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Rug experts agree that in-plant rug cleaning is highly recommended for proper maintenance of Orientals and other loose-laid rugs. They should not be cleaned on location like synthetic, wall-to-wall carpet for many reasons:

  • Rug fibers are very different from those found in residential and commercial broadloom carpet. There is far more natural fiber such as wool, cotton, silk and jute used in rugs than in broadloom carpet.
  • Backings are very different, as natural foundation yarns are more prominent in rugs as opposed to separate synthetic backing fabrics for tufted carpet.
  • Construction is different: woven constructions are most prevalent in area rugs, as opposed to tufting being the dominant construction in the broadloom market.
  • Cleaning technology is different due to the potential for dye migration and fiber distortion.

Failure to perform specialized procedures in a plant may result in permanent damage to the rugs and flooring materials under and around the rug. Incomplete soil removal may occur due to an inability to dust or adequately vacuum both sides of the rug. It is recommended that any rug as well as carpet exposed to heavy traffic, be cleaned at least annually.

How to Care for your Area Rugs

Padding - A quality pad used under your rug helps protect it from damage, wear and slippage. Every rug needs one. For a flat weave, use rubber waffle pad and for a thick hand knotted or tufted, use rubber backed synthetic felt.  Always replace the pad if the rug has had pet contamination. 

Vacuuming - Like most carpeting, rugs should be vacuumed at least weekly to remove dry soil, lint, and hair. If in an entryway, vacuum more often. Be cautious not to vacuum the fringe with your brush bar! Use the end of a vacuum hose from a canister vacuum. Every few months turn the rug face down on a clean, dry smooth surface and vacuum to vibrate out the embedded dry soil.

Rotation - To ensure even wear, your rug should be rotated. Depending on the traffic, the rotation may vary from every six months to once a year.

Spot and Spill Procedures

  • Make sure that you safely and immediately clean up spots and spills before they set.
  • Scoop up or scrape the solids off of the carpet or rug
  • Soak or blot up the excess liquid by blotting with a clean absorbent material. Do not brush or scrub the stain.
  • Always work from the edge of the spot inwards
  • Then spot clean with a WoolSafe-approved spotter www.woolsafeusa.org/consumerproducts  or mild liquid laundry detergent solution mixed 1/2 teaspoon with 1-quart water. Apply small quantities at a time, applied to a cloth, NOT directly to the spot; work into the spot with a small brush or sponge
  • Do not over wet.  Blot dry until most of the moisture has been absorbed and color is no longer visible on the towel.
  • Rinse area thoroughly with a mixture of 6-parts water to one part white distilled vinegar. Avoid wetting the rug's backing.
  • Dry completely. A fan or cool hair dryer can be used to speed up the drying process.
  • Some stains or animal contamination you may find impossible to remove completely in which case the assistance of a professional may be required.  
  • For stains that do not come out using these methods, consult a WoolSafe Approved Service Provider at www.woolsafeusa.org/find/a-registered-carpet-cleaner .

The indication of a great meal may be an empty plate, but unfortunately, the true sign  of a joyful holiday gathering is often gravy dotting one’s dining room rug or carpet, or cranberry juice dribbled on a chair (sigh).  But just enjoy your festivities worry-free, because we’ve got the solution to getting your fine furnishings clean again  Remember, the longer spots or spills sit on a fabric, the more difficult they may be to remove, so act quickly. Here are a few tips for removing some common holiday spots or spills. Always start by blotting with a clean, white terry or paper towel or scooping up or scraping off excess with a spoon or dull knife.  Never scrub or rub! 

And before attempting any spot removal process always pretest in an inconspicuous area to ensure that the cleaning solution you use will not cause color migration or color loss. 

 Turkey, gravy, butter, and salad dressing: (oil-based stains): Blot up the excess. Apply dry cleaning fluid (Carbona, Energine) to a dry white cotton cloth, then gently work in the cleaning agent from the edges of the spot to the center.  If the fabric is colorfast, apply spotting solution available from your local WoolSafe Service Provider (or mix 1/4 teaspoon of a mild laundry detergent such as Ivory or Dreft) per one cup of lukewarm water to a white cotton cloth, then gently work in from the edges of the spot to the center. Continue until there is no longer transfer of the spot to the cleaning cloth.  Blot with a water-dampened towel. Place a thick stack of towels on the area, weighted down with a heavy object (jug of water or glass dish) and leave for several hours, or use a hair dryer.

