Sofa Maintenance: Keeping Your Furniture Clean

By in
Sofa Maintenance: Keeping Your Furniture Clean

Sofa Maintenance: Keeping Your Furniture Clean

The living room sofa is likely the most popular set in the house, loved by family members and visitors alike. Whether you’re lounging on it as you watch the game on TV, relaxing with your friends over some tea and snacks, curling up with a book and drink in hand, or simply taking a nap on those lazy afternoons, the sofa is the preferred place to hang out. However, this comfort is taken away when the furniture becomes messy, with dirt, stains and odours. You won’t be comfortable having your senses assaulted by smells coming from the cushions, or look forward to resting on those cosy cushions when there are stains screaming at you. Pet fur and dander is also an issue, from the allergic reactions that result from it to cases where bits of fur tend to stick onto people’s clothes – from the guests that you’re hosting to your very own suits as you prepare for work in the morning. Investing in a proper cleaning regimen for your sofa will go a long way in enhancing your comfort. 

Debunking Common Sofa Cleaning Myths

There are some myths and misconceptions that are being peddled around, affecting people’s perception of sofa cleaning. Here are a couple of them:


  • Keep off the cleaning until the sofa looks dirty


The absorbent nature of the upholstery makes it pile up loads of grime, and by the time there are visible signs such as colour changes, there will already be a lot of material buried within the cushions and padding. Putting off the sofa cleaning for so long actually contributes to the decline of the upholstery, given that there will be continued deterioration due to the gritty soiling that abrades the material. On the other hand, routine cleaning will ensure that the levels of grime are kept to a minimal, allowing your sofa to last for longer. 


  • Dry cleaning is the safest route


One of the core issues when it comes to upholstery care is the amount of moisture involved, and whether it should, in fact, be used for the cleaning. Risks like cellulose browning, fading of the upholstery and fabric shrinkage are a common concern, and they all involve water-based cleaning. This led to people assuming dry cleaning is the only mode that should be adopted. Well, it depends on the fabric material. Checking the labels of the upholstery, you will see codes like W, S, WS and X. Water based cleaning methods can be used for the W and WS-labelled upholsteries, and should be avoided for the S and X, which use solvent-based methods and dry cleaning respectively. In the same breath, you should never use dry cleaning solvents on sofas labelled W. 

So, while the statement that dry cleaning is the safest does have some truth to it, it is wrong to apply it to all upholsteries. In fact, the dry-cleaning solvents can wreak havoc on the fabrics that are not under its recommended mode of cleaning, causing issues like colour bleeding. The safety of a cleaning method comes down to the particular type of upholstery – be it synthetic, natural or leather, its pH level and how the material being worked on will react with it. 



This myth is usually peddled for synthetic fabric upholsteries like polyester and olefin, where one of the main issues that face them is build up of soil residue. Yes, hot water speeds up the cleaning processes, enabling the upholsteries to release the oily soiling. It also reduces the need for working with detergents which could bring in risks such as fading or colour bleeding. However, this is only applicable within a set range, since very hot water can also damage the upholstery. Again, this depends on the particular type of upholstery material. For instance, with velvet upholsteries made of synthetic fibre, the very high heat levels will cause the fabric to get distorted. Here, it is safer to work with warm water. 


  • The sofa cleaning process is easy


“After all, the professions do it really fast. How complicated can it be?”

Remember that the companies have trained personnel, and powerful equipment. Many homeowners are usually limited to the locally available products and machines from dealership stores. On the other hand, the professionals have access to reagents that may not even be sold over-the-counter due to industry regulations, and they also have heavy industrial-grade machinery to carry out the cleaning. This, coupled with the experience of the personnel and the manpower needed for the job, cuts down the amount of time that is required for the cleaning to be undertaken. 

DIYers also have a tendency of ruining the upholstery, due to using the wrong cleaning products and processes. Working with chemicals that are incompatible with the particular type of sofas can result in issues such as stains being set deeper into the fabric, protective treatments getting depleted, or the fibres themselves getting corroded, weakening the upholstery. Such risks are avoided when one hires professional sofa cleaners for the task.

Pick The Right Cleaner For Your Needs

When outsourcing the sofa cleaning, you want to be sure that the company you’re hiring will be up to the task, and not putting your property in the hands of rookies who will mess up your sofa. As such, it imperative that you carry out some background checks on the company. Fortunately, in this digital age, you can do this all from the comfort of your home. Go through the social media profiles of the company, paying particular focus to the reviews and comments made from previous customers. Do they appreciate the services that were provided? Are there complaints? If so, how were they handled- and was there an update provided by the customers to show that the issue was addressed? How frequent are the complaints? When discussing the project with the company representatives, also ensure that you have asked about the training and certification of the cleaners, and the particular methods that are used for the cleaning- be it dry solvent cleaning, shampooing, or even hot water extraction. 

Sofa Maintenance: Keeping Your Furniture Clean

One Comment
Leave a reply