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11Jul 2014
Cleaning Your Upholstery
Cleaning Your UpholsteryFurniture is one of those things that inevitably gets worn the most. No matter whether you live alone, or with a partner or with a family plus fifteen cats and dogs, your furniture is going to be the one place where the most wear and tear takes place. Even if you do not have pets scratching and clawing at the material, simply by sitting down and moving around on the cushions you will create some degree of damage. And this is annoying when you really need your furniture to look good year round. Apart from re-covering your furniture, which is an expensive option, there is little you can do to prevent stains, discolouration and general dirtiness taking place. Unless of course you develop a super effective cleaning routine which effectively removes the need for you to worry. Impossible? Absolutely not! Believe it not, the best weapon of choice against sofa dirt to use regularly is your vacuum cleaner. Look through the attachments and select the best option for tackling the various cracks, crevices and ridges of your furniture. Dirt and oil can somehow get everywhere. Make life easier for yourself by not allowing any food or drinks to be consumed on the furniture. This way, when the inevitable spills occur, they won’t affect your soft furnishings. And if you create a general rule, it will be easy to stick to. Another good wear and tear prevention tip is to take your cushions outside regularly and beat them, either by hand or with a paddle. And when you replace them, put them in different positions to avoid wearing the same places down. In addition, you can simplify things further by avoiding articles near your sofa which will stain easily, for example felt tip pens, make-up and even print from newspapers. However careful you are sometimes it will be necessary to thoroughly clean your furniture. Upholstery cleaning products can be purchased from any supermarket or hardware store and you can choose the best one for your needs. What you MUST do before using the product however, is to test a patch of the sofa for colourfastness. You probably won’t have any problems, but just in case you should select a small patch of the sofa or chair and apply the cleaner. Rinse and then wait 24 hours before you continue so that you can be sure the colour of your soft furnishings is not going to be adversely affected. When you target a specific stain, make sure that you do not over wet the fabric. If you do, the stain may spread and make the problem worse and the liquid may seep through the fabric and create a damp patch which will prove hard to dry and provide an ideal environment for bacteria to grow. This in turn will give you multiple other problems! Drying the material will be a concern to some people. There is no need to artificially accelerate the speed of drying by using a hair dryer or similar. Just let the natural warmth of the environment do the job for you. This will ensure the best results. If the cushions have removable covers then it’s wise to machine wash them. If you choose to do this at home simply turn the cushions inside out and wash in your machine. If you choose to have them professionally dry cleaned then it’s a good idea to have all the covers done at the same time. They may not all be stained, but if the cleaning causes any change of colour in the fabric then the change will be equal across all the cushions.


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