 Cranberry sauce, apple cider, and pumpkin pie:(fruit-based stains): Blot up the excess. If the fabric is colorfast, apply spotting solution available from your local WoolSafe Service Provider (or mix 1/4 teaspoon of a mild laundry detergent such as Ivory or Dreft) per one cup of lukewarm water to a white cotton cloth, then gently work in from the edges of the spot to the center. Continue until there is no longer transfer of the spot to the cleaning cloth.  Blot with a water-dampened towel.Place a thick stack of towels on the area, weighted down with a heavy object (jug of water or glass baking dish) and leave for several hours, or dry with hair dryer.  If color remains, mist area with 3% hydrogen peroxide and allow to dry.  Repeat as necessary.

 Coffee, tea, wine, and soft drinks (beverage stains): Blot up the excess. Same as above.

 Jello, colorful cakes, and desserts: (food-coloring stains): Blot up the excess. Same as above.

 Wax: (solid) Use a dull knife to scrape off surface wax without pulling out fibers. Then lay several folded layers of paper towel over the area.  Use a clothes iron on the lowest setting or a hair dryer on the area to liquefy the wax. When it melts, blot with a towel as the wax will absorb into the paper toweling.  Continue until wax is completely removed. If color remains, treat it like a food coloring stain. Note: When working on synthetic fibers be careful not to melt the fibers!

Soot or ashes: (dry particles) First vacuum thoroughly with a crevice tool getting down into the backing! Then vacuum some more. Don’t rub or scrub; you may make the stain worse.  Then follow the steps for oil based stains above.

To find a WoolSafe Service Provider company in your area or for more spotting tips and videos search the WoolSafe site - www.woolsafe.org.  You may also download the WoolSafe Consumer Spotting App to your phone or device.

Kitty and Pooch Problems?  You're Not Alone

Between 30% and 40 % ofU.S.households have at least one cat or a dog in residence.  And although they may be our best friends, they may not be the best for the carpet, rugs, draperies and upholstery.  Animal related issues and stains can be challenging to remove, so it’s best to attack them while they are fresh.

There are two types of reactions that can take place between the chemicals in an animal’s urine and those in the dyes and fibers of textile furnishings. The first type of reaction is immediately noticeable. The yellow color of the urine can change the color (s) of the fiber or fabric (especially light colors) as soon as it comes in contact with them.

The other reactions develop slowly over several days to several months and can result in permanent changes to the dyes and fiber. Not only can the dyes change but some fibers may become weakened or destroyed by the aged urine. The decomposing urine can also produce an objectionable odor. After cleaning, these areas are more obvious because the soils that hid the changed color and damaged fibers have been removed.  Also, dyes weakened by urine may bleed especially on your fine wool rugs so if you see color transfer as you’re blotting up the urine, take the rug to a WoolSafe Service Provider in your area as soon as possible. 

The next time you encounter a fresh urine “accident,” follow these simple steps:

1. immediately absorb as much liquid as possible with several layers of white terry or paper toweling.

2. treat the area with a neutral detergent solution (one teaspoon neutral white or colorless laundry detergent in a cup of lukewarm water).  Make sure the detergent is free of bleaching agents (no chlorine or peroxide).  Blot (don’t rub or scrub) that liquid with several layers of white terry or paper towel.  Note: always test the solutions first by applying a small amount in an inconspicuous area to determine its effect on the fiber and dye. Wait thirty minutes to an hour to see if any color changes or other problems may arise.

3. apply the mild ammonia solution (1/2 teaspoon clear or sudsy, uncolored household ammonia in one cup of water ).  Blot again.

4. apply the vinegar solution (one part white vinegar to two parts water). Blot.

5. finally place several clean, dry, white terry or paper towels over the area and weigh down with a plastic bucket or jug filled with water.

