How I Clean an Area Rug

How to Clean an Area Rug

When it comes to large area rugs it can seem a bit hard to properly clean being most rugs are much too large to clean in a washing machine. But do not become discouraged area rugs are not impossible to clean and do not need to be thrown out in event of an extensive accumulation of dirt. With the high cost and value of area rugs, especially antique rugs sometimes tossing and replacing simply is not an option. This article will help you in find the information you need to clean and salvage that area rug which was once a beautiful clean rug and is now stained, dirty, or worn.

Hand Wash With A Clothes Line

One of the best ways to clean an area rug is to hand clean the rug which will prevent any damage especially towards antique materials. You can do this by hooking up a clothes line and pins outdoors on a decently warm and dry day. Hang up the area rug rinse with your garden hose and scrub with washing liquids and a hand rag. Then rinse back out with a hose and either squeeze out remaining liquids and leave to dry, or just leave out to dry.


Although you cannot use a shampooer on most area rugs you can vacuum if your vacuum has adjustable power settings. Make sure your vacuum is not set too high to prevent pulling up on bits of your area rug damaging the rug and possibly clogging the actual vacuum itself. Other ways is to sweep the carpet regularly with a broom making sure to lightly brush being careful not to push the dirt father into the carpet. Small hand vacuums also work great on delicate area rugs.

Hand Clean Stains

If a few to many stains in your area rug is your problem you should not need to hang your rug outdoors. Using bleach free stain removing cleaners you are able to remove any stains by hand. Simply spray on the cleaner or mix cleaner with a small bucket of water and cloth dab or scrub depending on the delicacy of the materials to uplift the stain and use a vacuum to lift out the dirty water once the chemicals are rinsed with warm water. Let the area rug sit until the wet areas are dry avoiding stepping on or using the carpet until the rug is completely dry.

Professional Assistance

Some specialized businesses such as dry cleaners may be trained to also work on area rugs, needing assistance with large rugs is a common problem therefore help is traditionally available at a reasonable price. These companies usually will also carry out damage repairs and restoration upon personal customer requests if the company offers the services.

If you cannot find a company to repair your rug there are simple sewing techniques which are available to be learned through online courses varying on the type of rug and the way in which the rug was put together. Such as the sewing technique used to build the rug.

Betsy Cline

Betsy Cline has been a professional house cleaner for 15 years and also a mother of 4 amazing kids (who make lots of messes). She is the founder of How to Clean It and loves to share tips and advice for cleaning up anything life throws at you.

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