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Rug Cleaning Tips: How to Clean Persian, Oriental & Jute Rugs at Home

Freshen up the rugs in your home with this article on rug washing! Find out how to clean and remove stains from jute, oriental and persian rugs.


Reading Time: 5 minutes

Written by Eunice Samson

Learn how to clean a rug

Jute, persian, and oriental rugs can make any house into a home but, unfortunately, often come with demanding care requirements. With the right advice however, you can take matters into your own hands, reducing the need for expensive professional cleaning and helping your rugs stay in great condition for longer.

Since combing can damage an oriental or Persian rugs’ fringe, straighten it by flipping the rug end-over-end instead.

How to Clean a Jute Rug

Jute rugs are made of hard-wearing natural fibers. Despite their durable nature, they require reasonable care when cleaning. Soaps, detergents, and water can all damage jute.

How to Clean a Jute Rug: Stains

  1. First dab off any excess moisture as soon as possible. (Don’t rub, as this can cause the stain to set, and rubbing can fray jute fibers.)

  2. Gently brush with a soft brush and water as immediate treatment.

  3. If the stain is acidic, use club soda instead of water.

  4. Dry immediately with a hairdryer to avoid damage.

  5. For solids, first gently scrape it off with a blunt knife or spatula.

  6. Brush the remains with a stiff brush and vacuum.

Jute Rug Care: Prevention & Upkeep

  • Vacuum your rug regularly. If left, grit can wear away at the fibers.

  • If the rug is bound, make sure to vacuum the same way as the binding is sewn.

  • Don’t use too much water when cleaning, and never shampoo or steam-clean jute. Jute releases brown oils when wet and water can distort the fibers too.

  • Dry carpet cleaning systems are very effective if serious cleaning is required.

How to Clean Persian and Oriental Rugs at Home

Persian and oriental rugs sometimes use vegetable dyes, and can often be made of silk or wool. It can be confusing, then, how to clean such rugs at home. Help, however, is at hand.

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Persian and Oriental Rug Spot Cleaning

  1. Use tissue to absorb any water in case it soaks through.

  2. Gently dab with tissue, from the outside of the stain first, then working your way in.

  3. Do not use soap or bleach.

  4. Fill a spray bottle with 3:1 white vinegar and water mix.

  5. Mist the stain and, using a soft brush, brush gently in the direction of the pile.

  6. If the stain is acidic (wine or tomato, for example), fill the bottle with club soda instead.

  7. Dry immediately with a fan or by giving it a wet vacuum.

  8. For solids, scrape with a spatula or blunt knife instead. Then vacuum.

How to Clean Persian and Oriental Rugs: General Clean

Sometimes, however, your rug may need something more comprehensive. Knowing how to clean the rug in this way is important for keeping it in good condition and looking great. (The following steps are not suitable for silk rugs, which will most likely need professional attention.)

  1. First, beat the rug to remove loose particles and grit. (Do this gently if the rug is old. Do not do this if you have any doubts about its delicate nature.)

  2. Mix wool-safe shampoo in a bowl with warm water.

  3. Whisk up the bowl to produce foam.

  4. Put a small amount of foam (and only the foam) on the rug. Make sure to not get the rug wet.

  5. With a sponge, gently rub in the direction of the pile.

  6. Rinse by placing a tiny amount of water on the rug and then absorbing it with a dry sponge. (The water should not reach the back of the rug.)

Persian and Oriental Rug Care

  • Vacuum both sides of the rug regularly. This will reduce wear from grit and help to lift up beaten-down fibers to make the rug nice and fluffy again.

  • If you have one, turn off the beater bar when vacuuming to help reduce damage to the rug.

Be sure to test any new cleaning product or technique on an inconspicuous area first. Always read and follow any care instructions your rug may have, as well as those of any cleaning product.

Frequently asked questions on washing rugs at home

Can you machine wash jute rugs?

We recommend you avoid machine washing your jute rug. Along with steam cleaning, and wet shampoo, cleaning your jute rug with any method that involves saturating the natural fibers could lead to damage including discoloration. Gently dabbing with a damp cloth should lift most stains, whilst a professional dry cleaner can do the best job if you need a deeper clean should your rug become heavily soiled.

How do you clean a hemp rug?

The steps for how to clean a hemp rug are simple once you know how. First, clean up liquid spillages as quickly as you can. We recommend doing this by using a paper towel and pressing it gently over the spill, working from the outside in. Solid spillages can be scraped up using a blunt knife or spoon. For maintaining the rug ensure you vacuum but don't use a beater bar. As with a jute rug, avoid cleaning the rug with any form of water saturation as this could damage the rug.

What exactly is a jute rug?

A jute rug is a natural rug which is made from the fibers of a jute plant. These fibers are most well known for being durable, making it an ideal choice for your rug as it not only looks good but is also comfortable and can withstand the daily pressure of family life including pet and people traffic.

Are there any tips for cleaning Chinese silk rugs?

If you want to try cleaning Chinese silk rugs, we have some simple steps for you to follow. First, use a soft broom to brush away loose dirt and debris. Next, use equal parts water and vinegar to remove any stains – take care to remove solid stains with the back of a spoon and liquid spillages by dabbing them with a paper towel before treating them. Sprinkling a little baking soda over the carpet and leaving it overnight before vacuuming is a great way to remove unwanted odors from your Chinese silk rug. Finally, if you have some more serious stains or cleaning required, make sure that you get your rug cleaned professionally.

Originally published