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The Best Way to clean upholstery
The best way to clean a Cloth sofa or armchair, including using vinegar.
Discover how vinegar makes a great upholstery cleaner – and get your sofas looking like new
Until a spillage occurs or a stain mysteriously appears, it can be easy to forget about cleaning your upholstery. But given how much dust and hidden dirt build up in your couches and armchairs and how frequently it’s used, it’s important to freshen them up every now and then.
Tackle the Entire house this spring with tips from our care and cleaning category.
Follow this four-step manual to clean upholstery and leave it looking, smelling and feeling fresh.
1. Clean off surface dirt
Start by eliminating throws and cushions and assessing down the sides and back for any loose change, sweets wrappers and so on. To your vacuum cleaner, fix the upholstery attachment for cloth sofas. Use the brush attachment on leather upholstery to avoid scratching at it.
Gradually suck up all the crumbs and dirt that have accumulated on the surface, using a slow sweeping movement. Switch to the tool to get anything from cleaning the seams, as well as the borders your fingers couldn’t reach. Repeat on the cushions.
2. Check the label
If your upholstery still has its tag or a sticker attached to the underside, check it first before using any cleaning solutions.
W means you can just use a water-based cleaner. P or S means it can only be cleaned with solvents (dry-clean only).
SW or WS means that you can use either a water-based detergent or solvent cleaner. A steam cleaner will be nice to use.
Eventually, X means that you can not use any water or detergent on the surface – get it professionally cleaned instead.
3. How to spot clean a cloth sofa with vinegar
We are often asked if you’re able to clean a cloth sofa with vinegar, and the answer is yes. In fact vinegar is a natural stain remover for most types of upholstery. Start by blotting the stain with equal parts vinegar and water solution, then wipe the stain away gently using a microfibre fabric (only use a new cloth or make sure it’s completely clean).
Follow this up with a mixture of mild detergent and tepid water to remove any lingering vinegar odor. Leave it to dry naturally. Usually, you should always tackle stains.
4. How to remove smells from upholstery
From the dog’s key naps on the sofa to cigarette smoke drifting into the window, your upholstery might look good on the outside, but it could still be harbouring a whole slew of odours. Sprinkle bicarbonate of soda all and leave it overnight to allow the powder. Vacuum it all off.
#1 Bissell 3624 SpotClean Professional on Amazon:
#2 Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner on Amazon:
#3 HOOVER Spotless Deluxe on Amazon:
We tested 3 of the best upholstery cleaning machines for cars which also happen to be great for carpet and furniture cleaning as well.
We tested the Bissell Spotclean pro 3624, the Rug Doctor Portable spot cleaner and the Hoover Spotless Deluxe.
In a previous video which I will link in the description we tested these 3 units with stain tests and airflow test on carpet and found that although it was very close the Bissell SpotClean Pro did the best and was the easiest to use.
Our test on car upholstery was mainly to see if there was anything different with regard to their performance on auto upholstery.
As far as the performance, they all sucked out lots of gross stuff from this 200,000 mile truck but since there weren’t really uniform stains we will have to defer to the previous stain test and say that they were all nearly equal with the Bissell Spotclean pro doing just a little better.
But as far as specifics related to auto detailing, there are a few things to note
First the Bissell has the longest cord at 22’ which is good but you are most likey going to use an extension cord anyway when cleaning cars, but the extra 7 ‘ could be the difference in your situation.
The Bissell and the Hoover also come with 2 sizes of brushes, the smaller of which is specifically meant for auto detailing.
The Rug Doctor on the other hand only has the one brush. But its brush does have a feature where if you flick a switch it moves part of the brush around with a motor. I personally didn’t use that feature much because you have to put a lot of pressure on the handle to suck out the all the water and I didn’t want to put all that pressure on a motorized part of the brush.
The Rug Doctor has the longest hose of the 3 units but it’s the only hose of the 3 that doesn’t seem very sturdy, which is odd because the rest of the rug doctor seems very well built but the hose seems like it would be the first thing to break. In any case since all 3 units were able to fit on the floorboard the hose length was not an issue.
As with the carpet tests I would have to recommend the Bissell Spotclean Pro for car upholstery as well, as it was the easiest to use and based on the previous stain test it performed the best. I also found its construction to be very sturdy.
The Rug Doctor is a very close 2nd
And the Hoover is the only one I would not recommend at all, due to its being more cheaply made, harder to use and having the worst showing in the pervious stain tests.
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