We know that our upholstered furniture needs to be cleaned when it gets stained, by say red wine or pet urine. But over time, furniture gets gradually dirty, so slowly that you might never notice.
If you’ve decided it is time to clean your furniture, here are some ideas to consider. Always start with a thorough vacuuming.
Check the cleaning code label. This is like the care label in clothes. Manufacturers are supposed to attach the label to guide you in using the right cleaning formula although this requirement has been in effect for only a few years.
- W – this is the magic code you hope to find which indicates that it can be cleaned by a water-based cleaning solution. This is the easiest cleaning classification. Consider using 1 teaspoon per cup of water, or various commercial products generally available.
- S – this means that only water-free formulas are allowed. This is typically the classification for natural textiles, including cotton, linen, and wool. Look for commercial products that are water free.
- SW – this classification indicates that both water-based and water-free formulas can be used
- X – This means that neither water nor water-free solvents can be used. You’re pretty much limited to brushing and vacuuming a couch with these labels.
- DryCln – this means you need the services of a professional upholstery cleaner that can dry clean your furniture.
If your furniture does not have a label, you may be able to search online for cleaning instructions. If you can’t find the guidance, use a color test on an inconspicuous place. Apply a few drops of the formula you want to use and wait a few seconds. Then blot the area with a white absorbent cloth. If you get no discoloration on the fabric or color transfer on the cloth, you should be safe.