Oriental and Persian Rug Maintenance

As the owner of an oriental or Persian rug, it’s incredibly important to know how to properly care for it. If you have any questions about any of the rug maintenance tips on this page, do not hesitate to contact us online or call us at (269) 382-2288.

Address Emergencies Immediately

Oriental and Persian rug repair and restoration is expensive because it takes a lot of time, skill, and energy. Because of this, any damage to your Persian rug should be addressed sooner rather than later. The longer a damaged area goes un-repaired, the longer a spill or animal accident remains on the rug, or the longer your rug goes with moths eating away at it, the harder it will be to correct. If not addressed immediately, stains may not come out and the repairs could be very costly.

If a liquid spills on your rug, DO NOT scrub the spill. Instead, pour table salt on the stain, and let it sit overnight. Put enough salt on the stain to absorb all the moisture. The next day, vacuum up all the salt. This should take care of most stains.

Try to Avoid Sun Fade

Unfortunately, sun fade may be impossible to correct. You should always be conscious of how the light from your windows or skylights will affect your handmade rug. Also, keep in mind that you should take care to see a full day’s sun in your home as it will move throughout the day.

An excellent way to prevent sun fade is to apply a coating to your windows which will block most of the harmful rays. In fact, we have had this done in our own home. If this is not possible, consider curtains and shades. Once the rug becomes faded unevenly, it is virtually impossible to even out the color.

The Truth About Rugs and Dogs

In general, most of the damage we see to oriental and Persian rugs comes from puppies and younger dogs. There is a narrow window in which to address pet urine on a rug before it turns into a permanent stain. In addition to urine, we have seen many rugs damaged by chewing on the corners and the fringe. Because of this, if you have a puppy or young dog, we recommend you store the rug away from the dog’s reach until it is old enough to be house-trained and out of the chewing stage.

Rules for Rug Storage

If you need to roll up your handmade rug for storage, you must have it professionally cleaned first. Once it’s clean, the rug should be wrapped in a breathable, archival type paper—never plastic—for storage. If you roll up a dirty rug and place it a garage or other dark area, you’re just asking moths to come eat holes throughout the rug. Moth damage is a time-consuming and costly repair.

Never Put a Potted Plant on Your Rug

We have seen many handmade rugs sustain major damage from potted plants being placed on them. This occurs, because it is virtually impossible to ensure moisture will not make its way to the rug, causing it to rot. This is an extremely expensive repair.

Vacuum Frequently

Because soil, grit, and dust particles act as tiny razor blades sawing away at your handmade rug as you walk on it, you should vacuum it often—taking care to avoid the fringes. In most cases, the fringes are an extension of the foundation of your handmade rug, so it’s important to avoid damaging them.

Inspect Regularly

If any part of your rug is under furniture or in a dark area, you should inspect it periodically for moths and evidence of other insects. In general, moths will be evident by their casings, which look like grains of rice.

Rotate Your Rug

You should rotate your handmade rug to avoid continually walking over the same spots. Rotating the rug may also help prevent or reduce sun fade.

Enjoy Your Rug!

While all of these tips may make it seem as though your rug is fragile and requires a lot of care, the opposite is true. Persian and oriental rugs are extremely durable and will outlast wall-to-wall carpeting if you properly care for them. Proper care includes washing them periodically, vacuuming, and keeping them away from harmful sunlight, moths, and your young animals. If these tips are followed, you will enjoy your rug for your lifetime.