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how to clean flat weave rug

How to Clean a Flat Weave Rug The Easy Way

Welcome ! back, guys – today we’ll be going over how to clean flat weave rug! Alright, so the title isn’t exactly accurate. There’s more than one way to wash a rug, after all. Still, not all rugs can be washed the same way. While most washable rugs are fairly easy to manage, some—such as antique rugs—might require a bit more care. How much, how often, or even how hard it will be to clean your rug will also vary by rug. Still, if you have your flat weave rug and you’re looking to clean it, you’re in the right place. Snag it from the kitchen or drag it out from under your bed frame in the bedroom, get it in a safe place, and let’s get started.

Methods for How to Clean Flat Weave Rug

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Flat weave rugs need to be cleaned a bit differently from other types of rugs, such as my favorite hand-knotted rug. Still, the overall process is fairly simple, regardless of which method you end up using. That said, the best method will really depend on your cleaning needs. Below, I’ve gone over the most important cleaning methods you’ll need to know, from basic cleaning methods to more in-depth, heavy-duty approaches to getting the clean rug you’re after.Let’s start with the more basic methods of how to clean flat weave rug.

Basic Methods of How to Clean Flat Weave Rug

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Giving your rug a complete cleaning is a great idea, but by giving it regular cleaning sessions using these basic methods below, you can help keep your rug looking great without making deep cleaning sessions quite as challenging.

Here are three easy, low-maintenance how to clean flat weave rug methods to add to your weekly routine.

Shaking the Rug

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It might be a bit old-fashioned, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work! The best part about this method is that you can use it with any type of rug, be it a flat weave rug, an oriental rug, or something else.

Rugs are meant to be stepped on. Unfortunately, the more foot traffic they see, the quicker they tend to get dirty. You can partially reduce this wear and tear by wearing slippers. Leave the shoes for the outdoors, as they tend to carry lots of loose dirt inside your home.

To do it, simply take the rug outside and shake it for at least 30 seconds. I recommend doing this away from open windows, and wearing a mask if you’re sensitive to dust. Although this won’t remove any stains, you should still see a noticeable difference almost instantly.

Vacuum Your Rug

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For some rugs, especially larger ones, taking them outside to give them a good shaking just isn’t an option. Your rug could be too big, the weather could be too bad, or maybe the rug would be just too much of a pain to move! Not to worry, though, as that’s where a vacuum can come in handy.

You do have to take a bit of extra care when using your vacuum cleaner. For one, ensure that you’re not using your regular vacuuming settings. Instead, turn the suction down, ensuring it can still remove dirt and dust without damaging the rug’s surface.

It might seem like using a stiff brush would help remove more dirt, but part of learning how to clean flat weave rug is remembering to avoid doing this. Unfortunately, flat weave rugs are rather sensitive. Using a beat brush can actually harm your rug more than it helps, so stick just to regular vacuuming instead.

Spot Cleaning

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I haven’t mentioned addressing stains yet, but that’s what spot cleaning is for. Unlike the other methods, this one is done on an as-needed basis. You’ll have to be quick, as it only takes fifteen minutes or so to go from simple spills to stubborn stains.

Whether it’s a glass of wine or a smudge from your favorite tasty treats, most stains should be easy to remove if addressed fast enough. Grab a mild detergent and some cold water, then blot the stained area until the stain is completely gone.

Blotting is the best way to go about it, as scrubbing can actually damage your rug. Even using a soft brush type of rug can be too much, so stick to gentle blots. You can pat the area down with a clean cloth or dry towel to remove any excess moisture.

Bonus Tip – If you have them on hand, commercial rug clears or even a white vinegar solution can work as well! Running into mold issues? Consider picking up this mold remover to help prevent future problems.

In-Depth Methods of How to Clean Flat Weave Rug

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Alright, so I’ve taught you the basics of how to clean flat weave rug. The above methods are enough to get you through the day-to-day upkeep. At a minimum, you really only need some detergent, a vacuum cleaner, and some cool water to get the job done.

That said, there are times when your rug will require deep cleaning. Generally, once a year should be enough, although your individual; needs might vary. Still, if that’s the info you’re looking for then here’s what you’ll want to try.

The Bathtub Method

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Photo by Augusta Hoffman

Before trying the bathtub method, you’ll need to ensure your rug is properly prepared. In other words, vacuum both sides of the rug and take a look at the label to find the right water temperature and detergent recommendations. Avoid using hot water unless explicitly instructed to do so.

With the correct cleaning solution in hand, you can start to fill your tub. Cover your rug completely, using a tablespoon or two of detergent for each gallon of water in the tub. Tumble the rug around by hand underwater to help remove loose dirt and lessen stains. From here, leave it to soak for 15 to 30 minutes.

After enough time has passed, drain the tub. Rinse the rug with cold water until all of the suds are gone. leaving only clean water. Next, gently compress your rug to remove excess water, but avoid twisting or wringing the rug.

Finally, lay it out on a flat surface to let it air dry completely.

The Washing Machine

You might be wondering if you can safely wash your flat weave rug in a washing machine. Well, good news – you can! Here’s how to do it properly.

