Intricacies Of The Sofa Cleaning Process
This is an important part of the household maintenance routine. However, unlike the usual dusting and wiping of surfaces, brushing and mopping of floors, dealing with sofas is in a different ballpark. It is a challenging task, that requires one to be highly skilled in order to get it done fast, and to quality results. There is plenty of misunderstanding out there about the different aspects of the job. Let’s first take a look at these:
Unmasking common sofa cleaning myths
- Sofas should only be dry cleaned
This probably sprung out of the fear of shrinkage of the upholstery, issues like texture damage or colour bleeding that are associated with wet cleaning. However, this only occurs when the wrong procedure is used- hence the need of relying on professionals for the task, who can use water-based sofa cleaning methods appropriately, to get rid of the dirt and grime without posing a risk to the upholstery.
- The hottest water makes for the most effective clean
The hot water extraction method is popular for sofa cleaning. After all, it is highly effective. It flushes out the dirt from within the material and also minimises the need for relying on harsh alkaline-based products that could cause fading and colour bleeding. However, it is not a one-size-fits-all system. There are fabrics that are sensitive to heat, with their structural integrity being put on the line. In some cases very hot water may contribute to colour fading, depending on the nature of the fabric dye. Without properly regulating the heat systems, issues like fabric distortion may also occur. As such, it is recommended that you leave the task to the professionals, who will apply the ideal temperatures and pressures for the sofa cleaning process.
- Synthetic upholstery requires little to no maintenance
There’s a difference between durable and invincible. The synthetic units are the former, not the latter. While the material has the ability to withstand the daily wear and tear, it doesn’t mean that it should be neglected. The dirt and grime that will accumulate on it will gradually weaken the structure. From abrasive action that wears down the upholstery, the spills soaking into the upholstery and reacting with the dyes and protective treatments that had been used on the material- these all need to be got rid of. The cleaning methods used also factor in. You don’t want a situation where harsh acidic products corrode your upholstery.
- You should only wait for when the sofa is visibly soiled to have it cleaned
Dirt continuously accumulates on the sofa fabric with everyday usage. What’s more, when people sit on those cosy cushions, the dirt gets pushed deeper into the upholstery. Waiting for it to become utterly soiled will mean that there is an extreme build-up of dirt within the material.
- Any cleaning company can get the job done
That couldn’t be further from the truth. Companies are different- from the processes they use, the skill level of their cleaning personnel, to the type, power and capacity of the machinery that is involved in the task. Fly-by-night types whose existence can barely be proved on paper, rookie cleaners that come with faulty equipment and take short cuts during the cleaning, those running bait-and-switch tactics to hook you and hike the price later on- there are all sorts of companies in the local sofa cleaning industry. You can have a situation where the company involved has quality equipment, yet the personnel meant to operate it is not well-trained. When dealing with day companies, you run the risk of anything from getting poor quality results, to the property getting damaged in the process. There are even those service providers who are not insured, in which case if there are damages you end up footing the costs of repair out of your own pocket. It is advisable to seek the services of a reputable company, with a track record to prove itself. Dealing with a company that adheres to the industry standards of operations, and places emphasis on customer service, will enable you to have a pleasant experience, and quality results at the end of it.
What the cleaning codes mean
What do those tags on the sofa signify? They are not just random. These are labels from the manufacturer of the upholstery, that aid in determining the products that can be used on it. These include:
W: This refers to “water-based cleaner”. Basically, the upholstery in question can only be worked on with a water-based formulation.
S/W: This stands for “Solvent- and water-based cleaners” Both types of cleaning agents can be used on this particular type.
S: These units can only be cleaned with solvent-based products.
X: Here, neither water nor detergents can be used. These upholsteries are highly delicate, and only professional cleaning is recommended.
Daily tips for taking care of your upholstery
- Do you have fibre-filled cushions? Plump them up every day. This will help them to retain their original shape. That way they won’t get deflated because of the fibres meshing together. This barely takes up any time. Simply pick up a cushion, hit it on each side, and then drop it onto a clean surface to get some air back into the structure. Put it back in place. It’s also recommended that you swap the cushions around, that they achieve even usage and remain comfortable all through.
- For stains, they should be tackled immediately they occur. Use a clean and dry cloth to soak up any excess liquid from the spill. Proceed to spot clean the area using the right cleaning products for your particular type of upholstery. This is key, since using the wrong formulations will damage the material and void the warranty. Troubled by stubborn stains? Don’t fret. Call up the sofa cleaning professionals, and they will get rid of the spots for you.
- Where have you positioned the sofa? You can avoid the gradual damage to the unit by setting up the sofas away from direct sunlight and food preparation areas.