So, silk carpets and rugs are extremely delicate and can be challenging when cleaning up spills and stains. Unlike most carpets and rugs, where you can grab some stain removal products and apply and remove the stain in a few minutes, silk carpets and rugs require more time and preparation.
The first thing you need to ensure is that the process itself isn’t going to damage the material. Although the tensile strength is very high due to being made from organic materials, it is highly susceptible to some cleaning products that may be fine on synthetic carpets.
Usually, the best way to clean a silk rug would be to contact a professional carpet cleaner. This is advised, especially if the rug is ancient or a family heirloom. The slightest mistake can cause a life-changing amount of damage.
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Silk Carpets and Rugs Cleaning Methods
Even today, carpet cleaning technicians are still discovering new and improved ways to clean silk rugs and carpets. Preparing the rug or carpet will involve the current state of the carpet fibres. Regular vacuuming will help keep dry soiling from embedding itself deep into the carpet fibres. This will cause the fibres over time to rip and fray apart.
However, if the rug has a fringe, refrain from vacuuming this area, as it may pull them out and ruin their texture. Cleaning the area will only be necessary when there is a significant build-up of soiling. You can usually tell when a clean is needed as the soiling will begin to affect the look and feel of the area. Another way to assess if cleaning is required is if a rug picks it up and beats it slightly. If a dust cloud is released, it is time for a clean.
Silk Carpets Stain Removal
Dry stains should be removed without using any liquid, whereas wet stains should be blotted up, NOT RUBBED, as this can cause a colour run, damage to fibres and spreading of the stain. Lukewarm water should not be hot as hot water can cause shrinkage and break down the fibres.
Using any cleaning products on silk rugs is rare, so eco-friendly or natural products would be the best treatment. However, contacting a professional cleaning company would still be the safest option. Professional carpet and rug specialists will eliminate any guesswork as they have undergone all the necessary training and understand these delicate materials entirely.
Cleaning your silk rugs isn’t just about getting a clean result. It is about expanding the lifespan of your rug and ensuring you get the most extended possible life from your rugs and carpets.
Here’s a safe way to remove stains:
- Using soft brushes, gently remove any dried-on dirt particles, making them easier to pick up.
- The vacuum the area thoroughly
- Once this is complete, you can apply some club soda to remove the colour from the stain. Pour the club soda onto a clean cloth and blot the stain. Use a dry cloth to absorb any excess club soda. Allow the area to air dry. Do not use heat, such as a hairdryer, to dry the area because heat may damage a silk rug.
- Then, apply a mixture of white vinegar and water to remove stains. Pour the vinegar and water solution on a clean cloth and blot the stain. DO NOT RUB. Use a dry cloth to absorb the excess solution and allow the area to air dry. Do not use any heat to dry the area. It’s best to let the area dry naturally.
How to remove carpet odours
Sometimes, odours cannot be smelt by the people living in the household, but they can occasionally notice these odours when you have guests over. Households with pets can exceptionally be subject to nasty smells. Herе is a procedure to help remove these odours.
- Firstly, sprinkle some baking soda onto the affected area (usually where the pet likes to spend a lot of time).
- Allow the baking soda to absorb for about 1 hour.
- Vacuum the rug using the brushless suction head of a vacuum cleaner.
I use vinegar and water solution to eliminate odours from silk rugs. The slight acidity of vinegar makes it effective in removing odours and germs.
- Mix equal parts of water and vinegar into a spray bottle. This makes it easier to apply the solution.
- Lightly mist the area treated with the vinegar and water solution.
- Wipe over the area gently with a clean, dry cloth and then leave to dry
This method can leave the household smelling of vinegar, but after airing the area out for a few hours, it should fade and be unnoticeable.
The drying process is as important as the cleaning process. If the area isn’t dried completely, you face the risk of mould or mildew setting. Silk rugs can also be at risk of browning. This is caused when leftover water rises to the tips of the fibres before evaporating, leaving a dark brown residue of lignin and other dissolved materials in the water. Also, dye bleeding is another risk if the drying process isn’t complete.