Few things say style and comfort quite like traditional leather furniture. As amazing as it may look in your living room or den, though, cleaning a leather sofa or chair can be a bit difficult at times. These tips can help.
Use your vacuum cleaner regularly to eliminate any debris that may have collected either on the furniture itself or between the cushions. Cleaning leather furniture this way routinely should help you avoid more serious problems
down the road. By removing any food, hair, and dirt early on, you’ll help prevent it from getting ground into the leather and leaving a stain.
Before cleaning a leather sofa or other furniture with any specific product, you’ll want to figure out what type of leather it is actually made from. That information should be on the tag. If not, contact your retailer or the manufacturer to learn more about your furniture. How you clean the leather will depend on whether it’s genuine or bonded, as well as what type of animal it is from.
Most leather furniture can be safely cleaned with mild liquid soap and distilled water. You’ll need to mix the soap with about a quart of water, and whip it until suds form on it. In an inconspicuous area, test to make sure you’re not going to cause more damage to the leather.
Dip a rag into the water, then wring it out well and wipe the surface down with the cloth. Clean it off with a separate cloth dipped in pure distilled water, being careful not to get too much water on the leather. Dry the sofa carefully or allow it to dry naturally, always out of direct sunlight. Cleaning leather furniture in this way can be done as often as you think it needs it. Be careful not to get the leather too wet, or it will cause stains.
About four times a year, you’ll want to get soap that’s made for cleaning leather furniture and carefully clean your sofa, chairs, and other pieces. This not only gives your furniture a beautiful, clean look, but the conditioners in the soap will help to protect the leather, too. Follow the directions on the package for best results.
If your leather furniture does get stained, it can be a challenge to get clean. Some people swear by using alcohol, but it can be very drying and damage the leather. Often, you can use the same method that you would for regular leather furniture cleaning: a slightly damp rag with a little mild soap. Blot the stain carefully and rub very gently, with the grain, if needed. If you have a serious stain, it’s best to turn to a leather cleaning professional. Check out more tips for removing stains from leather furniture
Bonded leather furniture can be cleaned in much the same way as genuine leather, but because the surface is made up of polyurethane, it may not stain as easily. It can be cleaned with a damp, soft cloth and mild soap, if necessary. Never use alcohol-based cleaner on bonded leather. As when cleaning leather furniture made with genuine leather, always test your cleanser in a hidden location to make sure that it will not damage the surface.
As you can see, cleaning leather furniture isn’t too difficult if done correctly, and with proper care, your leather should look great for many years. Always keep leather furniture away from direct sunlight as much as possible, and clean up any spills immediately, before they have a chance to stain.