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Upholstery Needs Weekly Care

Upholstery Gets as Dusty as the Coffee Table

Many people hit the high spots when doing their weekly cleaning.  By this I mean running a dust cloth over the tops of the wood furniture.  I also mean vacuuming the center of carpets, wiping off counters and mopping floors.  It is totally likely that the upholstery will be overlooked.  The same dust that falls on the coffee table, falls on your upholstery.  As a matter of fact, the sofa may hold on to more dirt than the coffee table.  The kids eat popcorn and Cheerios on the sofa.  They climb up with the dog or cat onto the upholstered chair.

The proper way to clean upholstery is to take the loose pillows off and vacuum them first.  Remember that seat cushions and most pillows are made with six sides.  Vacuum them all using an upholstery attachment on your canister vacuum.  Now add the crevice tool to the wand and get down into the crease where the back and sides meet the seat.  With any luck, you’ll find some spare change!  If the chair or sofa sits in the middle of the room, remember to vacuum the back and sides as well.

Handling Leather Upholstery

You probably have a cloth surface under the seat cushions.  You should clean this using an upholstery attachment.  Then, take a slightly damp microfiber cloth with no chemicals and wipe down the leather surfaces. Your sofa or chair may be made with buttons as you see in the illustration above. Be sure to get into all the indentations where dust and pet hair hide.

Pet Hair May Be a Special Problem

Use a lint roller to pick up pet hair that does not come up in the vacuum..   You can also use a  slightly dampened a microfiber cloth and gently rub it over the surface.  Be sure to merely dampen the cloth.  Do not saturate the cloth with water.

Make upholstery cleaning part of your weekly routine.  Then you will know that no crumbs or morsels are lurking under your seat cushions.  Maybe you’ll find enough spare change to take the kids to the movies and let the theater deal with picking up popcorn.

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Editor’s Note:  We originally published this article in June 2014.  We have updated it for freshness, accuracy and comprehensiveness.