cleaning machine is, the more feature you will have like deep cleaning, steam cleaning, etc.

But, even the most basic cleaner device will not cost you a lot of money and will clean your upholstery just as efficiently.

Tank capacity
You will need to give a good amount of consideration to the tank capacity when you are choosing up upholstery cleaner.

Different devices in the market have tanks of different capacities.

The tank capacity will determine how effectively and efficiently you will be able to clean a particular size of an area.

Most upholstery cleaners have a water reservoir of good capacity. This will avoid endless trips to the taps while using the cleaner device.

On average, most upholstery cleaners have a capacity of up to 30 ounces, approximately.

Furniture creates the style factor in your house. This means that the upholstery of your furniture needs to be looked after and cared for in order to maintain cleanliness and longevity.

The way you clean your carpets and the covers of your furniture, your upholstery needs to be maintained in the same way. Using an upholstery cleaner device will make a big difference.

The cleaner device should be able to clean any spills with ease. Today, you will also find upholstery cleaner machines that are portable and can be carried around as well.

All you have to do is just consider the above points before settling for one!