by Staff Writer
Keeping your area rugs clean will not only keep them looking great, but will also help them last a long time. With the proper care of your area rugs, you'll be able to enjoy their beauty for years to come.
Wool rugs: Vacuum your wool rugs at least once a week. Most manufacturers recommend disabling beater bars and brush bars when vacuuming wool rugs. Get a professional cleaning done every one to two years. Blot spills as quickly as possible with a white cloth; then spot treat.
Cotton rugs: Small rugs can be machine washed in warm water with a mild detergent; larger rugs should be beaten thoroughly and then vacuumed. Professional cleaning can fade a cotton rug. Stains will need to be treated by hand: Dab with a dry towel, followed by a damp towel. For stubborn food stains, try a combination of ammonia and hydrogen peroxide or a dry cleaning powder.
Other natural fiber rugs: Vacuum the rug weekly, vacuuming the underside, too, if possible. Professional cleaners should only use a dry extraction process, not steam or shampoo, on the rug. Blot spills immediately with a clean towel.
Synthetics rugs: Vacuum regularly and care for synthetic rugs following the same guidelines as wool rugs.
Silk rugs: Vacuum weekly on low suction without a beater bar. Have your silk rug cleaned every one to two years by a professional who specializes in silk or antique rugs. Blot spills with a towel, then douse spot with water and blot it again, but never rub. Repeat until the stain is gone. Do not use chemical spot cleaners.
Before you use any rug cleaning products on your rug, test them in a small, unnoticeable place to make sure the cleaner will not fade or damage your rug.
Always read and follow the manufacturer's care instructions that come with your area rug.