Leather is a great material––it’s sturdy, attractive, practical and long lasting if you know how to take care of it. If you don’t, it dries, cracks and wears, losing all its attractive qualities.
With our extensive experience in home and furniture cleaning in Village, VA, it astounds us that more people do not take better care of their leather furniture. Leather is quite an investment, and its upkeep is simple and easy.
Below are five tips from our home and furniture cleaning experts that can help you add years to the life of your leather furniture:
- Move out of direct sunlight: Sunlight isn’t great for leather. It dries the leather out and causes it to crack, and it can cause some cleaning solutions to bleach leather, so make sure you move your furniture out of sunlight for the duration of the cleaning. Even after the cleaning, you should try to keep your leather furniture out of direct regular sunlight, even if it means rearranging your living room.
- Remove dust and loose dirt: Before you get to the real cleaning, it’s important to remove dust, loose dirt and sand that might have accumulated on your leather. Use your vacuum’s hand-held extension to remove loose dirt. Then, dust with a static-cling duster or, if you don’t have one, a paper towel works fine.
- Spot clean your stains: Stains take much longer to clean than the rest of your leather, so you’ll need to take a different tack with those. You’ll want to mix up a cleaning paste: one part lemon juice to one part cream of tartar (alternatively, a paste of water and baking soda works, as does non-whitening non-gel toothpaste). Rub the paste into the stains, leaving enough paste to completely cover the surface of the stain. Let it sit for two or three hours. (If the stain is extra tough—like a motor-oil stain, for example—you may need to let the paste sit overnight.)
- Clean with liquid solution: A liquid mixture of water and vinegar works well. But you might find simply mixing a little dish soap in water is easier and, as an added bonus, it doesn’t make your couch smell like a pickle. Using a rag (damp with the solution, but not dripping), wash the whole couch. Do not scrub, except to remove any of the paste left from the previous step. Afterward, lightly buff the leather dry with a soft cloth.
- Condition your leather: Use a bit of linseed oil or tea tree oil to lock moisture into your leather and keep it strong. Many home remedies call for olive oil, but over the years this can actually weaken the leather. Linseed oil works great. Tea tree oil works equally well, and has a fragrance many people enjoy. Use a rag to work the oil into the leather.
Cleaning your leather regularly is a basic requirement of owning leather furniture, and we suggest you do this once a season, or at the very least every year. To really add to the longevity of your furniture, consider hiring a professional to perform a deep clean every three years or so. Our furniture cleaning experts have tools and solutions specially designed not just to get your leather clean, but to nourish it and extend its life. If you’d like to know how we do it, or are in need of furniture cleaning in Village, VA, give us a call here at King’s Cleaning Service, Inc.