Rug Cleaning Tips: How To Care For Your Area Rug

Posted on Mar 10th 2020


Rug Cleaning Tips: How To Care For Your Area Rug

Area rugs have the ability to pull any great room together, with one simple splash of elegance. Heck, it doesn’t even have to be a great room to begin with, but it will be once that rug is done with it!

It’s safe to say that area rugs have such an important impact on the look of any room. Therefore, it’s also important that these rugs stay nice and beautiful for the duration of their stay in your home, right?

Sure, vacuuming every now and again is a pretty solid way to keep a rug consistently clean, but have you thought about a good deep clean on it?

Here’s a good test for you: lift up the corner of your rug in a nicely lit section of your home. Drop it back down. If you see a good poof of dust and particles fly around it, then that poor ruggy needs deep cleaning for sure!

Now, there are basically only two ways to get this done; with a professional cleaning or DIY at-home care and maintenance, and we’re going to teach you about both. As experts on carpet, rug, and tile cleaning, coming to Zerorez® Tucson for your rug cleaning advice was a good idea, indeed.

Basic Rug Care Tips

Of course, area rugs are made up of different materials, so specific care and cleaning will vary slightly- but we’ll dig into that pie in just a minute. Overall though, most rugs will benefit from a regular, basic care routine, in between your deep cleanings.

1. Vacuuming Regularly

This of course, is what most of us do already, right? Just like carpet, regularly vacuuming your area rugs is the most important piece if your regular care routine. What most people don’t think to do though, is vacuum both sides of the rug!

I know, it sounds weird, but it’s actually quite necessary. This removes all of those stubborn, dirty particles that can wear out your rug and shorten its lifespan!

Oh, and another Zerorez® care tip: try not to vacuum the edges and corners of your rugs to avoid fringing and frizzing of the rug fibers. You can also turn off the beater bar when you are vacuuming a shag rug to prevent tangling and fringing the long fibers of the rug!

2. Brushing Out Pet Hair

Unfortunately, vacuums can’t pick up ALL the pet hair available and may end up leaving some behind. Instead of continually running the beater bar over those furry patches to get it all up (while simultaneously fringing up the rug fibers), try using a stiff brush to remove the hair, brushing in the direction that the fibers of your rug are laying.

3. Make Sure To Turn Your Rugs

Foot traffic and sun can put extra stress on area rugs. Make sure to turn them once or twice a year to even out the wear on all sides of the rug.

If your room layout allows it, you can also move the furniture around on a regular basis. Your area rug will definitely appreciate it if you can do it every six months, to prevent premature wear on high traffic areas!

Who knew?

4. Shake Those Rugs Out!

If the rug is small enough, you will positively want to can take it outside to shake it or beat it vigorously to remove that embedded dirt and grit. Poor ruggy… don’t be too hard on him.

5. Start at The Door

Yes, all dirt and grime start at your front door, my friend! Meaning all the dust and dirt that enters your home, is brought in by the bottom of those shoes. Make it a goal to not wear your shoes in the house at all, and that will certainly help the life of your area rug, not to mention your carpet or flooring as a whole!

Rug Cleaning: Different Area Rug Types & How To Deep Clean Them

First and foremost, knowing what type of rug you have will determine what the best care and cleaning options are for each; both professional and DIY! We’re going to dive right in with some tips for the most common types of area rugs:

1. Woven or Braided Rug Cleaning

This type of rug can be a bit finicky in the cleaning process, given it’s particularly woven nature! Because stitching breaks can often happen with this type of rug, we definitely suggest a professional deep clean for this guy.

If it’s a smaller woven rug, such as a bathroom mat of sorts, it’s very possible you could machine wash this- Of course, check the tags on your specific rug to make sure.

If they are, place them in a zippered pillowcase or mesh laundry bag. Wash in cool water on a gentle cycle, rinsing thoroughly, and hang to dry (dryers can often have a negative impact on rug fibers, no matter what kind of rug they are!).

For larger woven or braided rugs, as we mentioned above, a good professional cleaning once a year is the best option for that.

