How to Clean & Care for Upholstered Furniture

Hurray! Your new sofa, chair, sectional or bed frame has just been delivered. Now, what is the best way to care for and clean your beloved new furniture? First, it’s important to know which cleaning code applies to the fabric on the piece. Usually these are indicated as an S, W, SW or X. Not sure? Contact us and we can find out for you. See below for common codes and cleaning procedures. If your new item is covered in leather, see below for leather cleaning and care tips!

Fabric Cleaning Codes & Protocols

W: Indicates water-based cleaning agent. Common mild household detergents that can be used are: Woolite, dish soap, or laundry detergent. Mix ¼ teaspoon to 1 cup water to create the solution and mist it with a spray bottle.

S:  Indicates solvent-based cleaning agents must be used. Often this is because water based cleaners will cause shrinking. Solvent based cleaners include Renuzit, Carbona and other petroleum-distillate products.

SW: Either water-based or solvent-based cleaning agents can be used.

X: Vacuum only. Any cleaning agent may cause damage to fabric or shrinkage.

How to Clean Fabrics

Spot Cleaning for water or solvent based fabrics (including performance fabrics):

  1.  Before spot cleaning, blot up liquids on the surface with a clean, soft towel and vacuum

any loose dirt.

  1.  Prepare a cleaning solution (1/4 teaspoon detergent to one cup of water for water based fabrics). For solvents, see directions specific to the product.
  2.  Apply the cleaning solution using a misting spray bottle. Work the solution into the affected area by lightly scrubbing the area with a sponge or soft bristle brush. Make sure to work from the outside of the stain inward so as not to spread the stain and rinse your sponge or brush frequently.
  3. Allow the cleaning solution to soak into the fabric. Rinse detergents thoroughly (spray water onto surface) to remove all soap residues, as residues will attract dirt. Blot excess moisture with a clean, soft towel or sponge.
  4. Repeat steps 3-6 as needed.
  5. Allow fabric to air dry.

How to Clean Leathers

Finished/Smooth Leathers

  1. For regular care, simply dust with a dry cloth. No harsh cleaners should be used.
  2. For stubborn stains or spills a lightly damp cloth with warm water can be blotted on the stain to lift & remove it. If that doesn’t work, a mild soap & water solution (as above) can be used to blot the stain. Always finish by blotting with a dry cloth. Never scrub leather.
  3. Suede/Nubuck or Unfinished Leather
  4. For regular care, vacuum then brush with a soft nylon brush.
  5. For spills, blot excess with a clean white absorbent cloth or sponge. If necessary a damp clean cloth can be used. Dry area using a blow dryer while brushing the area with a soft nylon brush.
  6. For dry stains and marks, these can sometimes be removed with a pencil eraser or dry cleaning pad to rub the area. Follow by vacuuming the area.
  7. For oil/grease stains: first wipe off excess with a clean cloth. Then leave it alone as the spot should dissipate into the leather in a short period of time. If the spot doesn’t dissipate after several days, try sprinkling the area with baking flour, then cover it with a damp cloth. Allow to sit for one hour. Then remove the cloth, dry the area with a blow dryer, vacuum up the flour and brush the surface of the leather. Repeat until the stain is minimized.
  8. Do not use cleaning chemicals on nubuck or suede!