5 Upholstery Cleaning Mistakes To Avoid

You can do a lot of everyday upholstery cleaning yourself.  You just need to be prepared to go about it the right way.  Above all, you need to avoid these five upholstery cleaning mistakes.

Ignoring the manufacturer’s guidance

When you buy upholstered furniture new, you can expect to be provided with instructions on how to look after it.  Of course, you may not have thought to keep these.  You might also have bought upholstered furniture pre-loved and not have the care instructions.  In these situations, you have three options.

Option one is to do your research.  If you can identify the manufacturer and they are still in business, you can generally get the care instructions from them.  Even if they’re not, you may still be able to find them online.

Option two is to stick to homemade, chemical-free cleaners.  These are gentle enough to be used on most fabrics.  They’ll usually do a decent job of everyday cleaning.  Realistically, however, they’re unlikely to be up to heavy-duty cleaning.

Option three is just to leave the cleaning to the professionals.

Not cleaning upholstery often enough

You probably know that you need to react quickly if your upholstery gets stained.  As a pro tip, if you can’t get the stain out completely yourself, call in a professional immediately.  Even minor stains can become major problems if left untreated.

It can, however, be easy to overlook the gradual build-up of dirt and grime on your upholstery.  You’re too busy to notice it until your upholstery is too dirty to be ignored.  At that point, you may have to call in the professionals whether you like it or not.

If you want to do all your own upholstery cleaning, then you need to do it regularly.  If that seems like too much effort, split the difference.  Call in professionals for periodic deep cleaning.  Then make the most of that by cleaning your upholstery as often as you can yourself.

Not patch testing

You don’t usually need to patch-test chemical-free cleaners.  That said, if you have particularly delicate fabrics, it may still be a good idea.  You absolutely do need to patch test any cleaner with chemicals in it.  More specifically, you need to patch test it according to the guidance on the product.

Remember that cleaning product manufacturers have to create their products according to general rules, guidelines and best practices.  They’re unlikely to know how, exactly, any given item of upholstery is going to react to their product.  That’s exactly why you have to do a patch test.

Using too much water

Water is a great cleaner but you generally want to use it in moderation.  This is particularly true when you’re cleaning upholstery.  You are not trying to soak it through the way you do when you put regular clothes in the machine.  You’re just trying to help the cleaner get right into the fabric.

Not leaving the upholstery to dry properly

You absolutely must ensure that your upholstery is completely dry before you start using it.  If you don’t, you’re basically asking for mold.  Of course, the less water you use, the easier it will be to get your upholstery dry.

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