Area rugs certainly do a lot to visually unite a space. But they also take on a lot of wear and tear. Being at the center of common living spaces means an increase in foot traffic, not to mention some paw prints and muddy football cleats. With all of this activity, it’s common for stains and smells to develop over time. 

Although area rugs are routinely vacuumedthey occasionally require a deeper clean. With the exception of delicate, antique rugs, and Persian rugs, most can be cleaned without professional assistanceHowever, before you embark upon this DIY, first check your rug’s instructions (if attached) to make sure that yours doesn’t call for any special cleaning regimen. 

For most rugs, you can follow these following steps: 

  1. Begin by giving both sides of your rug a thorough vacuum. If your vacuum settings allow for different speeds, use the softer suction. For a smaller-sized, rug, either shake it outside or give it a good, old-fashioned couple of beatings. It’s free therapy and also helps to loosen dust and debris. Then, proceed with the two-sided vacuuming. 
  2. Wet the entire rug with cool water. 
  3. If your rug has an attachment with care information and cloth type, choose a carpet cleaner that is specifically designed for its material. Otherwise, you can use a mild dish soap mixed with water. 
  4. Before getting any further, test the carpet cleaner on a small patch of the rug. This is an extra precaution to make sure your rug’s color won’t become damaged in the process. 
  5. Once you’ve approved the cleaning solution, apply it on to the whole rug, and gently scrub with a soft-bristled brush. 
  6. Use cool water to rinse the rug clean. Be generous with the amount of water as it’s important that all of the residue-creating shampoo is gone. 
  7. Dry your rug completely. If one is available, use a wet-dry vacuum or even a squeegee to eliminate excess water. You may want to blow some fans in the area for a day to help quicken the drying process.  

Sweeping things under the rug doesn’t work if your rug is the problem. Follow this guide to get yours looking as clean as new. 

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