  1. Once again, vacuum. You’ll want to remove as much dirt and grime as possible before chucking it in the washing machine.
  2. Double-check the recommended detergent and water temps. Following these will help minimize the risk of damaging your rug.
  3. Place your rug in a mesh laundry bag. This is a vital step. If you don’t do it, you run the risk of quickly damaging your rug beyond repair. Won’t fit in a bag? Then it’s probably too big for the washing machine.
  4. Set the cycle and add detergent. You’ll want to go with a gentle cycle. Just like handmade rugs, these require special care.
  5. Once it’s done, take it out and squeeze as much water from the rug as possible. Avoid twisting it, though, as this can damage your rug’s fibers.
  6. Lay it down to air dry, keeping it out of direct sunlight to avoid fading or shrinking.

Pro tip – Vacuum your rug once it’s tried to fluff it back out!

How to Clean Flat Weave Rug – Tips & Tricks

how to clean flat weave rug

Like I said, learning how to clean flat weave rug isn’t very hard. That said, there are some three tiny tips and tricks I’d like to share with y’all. I think they can really help you get the best results overall.

Always Make Sure Your Rug is Dry

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Leaving excess water while placing your rug can damage the floor underneath, but you should really aim to eliminate all moisture before placing your rug, outdoor rugs are bothered much by water as they’re designed for it, but leaving a flat weave rug wet can cause a number of issues, including:

  • Mold
  • Mildew
  • Color bleeding
  • Staining to the floor underneath
  • Damage to the rug’s fibers

These potential issues just highlight why it’s never a good idea to leave your rug wet, or even damp. Just laying your rug down on a flat surface for an extended period of time should be enough to dry it out. 

If not, try to speed up the process by using a fan or two. However, avoid leaving it in direct sunlight to dry unless you won’t be bothered by potential color fading.

Adjust Your Methods for Your Material

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Just like how cleaning a Persian rug will require a different method than cleaning a felted wood tapestry, you’ll need to adjust your ideal cleaning method(s) based on the individual rug itself.

If you have a synthetic rug then the recommendations are fairly simple. Just avoid alkaline-based cleaning solutions and bleach. As long as you can do this, you should be able to avoid damaging the synthetic fibers of your rug.

Natural fiber rugs are a bit different. For wool flat weave rug fibers, you need only avoid using hot water, which can shrink the wool’s natural fibers. For silk, however, you’ll want to avoid water or any other liquid at all, as they can discolor and stain your rug. Got silk? Stick solely to dry cleaning methods instead.

Learn the Best Time to Clean Your Rug

The bad news? There isn’t any “one” time that’s best for your specific rug. Actually, part of learning how to clean flat weave rug is learning when your rug will need to be cleaned. Fortunately, you know your home best, so figuring this out shouldn’t be too hard.

For the “basic cleaning” methods I’ve listed above, once per week is a good place to start. Vacuuming or shaking the rug should remove all the dirt and dust accumulated throughout the week. Since it’s easier, I’d say vacuum once per week; shake once per month. Adjust this based on how quickly your rug gets dirty.

Spot cleans, as mentioned, need to be done ASAP. Deep cleans, on the other hand, can generally be limited to once per year. Of course, you can always deep clean your rug more often if your rug designs start to become a bit obscured by the grime. I always recommend giving a new rug a deep clean, even if the thrifting store says it did already.

Lastly, help limit how often you need to clean under the rug by using a rug pad. This will protect the floor and the rug from wear & tear.

A Simple Summary of How to Clean Flat Weave Rug

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When in doubt, you can always rely on professional cleaners to get your rug cleaned right. Still, it’s nice to learn how to clean flat weave rug so you can do it at home. As you can see, it’s really not that hard (just a bit time-consuming!). 

An added bonus? You’ll no longer have to worry about getting dirt on the floor while redoing your backyard decor or other outdoor projects. There’s no bill; you can simply clean it yourself for free.

Well, that’s all I have for you today, guys. I hope this was helpful. If it was, please let me know in the comments below. I’ll be back next week with more, but until then, have a great week!


Frequently Asked Questions About How to Clean Flat Weave Rug

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Can you dry clean a flatweave rug?

Yes, you can. I’d definitely recommend doing it if your rug is made of silk, as liquid-based cleaning methods can actually damage the material.

Can you vacuum a flat weave rug?

Yes, you can, but you want to avoid using a beater brush. Ideally, aim for enough suction to remove dirt and dust without damaging the fibers of the rug.

How do you refresh a flat rug?

Actually, it’s easy to give your flat weave rug a quick rug refresh just by vacuuming it after cleaning it. Vacuum, wash, then vacuum again for a nearly new look.

Are flatweave rugs durable?

Despite being lightweight and thin, flatweave rugs are relatively durable. This makes them an excellent option for high-traffic areas of your home, and also makes them easier to clean than high-pile alternatives.

What does flatweave mean in a rug?

“Flat weave” refers to how the rug is put together. In these rugs, the fibers of the rug are woven together without knots, giving you a thin, flat, and lightweight rug. Basically, they’re the polar opposite of shag rugs.

Are flatweave rugs good for pets?

Being durable, reversible, and easy to clean, flat weave rugs are an excellent option for pet owners. Whether you’re worried about constantly-accumulating pet hair or spilling decorative plants on the floor, don’t be. The cleanup after the storm will be very easy with these rugs.

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