Many customers ask us what is the best way to clean a fabric sofa, and the first answer we give, regardless of where you purchased the sofa, is to check with the manufacturer on best practices, as there are normally specific care guides provided with it, or you may have had an option to buy a fabric care kit at first. In some cases, the rear of the cushions have a cleaning code label stitched into them, so check that too. (for cleaning codes, see the bottom of this article!)

Failing that and assuming there is no fabric care kit available, or, you prefer not to use chemicals on your sofa, here are a few tips on how to clean a fabric sofa naturally:

Switch Cushions

Flip and rotate the cushions around often to lessen the appearance of being worn down.

Firstly, give your sofa a good brush down with a soft brush, or gently hoover with the brush attachment, as you don’t want to rub in dirt or debris while cleaning.

Then decide if you wish to simply freshen up the sofa to get rid of bad smells, or if you have to tackle cleaning up a stain on your cushions.

Clean A Small Area First

Our top tip here is to test your fabric first. Take a sample of the sofa that is not visible in everyday use, in an inconspicuous area, and try these methods first, and check to see that there are no issues on your fabric before applying to your entire sofa.

When you are happy with your test on a sample area, here are some options that you can try on your fabric sofa:

For a freshen-up and to remove smells, sprinkle the entire sofa with baking soda and leave to sit for at least 20 minutes. When the time is up, hoover the sofa using a brush attachment. If that isn’t enough and your cleaning code says you may use water in the cleaning of your fabric, we recommend taking a handheld steam cleaner to remove lingering odours from your sofa.

For any tough stains that are still present, you can use a solution that will work for the type of fabric along with a clean cloth for blotting away stains. For instance, fabric upholstery can be cleaned using a mixture of:

  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of dish soap
  • For synthetic upholstery, use a mixture of one cup warm water, 1/2 cup vinegar, and 1/2 tablespoon of dish soap.

Remember, when choosing a new fabric sofa to ask about the care and maintenance of the sofa and look for the Aquaclean option when shopping with Flanagan Kerins Furniture Store. You can click here to view our range of Fabric Sofas available to buy online.

Cleaning Codes generally used on fabric sofa tags include:

  • W – This indicates water can be used in cleaning
  • WS – A dry cleaning detergent or mild detergent and steam vacuum can be used
  • X – No water, vacuum only
  • S – Clean with dry cleaner detergent