How To Clean a Dry Clean Only Couch or Sofa

Most households prefer not to dry-clean their couch or sofa even if the manufacturer tells them to do that. Dry cleaning ensures that the furniture materials will not be damaged from the harsh usual cleaning. But there are sofas and couches that require nothing but dry cleaning. For these, you have two choices—DIY or professional cleaning.

Professional cleaning is a surer and safer way, but it is the more expensive option. You do not have to clean the sofa everyday, anyway. The money you’ll spend will sure be worth it especially if you have chosen a reputable cleaner. If you choose this, make sure that they will cover insurance for the sofa. Many dry-clean-only couches and sofas are very expensive that they deserve insurance.

DIY is a cheaper but not-so-safe option. One wrong move and your lovely couch or sofa might turn into an old-looking furniture. Better do it right if you don’t want to regret later. Follow the steps below when dry cleaning a couch or sofa:

  • Remove dirt. Wipe or bush the sofa to remove obvious dirt. Remove as much dirt as you can. This should help for easier vacuuming.
  • Vacuum-clean the furniture. Use the proper attachment for the vacuum cleaner. Start vacuuming the dirt on the couch.
  • Apply dry cleaning solution. If you can find a special dry cleaning solution for couch and sofa, then use that. Dry cleaning solution for carpets and clothes can be great alternatives, too.
  • Read the product instruction before using it. Test some solution on a hidden portion of the furniture. Wait for some minutes and see if the product will react negatively on your couch or sofa. Don’t dare use the solution if you have seen negative results. Instead, try another dry-cleaning solution until you get the perfect cleaning product.
  • Use the product as instructed. Usually, the powder has to be sprinkled all over the couch or sofa. Let it sit for some minutes and then, vacuum the powder out of the furniture. The dry-cleaning solution can attract dirt from beneath. That is why they need to sit on the furniture for a while before vacuuming.
  • See if there are still spots that need cleaning. Sprinkle some powder on those spots, wait for some minutes, and vacuum. Do this again and again until you are satisfied with the result.
  • There is another way to do this, which does not require a vacuum cleaner. Mix one tablespoon of the dry cleaning powder to one quart cold water. Damp a terry washcloth using that mixture. Squeeze out excess liquid because you don’t want to dampen the couch or sofa. Start wiping the furniture with the cloth.

Take note—do not use any heating device on the furniture because this might only result to shrinking, wrinkling, and discoloration. Instead, wipe the furniture with clean cotton cloth. Take as much excess water as you can. Let the couch or sofa to air dry.

These steps can also be followed when dry cleaning other fabric-covered things like clothes and carpets.


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