How To Properly Clean and Protect Your New Furniture

How To Properly Clean and Protect Your New Furniture
You’ve just made a great investment buying a new living room set, complete with clean wood furniture and comfortable leather seating. It looks and feels so nice! But after a few months of introductions to your kids, pets, and various guests, your furniture is starting to lose its brand-new glow. What should you do?
One of the most frequently asked questions AFW hears is, “How do I clean and care for my furniture?” You don’t have to wrap your furniture in plastic or make your living room off-limits to keep it at its best. We have some tips that will protect both your budget and your brand new home furnishings.  

How To Clean Wood Furniture:
  • Keep furniture out of direct sunlight to prevent fading or darkening.
  • Use a lint-free cloth to dust wood furniture. Use a slightly damp cloth, followed by a dry cloth to clean. Don’t use abrasives or wax on wood furniture.
lightly spraying wood furniture to clean
  • Use felt backing underneath lamps and other accessories to prevent scratches and gouges. Rotate accessories when dusting so they don’t remain in the same spot.
  • Use placemats to protect wood tables from food and condensation from plates and cups. When hosting or serving, use hot pads under hot serving dishes. Put coasters out for glasses and cups on wood coffee and side tables.
glass cup on coaster, wood table with place settings
How To Clean Leather Furniture:
  • Use a vacuum crevice tool to clean the seams of leather furniture. Use a lint-free cloth to dust. Try not to rub when cleaning but wipe gently instead. Don’t use abrasives or harsh chemicals on leather furniture. For most spills, use a damp cloth. Keep in mind that improper cleaning can void your leather furniture warranty.
hand wiping down leather sofa
  • Don’t use or place sharp objects on leather goods. Keep furniture out of direct sunlight to avoid fading or cracking. Keep leather furniture at least two feet away from heat sources.
  • Leather is durable, but it’s not accident or damage-proof. Remember that no furniture is pet-proof, including leather. If you’re looking for ways to protect your furniture while sharing it with your fur babies, or thinking about giving them a comfy space of their own, shop our pet beds.
dog on chewed up couch
How To Clean and Care For Upholstered Furniture

General Care
Keep furniture out of direct sunlight. Rotate cushions and pillows regularly to allow even wear. Vacuum using the upholstery attachment to remove soil and debris that could be abrasive to the surface. Be careful when using household cleaners and chemicals near upholstered furniture. Overspray from these products could cause damage to your furniture.
vacuuming a couch
Spot Cleaning
If a spill happens, it’s important to clean the fabric immediately. Don’t wait.

spilled wine on couch
Blot the area with a clean, white cloth. A white cloth helps avoid other staining from the dye in the fabric being used. Pre-test all care products in a hidden area to check compatibility with your fabric. Clean spots from the outside of the affected area to prevent rings.

Advanced Cleaning
To better understand the cleaning needs and dos and don'ts of your furniture, there are cleaning codes that tell you the best cleaning method to protect it. The cleaning codes are usually found on a tag attached to your furniture, most commonly under the cushions or underneath the furniture. Take a look at the cleaning code located in the yellow rectangle below. You can even check these codes on some floor models before making a purchase decision to make sure the furniture is right for your home.

furniture tags
Cleaning Codes:

W – This means water-based cleaning agents or foam can safely be used for spot cleaning. Store bought furniture cleaning products are typically safe for this furniture. Try to use as little water or product as possible, making sure to follow the directions or time instructions.

S- This means your furniture is dry clean only. Don’t use any water or foam. It is safe to spot-clean with water-free cleaning solvents only. Pre-test a small, hidden area first. Never use water on furniture marked with this code, or you can lose color or end up with rings. Blot any spills or oil-based crumbs immediately.

WS – This code means it’s safe to spot clean with upholstery shampoo, foam, mild detergent, or dry-cleaning solvent. Steam cleaning is not recommended. Solvent furniture cleaner or having the fabric professionally dry-cleaned is suggested.

X – This code means you must clean this furniture by vacuuming or light brushing only. Do not use any liquid or foam cleaners on furniture with this code. This is a rare code, so don’t skip this advice.

Maintaining your new furniture is just a matter of knowing what to do to ensure it has a long life. Understanding all of your furniture and what it needs is key in protecting your investment. Looking to learn more about furniture and how to care for it? Check out our other blogs below.