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Upholstery Cleaning

So you have decided not to heed the advice on the label of your favorite chair saying 'professional clean only'. You are a brave soul, and of course you are looking to save some money and hassle.

It actually isn't that hard to clean your own upholstery, you should just know what to look out for and have some time saving tips.

Moisture Is Your Worst Enemy
Although it may seem like the more wet you wet your upholstery the easier it will be to eliminate stains, this is not the case. Water will destroy the fabric. Try to use a powerful stain remover before you go at the fabric with water. The faster the stain comes out, the faster you can soak up the water and the less risk you will expose your upholstery to.

When you do extract the water try and get as much of it out as you possible can.

Synthetics
Synthetic fibers are made to be easily cleaned, so if that is the case you have very little to fear. What you should watch out for is natural/synthetic blends. If your fabric has more than 50% cotton you should be wary. Also, if the cotton is an imported blend I would have it professionally cleaned. These cottons are often more delicate than American ones.

Baby-Wipes
This may seem counter intuitive, but baby wipes are a great way to clean some upholstery. There isn't too much water and soap involved and the alcohol in the wipes ensures that it evaporates quickly. Just think about it, if they can get the stains off of your baby's butt without harm, it can surely do the same for upholstery.

Spray and Wipe
Unless the stains are really bad, you might want to consider an upholstery spray. These are quite inexpensive (usually no more than $5) and they work quite well. Use caution though, they work better on small organic stains. If you are trying to remove grease or oil in large patches, a spray will not work.

Know Thy Fabric
As was mentioned before, synthetic materials are easy to clean. If your chair or sofa is an expensive one, there is probably a lot of organic material inside. Therefore you should spend the money to have it professionally cleaned. It is worth the investment.

Hammer Share tips with others in our Floors forum.