Curtains can be a beautiful accessory in your home decoration. Still, when not cleaned properly, they absorb smells from around the home, such as cigarette smoke and cooking aromas. As time passes, the dirt on them can make them smell less fresh and cause discoloration. When the curtains are made from a light-colored fabric, very soon, the stains will become noticeable.
Cleaning curtains doesn’t have to be tedious when having the proper knowledge of how to do it. There are several ways to deal with the situation, including using a steam cleaner. In addition, you are obligated to purchase a product that you may not be able to utilize properly or that you may never touch again. Of course, there are other easy methods and cleaners to maintain the excellent look of your curtains.
Cleaning in The Washing Machine
Depending on the fabric of your curtains, you can clean them in the washing machine. It is good to know that beforehand, and if you don’t, to figure it out, read the cleaning instructions carefully. If you have them made for you, not just bought from the store, then ask the sewer what the material is and have it written somewhere for future use. Also, ask them for specific instructions on how to clean the curtains.
Some washing machines have a delicate cycle that is great for curtains, but if yours doesn’t, choose a cool wash with slow-spinning and use the usual laundry detergent of your preference. However, if you fear they might shrink, don’t risk it and hand wash them.
The thing about hand washing curtains is it becomes a bigger chore than putting them in the washing machine, but it does reduce the chance of shrinking. Curtains made from 100% cotton are great to be washed by hand, but avoid those from heavy fabrics. Extracting all the water is complex, and the drying time is longer.
Using a good quality steam cleaner with an upholstery attachment is one of the best ways to clean curtains. It is an excellent choice when heavy materials or expensive fabrics. The steam cleaning procedure cleanses all threads and removes dirt and dust attached to the curtains. It is a handy way to clean curtains without removing them from the rail. However, the process requires special attention to the basic instruction of proper curtain cleaning. You must start from top to bottom very cautiously not to damage the fabric, and if you notice it is becoming wet, then you should hold the appliance further away from the drape. Take proper measures before using the steam cleaner; it can burn you.
Using the dryer may not be wise, mainly because there is a high chance of creases appearing that even a hot iron cannot remove. Instead, let the curtains dry outside, but avoid direct sunlight so they do not discolor, ideally in a ventilated place. Do that, and the curtains will not have almost any creases, and a quick iron afterward will make them look new.
Preventing Curtains from Getting Dirty
One of the best ways to prevent curtains from getting dirty is to minimize the amount of dust and airborne particles that settle on them. One effective solution is to use air purifiers or ventilation systems in your home. These devices can filter out pollutants and allergens, making the air in your home cleaner and fresher. Another way to prevent dirt and odor buildup on curtains is to avoid smoking indoors. Cigarette smoke can cling to fabrics and leave a residue that is difficult to remove. Using kitchen exhaust fans while cooking can also help reduce the amount of cooking odors that can stick to curtains. Finally, it’s best to avoid using strong fragrances or air fresheners near curtains, as they can leave stains or marks. Following these tips can help keep your curtains clean and fresh for longer.
Maintenance Tips for Curtains
Regular maintenance is key to keeping your curtains looking their best. One simple way to maintain your curtains is to regularly dust or vacuum them to prevent dust and dirt buildup. When hanging curtains, it’s important to avoid using clothespins or other metal clips to hold them, as they can leave marks or creases. Instead, use curtain rings or hooks to hang your curtains. Rotating or switching curtains in different rooms can also help prevent fading or discoloration from prolonged exposure to sunlight. Finally, using curtain liners or blackout curtains can protect your curtains from sun damage and prolong their lifespan. Following these maintenance tips can help keep your curtains looking clean and fresh for years.
Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Curtains
When cleaning curtains, it’s essential to avoid common mistakes that can damage the fabric or reduce their lifespan. Some of these mistakes include:
- Using bleach or harsh chemicals – Bleach or other harsh chemicals can damage or discolor the fabric of curtains, making them look worn out and dull. Always read the care instructions provided by the manufacturer and avoid using any products that could damage the curtains.
- Overloading the washing machine or dryer – Curtains are often large and bulky, and it can be tempting to stuff them all into the washing machine or dryer at once. However, this can cause them to shrink or wrinkle, making them difficult to hang correctly. It’s best to wash curtains in small loads and give them plenty of room to move around.
- Ironing wet curtains – Let your curtains dry completely before ironing them. Doing it while they’re wet can cause the fabric to stretch or become misshapen, leading to unsightly wrinkles and creases.
- Hanging wet curtains – Hanging wet curtains back on the rod can cause water damage or mold growth. Whenever excessive moisture is present, mold and mildew can grow on the fabric. Always make sure your curtains are completely dry before hanging them back up.
When in Doubt, Call the Professionals
Indeed not everybody wants to spend their free time hand washing or using a steam cleaner, which may not have been the proper investment. Professional companies have a long experience in cleaning drapes without damaging the fabric. Some even use protective coat solutions that prolong the life of the curtains and even protect them from sunlight and dirt.
Sometimes emergencies can occur, and in those cases, the curtains will require immediate cleaning. Hiring a local cleaning company can benefit you as it saves you from buying unnecessary items from the store. No matter where you live, the curtains will catch whatever is in the air because they act like an air filter. Having your curtains professionally cleaned is another way to improve the overall hygiene of your home.
Cleaning curtains isn’t the most fun activity to do. It’s not rocket science either, but if not done correctly can lead to some severe fabric damage. However, with regular maintenance, such as vacuuming, rotating and reading the labels before washing, you can avoid creating a disaster. Following these tips above and avoiding common mistakes can help keep your curtains clean and fresh for years.