How to Care for Your Area Rug

Area rug cleaning and care

As hardwood floors have risen to equal popularity as home carpeting, area rug cleaning has become a more common need.  We all know to vacuum our carpets but what should we do to keep our area rugs clean?  Some are old, and made of finer materials than carpets.  Others utilize newer materials that have special cleaning requirements.

Always read the manufacturers cleaning requirements.  Following those guidelines will usually put you on the right track. If you don’t have instructions or can’t adhere to them, here are some tips for cleaning area rugs.

 

Oriental Rugs

Oriental rugs, especially traditional ones, are usually handmade, older, and need careful care.  A normal vacuum’s brushes are generally too harsh and can damage these rugs.  You can use an older vacuum with a beater bar and work with the vacuum attachments to avoid sucking up the fringes of the rug.  A common practice is to use a covering over the hose attachment to prevent sucking it up.  Nylon hosiery or a sheer cloth is usually the best type.

 

Alternatively, if your area rug is on the smaller side, you could utilize an old fashioned but effective method: hanging it outdoors and using a soft brush to clean it off.  Even if you do this, we recommend running a vacuum over the back of the rug as it can gather debris, and won’t be damaged by the vacuum.  It is recommended that you have the rug professionally cleaned annually, or every year and a half if it’s in a low traffic area.

 

Flat-Woven Rugs

These area rugs are usually very similar to carpeting.  It’s recommended that you clean the rug as often as you would vacuum other areas of your home.  You can hang it outdoors and clean it with a soft brush for smaller rugs, or even shake the dust outside if the rug is small enough.  A select few types of flat-woven rugs can be washed.  Read the manufacturer’s instructions, some may require you to hand wash them or put them in a bag when using a washing machine. It’s important to professionally clean flat-woven area rugs approximately annually or depending on the traffic volume.

 

Pile Rugs

If a pile rug is made of wool, then wet cleaning is preferred.  If your area rug is made of silk, then it should be washed with a dry method.  A simple technique to check if you’ll lose color while cleaning is to take a damp cloth and run it gently over the area rug.  If color transfers to the cloth then you know the area rug will lose color if you wet-clean it.

 

Shag Rugs

If you have a shag area rug then a canister vacuum works best.  Traditional upright vacuums will likely damage the shag loops.  Another effective tool for maintaining these area rugs is a carpet rake, as it could help detangle them.

 

Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration has been keeping Bay Area home flooring professionally clean and in beautiful condition. Please contact us today if you have any questions or would like us to professionally clean your area rug anywhere in San Ramon, Danville, Blackhawk, Alamo, Dublin, Pleasanton, or Walnut Creek.

Carpet Repair: 4 Most Common Carpet Injuries that are Fixable

carpet repair, fixable carpet situations

Your carpet is a significant part of your home. It creates the foundation of your interior design. And your carpet can get a lot of wear and tear. You can vacuum, spot clean, and have it professionally cleaned to keep it looking well maintained. Despite your efforts, your carpet may sometimes sustain an injury that requires repair. Here are the 4 most common carpet injuries and the steps you can take for repairing them.

Stains, Spills, And Burns

The normal routines of life – dinner parties, feeding kids, having indoor pets – can all result in spills. Some spills are easily cleaned. Others, such as those from adhesives or candle wax may be harder to remove. Some adhesives will require a special solvent. Candle wax can sometimes be removed by placing a cloth over it and then ironing the spot. As you iron, the wax may loosen and transfer to the towel. If you try it, remember: we didn’t advise you to do that. 🙂

Most carpet stains are removable, especially with many of the new products on the market. Anything from red wine to pet urine can be removed. However, occasionally a stain is especially stubborn to remove. This is more likely happen if the stain sets too long.

