How to Clean Wool Carpets

Who wouldn’t want to own a wool carpet or rug?  Wool’s warmth makes it ideal for long winters and its durability will ensure it’s around for many seasons.  The fibers are naturally strong and hold up well against stains and other wear and tear.  While the cleaning process can be lengthy and demanding, it’s worth the extra effort when that means being able to enjoy your wool carpet for years to come.   Here’s what you need to know when cleaning your wool carpet:

Vacuum Regularly

Like most floorings, it’s important to clean floors regularly to maintain their appearance.  This is especially true for wool carpets.  Wool’s ability to trap and hold on to dust can make it difficult to remove that dirt later on.  Simply vacuuming once a week will help to keep your rugs and carpets dirt-free.

Invest in a Good Vacuum

It’s nice to own a good vacuum, regardless of the floorings you have in your home.  A wool carpet will benefit greatly from a rotating beater bar, but only certain types.  Berber and other carpet types might be ruined by this vacuum feature, so make sure to double check before you begin.  If you have a wool carpet that can be used with a rotating beater bar, vacuuming will help to agitate any dirt deep in the fibers and remove it efficiently.

Avoid Hot Water

Just like certain clothes shrink with hot water, so will your wool carpet.  Cleaning with water hotter than 150 degrees will warp wool rugs and cause wool carpets to pull away from the wall.  Both damages are irreversible and will ruin your wool carpet or rug.

Don’t Use Too Much Water

Wool is known for holding onto to heat, keeping homes warmer in the winter.  Because of this, it’s also efficient at holding water, which isn’t so great.  A wool carpet that’s been soaked in water will not dry any time soon, sometimes taking up to many weeks.  Eventually, the sitting water within the wool fibers will start to smell unpleasant, and you’ll be forced to replace the carpet.

Act Quickly When Cleaning Stains

While wool rugs and carpets are exceptionally stain resistant, that does not mean spills can sit on the carpet for extended periods of time without causing damage.  When stains have time to set, they will be nearly impossible to remove from a wool carpet.  Those same qualities we love so much about wool, like durability and resistance, can also seal in stains forever. When you spot a spill, blot the area with a clean dry cloth to remove the majority of the liquid.  Then, use lukewarm water and a towel to remove the substance completely.  Be sure to blot the spot instead of scrubbing, as this will maintain the fibers of the carpet and keep it looking new.  And like mentioned above, don’t allow too much water on the carpet, or it will take much longer to dry.   

Use Gentle Cleaners

With any carpet, it’s important to know which kinds of cleaners are safe to use.  Wool is particularity sensitive, which is why it should never be exposed to harsh chemicals.  A mild cleaner with a pH between 5 and 8 is recommended, but it’s best to consult with your flooring professional to find the best-suited product.

With proper care, any wool carpet or rug will stay beautiful and durable in your home.  Owning this sought-after flooring may require more work than other options, but its resistance to wear and tear, as well as its added warmth in the winter, is unmatched by any other carpet type!