Let’s be honest, your area rugs are pretty special to you. You searched long and hard to find the perfect rugs that not only were the correct size, but also matched your color scheme and fit with the character of your home. It’s not surprising that you want to hold on to these rugs forever, but you’ll need to take really good care of them. Here are some tips from First Coast Home Pros to keep your unique area rugs looking fresh and new.
General Area Rug Care
- To keep an area rug looking like new and to avoid wear patterns, you need to rotate your rug on a regular basis. This also helps to even out (or camouflage) the sections that have acquired some sun fade.
- Your unique area rug needs to be vacuumed on a regular basis, whether it looks dirty or not. Even an average buildup of soil and dust can damage the carpet fibers and shorten the life of your rug. Also, you will need to loosen the dirt that has settled at the base of the carpet by “agitating” the pile. Remember to use a vacuum cleaner that doesn’t employ a rotary brush and isn’t considered high-powered.
- The best location for your rug is a dry, interior room, far from an outside door, mudroom or other location with wet shoes. Also, never place your area rug down on a damp or wet floor.
- It’s best to get your rug cleaned professionally each year. However, if your household traffic is light, once every two years may be often enough.
Polyester, Polypropylene and Nylon Fiber Rugs
- It’s very important to deal with spills as soon as they happen. Don’t let the stain soak in and dry before you do something about it. Pick up anything solid right away, and try to blot up all the excess liquid with a clean, white cloth. It’s important to blot – not rub – as rubbing can force the stain farther into the carpet, damage the fibers, and increase the size of the stain.
- After most of the liquid has been blotted up, if a stain remains, apply warm water and continue to blot at the area until clean. If still unsuccessful, a rug cleaning product (marked safe for synthetic fibers) may be used. Follow the instructions carefully, especially regarding testing the cleaning agent on a hidden section of the rug!
- When the stain has been completely removed and the rug has dried, vacuum.
Viscose, Cotton, Seagrass, Jute and Sisal Fiber Rugs
- Don’t let a stain soak in and dry before attempting to remove it. Handle spills immediately. Pick up as much of the solids as possible and try to blot up all the excess liquid with a clean, white cloth. It’s important to blot – not rub – as rubbing can increase the size of the stain and also be hard on the fibers.
- After absorbing as much of the excess liquid as possible, if the stain is still visible, you will need to decide how to proceed. Dry cleaning is probably your best option as this variety of rug can’t handle much moisture without suffering shrinkage or color bleed. If you do decide to try a bit of water on the stain, start a fan blowing on the rug as soon as possible once you finish up.
Wool Fibers Rugs
- Always tackle spills as soon as they happen, don’t let the stain soak in and dry overnight. If there are solids, pick them up; then, try to blot up all the excess liquid with a clean white cloth. It’s important to blot, NOT rub, as rubbing can increase the size of the stain and also damage the fibers.
- After blotting at the excess liquid, if the stain is still present, add warm water and blot some more. If this is unsuccessful, combine warm water with a gentle laundry soap that does not contain bleach. Apply to the affected area with a clean, light-colored cloth. (It’s probably not a bad idea to keep these supplies close at hand!) Let the fibers absorb the solution for approximately five minutes, then “rinse” out the soap with more warm water. Keep blotting until all the soap is gone.
- When the rug is completely dry, give it a good, gentle vacuuming.
Do you have more questions about caring for the carpets in your home? Download our free e-book “Cleaning Secrets from the Professionals” which includes (among other things) carpet cleaning tips from First Coast Home Pros.
At First Coast Home Pros our friendly staff is committed to quality and technically certified. We are proud to be the leader in Jacksonville, Florida professional carpet cleaning.