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Upholstery can be intimidating to clean, it can be awkward and probably is not a part of your regular cleaning routine. No one wants to sit down and relax on a couch or chair covered in stains. Rug Doctor Rental is here to help. Refresh your upholstery in just 5 steps!

Step 1: Check The Manufacturer's Tag

Before starting the sofa cleaning or chair cleaning, check the manufacturer’s tag for specific cleaning instructions. On upholstery, you’ll probably see a manufacturer’s cleanability code tag. If the fabric is coded “WS” or “W”, it’s safe to clean. If your upholstery tag is coded “X” or “S”, it is unsafe to clean due to the type of fabric on the couch or chair. Once you know that it’s okay to be cleaned, test a small hidden area of your fabric couch or chair for colorfastness.


Now that you know your couch or chair can be cleaned and that the upholstery color won’t be affected, take off anything that can be removed from the sofa: throw blankets, pillows, toys, and everything else.


Focus on the cushions once you have all the ‘extras’ off the couch or chair. Technically, these can be taken off, and they should, but they can’t just be thrown in the washing machine. That’s where our Rug Doctor Rental products come in handy. You can rent our machines for 24 to 48 hours and get a professional-grade clean for a fraction of the price. Don’t forget to rent the accessory tool and hose for the couch cleaning!

Step 2: Vacuum

Start by using your vacuum attachments to clean hair and loose dirt from the surface. Now that the dry debris is removed let’s give your couch and chairs a good deep clean.

Step 3: Pretreat Stains

First, take a look at your couch and assess any glaring stains on the upholstery that need a little extra attention. Tackle those stains by pretreating them with one of our specially developed formulas. Your carpet isn’t the only place that has heavy traffic. Use Rug Doctor Professional Fabric & Upholstery Cleaner® to loosen and remove tough stains and embedded dirt. This ready to spray 2-in-1 Formula removes tough stains and loosens embedded dirt in heavy traffic areas improving deep cleaning results by 45%. The dual-action formula removes tough stains like food, grease, oil, wine, fruit juice, soda, coffee, tea, and ground-in dirt. Rug Doctor Professional Urine Eliminator® is great for pet stains. This spray not only eliminates urine stains but also other biological stains such as sweat, vomit, feces, and drool. For bright colored stains the Rug Doctor Professional Fabric & Upholstery Cleaner® works great. The multipurpose fabric cleaner formula is ideal for removing stains and odors like coffee, soda, wine, juice, food grease, mud, ink, and dirt and can be used on upholstery, car interiors, throw pillows, outdoor furniture, and other fabric and textiles.

Step 4: Deep Clean

After pretreating the stains, get the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner you’ve rented. Fill the machine with one of our machine formulas for best results and attach the hose and accessory to get started. Spray the formula onto the upholstery using a slow and steady forward and backward motion. Then, go back over the same area and suck up the stains and dirt. Do this over the whole sofa and chairs to clean them.

Step 5: Let it dry and Enjoy!

Once you’re done cleaning the sofa and upholstered chairs, you will need to let them dry. There are a few factors that speed up or slow down dry time, so each case is different, but we recommend waiting 4-6 hours before sitting on your couch or chairs. You can also point a fan at them to help speed up the drying time. Once your furniture is dry, enjoy your freshly cleaned upholstery!