A burn to your carpet may be the most challenging to repair. If the burn is just at the top of the fibers, you may just be able to carefully trim them away with scissors. If the burn is severe, you may need a more drastic plan. You may need to remove that patch of carpet and replace it seamlessly with a remnant. Not only can carpet patching be performed by your professional carpet repair professional, but the professionals do tend to make a much more hidden patch, with fewer differences in color, shape, and texture or direction of fibers.

Furniture Indentations 

When you have had furniture in the same spot for years and then move it, you may be frustrated by the deep carpet indentations left behind. You may vacuum and hope that loosens the fibers. You’ll find that it’s often not quite enough.

One solution is to dampen the spot with some sprays of water and then blow-dry the area, while fluffing the fibers. Another solution is to use steam to remove the dents, by placing a damp cloth over the area and ironing on the cloth. A third solution is to have your carpets professionally and deeply steam cleaned. This will loosen the fibers and reduce or eliminate the indentations.

Cuts And Tears

A cut or tear to your carpet can occur during furniture and appliance moves. This damage is harder to repair than a stain or dent. You might be able to use heat-activated carpet tape and a steam iron to repair the carpet. This will work for a small tear that has matching seams that come together. If the tear is particularly jagged or large, you may need to have a bit of the carpet removed and replaced with a matching remnant by your professional carpet repair specialist.

Bleach Stains

Bleach stains are like the inverse of a regular spill or stain. Bleach permanently removes pigment from the carpet making it almost impossible to return to it’s usual appearance. At Diablo Carpet, our expert carpet technicians can create an identical match pigment to dye bleach stains, returning bleach injured carpet to it’s original color.

If your carpet has been damaged or injured, call Diablo Carpet for an expert carpet repair assessment and the best service for a high quality fix.

5 Signs You Need Upholstery Cleaning

clean upholstered furniture

 

When it comes to cleaning interiors, one area that goes forgotten is the upholstered furniture, or soft furnishings. They’re difficult to thoroughly clean yourself at home, so we get in the habit of skipping over them.

Good news: professional upholstery cleaning provides the ideal solution to deeply cleanse and safely rinse all upholstery. Here are 5 clear signs that it’s time for professional upholstery cleaning for the health and beauty of your home.

  1. You Can See Stains

Visible stains are a sure sign you should have your upholstery cleaned. It’s probably been a long time since the last thorough cleaning, if there ever has been one. Spills that stain are particularly difficult to remove from upholstery because they settle into the fabric and padding quickly, becoming set before you can properly clean the spill. Professional upholstery cleaners have the tools and machinery to safely deep clean and spot treat upholstery to fully lift and remove even stubborn stains, as well as the filth you can’t as readily see.

  1. You’ve Noticed More Sneezing and Allergies

An increase in sneezing, allergies and asthma in your home is a reliable sign you would benefit from thorough upholstery cleaning. Just like carpets, upholstery fibers can harbor dust, dust mites and pet dander – all allergens that can set off your symptoms. While regular vacuuming of soft furnishings helps, it takes professional upholstery cleaning equipment to remove these allergens on the deepest level to keep you healthy.

  1. Your Upholstery Has an Odor

Upholstery, carpets and other soft surfaces in your home can be magnets for odors. Whether it’s cooking odors, pet odors, smoke, or just a musty odor, dirty upholstery often has a distinctive ‘smell’ to it. The solution to preventing upholstery odors is to remove the source of the odor – ventilate while cooking, only smoke outside, and don’t allow pets on the couch. But if the odors are already there, professional upholstery cleaning is the only way to really get them out.

  1. Upholstered Furniture Fabric Looks Dull and Oily

Over time, upholstery fabric absorbs grease, oil and dirt from our bodies as we use our couches and sofas. You’ll find this most prominent in the areas we repeatedly touch the furnishings with our skin, like where our hands, heads, or necks rest. This is a very unflattering effect on upholstery, making it look much older, grubbier and dirtier than it has to look. Professional upholstery cleaning lifts away grease, oil, grime and skin flakes that may have collected in your couch over the years through prolonged use.

