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Rug Cleaning & Care Guide

We all want our new rug to look good for as long as possible but the reality is dirt and grit is a fact of life and spills and accidents are inevitable. There are, however, some basic measures that can be taken to extend the life of a wool rug and help it look good for longer.

 

For example:

  • Use a doormat as that will significantly reduce the rate at which the rug will soil.
  • Vacuum your new rug regularly. This will prevent dirt and grit from matting the fibers. An upright vacuum cleaner fitted with a beater bar and/or brushes is recommended for cut pile rug. A vacuum only model is best for loop pile rugs to prevent pilling.
  • Always vacuum new rugs. When a rug is first laid there may be some fluffing or shedding of loose fibers but this is perfectly normal. In the first year, we recommend vacuuming at least two or three times a week to remove excess fuzz that accumulates on the rug surface. This fuzzing is perfectly normal and in no way shortens the life of your rug. It is merely the result of loose fibers created during the weaving process. "Pilling" (A condition of the carpet face in which fibers from different tufts become entangled with one another, forming hard masses of fibers and tangled tufts. Pills may be cut off with scissors.) can be caused by excessive heavy foot traffic or using powder cleaners or deodorizers that "clump" fibers together. If the beater bar of your vacuum slows down noticeably on the rug, raise the height of the vacuum/beater bar. Constant, heavy beater bars can also cause pilling.
  • Our hand-tufted wool area rugs are well constructed and durable. A vacuum with a rotating beater bar to agitate the area rug pile and strong suction to remove loose particles is well tolerated by the area rug. If your vacuum does not have a beater bar, it may remove surface dirt well but may leave embedded soil that can damage the area rug through abrasion. Remember, vacuuming is the best tip for cleaning wool rugs.

 

Wool Rug Cleaning Methods

Dry Foam and Absorbent Pad

This is our recommended method. It uses little water to create light detergent foam that is worked into the pile, and then vacuumed out when dry.

Steam Cleaning

This method is most effective when performed by a professional, although many rug cleaning machines may be purchased or rented. The dangers of performing this method on your own involve using too much detergent or water. Some cleaning agents available with rented units leave a heavier residue, so use care or the advice of a professional when choosing a product. Test the product on a small area to check for residue or a sticky feel. Do not use if a residue exists, or if in doubt about a product. Finally, do not use laundry detergents to clean your area rug to avoid possible chemical brighteners.

"Oxy" Cleaners

Synthetic fibers - fine. Wool fibers - No! There are many oxygen cleaners on the market that are environmentally safe and work well for spot cleaning various stains on synthetic fiber area rugs. Most of these cleaners are biodegradable and form oxygen, hydrogen peroxide and soda ash when mixed with water. Soda ash is sodium carbonate and has alkaline properties. Do not use this cleaning method on wool or silk and avoid prolonged skin contact.

Dry Powder

We do not recommend using dry powders with plush or deep pile area rug, as the cleaning residue may be difficult to remove. Powder cleaners and deodorizers can cause "Pilling". If the area rug is heavily soiled, we recommend a different procedure or using a professional.

Area Rug Stain Removal

If an area rug becomes spotted or stained, work quickly. When possible, scoop up solids and blot liquids immediately after a spill occurs. Absorb as much liquid as possible with a white cloth or paper towel without scrubbing the area to prevent matting or fuzzing.

 

Cleaning instruction guide - Spot and stain removal

A...Scoop up any solid matter first.    

B...Blot up as much liquid as possible using a clean white absorbent towel or sponge.    

C...Clean with the appropriate treatment from the cleaning guide. All cleaning agents should be tested on an inconspicuous area of carpet before use. Apply the cleaning agent to a clean white cloth - not directly to the carpet. Remember that to avoid spreading the stain, start from the outside of the stained area and work towards the centre. Do not rub or scrub your carpet.

Cleaning Guide 
(Begin with Step One and proceed to Step Two or Three if necessary.

Stain

Step One

Step Two

Step Three

Alcoholic beverages

1

2

 

Bleach

1

13

 

Blood

1

2

 

Butter

4

2

 

Candle Wax

10

4

 

Chewing Gum

5

4

 

Chocolate

4

2

 

Coffee

1

2

6

Colas & soft drinks

1

2

 

Cooking oil

4

2

 

Cream

2

4

 

Egg

2

13

 

Feces

2

3

13

Floor wax

4

2

 

Fruit juice

1

2

 

Furniture polish

4

2

 

Gravy & sauces

7

2

 

Ink (ballpoint pen)

9

2

 

Ink (felt tip pen)

4

2

 

Lipstick

4

2

 

Milk

2

4

 

Mustard

2

 

 

Nail polish

8

4

 

Oil & grease

4

2

 

Paint (oil based)

12

4

 

Paint (Acrylic)

1

2

 

Rust

6

13

 

Salad dressing

2

4

 

Shoe polish

4

2

 

Soot

11

4

 

Tar

12

4

 

Tea

1

2

6

Tomato sauce

7

2

 

Urine(fresh)

1

2

3

Urine(old stain)

13

 

 

Vomit

2

3

6

Wine

1

2

6

Unknown material

4

2

 

 

  1.    1. Cold water.
  2.    2. One teaspoon of wool detergent with one teaspoon of white vinegar and one litre of warm water.
  3.    3. Clear household disinfectant.
  4.    4. White spirits (available from hardware stores). Use only on dry carpet.
  5.    5. Chill with ice cubes in a plastic bag. Pick or scrape off gum.
  6.    6. Mix 1/3 cup of white vinegar with 2/3 cup of water.
  7.    7. Warm water.
  8.    8. Nail polish remover (should not contain lanolin).
  9.    9. Surgical alcohol.
  10.    10. Place absorbent paper over wax and apply hot iron to paper. Wax will melt and be absorbed by the paper.
  11.    11. Vacuum clean.
  12.    12. Mineral turpentine.
  13.    13. Seek assistance from a professional carpet cleaner.