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Tips For How to Care for a Shag Rug

Posted Monday, November 21st, 2016

Do you know how to care for a shag rug?

Shag rugs are in this year, and it’s easy to see why Sterling Heights residents love them. Soft underfoot, warm, and available in natural, long-lasting fibers like wool, they are a clear winner in home décor. Still, for all their appealing features, shag rugs are not easy to clean. Here are a few ideas to help you care for a shag rug.

Have you chosen the right rug for the right space?

The long fibers of a shag rug will collect more dirt than other types of carpeting. If it is plush enough, it will also swallow LEGOs, crumbs, dirt, small leaves, and any other thing your pets and children might leave behind. It’s important to choose the right rug for the right space. Shag rugs are not always the best choice for high traffic areas, like the dining room or playroom. It’s harder to keep a Flokati rug clean when it’s laying under your table, than when it is in the bedroom.

Vacuum the back of the rug.

There’s a special trick to vacuuming shag rugs. First, roll your rug and unroll it upside down. Then use your vacuum as normal on the back side of the rug. This will suck out dust and dander, and the beater will loosen dirt caught in the fibers of the carpet. Roll the rug back up again. While the rug is rolled up, run the vacuum over the floor sucking up all the dirt that fell out of the carpet. Finally, unroll the rug right side up.

Vacuum the front of the rug with the upholstery attachment.

Shag rugs can snarl on the vacuum’s rotating brush, or begin to “blossom,” which means that the individual strands of fiber fray and untwist. The beater brush will quickly damage the rug, aging and loosening the fibers. Switch to an attachment with a soft brush head – the type designed for drapes and upholstery. Because it uses only suction, it is gentle on the carpet fibers, while the bristles loosen debris caught on the strands.

Soak up as much of a spill as you can right away.

You should soak up spills and spots with a soft white rag or towel as quickly as possible on any kind of rug, but especially on shag rugs. The depth of the carpet ply makes a shag rug like a sponge, and once that wine has really soaked in it’s hard to get out. Take your time, and really try to blot out every last bit of moisture.

Treating individual spots with care.

Once you’ve soaked up as much of a spill as possible, you can treat spots on a shag rug. However, use extra care in picking the correct cleaner. Because of how dense the ply is, too much water on a shag rug will take a long time to dry. A damp rug is breeding ground for mold and mildew, which can cause allergies and respiratory issues. Try misting the stain with a vinegar and water solution, allowing it to sit for a few minutes, and then wiping with an absorbent cloth. This should lighten stains and not overly saturate the rug.

When should you take a shag rug to be professionally cleaned?

How often you take your rug to be cleaned by a professional will depend on several variables. A rug in a sitting room will likely need cleaning more often than one in the guest room. And if you have children and pets you may need to take rugs more often still. A good cleaning company will have the right equipment to deal with the most delicate and expensive shag rugs, using specialized cleaning solutions, and a labor intensive washing and brushing process.

This kind of cleaning is impossible to DIY at home. However, to extend the life of your rug, and keep it sanitary, professional cleaning is a worthwhile investment. We know that taking every necessary step to care for a shag rug is a big job. When you are ready to trust your rug to the experts, contact us at Modernistic.

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