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A guide to the care and maintenance of your investment grade rugs
Care and maintenance of old rugs – Owning an antique rug, especially a beautiful antique rug, is not only a pleasure, but a responsibility. Owners of ancient rugs and Persian rugs should in fact see themselves as “the present owner,” a member of a series that spans the past and the future. The care and maintenance of antique rugs is perhaps the most important and easiest aspect of owning a rug. Its maintenance is essential to protect the condition and therefore the value of the coin. The basics of carpet care are also covered in our Guide to Everything You Want to Know About Antique Carpets.
To enjoy a beautiful carpet over the long term, it is important to follow these simple precautions:
Carpets are mainly sensitive to the following:
- Carry – due to foot traffic and / or sudden suction.
- Pity – because of moths and other insects
- Tasks – food or drinks.
- Burns – smoking or chimneys.
- Pity leaking plumbing / potted plants.
Why such damage to carpets, if left unchecked, will eventually become a major problem:
You should be careful with a carpet if it starts to unravel or wear down to the foundation, as it would likely continue to deteriorate further into a hole, tear or tear. space.
Such losses on the fabric – holes and torn edges – should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent them from getting bigger and requiring more extensive repair.
If you have a leaky flowerpot sitting on a carpet, water will seep into the carpet and over time it will develop a dry rot. Once the carpet foundation has rotted, there is no way to fix it – this area should be completely reattached and the foundation recreated.
Damage from leaks can affect the entire mat. If a carpet “sits” in the water for a while, the colors will start to run off and may develop a dry rot. the mat does not need to be completely submerged for this to happen. Since the wool will absorb water, it will need to be opened and dried completely before you know if the carpet has suffered significant or long-term damage.
How to minimize the risk of damaging your carpet:
- Beware of Moths – If you see a moth flying, you must realize that there is a good chance that your carpet is already infested and you should probably seek professional help. Check the underside of your carpet regularly for signs of moths, especially the silky white cobwebs of the larvae. Some residences tend to have moths. If you fall into this category, use moth spray regularly, even on the reverse side of rugs in use.
- Storing Your Rugs – If you are storing folded or rolled rugs, use mothballs or cedar shavings and check the rugs every month or two. make sure you have the fully wrapped and sealed so that water and moisture do not enter. It may be a good idea not to place the mat directly on your warehouse floor. If a leak does occur, it may be days before you discover it and you certainly wouldn’t want your carpet to “sit” in the water the entire time.
- Burns – make sure you have something placed under a candle or incense. This way, hot wax and ashes will not fall directly on the surface of the carpet.
- Flower Pots – Make sure you have something under the flower pot where water can collect. As long as the area (of the mat) where the flowerpot is located remains dry, you will not create any problems.
- If you have a good room, regular food and drink stains are unlikely to cause long-term damage. Therefore, you should feel free to use and enjoy the room and worry if your guests spill red wine or food.
How to keep your carpet clean and well preserved:
Carpets get dirty over time. It’s a fact – no matter how careful the owner is. Accumulation of dust and dirt can contribute to wear and / or damage.
Here are some steps you can take to keep your carpet clean and healthy over time:
- Washing and cleaning your carpet – In routine maintenance, every four years or so, a carpet should be washed and cleaned by a professional. Urban environments will deposit dirt and soot suspended in your carpets and textiles. Carpets can also dry out from central heating, and washing not only cleans the carpet, but rehydrates the wool.
- Spot cleaning – This may be necessary in case of spill stains. NEVER use chemical cleaners or stain removers. If they are not used or applied correctly, they can damage the mat irreversibly. Stains from red wine, tea, coffee, milk and animals should require immediate attention. These spills should be mopped up and then rinsed off with lukewarm water. This can be done by placing a towel or disposable rag under the carpet and pouring water into it until the stain is rinsed off. Test the carpet first to make sure the colors do not run off before rinsing off with plenty of water. To “test” the area, simply rub a damp white cloth over the affected area, then see if any of the colors have transferred to the white cloth. If this is the case, we strongly encourage you to seek professional help.
- Spilled red wine can also be treated by putting table salt on the stain after blotting and rinsing, but the salt must be removed after five minutes or it will whiten the carpet.
- If you soak an area on the mat -Following a leak, a spill or if it is done on purpose, a wet carpet should never be left on the floor. Make sure to lift it off the surface of the soil to allow air circulation on both sides until it is completely dry. You don’t need to lift the entire mat off the floor, placing objects under different areas of the mat will allow air to circulate and moisture to evaporate. A damp carpet left on the ground can lead to dry rot. Heavy washes and even spot cleaning are best left to the professionals. A professional cleaning service can do wonders in removing stains, especially if the carpet is taken care of quickly.
Minimize damage caused by foot traffic:
Even the finest carpet will wear out if subjected to repeated traffic.
Follow these simple steps to protect the longevity of your carpet:
- Rotate the mat – It is important to rotate the carpet every two years or so so that the traffic is evenly distributed over the room.
- Vacuum your carpet – Frequent vacuuming is essential to remove dust and grit that will wear down the pile under foot traffic. But it should be an ordinary vacuum cleaner.
Prevent the colors of your carpet from fading:
Contrary to popular opinion, plant dyes can fade considerably when exposed to UV light. Synthetic dyes will fade considerably and this will happen much faster than with vegetable-dyed rugs. Strong and prolonged sunshine is not good for textiles of any type. Strong light can also dry out and oxidize wool, weakening the fibers. This is the case with vintage rugs and old rugs.
Follow these steps to keep your rug colors looking great:
- Shade the carpet – If you have rugs in a very sunny room with a southern exposure, it is advisable to use shade, not to block the light, but to reduce it somewhat.
- UV films – The application of UV filters on your windows is strongly recommended. You won’t see a difference and it’s quick, easy, inexpensive to implement.
What you should avoid doing to ensure that your rug has a long and happy life:
- Do not store rugs in a closet or attic without checking every month or so for moths.
- Do not store rugs in a basement, which could lead to irreparable dry rot (due to the humidity that is always present in such places).
- Do not leave a damp or wet carpet directly on the floor surface. Moisture that cannot escape from the underside of the rug can also cause dry rot – be sure to hold the rug up, allowing air to circulate.
- Do not use vacuums with brush roll bars, unless the roll function can be turned off. Roller or bat bars can fray the ends and sides of the carpet, causing significant pile loss or damage.
- Do not try to treat stains with chemical cleaners. This can make matters worse and prevent a professional cleaner from removing the stain later.