You’ll want to make sure that whatever company you chose does not use harsh chemicals and detergents on your delicate rug, and also does not flood the rug with too much water!

Zerorez® Tucson will do neither of those things… *wink wink*

2. Antique, Persian, & Oriental Rug Cleaning

Because Antique, Persian, or Oriental rugs and runners popular choices for kitchens and great rooms, they also see quite a bit of foot traffic. Luckily they are used in these areas because of their strength and durability, but this also means they need a bit more special attention!

Of course, their hefty size does not allow for throwing this beautiful rug in the washer- that is simply not an option.

You will undoubtedly want these rugs professionally cleaned at least once a year. And again, choosing a company, such as Zerorez® Tucson, that will deep clean your rug without the use of harsh chemicals and flooding, will be the best way to go!

Another Zerorez® tip: when buying these antique rugs, learn as much as you can from the seller about the rug’s fiber content and construction, and ask for some specific care tips! A little preparedness never hurt anyone, right?

3. Coir, Sisal, Jute, & Seagrass Rug Cleaning

You know what we’re talking about! These are those itchy, tough, scratchy rugs that make for great front door, outdoor, and pool bathroom rugs, am I right? Of course, they are beautiful indoors too!

So how does one clean these rugs? You can’t really toss these in the washer either, given that they are often made out of tough plant fibers (and they’re not very flexible).

The best thing you can do to clean these rugs is to take the classic way out- take ’em right outside and give them a good hose down. That’ll typically do the trick just fine.

If you want to give it some more depth, trickle some good quality dish soap over it and then give it a solid hose down. And of course, hang to dry!

No professionally cleaning really necessary for this tough guy!

4. Fur, Hide, and Sheepskin Rug Cleaning

This type of rug can get a bit tricky if you aren’t quite sure how to clean it.

Given its animal-derived nature, washing these rugs in a washer, or even having a professional clean on them, simply isn’t an option or you will risk ruining the hair or fibers of the rug.

This rug can be a lot of work, so make sure that if you want to get this type of rug, you know exactly what you are getting yourself into.

Just like the animal that your rug came from, the hides are naturally resistant to stain and are very durable. But, it is important to remember that because they are technically leather, any excess water could harm the backing of your rug, making it stretch out of its normal shape.

Think of it as if you are actually going to wash the animal itself- how would you do that? The same way you would wash your doggo just about right? Gently and by hand, my friend.

You’ll want to shake the rug out often to rid it of any dirt and debris- we don’t suggest vacuuming a fur or hide rug because you will risk ruining the natural hair and fiber.

To actually deep clean this type of rug, we also suggest not having a professional clean done. You will need to wipe down the rug front and back by hand once or twice a year, with a sponge or wet cloth “with the grain”, in order to preserve the hair and hide.

Make sure to not use excessive amounts of water, chemicals, or detergents on this type of rug, or (again?) you’ll risk ruining the natural hair and fiber of the rug.

Some owners of cowhide or sheepskin rugs also notice a certain odor after a while, with these rugs, especially if not hand washed regularly. Yuck…

You’ll want to shake unscented talcum powder on your fur, sheepskin, and hair-on-hide rugs, and leave it for several hours.

Brush the talcum powder through the hair, with the grain as they say, then take it on outside and shake it out. Repeat this process several times, depending on the length of the fur.

Sheesh, talk about a process… still want that cowhide, fur, or sheepskin rug?

Rug Cleaning Services in Tucson

With regular care, maintenance, and yearly rug cleaning, your area rugs will serve your family and home for as long as you’ll have it! If your rug allows for it (i.e. Persian, oriental, shag, antique, woven, or braided) Zerorez® Tucson is here to give you a yearly professional hand!

At Zerorez® Tucson, we use an effective, patented cleaning system, with our harsh-chemical-free Powered Water® to make sure that your area rug will look beautiful again. While some rugs may be cleaned in the home, others may need to return to our shop for a more delicate clean!

For a cleaning that gets more out, lasts longer, and is performed by professionals that know how to handle your delicate rug, Zerorez® Tucson is the way to go!