6. allow the area to dry a minimum of six hours.  Repeat if necessary.

If you discover an old or dried urine spot, skip step #3.  And remember, if the situation is more than you can handle or you have any questions, call a professional.

Normal pet feces tend to be easier to deal with than urine. Compact deposits can be quickly removed with a plastic bag. The surface should then be cleaned with the neutral detergent solution and blotted. Rinse the area with water and blot again. Follow this treatment with a mild disinfectant like dilute liquid Lysol®.  A word of caution: some disinfectants may cause color loss. Test the area first!

Loose feces or vomit require the same clean-up procedure as described for fresh urine removal. This should also be followed with an application of disinfectant.  If your pet’s food contains red dye to make it “look meatier,” this could leave a red stain at the site of the “accident” because it contains an acid dye which colors both nylon and wool fibers. We may be able to remove this with a specialty spotting chemical.  The good news!  If immediate action is taken to remove the animal deposits, little or no change in color should occur and that “accident” will not become apparent after your carpet or other textile has been professionally cleaned.

Remember, pet issues, if forgotten or never discovered, will return to haunt you.  Dried urine will smell like strong ammonia when humidity is high or when the spot is rewetted.  Feces and urine can contain harmful bacteria.  A spot that is small on the surface is often many times larger on the underside. The urine can damage both dyes and textile fibers.  Unfortunately, the change usually isn’t noticed until the textile furnishing is cleaned.  The damage caused by aged urine generally required professional restoration, possibly color tinting, color removal, and sometimes removal of the contaminated carpet and cushion, and subfloor resealing.

WoolSafe-Approved Service Provider Companies have cleaning methods available to disinfect the contaminated area, reduce the odor and minimize the discoloration. Unfortunately, it is often impossible to completely restore the original appearance of a textile that has been damaged with untreated or aged pet urine.  Go to www.woolsafe.org/usa to locate a Service Provider in your area. 

Let’s face it . . . life is messy. And it’s surprising how fast a neat and tidy home can get dirty, especially with kids, pets, a busy social life, and trees dropping “who knows what” all over. Generally speaking, a “dirty” environment where dust, soil, microbes, mold, pollen and potential pathogens thrive does not promote good health. Two things you can do to create a healthier indoor environment are: having a regular cleaning routine and hiring a certified professional company like Chase Carpet and Rug Care for periodic deep cleaning of your furnishings and flooring.

Dusting furniture, blinds, window sills, and other hard surfaces, as well as sweeping, damp mopping, and, especially vacuuming with a high-filtration machine on a regular basis can remove a high percentage of dust and soil.

Using cleaning products that remove or kill harmful germs and sanitize areas like bathrooms, countertops, tables, hard surfaces where food is prepared or eaten can minimize the health dangers caused from contaminated surfaces and germs.

Although there is much homeowners can do to clean up and improve living conditions, periodic deep restorative cleaning is an important and highly beneficial supplement to the homeowner's cleaning routine.

Here are some areas where professional services will be particularly beneficial:

  • Carpet and Rug Cleaning - vacuuming removes a large percentage of dust and dry soil, but to remove deeply embedded and sticky dirt safely without damaging the carpet or rug, having carpet or rugs cleaned professionally is highly recommended.
  • Upholstery Cleaning - over time your favorite chair, sofa, or recliner builds up oils, sweat, dead skin cells, lost cookie crumbs, etc. on the headrests, armrests, cushions, and pillows. These are not always easy to clean, and the color and fabric could be damaged if the wrong cleaning products or techniques are used. You can trust us to know what cleaning chemicals and techniques will be safest and most effective.
  • Hard Surface Cleaning - ceramic tile or natural stone - these flooring materials are relatively easy to maintain and clean. However, soils tend to build up progressively and in cracks or grout lines. Sooner or later a professional cleaning service may be needed to deep clean, restore and seal these surfaces, especially troublesome grout. That’s the time to call a certified, professional

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R. L. Seminars, LLC
WoolSafe North America
437 Alfred Ladd Road East
Franklin, TN 37064

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