We bought a sofa for the family room a few months ago. It’s beige and starting to show the dirt. Someone told me I can’t use upholstery or carpet cleaner on it. So what are the best ways to clean microfiber couch cushions?
LaRue Sorensen, Ogden, UT
You’re right, you probably shouldn’t use a carpet cleaner on this kind of sofa. It could cause spots or damage the fabric. Instead, I’ll tell you some of the best ways to clean microfiber sofa cushions without staining or bleaching them. All my information comes from this article: https://www.tipsbulletin.com/how-to-clean-a-microfiber-couch/ we published some time ago.
First off, simply read the care label. It tells you exactly what kinds of cleaning methods are acceptable. Some microfiber fabrics are dry-brush only. In that case, use a soft-bristled nylon brush or vacuum attachment to remove dust or debris. Vacuuming this type of sofa once a week does a lot to keep it looking great.
Other microfiber materials you can wipe down with a damp cloth, or use a solvent. Look for an “S” or “W-S” on the label. “W” means it is water-safe” and “S” means you can clean it with solvents. (But never use acetone!)
Rubbing alcohol is an inexpensive solvent that cleans stains off microfiber. Test it on a small area out of sight to see if it affects the color. Once you’re sure it won’t bleach the fabric, spray it on water spots or other marks and let it dry. Brush the area afterward with a soft nylon brush.
On the other hand, if you have a water-safe microfiber, you can try a mixture of warm water with a squirt of dishwashing liquid. Clean a small area using circular motions, and wipe it dry with a clean cloth so it won’t spot. Avoid using too much soap because the residue from it will attract dirt.
Finally, check out our article on homemade upholstery cleaner recipes for detailed information on each step. I hope this helps your couch cushions look like new again.