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What Is The Best Way To Clean Fabric Upholstery?

Maintaining the cleanliness of a couch is essential, as it is one of the most heavily used furniture in the home. It raises the query about what is the best way to clean fabric upholstery. It requires special attention and care to ensure that it remains in good condition. It makes sense to regularly clean your couch’s upholstery due to the potential for dirt, solid stains from food and drink, and pet hair. 

You can check the maker’s label for the best way to clean your upholstery and use the advice to ensure your couch looks as good as new.

What Is The Best Way To Clean Fabric Upholstery

Manufacturer’s Cleaning Code For Upholstery Cleaning And Codes

Furniture makers started including a label to guide the most suitable and secure way to clean upholstery. Investigate the label underneath the couch or cushions and adhere to the directions for upholstery cleaning. Here are the codes defining what is the best way to clean fabric upholstery

  • S-Code: The manufacturer suggests cleaning stains and soils using a dry cleaning or water-free solvent. Ensure the room is well-ventilated and no open flames are present, such as from fireplaces or candles.
  • W-CodeThese fabrics can be washed with water-based detergents.
  • X-CodeWhen you spot the “X” symbol, avoid any cleaning product. These fabrics should only be cleaned with a vacuum or by a professional. Using household cleaners can cause discolouration and shrinking.
  • W-S-CodeThese fabrics used for upholstery can be cleaned with either water or solvent-based cleaning products.

If you have encountered a cleaning label, you can try the cleaning process and what is the best way to clean fabric upholstery. If there is no tag, you should test a small area of the fabric to see how it reacts to cleaning products. It is best not to get the fabric too wet, as too much moisture can lead to mould and mildew growing in the cushions, which is very difficult to remove.

Cleaning Methods For Upholstery Cleaning

The method for cleaning an upholstered sofa will depend on the type of fabric used for the upholstery. Here are some of the effective methods to clean the upholstery furniture:

  • SteamingEliminate surface dust mites using a handheld fabric steamer or steam from an iron. Then, go over the entire couch, focusing on the steam to reach the material. If you can’t access a steamer or iron, bypass this step and vacuum.
  • Testing The Tough SpotsBefore using any upholstery cleaner or cleaning appliance, test it in an inconspicuous spot to guarantee that it won’t create any water spots or discolouration of the material.
  • VacuumUsing the upholstery attachment for your vacuum, thoroughly clean the sofa by vacuuming the cushions, back, skirt, and arms. If the cushions are detachable, remove and vacuum the underside of the fabric, reaching as far back and underneath the arms as your vacuum allows. Use the crevice tool throughout the buttons, within the seams, and alongside the trim.
  • Deep Spot CleaningFor safe fabrics to clean with water, treat food and pet stains by using a Professional Pet Stain & Odor Remover that contains enzymes and following the instructions on the package. 

If you don’t have that, mix ¼ teaspoon of mild dish soap with one cup of warm water. Remove the cushions and place a paper towel between the fabric and stuffing to soak up any extra moisture if the cushions have removable covers. 

Apply the cleaner to a cloth and blot the stain gently, starting from the outside of the stain and moving inwards. 

After removing the stain, use a damp cloth to rinse the area and then blot it dry. For fabrics labelled with an “S”, use a solvent-based cleaner such as Dry-Cleaning Fluid for Fine Fabrics, following the directions on the package.

  • Armrest And Headrest CleaningIf you need to clean water-safe fabrics, a portable extraction cleaner with a built-in heating system is your best bet. Mix the cleaner and water, spray it onto the fabric with the hose attachment, scrub it with the brush nozzle, and then use the vacuum to suck up the dirt and debris into the tank. For fabrics that only require solvent cleaning, it’s best to consult a professional to ensure the job is done safely and thoroughly.
  • Upholstery sanitization: Spray an antibacterial fabric sanitizer onto water-safe upholstery to kill bacteria and remove odours after your sofa has been cleaned and dried.

Things To Consider While Cleaning The Upholstery Furniture

When deciding how to clean your fabric sofa, it is important to consider a few things. Consider the type of fabric, the type of cleaning products you can use, and the amount of time and effort it will take to get the job done. Here are some of them

  • It is essential to thoroughly read the manufacturer’s instructions before utilizing the item. Reading the care label on clothing properly ensures the item is not damaged during cleaning.
  • The tags can provide helpful information on the best techniques and products for various surfaces and tips for managing tough stains and spots.
  • You should always follow the suggested cleaning instructions on the tags.


To take care of upholstery, it is important to avoid scrubbing the material, even when faced with difficult set-in stains. It defines what is the best way to clean fabric upholstery in different aspects. Instead, allow the stain remover to penetrate the fabric and gently blot it away with a soft microfiber cloth. If the fabric has become stiff due to cleaning, use a soft brush to restore its original texture. If you have any queries on fabric upholstery cleaning, call in for professional upholstery cleaning service advice!