How to Clean a Microfiber Upholstered Sofa

One of the biggest selling points of microfiber is the ease with which it can be cleaned. To clean your microfiber-upholstered sofa, follow these directions.

Steps

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    Vacuum the sofa thoroughly to remove dust and loose debris. Use the extension hose with the fabric attachment for this.
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    Scrub any stains with a clean, dry brush. This will help lift crusty spills from the fabric.
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    Remove the seat cushions, back cushions and loose pillows. Vacuum and brush the newly-uncovered areas.
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    Check the sofa tag for care instructions. Microfiber furniture is typically labeled with one of four codes to indicate what can be used to clean it: W is for a water-based cleaning solvent, S is for a water-free solvent, S/W is for either, and X is for neither (i.e. vacuum-only).
    • If your sofa is labeled with an X, your work is done; resist the temptation to use any cleaning solutions, which can stain, spot, or shrink the fabric.
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    Find an appropriate cleaning solution. Good water-based cleaning solutions include gentle soap, mild dish detergent, carpet cleaner, and upholstery shampoo. Water-free solvents include rubbing alcohol, clear alcohol like gin or vodka, dry-cleaning solvent, lighter fluid, baby wipes, and oxygenating solutions that don’t contain bleach.
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    Test the solution in an inconspicuous place. Wait for the fabric to dry before gauging whether or not it has been damaged.
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    Spot-clean the stains. Apply a small amount of your cleaning solution directly to the stain, making sure not to over-saturate the fabric. Of course, certain spills respond better to certain cleaning techniques. Provided that your fabric can handle it, try the following:
    • Apply rubbing alcohol to ink stains and watermarks.
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    • Place a paper towel or terry cloth over spilled wax and quickly run a hot iron over it.
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    • Ice chewing gum until it hardens, then peel it off; alternatively, rub butter on it, peel it off, and remove the grease with soapy water.
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    • Apply baking soda and water to smells, let the fabric dry, and then vacuum.
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    • For a very dirty sofa with a removable W or SW cover, run the whole thing through the laundry machine on a delicate cycle with a gentle detergent that you’ve already spot-tested.
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    Blow-dry wet spots if necessary. Water-based solutions take especially long to evaporate.
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    Brush the treated areas with a clean, dry brush. Microfiber tends to stiffen after being cleaned but can be restored to its normal texture with a little brushing.
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    Reassemble your couch. It should look and feel like new.

Tips

  • Spot-clean any future stains as they appear to keep your sofa looking its best. Since microfiber is somewhat water-resistant, water-based spills should be relatively easy to remove before they set. Simply dab them with an absorbent paper towel or cloth; do not rub fresh spills or you will press them deeper into the fibers.
  • Make cleaning your sofa a part of your regular cleaning cycle.

Article Info

Categories: Cleaning | Couches and Sofas