Upholstery, Couch, and Sofa!
Everything You Need to Know About Couch Cleaning Services in Toronto
Do you know that your couch is the dirtiest thing in your home — dirtier than your washroom?
According to a Hygiene Audit Systems study, microbiologists found that the average games controller, which is an item usually left on couches, has a bacterial count of 7,863 per 15 square inches, nearly five times that of a typical washroom. Sofa arms were found to be 12 times more contaminated, and a typical favorite children’s toy is 1.5 times dirtier.
So, it turns out that one of the most frequently used furniture in our homes — except for the kitchen table — is also the dirtiest. But, unlike the kitchen table which we always clean after use, people rarely have their couches/sofas/upholstery thoroughly cleaned. A Hygiene Council study found that 61% of the population has either never gotten their sofas professionally cleaned, or have done so only once or twice since they acquired them. Yikes!
How dirty can sofas and couches get?
Soft surfaces like those on couches and sofas are harder to clean, so they can house dangerous allergens and bacteria longer than hard surfaces do. These bacteria can include the common cold bacteria, the flu virus, listeria, staph, and strep bacteria. Our couches and sofas can literally make us sick without our being even aware of it. However, the good news is they can be removed by a good professional cleaning service in Toronto that thoroughly cleans them.
How long do sofas and couches last?
People put a lot of thought into buying their furniture, especially their couches or sofas, and consider it an important home decorating investment in their budget. Our sofas are not only our comfort zones but also say a lot about our home, personality, and character.
Maintaining it, though, appears to be another matter. Although we wish they’d just take care of themselves and live forever, they can’t. The average couch or sofa life is only between 7 to 15 years. If you take good care of it, you might likely be able to recoup some of your investment in it by selling it at thrift furniture shops someday.
Can upholstery fabric really be cleaned?
Yes! It requires that you know how to do it properly, though. Different upholstery fabrics need different kinds of care and cleaning. You don’t want your upholstery to shrink or the color to bleed when you’re cleaning it.
There are 5 types of upholstery: natural, synthetic, combined, microfibre, and leather.
(1) Natural upholstery is made of 100% natural fibers, like cotton, wool, silk, velvet, and linen. Natural fabrics retain a lot of water so wet cleaning is not advisable. Steam cleaning would be good, though. Generally, you can clean them by yourself unless the label says not to. Using water-based products will be fine in moderate amounts. Too much can cause shrinking or “water rings”.
(2) Synthetic upholstery is made of fabrics from human-made fibers, like acrylic, nylon or olefin, and polyester. They are generally easy to clean. They can take water well and most any type of water-based cleaning product will do. If the upholstery can be removed, it can even be washed in your laundry machine. It’s always a good idea, though, to check the upholstery’s label first for specific cleaning instructions and warnings. Also, test a small, not-easily-visible area first for discoloration or shrinkage before cleaning the entire furniture. If discoloration or shrinkage occurs, stop, and try another cleaning agent.
(3) Combined upholstery uses both natural and synthetic fibers. Oftentimes, cotton or wool is blended with synthetic fibers at a 50:50 ratio. Since this requires expert knowledge and professional treatment, the safest option is to hire professional upholstery cleaning services in Toronto, unless the label specifies a do-it-yourself (DIY) cleaning method.
(4) Microfiber upholstery uses microfiber fabric where a tiny fabric area uses a large number of fibers. This stops dirt from penetrating deeply into the fabric, so this type of upholstery fabric is easier to clean. Usually, just regular scrubbing off the dirt with a brush and vacuuming to remove the stain will do. Still, check the manufacturer’s label for specific cleaning instructions, especially for spot cleaning.
(5) Leather upholstery fabric usually needs only prompt and regular wiping off of dust and dirt and periodic conditioning to keep the fabric smooth and elastic. However, for spot cleaning, it is recommended that a professional cleaning service in Toronto does it for you.
Please note also that we’re just talking about cleaning upholstery fabric here. If you decide to do it yourself, remember to keep liquids and cleaning agents away from frames, legs, or armrests. The metal or wooden parts of your sofa or couch can corrode, discolor, rust, and even stain the upholstery if the liquids and cleaning agents get into them.
What are double rubs?
Upholstery cleaning also depends on the type of furniture fabric you have in terms of double rubs, which is the measure of how much use upholstery fabric can stand up to.
If the fabric is —
- less than 3,000 double rubs, it’s designed for decorative use, like curtains, drapes, or pillows, but not for furniture fabric.
- between 8,000 to 10,000 double rubs, it’s designed for light use and won’t withstand daily wear and tear.
- between 10,000 to 25,000 double rubs, it’s designed for medium use. Most residential upholstery fabric belongs to this category. For high-durability residential use, the recommended standard is between 15,000 to 30,000 double rubs.
- between 100,000 to 250,000 double-rubs, it’s commercial-grade upholstery fabric designed for heavy use like in airport terminals, hospital waiting areas, theatres, fast-food restaurants, and stadiums. For general contract commercial upholstery projects, 15,000 double-rubs is the minimum.
How to treat and clean these different types of fabrics require professional knowledge and long years of experience in the field of upholstery cleaning services so it’s best to hire one in Toronto.
Can I not clean my upholstery myself?
Yes, you can if you know what type of upholstery fabric you have and the proper way to clean it. In general, you can vacuum your sofa or couch regularly as DIY maintenance, but it is highly recommended that you have it professionally cleaned every 6 months, or at least once or twice every couple of years.
Some key benefits of professional cleaning services are:
- longer furniture life for your sofa or couch;
- better aesthetic appearance;
- cleaner, fresher smell;
- safer cleaning practices; and, most of all,
- better air quality in your home and
- a healthier environment for you and your family
Still, it all comes down to the 4 key factors you must consider in deciding whether to do it yourself or hire a professional cleaning service instead. These factors are cost, time, cleaning results, and removing deep stains.
For example, doing it yourself will certainly save you money, but if you don’t know how to do it properly, it might end up costing you more. Also, consider the value of your time and energy in doing it yourself vis-a-vis having a professional cleaner do it for you. Will you be more productive and earn more if you have a professional sofa and couch cleaner do it for you, or won’t you? Usually what you save in money will require more of your time, attention, and energy.
In terms of cleaning results and removing deep stains, will your home remedies and rented cleaning tools attain the thoroughly clean results you want and remove the deep stains from your upholstery fabric, or will a professional cleaning service be able to do it better?