Oriental, Persian, and other wool or silk area rugs can be a room’s focal point. As such, they may receive a lot of wear and tear. Many of these rugs are hand-knotted and are often heirlooms, passed down from generation to generation. Others are purchased as a long-term investment or as a design element. A high-quality hand-knotted rug can last for generations with proper care and cleaning.
It’s a good idea to get your area rugs professionally cleaned at least once every three to five years, depending on traffic, use, location, and other factors. If you’re unsure whether your rug needs cleaning, here are some steps to take to determine how dirty it is.
Very lightly dampen a clean white cloth and gently rub it against the rug’s surface a few times. If dirt shows on the cloth, your rug needs cleaning. Be careful not to use too much water in case the rug’s dyes are not colorfast.
Another way to test is to pick up the corner of your rug and kick the underside. If there is a cloud of dust, it needs cleaning. You can also fold a corner of the rug over, with the backside facing you. You’ll be able to see the crevices where your vacuum can’t reach. If you see dirt and debris lodged there, get the carpet cleaned.
Should You Have Persian Rugs Professionally Cleaned?
Oriental and Persian rugs are an investment, and it’s important to know that there are mistakes you can make that can be difficult and expensive to fix. For instance, some rugs are not colorfast, and it’s possible to cause the colors to bleed. Hiring a carpet cleaning company to clean the rug in your home is a no-no, and you can view a video here to find out why. Also, wool rugs need to be carefully dried to prevent shrinkage and damage to the structural fibers.
Mistakes made in cleaning and spotting of wool or silk area rugs can be very costly to fix and impossible to recover in the worst case. There are no shortcuts or substitutions for a professional rug cleaning.
A well-cared-for hand-knotted rug can last generations, remaining beautiful and functional. However, its lifespan is considerably shortened if not adequately cleaned and maintained. Professional rug cleaners have the knowledge, technology, certification, and experience necessary to clean and preserve the long-lasting beauty of hand-knotted Persian, Oriental, Turkish, and all other wool and silk area rugs.
Won’t Any Professional Carpet Cleaning Company Suffice?
When we refer to “professional rug cleaners,” that doesn’t mean a carpet cleaning company or a company who claims to own a rug cleaning plant when the facts are they pick your rug up and wash it in a parking lot.
Steam cleaning processes used by carpet cleaning companies can be especially harmful to wool and silk rugs. Steam cleaning is detrimental to Oriental rug’s natural dyes. In addition to causing dye migration, the dirty water from the steam cleaning remains in the carpet, leaving it soggy, causing browning or wicking, mildew, shrinkage, or can even damage backing or foundation.
Oriental Rug Salon Steps To Cleaning An Oriental Rug
At Oriental Rug Salon, each rug is carefully inspected with high-intensity lighting for wear and tear, stains, structural integrity, and UV damage. We also scan the area rug with Xenon lighting looking for bacterial contamination such as pet urine, vomit, and blood. This inspection process will allow the technicians to decide on spotting procedures, dye migration stoppage, and the correct cleaning solution and pH for your rug.
Soil and Contaminate Removal
Dusting is a critical step in rug cleaning. At Oriental Rug Salon, rugs are safely vibrated at 40,000 vibrations per minute to dislodge deep-set dirt, sand, dust mites, pollen, pet dander, and other contaminants.
Fun Fact: In Iran, they “dust,” often using a branch from a pomegranate tree.
Before cleaning, any spots or stains are treated as appropriate. Specialized spotting agents and processes are used based on the type of stain encountered. All cleaning products are made explicitly for Oriental and Persian rugs and carry the WoolSafe Certification, so they will not harm or discolor your cherished area rug.
Washing and Rinsing
Only after thorough dusting and stain removal is complete, the washing process begins. The rug is immersed in water and a cleaning solution. The solutions are applied and hand-brushed into the rug’s fibers in the direction of the rug pile. Both sides of the rug are washed, and the fringe, if any, is pre-treated. Finally, the rug is rinsed in cold water to remove all cleaning solutions.
Once the area rug has been cleaned and rinsed, we use a specialized water extraction process to remove over 90% of the rug’s moisture before transporting it to an air table for drying.
Finally, the rugs are placed on an air table to dry in a temperature-controlled room. The drying process takes between 24-48 hours.
Our Rug Master will inspect the area rug to ensure it is thoroughly cleaned upon drying. He will ensure that any strands of high-pile are carefully clipped and that the fringe is in the best condition possible. Lastly, the rugs are combed with a special brush to align the pile to its natural path, and fringes are combed and trimmed. Silk rugs are also ironed in the direction of the pile.
Note: A thorough professional cleaning process will take 1 to 2 weeks to complete.
Oriental Rug Salon is a full-service Oriental, Persian, Turkish, wool, and silk area rug cleaning company serving all of SW Florida. All of our cleaning efforts are performed under the watchful eye of an experienced-certified Rug Master.
Oriental Rug Salon is a Certified Partner with the prestigious Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and the International Carpet & Rug Institute (CRI). We are a WoolSafe Approved Service Provider, A+ Rated by the Better Business Bureau, and an eight-year-in-a-row-winner of the coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award.
You can also visit us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/OrientalRugSalon