Upholstery Maintenance & Care Guide – Expert Advice from Hanford's Oak & Sofa Liquidators
Routine Care for Upholstery: The key to keeping your upholstery looking fresh and new is regular cleaning. Use a gentle brush attachment with your vacuum weekly to help remove dust particles, which can stick to the fabric causing abrasion over time. This simple tip can also aid in reducing allergens in your home.
Hazards to Your Upholstery: As with many indoor fabrics, direct sunlight can cause your upholstery to fade or degrade over time. Consider your home's sun exposure and make necessary adjustments to protect your furniture. The seat of a sofa, due to the tension from the springs, can be sensitive to activities such as walking, jumping, or falling onto it. Prevent damage to the frame and potential repair costs by avoiding these activities.
Spot Cleaning: For fresh spills, blot immediately using a tissue or a 100% white cotton cloth. If the spill is on a removable cushion, unzip it and place a folded white cotton cloth underneath to soak up any seeping moisture. Use a spoon or the blunt edge of a butter knife to scrape off thicker spills gently.
Before treating older stains, check for product tags with cleaning instructions. Use our Cleaning Codes guide to determine the suitable cleaning method. Always pre-test any cleaning solution on a hidden area.
Vacuum to remove dust or loose dirt. For a water-based cleaning solution, we recommend using a warm mixture of distilled or purified water and a mild liquid detergent. At Oak & Sofa Liquidators in Hanford, we advise a ratio of one teaspoon of a gentle dish soap to one gallon of distilled water. For solvent cleaners, follow the instructions on the product. Use a soft brush or a damp cloth to clean, making sure not to alter the fabric's texture. Quick absorption of moisture using dry, absorbent rags can prevent a ring from forming around the treated area.
Why Use 100% Cotton and Distilled or Purified Water?: The goal of stain removal is to dissolve the stain into the detergent solution and transfer it to an absorbent cotton cloth.
White cotton, known for its high absorbency, effectively lifts the stain from your upholstery. It's most effective when dry, warm, prewashed, and composed of fine threads.
Distilled or purified water boosts your detergent's cleaning power. Tap water can contain minerals and chemicals that hamper the detergent's efficacy and leave a residual ring as it dries. Using distilled or purified water reduces the chance of a residual ring.
Understanding Your Upholstery's Fibers: Upholstery often contains a mix of natural and synthetic fibers, each with their own strengths and weaknesses concerning comfort, aesthetics, and care. Natural fibers like cotton and linen have a pleasing look and feel but are more absorbent, making them more prone to stains and harder to clean. Synthetic fibers like polyester, olefin, and nylon resist moisture, are stain-resistant, and relatively easy to clean. Many fabrics blend different fibers to balance these properties, complicating the cleaning process. By understanding these basics, you can better care for your upholstery and approach cleaning cautiously to avoid exacerbating any issues.
Cushion Care: Every time someone sits on a sofa, the fabric tends to shift backward over the foam core. If your seat cushions are reversible, flip them regularly to counter this process and prevent excessive fabric movement. If possible, rotate cushions from high- to low-use areas to distribute wear evenly. Remember, zippers don't imply that the covers can be machine washed. Machine washing can risk damage or mismatch in clean cushions due to differential wear and cleaning. We recommend reaching out to a professional cleaner for comprehensive cushion maintenance. Trust Hanford's own Oak & Sofa Liquidators for all your upholstery care needs.