Upholstery Cleaning Codes

How should you clean spots, spills or stains on your upholstered furniture? Upholstery should be marked with a code that allows the buyer to know – in advance – what type of cleaning is suggested.

An important question to ask is should you try to clean it yourself? If you don’t want to think about it then by Design offers one the very best furniture protection programs in the industry. Seriously consider this option. Check it out here and ask your designer for details.

Apartment Therapy had a good explanation of cleaning codes for upholstery:

Upholstery Cleaning Codes

  • “W”

A “W” on your furniture means you are in luck, your piece can be cleaned with water. You will be safe if you use an upholstery/carpet cleaner (by using the attachments) on your spill or stain. You’ve selected the most durable type of fabric you can buy and that is ideal for furniture that will see a high volume of use or spills ( dining room chairs, living room couches and chairs).

  • “S”

An “S” on your furniture means that it MUST be cleaned with cleaning solvents (dry clean only) and will not react well if water is applied to it. Spot cleaning is only advised if the cleaning product is meant for home dry cleaning use. Many grocery stores will carry products of this nature. (Make sure that after using a product of this nature to use a blow dryer to dry the spot so it doesn’t leave a ring!) Stains, spills or dirt in general should be cleaned as soon as possible to retain the longevity of the colors and the fabric.

  • “S/W”

This code means a combination of dry cleaning solvents and water can be used. It’s rarely seen and is often times best left to the professionals. If that isn’t in the budget, use furniture with the S/W code in low traffic areas and clean spots ASAP before they have a chance to set in. It is best to use a solvent based cleaner if you have it on hand.

  • “X”

This code isn’t often seen, except on fabric blinds and shades. It means the item is NOT cleanable and is vacuum-only!! Should you find it on furniture, consider a local furniture restoration shop.

Short enough for you? Eyes not glazing over? Cool!

Here’s a link to the original article: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/how-to-read-upholstery-cleanin-57653

Avatar About the author: Laura is a Senior Designer at by Design, having worked here since 1992. She graduated from Iowa State with a degree in Interior Design: ” I’ve always felt that your home and your room should reflect your taste and lifestyle, no matter the scale of the project we work on. If I’ve done my job well, you’ll find yourself feeling “at home” in your new surroundings… and hopefully we’ve had a lot of fun along the way.” | Laura’s Page