To the lower right is a picture of a rag area rug we cleaned last week. In the picture it is safely on the drying platform, colors intact, no dye migration, no worries. Directly above it is a picture of the cotton rag we used to test the dye stability of the area rug. As you can see, the rug failed the dye stability test in fantastic fashion! Every color in the rug bled – almost instantaneously!
What to do when faced with this predicament? It’s a rag area rug, so it desperately needs a full immersion bath in the “rug spa”, yet it bleeds when in the presence of moisture. The answer is to treat it with a special chemical which helps to keep migrant dyes from fixing themselves on the surrounding fibers. This process effectively adds a day to the processing of the rug, but it allows us to wet wash area rugs that we otherwise couldn’t. Careful testing for dye stability is crucial for successful cleaning of tricky area rugs!
Posted in Rug Cleaning
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Rag rugs are beautiful, durable, colorful and just plain fun! They are usually difficult if not impossible to vacuum well and very few us take our rugs out for paddling like Grandma and Great-Grandma used to do. What are you to do with a rug that is dirty, but can’t be vacuumed very well, and last time you looked you had mis-placed Grandma’s rug beating paddle? The answer is you give it a thorough bath! This rag rug had only one dye susceptible to bleeding and that was the color red. The rug was treated with a special chemical that kept the red dye from fixing itself on any of the adjacent fibers. Then it was submerged in the rug spa and completely cleaned. It cleaned up beautifully! Next visit I’m going to show you a rag rug with serious bleeding issues!