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Caring for your Area Rug – how to make your area rug last and how to remove stains.


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CARING FOR YOUR AREA RUG

by Astrid Bullen

 

MAKE
IT LAST


Certain
rugs, such as those of Asian origin, can be made from anything, from silk to
nylon to wool. Very special care must be taken when cleaning to prevent any
possible damage. You can save money by taking these rugs to a cleaning
facility. However, it might be prudent to pay the service to have your rugs
cleaned on site if you have several rugs or if they are very large and
heavy.
 

Here
are some basic tips for caring for your area rug: 

  • Rotate
    your rugs at least once a year to even out effects of the sun and to
    prevent uneven wear. Depending on traffic, the rotation may vary from
    six months to two years. Experts recommend turning the rugs 180 degrees.
    Consider swapping rugs from one room to another. This may just
    invigorate your décor, and it will rejuvenate the life of your carpet.
     

  • Avoid
    constant direct exposure of your rug to sunlight. 
     

  • Clean
    spills right away to avoid discoloration. 
     

  • Vacuum
    a couple of times per week to get rid of loose dirt and bring back life
    to the fibers. Be sure not to vacuum the loose fringe. Vacuuming is the
    best way to clean a rug: hanging it outside and banging it with a broom
    or stick will eventually ruin it.
     

  • Be
    sure to use a rug cleaning expert for professional cleaning, especially
    deep cleaning. Professional carpet cleaning increases the life of the
    carpeting and improves air quality, reducing allergies and illness.
     

  • Always
    adhere to the rug maker’s suggested cleaning methods.
     

  • Top
    quality padding used under your rug helps to guard it from dirt, wear
    and slippage.

As
a rug buyer you must keep certain things in mind to get the service you
expect from your selection: 


 

  • Always
    lay rugs or carpets on smooth surfaces.
     

  • Cut
    loose yarns or tufts even with the rest of the pile. Never pull them, as
    they would have escaped the shearing of the pile in the factory.
     

  • Have
    holes and tears repaired promptly and by a professional. 
     

  • Be
    aware that the first few cleanings of machine made rugs with cut pile
    surfaces will produce large rolls of fluff.
     

  • The
    deeper the pile the more difficult and the more important it is to clean
    your rug meticulously to the very roots of the tufts, or else fine grit
    will become entrenched and grind through the fibers at their base.

Caring
for your area rug also involves keeping a coarse mat in front of the door to
stop dirt from being tracked inside of the house, and shedding your shoes
when you enter. Keep a shoe mat right inside the front door and have family
members and guests take off their shoes before proceeding through the house. 

To
reduce carpet indentations, move your furniture every so often. Dab an ice
cube on the spot until the fibers bounce back. 

To
save money, a lot of people interchange between do-it-yourself cleaning and
professional cleaning. Beware of the three most common ways do-it-yourselfers
damage carpets: 

  • Over-shampooing

  • Over-wetting

  • Failing
    to protect the wet carpet from furniture

 

Stain
Removal

Dilute
spills with plenty of water as soon as they take place. Next, use paper
towels to blot or brush lightly from the outer edge of the spill towards the
middle to avoid spreading or causing “the ring” when using solvents,
especially on twist rugs and pile carpets. Test solvent on a hidden area
first. Avoid rubbing the spot. Take a spoon and carefully scoop up the
material if the spill is solid. Saturate, blot and brush to get rid of old,
dry and stubborn stains. 

Caring
For Oriental Rugs

Oriental
rugs insert ageless style to nearly any space, whether heirlooms or fake
antiques. True Oriental
rugs are hand-woven of natural fibers and made in geographic regions
that comprise the Near East, Middle East, Far East and the Balkans. Grime
and grit will make your wool Oriental look dreary and gray and make the
fibers wear faster. The dust particles tend to grind in and cut fibers. A
complete cleaning to restore the richness of color and revive rug softness
is suggested every three to six years if the rug is in a high-traffic area. 

It
is because of careful handling that an Oriental rug can continue to exist
for centuries in reasonably good condition. Good quality padding will
protect your Oriental, especially in heavily trafficked areas; by prevent
needless friction from wearing out the rug. Never vacuum against the nap of
the rug, as this forces dirt back into the rug. If your rug has a loose
fringe, turn it under the carpet before vacuuming. If a spill occurs, a good
stain resistant treatment is spot cleaning with mild soap and cold water or
club soda. Use a sheet or cloth to wrap your rug if it is to be stored for a
long period of time, but do not use an airtight plastic bag. 

Handmade
Oriental rugs are unpredictable. It’s always best to get advice for
cleaning from the place of purchase. Leave cleaning to the pros if you’re
in doubt. A good Oriental rug will last for generations if taken care of
properly. 

Caring
For Sisal Area Rugs

Sisal
rugs and carpets are great alternatives when you are looking for
selections to redecorate or give a new look to any room. Sisal is the most
adaptable of natural fiber flooring materials. It holds up well under medium
traffic. To avoid accelerated wear, caring for your area rug is important,
you should give it a professional cleaning twice a year or more.

Caring
For Navajo Rugs

When
hanging your rug use a technique that does not damage the warp. A Velcro
strip with an adhesive back is one method that seems to work well. If
possible, turn over your rug every 90 days to expose the hidden side to
fresh air. This is thought to reduce the odds of insect infestation. Always
take your rug to someone skilled in cleaning either Navajo, Persian or
Oriental rugs, as harsh chemicals can cause the colors to bleed and
otherwise harm the integrity of your weaving.


 

If you are reading this page
it is probably too late but you may still find the information on making
the best use of your area rug
and what
you should look out for when choosing one
, of interest.


 

 

 

 

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