  1. Hair, Fur, Dust and Dirt Are Stuck To Your Upholstery

The soft fabric surface of upholstery easily collects pet hair, dust and dirt as humans and pets pass by. Unlike smaller bits of dirt and dust, these larger hairs are more visible to your family and visitors. Dust and dirt can turn into dark marks and wear over time with repeated use. Upholstery cleaning removes visible hairs, fur and grime for cleaner looking upholstery.

With professional cleaning you can make the upholstered furniture in your home cleaner, better smelling, and newer looking. Talk to a professional carpet cleaner about the options they have for upholstery cleaning to renew your upholstered pillows, chairs, sofas, benches, and couches for a fresher, cleaner, more hygienic home.

The Move Towards Luxury Vinyl Tiles and What It Means for Flooring

While carpet, area rugs, hardwood floors and ceramic tile flooring have traditionally been some of the favorite flooring choices for homes and businesses, it’s clear that the trend for flooring is moving to a new and different kind of flooring. This move is demonstrated in the announcement from Shaw Industries, one of the largest carpet and rug manufacturers in the world, that they are moving away from area rug production to invest over $100 million in luxury vinyl tile (LVT) floors. Shaw Industries CEO Vance Bell says “The economics of the rug business today simply does not allow for future growth or encourage future investment,” indicating that the money in the flooring business has shifted from soft floor coverings, to cost efficient and appealing luxury vinyl tiles. But what are luxury vinyl floor tiles and what is the importance of these luxury tiles for homeowners and businesses?

What Are Luxury Vinyl Tiles?
Luxury vinyl tiles are resilient, hardworking and truly beautiful, however, they are not a premium product in the way stone, marble or granite flooring would be considered premium. In essence, LVT floors are imitators, designed to impersonate with a high level of accuracy the look and feel of a luxurious stone, marble, granite or wood floor, while actually being composed of vinyl.

Luxury vinyl tiles are the result of advanced computer technology that allows the production of a vinyl flooring that very closely matches not only the look, but the feeling of premium flooring choices like stone, marble and granite. The production of these vinyl tile squares involves a computer “seeing” and copying what real marble or granite luxury floor tiles look like, and then making a photographic replication of that image onto the vinyl floor tiles. This results in an incredibly realistic product, of much higher quality than flooring imitators of the past.

How Are Luxury Vinyl Tiles Used?

The quality of luxury vinyl tiles can vary depending on the compositions and the manufacturing country (manufacturers in Asia, the United States and Europe all have their own manufacturing procedures and technologies). Luxury Vinyl Tiles that are composed of 100% vinyl are often used in commercial flooring, and have an additional protective layer (the mil layer) added to the vinyl to enhance the durability in commercial settings.

Luxury vinyl floor tiles used in residential settings may not be 100% vinyl and may not have an extra mil layer. However, it’s important to ensure your vinyl tile floor has a sufficient mil layer in order to make it more durable and easy to clean.

How To Care for Luxury Vinyl Tile Floors?
LVT floors do not need to be sealed or finished and many manufacturers strongly recommend against this. LVT floors are resistant to spots, stains and moisture, and sealants and finishes will merely end up peeling off the floor with wear.

Luxury vinyl tile floors are prone to soiling over time however, and need targeted care to maintain their finish and beauty. A professional floor cleaner is best able to remove soiling and staining from luxury vinyl floors using a neutral cleaning solution and a wet/vac system to remove all moisture along with the soiling and dirt.
Of course when it comes to cleaning floors, prevention is better than cure, so using a ‘high-performance’ matting system to help keep LVT floors looking great can be very effective. These ‘high-performance’ mats last for many years and are more effective and durable than conventional mats. Having the right matting and seeking professional floor cleaning care for your luxury vinyl floors helps to retain their appearance and functionality.

For more information on luxury vinyl floor tiles and their care, contact Diablo Carpet and Floor Restoration.