Should you clean it yourself or leave the job to the pros? That depends.Spills, stains and normal wear and tear can leave your upholstered furniture looking less than fresh.While manufacturers often recommend professional cleaning, many spots and stains can be treated at home without risk to the furniture.
The easiest upholstery stains to clean are those that are treated while they are still fresh. The hardest to clean are grease and oil. Any very large stain may be best left to a upholstery cleaning professional.If the fabric is synthetic, you can usually safely clean it at home, since synthetic fabrics were designed for ease of care. If the fabric is a natural/synthetic blend, however, use caution and test a small, hidden patch first. If the upholstery is more than 50% cotton, professional cleaning may be your best bet if the stain is large, dark or in a very noticeable area.
Did you know you can reduce overall grime and soiling of your upholstered furniture by vacuuming it regularly? Special upholstery attachments for your vacuum system can make it easy to reach small corners and creases, and are safe for use on fabrics. Vacuum furniture at least every two months, or weekly if you have pets or allergies.
A mild solution of washing-up liquid or laundry detergent and warm water should shift unsightly marks. Test it on a hidden area first and allow to dry to check it won’t damage the fabric. Take care not to get the area too wet and dry as quickly as you can – dab off what you can with a dry cloth, open windows or even get the hairdryer out. A slightly stronger cleaner for upholstery is vinegar – dab neat white vinegar onto the stain, then follow with a mild soap solution, followed by plenty of clean water and dry quickly
White vinegar can be used by wetting a rag and wringing it out completely so that it’s not dripping. Then wipe the furniture down. The smell is not pleasant, but after awhile it leaves the furniture smelling fresh. This removes surface dirt so if you need deep cleaning, this may not work. You will be surprised by the amount of dirt you remove from your furniture!