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How to Care For an Area Rug

The 8 Worst Things You Can Do to Your Area Rug

After spending hours scouring the local flea market and browsing Internet sales, you finally found the perfect area rug to complete your room — and we're guessing you want this precious piece of decor to impress for years to come!

A little bit of TLC now will go a long way to ensure the longevity of your purchase. Conversely, doing the following seven things will cause your area rug to dull and deteriorate prematurely.

Keep reading to learn the biggest mistakes you can make when caring for your rug:

  • Not Using a Rug Pad
  • When you're already dishing out big bucks for an area rug, it's tempting to skip the rug pad — but this comparatively affordable accoutrement can dramatically increase the lifespan of your area rug. Rug pads provide multitiered protection, buffering your rug from wear, allowing it the space it needs to breathe, and preventing slipping.

  • Never Rotating It
  • Daily traffic on the rug takes its toll, especially when it moves in the same pattern around your furniture day in and day out. Rotate your rug once a year to keep it from wearing unevenly.

  • Forgetting to Vacuum Regularly
  • Get in the habit of vacuuming weekly to keep dirt from building up and grinding into the pile. It's the simplest way to keep your rug looking clean and fresh for years to come.

  • Placing It in Direct Sunlight
  • Area rugs are not immune to the sun's strong rays. Unless you put up window shades or close curtains during peak daylight hours, the rug's vibrant colors will fade.

  • Only Vacuuming the Front Side
  • Did you know that the underside of your rug needs vacuuming too? Flip your rug over every couple of months, and give the bottom some attention. You'll be glad you did.

  • Letting Stains Settle
  • Spot clean straightforward spills immediately, and get the rug to a professional cleaner ASAP to clean up more challenging messes — even if you can't get the rug there until the next day, a pro should be able to tell you how to mitigate the problem in the meantime. In short, act fast, and don't let stains set!

  • Skipping Deep Cleanings
  • Vacuuming can only do so much. Every year or two, you need to go deeper to really flush out dirt and grime and restore your rug's luster. We recommend taking it to a professional rug cleaner who will know how to treat your specific rug, but if you're going the DIY route, be sure to follow the manufacturer's cleaning guidelines.

  • Allowing Dirt to Build Up Around the House
  • Prevent dirt from ever reaching your rug by limiting how much gets into the house to begin with. If you place a doormat at every entrance and regularly clean the floors around your house — especially those by entrance ways — you'll keep much of the mess from ever reaching the rug.

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