Upholstery Cleaning – The Complete DIY Guide

Last updated Sep 19, 2021 | Cleaning | 2 comments

All furniture is prone to wear and tear, no matter how diligent you are about taking care of them. At some point, you are likely to find stain, dust or spills that leave your precious equipment looking less than fresh. Though most would recommend a professional to do upholstery cleaning, many issues can be treated at home without risks to the furniture. So before hiring a professional, make sure to know if you can handle the job yourself first.

Homemade DIY Upholstery Cleaning Solutions

Creating your own cleaning product at home can help you save more money than hiring a professional to do the job. One great solution is to combine cup of biodegradable soap with 1 cup of warm water. You need to share the mixture until you see viscous foam.

The next step is to apply the foam to the furniture until the dirt is removed. Do not let the fabric get to wet. To do this, use a soft bristle brush as it helps clean the furniture without soaking it wet. To remove the excess moisture, use a dry cloth and let the furniture dry.

Another great solution to remove spots or stains is to use a club of soda and hydrogen peroxide. However, be careful in using this homemade cleaning solution because not all fabric reacts well to it. Test a sample fabric first and see the results.

Use cold water when trying to remove stains or dirt. But if you are removing grease stain, use warm water when using DIY cleaning solutions.

Using a shampoo cleaner is also a great way to clean stains. Mix the shampoo with water then stir. You can dap it onto a sponge and gently take the stain away on the furniture.

Whipped detergent is an effective cleaning solution that gets the job done. Use a gentle brush and scrub it on to the upholstery then rinse using a brush. Do not use laundry detergent when doing your upholstery cleaning. Use only whipped detergent.

A mixture of 6 tablespoon of soap flakes, one pint of ‘boiling water’ as well as 2 tablespoon of Borax make a perfect combination of cleaning solution to any furniture. Mix all the mixture until it becomes a gel. Apply the gel into the foam by using a rough cloth. You may also use a brush. Do not try to soak the mixture. To get rid of the dirt or stain, use only damp cloth.

White vinegar can also be used as an upholstery cleaning solution. Use it by wetting rag as well as wringing it out. The rag must not be dripping. Then, you can wipe the stain on the furniture. The smell is unpleasant at first but it will leave your furniture smelling fresh after a couple of hours. White vinegar is an excellent solution that removes surface dirt. Use can use them for deep cleaning for your furniture.

Effective Products to Use for Upholstery Cleaning and How to Use Them

Baby wipes make an excellent product to use for the everyday upholstery cleaning. The reason for this is that these are very mild. These are also not too wet. If there are stains or dust, you can use baby wipes to effectively clean everything, especially for the sofa or chair.

‘Dryel dry cleaning cloths’ can clean custom chair that is usually dry cleaned. Using these cloths cleans your furniture. This also adds a fresh smell as well.

Mean Green is a product that can be bought at most stores. This can be used to clean a carpet and furniture with stains, spots, and dirt. To use this product, apply the solution with the ‘upholstery cleaner.’ Wipe off with dry cloth. You’ll be surprised how much dirt you can get rid of by using this production in your upholstery cleaning.

Oxyclean is another suggested product by many for cleaning custom sofa. Mix the solution as per the directions and apply it all on the furniture. Wipe the solution with dry cloth and see your furniture looking good as new.

Alternative Upholstery Cleaning

Hydrogen peroxide pretreat is an alternative way for better upholstery cleaning. You can do this by vacuuming your furniture thoroughly using a soft brush to loosen or remove dirt. Blot the stains with the hydrogen peroxide solution to pretreat the stains. Use only 3 percent of the solution then let it sit on the furniture. Wipe the solution with a water damped cloth.

To keep your furniture looking clean and fresh, vacuuming should be a weekly routine to do, especially on the cushions. This will prolong the life of the fabrics, and extend the time of cleaning. This is an easy thing to do. In fact, you don’t need a professional to do this yourself. Vacuuming can help make your furniture free from dust and other harmful chemicals that ruin your precious equipment.

If you do not want to use all-purpose cleaners, you can use some alternative cleaners such as arm and hammer washing soda, microfiber cloths, down east all-purpose cleaner, or nature clean – cream cleanser. These products are less toxic and can help get rid of the irritating stains and dirt that can leave your furniture rusting.

There are also some products that can be used as alternative for using bleach. These include simply clean – oxygen bleach, oxiclean, envirodesic – hydrox, soapworks, and active oxygen bleach.

Tips for Upholstery Cleaning

  • Use cool water when cleaning non-greasy stains and use warm water when cleaning greasy stains.
  •  Do not use too much water when cleaning your furniture because it may cause water stains or mildew under certain conditions. This can make things worse so avoid using excessive water.
  •  To speed up the drying process, use a fan. This is a simple trick that can help dry your furniture at the quickest time possible. You can also let your furniture dry outside the house but be sure to put your attention to it.
  •  To protect your furniture, you can use slipcover whenever you are away for a week.
  • To kill bacteria, use lemon. It is a great solution that is effective against most household bacteria.


  1. I have a removable top on an ottoman that is white cloth, with a matching skirt.
    I used a product with bleach in it and now it is yellow in spots.
    What to do?

  2. Include me on your carpet cleaning and upholstery cleaning training


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