All About Rug Bleeding

Apr 19, 2023 | Area Rug Cleaning

Oriental rug fabric

Oriental rugs are beautiful and valuable pieces that can add character to your home. However, their delicate colors and intricate patterns make them vulnerable to damage during cleaning. Using the wrong cleaning methods or trying to remove stains can cause the colors to bleed together, ruining the rug’s appearance and value. To keep your oriental rug looking great, it’s important to handle it with care and take the necessary precautions during cleaning. By doing so, you can clean your rug effectively while keeping its unique design and rich colors intact.


What Causes Rugs to Bleed?

Color bleeding can occur in oriental rug cleaning for the following reasons:

  • Natural dyes are not colorfast: Oriental rugs made using traditional methods often feature natural fibers and pigments. While these natural dyes can create beautiful and unique colors, they may not be colorfast, meaning they are prone to bleeding during cleaning. Water-soluble dyes are particularly vulnerable to bleeding, and certain cleaning methods like flooding can exacerbate the problem.
  • Damaging cleaning methods: Dry cleaning and steam cleaning can be unsuitable for oriental rugs and leave behind a residue that damages the rug’s dyes, causing them to bleed. Aggressive agitation can also cause colors to bleed.
  • Application of excessive dye: If too much dye is used to color the rug, the excess dye may wash out during the first few cleaning cycles and contaminate surrounding areas if not stabilized or protected. Over time, this can lead to a noticeable loss of color and affect the rug’s overall appearance.
  • Exposure to alkaline substances or high heat during cleaning: Even if the dyes in the rug are colorfast or have been stabilized, they can still react and cause bleeding when exposed to high heat or alkaline substances often used in cleaning or stain removal processes. Fading is also a risk with such exposure.
  • Pet accidents: Corrosive substances like pet urine can cause dyes to bleed before or during cleaning if not promptly and appropriately removed. Urine can also damage the foundation of the rug, which can cause permanent damage if not addressed quickly.

Understanding the factors that cause color bleeding in oriental rugs can help you avoid damaging your rug during cleaning or stain removal. If you are unsure about how to clean your rug or remove a stain, it is always best to consult with a professional rug cleaning service.

Here are some tips from our oriental rug cleaners to minimize the risk of color bleeding and fading, and help preserve the beauty and value of your oriental rug:

  • Check the label: Look for cleaning instructions on the label of your rug or consult with a professional rug cleaner in Farmington to determine the safest and most effective cleaning method for your rug.
  • Vacuum regularly: Dirt and dust particles can become trapped in the fibers of your rug and cause color fading or bleeding. Vacuuming your rug on a regular basis can help prevent this.
  • Blot stains immediately: If you spill something on your rug, blot it immediately with a clean, damp cloth. Avoid rubbing the stain, as this can cause the dye to bleed.
  • Avoid DIY stain removal: DIY stain removal methods like using baking soda or vinegar can be harmful to your rug’s fibers and dyes. Always consult with a professional rug cleaner for safe and effective stain removal.
  • Use a rug pad: A rug pad can help protect your rug from wear and tear, prevent slipping, and keep it in place. It can also prevent color bleeding by creating a barrier between the rug and the floor.
  • Rotate your rug: Regularly rotating your rug can prevent uneven wear and sun damage, which can cause fading or color bleeding.
  • Keep your rug out of direct sunlight. UV rays can literally disintegrate the bonds that hold the fibers in your rug, which causes fading. Avoid placing your rug in direct sunlight.

By following these tips and taking proper care of your oriental rug, you can help prevent color bleeding and fading and keep your rug looking beautiful for years to come.

If you’re looking for a team of rug cleaning experts in Farmington and the surrounding area who will respect your rug and keep it in its best shape, give San Juan County Chem-Dry a call at (505) 325-7601 today!