Cleaning upholstery is not an easy task. Upholstered furniture is comfy to sit on, and has a nice texture, but it’s porous material and it absorbs everything. Food and drink stains, perspiration, dead skin cells, hair, dirt and grime, nicotine, pet hairs, and what ever they brought into the house – you name it – your upholstered furniture will gladly collect it all for you. Easy in (the upholstery) tough time out (removing from the upholstery). And most of the time it is all ground into the fibers and below the surface.
Even odors (including the smell of cigarette smoke or cigar smoke) will stick to the upholstery.
Vacuuming is great for removing surface dust and surface dirt, crumbs, hairs, etc. on the surface of the upholstery. Never brush crumbs, dirt, etc. with force to push it deeper into the fabric. That makes is much harder to remove.
With a large family, pets and much traffic in the living area, you might want to invest in one of those little cleaning machines. They are usually lightweight, easy to handle, and they have all the attachments that will reach into all areas of your couch and chairs. This little machine will inject the fabric with a hot liquid cleaning solution and also vacuum it right up. With the first pass you will see a big difference. This will remove the dirt and grime and also will remove odors that have been trapped in your upholstery. You can even use the machine on your carpeting.
If you have a small stain, you can try a spot carpet cleaner that you apply to the stain, let sit a few minutes and rub off. Sometimes for small stains a spot remover will do the job – just follow the manufacturer’s directions on the container.
You can call a professional service to do carpets, furniture and draperies as well. Make sure they are reputable – some saturate your carpets and furniture so much that you cannot use them for a couple days.