How to Get Dirt Out of a Couch


The couch is where you go to relax, watch a movie or read a book. So when you see dirt on it, you want it gone. Whether your kids put their dirty shoes on your couch or your pet jumped up on the furniture with dirt on its fur, removing it doesn't have to be an all-day chore. Use the right removal method and products to get dirt off the couch, so you don't spread the dirt around or damage the upholstery in the process.

Things You'll Need

  • Vacuum cleaner with attachment hose
  • 1 tsp. bleach-free liquid dish-washing soap
  • Bowl
  • Spoon
  • White rags
  • 1 tsp. household ammonia
  • Allow the dirt to dry if it's still wet. Trying to clean wet dirt from the couch only results in a bigger mess, as it spreads and reaches deeper into the sofa.

  • Vacuum up the loose dirt from the couch using a vacuum cleaner attachment. Take care not to scrub the upholstery with the tool or you risk spreading the dirt.

  • Combine 1 tsp. of bleach-free liquid dish-washing soap with 1 cup of lukewarm water. Use a spoon to stir up the mixture.

  • Dip a clean, white rag into the soapy water and wring it out. Dab the solution onto the dirty spots of the couch.

  • Blot the upholstery with a clean, dry rag to absorb the moisture. Alternate blotting with the rag and soapy water, and then blot up the moisture with the dry rag until no more dirt is coming off the couch.

  • Combine 1/2 cup lukewarm water and 1 tsp. of household ammonia if the dirt is really stubborn and isn't coming out with just soapy water. Sponge the ammonia solution onto the dirt spots with a clean, white rag, and blot with a dry rag to absorb the moisture. Continue this process until all of the dirt is gone.

  • Rinse the couch with a clean rag and cool water. Blot well with a dry rag to absorb any remaining moisture.

Tips & Warnings

  • Never mix bleach and ammonia or products containing these ingredients. This combination produces toxic vapors.
  • Work in a well-ventilated area when using ammonia.
  • Always test the product you are using on an inconspicous area of the couch to check for damage or color changes.

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  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images
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