Accidents happen; especially now that we’re spending more time than ever in our homes. That’s why we spoke with the experts at fabric protection service company Fiber-Seal® to compile the best tips and tricks regarding all things spot treatment and stain removal.
Design by Neil Bekstedt. Protected by Fiber-Seal®.
First Steps & Best Practices
There are several things to know when working to remove on a spot/stain that will increase your chances of success and reduce the chances of making it worse.
- First, what caused the spot?
- What is the fiber content (wool, nylon, silk, blend, etc.) that makes up fabric or carpet?
- ALWAYS test the products and procedures that you use in an inconspicuous place before trying to remove a spot/stain (back of cushion at the zipper).
- NEVER SCRUB! Blot with a white terry or white paper towel.
- Don’t make the spot larger…work only on the spot/stain not around it.
- Know when to quit… don’t overwork a spot/stain.
Before & After courtesy of Fiber-Seal®.
The Right Tools For The Job
If it is a powder spot such as soot, ashes, pollen, or mud don’t put any cleaning agents on it. VACUUM ONLY. You can try other methods such as a dry fabric sponge, soft bristle horsehair brush, or a bone spatula, followed by vacuuming again. Muddy footprints are better drying and then vacuuming.
Like removes like. In other words, if you have a water-based spot, such as coffee, tea or cola, you will need a water-based detergent to remove it. If you have a greasy spot it will take a grease remover (dry-cleaning solvent) to remove it.
The challenge is that you MUST know the fiber content of the items you will be working on and in some cases the construction as well. Some fibers such as rayon are 50-80 percent weaker when wet and they shrink readily and have no resiliency. If they are constructed in a pile such as Chenille or Velvet and it is a water-based spill…almost anything you do will make it worse, unless you are a professional.
Design by Michelle Wenitsky. Protected by Fiber-Seal®.
Specialty Fabrics Require Specialty Care
When fabrics are delicate there are some simple things to do. First, if you see the spill or accident happen, address it right away. If it is a liquid spill, BLOT with a white terry towel or white paper towel this will minimize the scope of the spot/stain. When in doubt always call a professional.
Protect Your Furniture Before A Stain Occurs
In the 1950’s and 60’s people covered their furnishings with plastic. In 1971, Fiber-Seal® began and created a Fabric Care System which relied on protecting furnishing and floorcovering with a treatment product and included a no charge follow up service commitment. And while some of the products of changed, Fiber-Seal® still believes that no product stands alone. That is why 50 years later the same no charge service is offered. A Fabric Care Kit with detailed instructions on how to remove spots and stains is also given to every client. If the clients are unable to remove the spot, Fiber-Seal® is just a phone call away.
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