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Cleaning Persian

Carpet Cleaning, Rug Cleaning, Upholstery Cleaning
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Cleaning your Persian rugs is essential to preserving their quality, aesthetic, and value. Persian rugs are a valuable investment, considered by most as art work and a sign of wealth -- they are known to adorn the floors of kings and fine buildings around the world. In an effort to protect your precious treasure, check out these guidelines for cleaning your Persian rugs.

You may have decided that it is time to clean your Persian rugs either because it is stained or just plain dirty. While your rugs should be cleaned regularly, how often you clean them, whether by you or a professional, will depend on how dirty – or stained – your Persian rugs are.

Dealing with dirt

Your Persian rugs should be handled with care and cleaned only when they really need it. Some rugs will need a yearly cleaning; others can go several years or more without professional cleaning. To determine how dirty your rug is and whether it is time for cleaning your Persian rugs, try one of the following methods:

  • Pick up one corner of your rug and hit or kick the back of the corner as hard as you can. If a lot of dirt soars out of the pile, cleaning your Persian rugs is the next step. It is normal to see some dust and wool fibers come off of the rug.
  • Rub the pile with the palm of your hand vigorously for about 10 seconds. If your hand is covered in dirt, your rug should be cleaned.
  • Look into the carpet to see if there is dirt where a home vacuum cleaner cannot reach. Again, pick up one corner of the rug and with the pile facing up fold the rug back so that it opens up allowing you to see the base of the pile at the foundation. If you see dirt, your Persian rugs need cleaning.

If you have a small Persian rug, you should be able to clean it at home in your garage or utility room. Use cool water, rug shampoo, and a soft, longhaired brush. If your rug is large, consider hiring a professional to handle cleaning your Persian rugs.

Spotting a stain

If you have stained your Persian rug, the good news is you will most likely be able to remove the stain if you act quickly. Cleaning stains out of your Persian rugs is possible – in fact, about 90 percent of stains can be removed. Almost every Persian rug – or other carpet, for that matter – is occasionally going to experience some kind of spill or stain (especially if you have kids or pets). If you act quickly after the accident occurs, there is a simple solution for removing most stains or spills. Try these simple solutions for removing a stain:

Don’t panic. OK, well, you might not be able to avoid panicking. Your toddler just spit out her chewing gum on your $10,000 Persian rug, and then proceeded to do her best dance moves on the wad. You’re allowed to panic. Just do it quickly and then start removing the stain.

Try to remove as much of the stain as you can. The longer the stain remains on your Persian rug, the harder it will be to remove. Remove solid material with a spoon or a spatula. For liquid spills, absorb any excess with a clean, white, absorbent cloth, towel or paper towel. To prevent spreading a stain, dab from the outside edge of the stain toward its center. Never use knives or scissors to cut off a stain!

Grab a spot removal kit and start working on the stain. Having a spot removal kit on hand will help you handle unexpected stains and spills quickly and effectively. A spot removal kit should contain the following: 1) A clean white, absorbent cloth and a sponge; 2) dry cleaning fluid (non-flammable, such as perchlorethylene). If you cannot find dry cleaning fluid, use a paint/oil/grease remover. 3) An eyedropper, or a squirt nozzle (not a spray nozzle) to apply your dry cleaning fluid; 4) ammonia solution to neutralize acid-type stains, such as fruit juice (mix one tablespoon of ammonia to 3/4 cup of water); 5) white vinegar solution to neutralize alkaline-type stains (mix 1/3 cup of white vinegar with 2/3 cup of water); 6) enzyme detergent (mix one tsp. of laundry detergent that specifically states that it contains enzymes with 1/2 pint of water); and 7) oil-free nail polish remover.

Important note: Never use bleach and never scrub or brush a stain out of your carpet. Also, test the spot removal in a very small section of the rug before applying it to a large area. Some detergents or spot removers can remove colors out of your carpet.

Find a Local professional. After removing as much of the stain as possible, find a professional who will carefully wash the rug and remove the entire stain. Also, talk with a professional carpet cleaner or rug dealer about spot removal and cleaning techniques that are right for your Persian rug before attempting to clean your rug on your own.

Common stains and spills

  • Wax -- Put a blotter or brown paper bag over the wax spot. Place an iron set to “wool” over the blotter, circling the iron over the spot for at least one minute or longer until the wax is absorbed into the blotter. Repeat if necessary.
  • Ink -- Spray the spot generously with hair spray. Allow it to dry. Brush lightly with a solution of water and vinegar.
  • Glue -- Soak a white absorbent cloth in vinegar or alcohol. Saturate the spot and blot with a sponge.
  • Gum -- Rub ice cubes into the spot until the gum becomes brittle and begins to break off. Use spot remover to clean up remnants of the spot.

Cleaning your Persian rugs should be done carefully. In some cases, you will find it most helpful to hire a professional. Of course, the best way to keep a Persian rug clean is to avoid it from getting dirty. Make it a rule to remove shoes when entering the house. Bare feet and socks are much gentler on your rugs than outdoor shoes, and will keep much of the dirt at the door and off your rug. These guidelines will help you the next time you are considering cleaning your Persian rugs.

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