Upholstered furniture in the home is often there because it’s particularly comfortable, goes perfectly with the rest of the décor, or maybe because it was handed down from generation to generation. Whatever purpose your upholstered furniture serves, it’s devastating when you find a stain on a cherished piece of upholstered furniture.
Getting stains out of upholstered furniture is challenging. For one thing, you can’t exactly just take off the fabric and throw it in the washing machine. Furthermore, if the piece is older, you might not know what kind of fabric you’re dealing with. You might not even know what caused the stain in the first place! It is possible, however, to remove or minimize the appearance of some upholstered furniture stains. Here are the basic steps to take.
1. Vacuum the Upholstery
It’s often surprising how much of a difference vacuuming can make on your upholstery. In some cases, what you thought was a stain was embedded pet fur or some other stray bit of fabric. In any case, you want to vacuum the upholstery first to get rid of any other surrounding dust so you can get a clear idea of the severity of the stain. Be sure to use the correct attachment that came with your vacuum for this job.
2. Outline the Stain
Once you start working on a stain and the fabric gets wet, it’s easy to lose sight of where the stain spot is exactly. Before you begin, outline the area of the stain with a piece of string or yarn. That way you won’t spend your time spot cleaning in the wrong spot.
3. Start With a Mild Cleaning
Many stains can be removed with a simple solution. You don’t want to use harsh chemicals if you don’t need to. Start out with a clean white cloth. A white cloth will ensure that you don’t accidentally stain your upholstery if the color in the cleaning cloth bleeds into the fabric. Dampen the white cloth with plain old tap water. If the stain is water soluble, it might come right out.
4. Move Up to Stronger Cleansers
The next step is to move up to stronger cleansers. Some household cleaners might do the trick. Ones to try are baking soda and vinegar, household ammonia, dishwasher detergent and laundry soap.
5. Use Tough Stain Removal Chemicals
If you still have had no luck removing the stain, you can move on to the tough stain removal chemicals. But before you do, test them on the upholstery in an inconspicuous spot, such as on the area where the fabric turns down underneath the furniture base. Chemical cleaners often have caustic ingredients that could make a hole in the fabric. To find chemical stain removers, first, check in the laundry aisle at the grocery store. Hardware stores will have even stronger chemicals that you can try, including lighter fluid. Be aware that these chemicals should only be used according to manufacturer instructions. You should also wear gloves when handling these types of chemicals.
Upholstery Stain removal is a process. But the trade off of having a beautiful piece of clean, upholstered furniture is worth it. For more tips on cleaning, or for a home or office cleaning quote, please contact the experts at Embassy Cleaners.