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by Zure Australia November 03, 2021 4 min read

Thank god for the glory and comfort of area rugs! They inject color, warm up floors and create inviting zones in a space. But with area rugs often come debris and unwanted stains. They may bring a room together but they are susceptible to taking a beating from foot traffic to spills and pets. Let’s face it- messes happen and often when you least expect them to. You can easily learn how to clean an area rug by yourself to bring all your floor coverings back to life whenever you like. Keep your area rugs looking their best by following this basic checklist for care, stain removal and deep cleaning. 


The first thing you have to take into account while cleaning a rug is its material. Here’s a material by material guide for you!


How to clean a jute rug?


Cleaning a jute rug is not a challenge unless it’s soiled heavily. More often than not if you just take your area rug and give it a good shake outdoors you can get rid of the dust and dirt easily. If it’s a small rug (160x230) you can do it yourself. If it’s larger (300x400) you can get someone to assist you. You can also use a rug beater or a broom to loosen deeply embedded dirt. 


An effective method for cleaning your jute rug is spot cleaning. You can press a clean paper towel firmly into your rug immediately after, working from the outside inward to avoid spreading. Avoid rubbing. Blot instead. For solid spills use a dull knife or nail file to scrape them up. 


Additionally, you can carefully vacuum the rug in the direction the fibres are woven. However please remember that using liquids on jute rugs may lead to eventual discolouration and damage. You can sprinkle some dry shampoo or baking soda and vacuum the rug up instead. 


How to clean a shag rug?

Shag rugs are super comfy and soft but what to do if they get dirty? Here’s what!


Even if your beautiful textured shag rug looks dingy but isn’t stained, you know it needs refreshing. Vacuuming the rug can easily bring back the fluff in a jiffy. 


But sometimes even vacuuming just isn’t enough. Then it’s probably time to give your rug a dry bath. Sprinkle some dry shampoo. Gently work it into the fibres using a bristle brush. Allow it to sit for a few minutes and then vacuum or shake the dry shampoo out of it.


You can also steam clean it. Add the water and cleaner to the steam cleaner and run it over the rug. Allow it to air dry. Incase you don’t have a steam cleaner then you can hand wash it. It’s better to not use a washing machine because it may be too rough even on the gentlest cycle. 


How to clean a polyester rug?


One way to keep your polyester rug stain free is to vacuum it frequently. Vacuum both sides every few weeks to help loosen the debris. 


If your rug only has a few areas that need cleaning, spot cleaning is a great method too. Remove any excess moisture from the spot. Use a clean cloth to blot liquids. Mix water and a mild detergent and use a clean sponge to blot the spot. Clean the sponge and repeat this process at least twice (or until the stain is removed). Rinse it with clean water and dry it completely. 


You can also deep clean your polyester rug if it’s soiled heavily. Wet your rug thoroughly. Mix a small amount of rug cleaner with water. Lather the mixture onto the rug using a soft scrub brush. Let it sit for a few minutes and then rinse thoroughly with water. 


How to clean a wool/cotton rug?


The easiest way to clean a wool/cotton rug is by either vacuuming it or giving it an old fashioned beating. Dry powders may be a popular trick but not a great one with wool rug because they tend to seep into the air pockets and create more of a mess. Steam cleaning or using hot water is also a no no. Avoid any and every method that involves soaking the rug. A wet rug that takes a significant amount of time to dry is also at the risk of developing mildew and mold. You can rotate your rug to prevent matting from frequent foot traffic, discolouration and excessive dirt in a single spot. Spot cleaning is just as effective if you get to the stain immediately and not letting it set. 


Can you wash rugs in washing machine?

Apart from the usual problem of rugs being too bulky or heavy and unwieldy to safely run a normal cycle, there is also the problem of dealing with drying them forever. Smaller rugs can usually be tossed in the washer. It’s recommended to run it on a gentle cycle of cold water and not keeping it in for too long. It’s better if you don’t throw your shag or oriental/persian rugs into the washer because it tends to discolor/shrink it. Rugs that are made of natural fibres are not machine washable. Rugs often are too delicate for the machine and in that case you can subject them to the aforementioned processes. Please note however, it's best to get them cleaned by a professional at least once every year. 


Rugs as beautiful and comfortable they are need to be maintained. Just like you, your area rugs need a bit of TLC too. So once you purchase one make sure you clean it every now and then because they are ultimately the stuff dreams are made of!

Zure Australia
Zure Australia

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