How to Steam Clean Wool Rugs

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Steam cleaning a wool rug restores the look of the carpeting.
Steam cleaning a wool rug restores the look of the carpeting. (Image: carpet image by Ragne Kabanova from Fotolia.com)

Wool rugs see a lot of wear and tear, especially when placed in high trafficked areas. Dirt, pet accidents and food spills can leave unsightly stains on wool rugs. It is important to remove stains as soon as they are noticed to prevent the stain from setting in to the wool fibers. In addition, keep your wool rug on top of rug padding to counter dirt from being worn into the rug because of the pressure of the feet. Steam clean wool rugs to restore the look of the carpeting.

Things You'll Need

  • Baking soda
  • Vacuum
  • Steam cleaner
  • Detergent
  • Water
  • Clothes line
  • Broom

Sprinkle baking soda on the carpet, so that it is thoroughly covered. Baking soda contains sodium carbonate, which neutralizes odors. Vacuum the carpet in both directions to prevent matting.

Rent a steam cleaner from the local grocery or hardware store. Choose a detergent product an mix according to the directions.

Pick a small test area of the carpet to steam clean. Feel the test area to see if there is a sticky residue. Avoid using the product if sticky.

Steam clean the wool rug in both directions. Hang the wool rug up on a clothes line to help dry. A sunny area of the yard works best for quick drying; however, watch for rain or other severe weather conditions.

Sweep off the carpet padding and inspect the padding for any mold or mildew. Throw the carpet padding away if any signs of mold growth are evident. Lay the wool rug on the carpet padding and vacuum to fluff up the carpet fibers.

Tips & Warnings

  • Monitor the vacuum bag to ensure that it is empty. Full carpet bags pick up little debris.
  • Avoid using a detergent product that contains bleach, because it causes fading of colored wool.

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