Information, Oriental Rugs

How to Care for Oriental Rugs

It is amazing how oriental rugs can transform a room or hallway, creating a new look that brings back memories of a time long past. A well-crafted oriental rug will last for many years with the proper care. Knowing how to properly clean and care for your rug means that you, your children, and your children’s children will enjoy it for many years to come.

While there have been some changes to how oriental rugs have been made over the past century, the basic craft is still the same. Using natural materials such as wool, the rugs are handmade and each one is unique in terms of design and appearance. Taking care of the rug means both knowing how to clean it and how to prevent damage from happening.

Prevention

The best way to keep dirt from affecting your rug is to limit how much reaches it. One of the best ways to keep dirt from piling up in your rug is to have everyone remove their shoes when entering your home. This not only works for your rug, but for your home as well. If you decide to keep the shoes on, then watch the rug for any signs of dirt or debris buildup and vacuum accordingly

In addition, you should put padding beneath the rug to keep it in place and to prevent the rug from being overly stressed when furniture or other items are placed up it.

Vacuuming

A good oriental rug can be vacuumed with little to no damage if you use the right setting. This is because the vacuum itself only pulls up the dirt, debris, and other contaminants without harming the fibers themselves. You should vacuum the top of the rug every month if it experiences foot traffic and the bottom or back of the rug once or twice a year.

Beating the Rug

The ancient technique of hanging an oriental rug and beating it to remove the dirt is still quite effective. In fact, vacuuming is a form of beating the rug. If you want to thoroughly clean it without actually using a stick, take the rug outside and vacuum it several times on both sides. Or, you can hand the rug off a clothes ling and use the appropriate instruments to beat out the dirt.

Professional Cleaning

While some may avoid this type of cleaning for fear that it may damage the rug, there are good reasons to take it in every so often for a proper cleaning.

  • Remove dirt and debris too deep for vacuuming
  • Destroy wool moths
  • Remove stains or other discoloration from the rug

Wool moths are small but can do a considerable amount of damage if left unchecked. If you see patches of wool missing, holes, or their white larvae, then you will need the rug professionally cleaned to remove the wool moths.

Light on the Shampoo

A proper shampooing of the rug starts with as little shampoo as needed. This is because the soap in the shampoo can cling to the wool fibers and cause discoloration. So, the goal is to use just enough shampoo to break the surface tension of the water, but not enough to leave behind any residue.

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