Furniture Care 101: How to Prevent Fading in Upholstery

Upholstered furniture adds warmth, comfort, and style to our living spaces, but prolonged exposure to sunlight can cause fabric fading and deterioration over time. Protecting your upholstered furniture from fading is essential to maintain its beauty and longevity. In this guide, we’ll explore effective strategies to prevent fading and preserve the vibrancy of your upholstered furniture.

  1. Choose fade-resistant fabrics. When selecting upholstered furniture, opt for fabrics that are specifically designed to resist fading. Look for upholstery fabrics labeled as UV-resistant or fade-resistant. These fabrics are treated with special coatings or dyes that help minimize the effects of sunlight exposure.
  2. Position furniture away from direct sunlight. Place your upholstered furniture away from windows or areas with direct sunlight exposure. Prolonged exposure to sunlight can accelerate fading and deterioration of fabric fibers. Consider rearranging your furniture layout to minimize sunlight exposure.
  3. Use window treatments. Install window treatments such as curtains, blinds, or shades to block out sunlight. Choose window treatments with UV-blocking properties to reduce the amount of UV radiation entering your home. Keep curtains or blinds closed during the sunniest parts of the day, especially in rooms with high levels of sunlight exposure.
  4. Rotate furniture. If you can’t eliminate sunlight exposure completely, consider rotating your upholstered furniture regularly to ensure even exposure. Aim to rotate furniture every few months or as needed.
  5. Maintain proper humidity levels. Maintaining optimal indoor humidity levels can help prevent fading and deterioration of upholstery. Dry indoor air can accelerate fabric fading, while high humidity levels can promote mold and mildew growth. Use a humidifier or dehumidifier to maintain humidity levels between 40% and 60% for optimal furniture preservation.
  6. Professional Upholstery Cleaning. Schedule regular professional upholstery cleaning to remove dirt, dust, and debris that can contribute to fabric fading. Professional cleaners have the expertise and specialized equipment to deep clean and revitalize upholstered furniture, prolonging its life and appearance.

Preventing fading in upholstered furniture requires proactive measures to minimize sunlight exposure and maintain proper care and maintenance. By following the tips in this post, you can preserve the beauty and longevity of your upholstered furniture for years to come.


Perk Up Your Carpets: A Guide to Banishing Coffee Stains

coffee stain

For many, the aroma of freshly brewed coffee is the perfect start to the day. However, in the midst of this ritual (and the hurry of getting ready for work and school), accidents and spills can happen, leading to stubborn coffee stains on your beloved carpet. Fear not, for with a few simple steps, you can bid farewell to those unsightly stains and continue to savor your coffee worry-free.

Swift Action for Success:

  1. Act promptly. The first rule when dealing with a coffee spill is to act promptly, before the coffee has a chance to soak all the way into the carpet and underlayment.
  2. Absorb excess liquid. Place a clean, dry cloth over the stained area and press down gently to absorb excess moisture. Repeat this process until you’ve removed as much liquid as possible. Remember to blot, don’t rub!
  3. Create a cleaning solution. Mix a solution of one tablespoon of liquid dish soap and two cups of lukewarm water. Stir the solution until it forms a slight lather.
  4. Apply the solution. Using a clean cloth or sponge, apply the soapy solution to the coffee stain. Blot the stain gently, working from the outside toward the center. Continue until the stain starts to lift.
  5. Rinse with water. Rinse the treated area with a cloth dampened with plain water to remove any soap residue. Blot the carpet to absorb excess moisture.
  6. If necessary, use a vinegar solution. For persistent coffee stains, you can create a vinegar solution by mixing equal parts white vinegar and water. Apply the solution to the stain and blot with a clean cloth. Follow up with a water rinse and blot dry.
  7. Dry completely. Allow the treated area to air dry completely before walking on it. Ventilate the room to expediate the drying process.

Professional Help:
If your coffee stain persists or you’re dealing with a delicate carpet material, it might be prudent to seek professional carpet cleaning services. Professionals have the expertise and tools to tackle tough stains without causing damage to your carpet. If you live in the Asheville NC area, give Five Step a call at 828.237.3237!

Coffee stains on your carpet need not be a cause for panic. By acting swiftly, using a gentle solution, and following the steps above, you can enjoy your coffee without fretting over accidental spills. With a little care and attention, your carpet will be as resilient as your morning coffee ritual is comforting.


Sweet Success: Removing Chocolate Stains From Upholstery

chocolate spill

Indulging in a chocolate treat, especially during the holiday season, can bring immense joy. But accidental spills on your upholstery can quickly turn the sweetness into a sticky situation. Fear not! With a few simple steps and the right approach, you’ll have no trouble removing chocolate stains from upholstery.

Step-by-Step Guide:

  1. Act Quickly. The key to effective stain removal is to act promptly to deal with the mess. As soon as the chocolate lands on your upholstery, grab a clean, dry cloth or paper towel to blot and lift as much of the chocolate as possible. Be gentle to avoid spreading the stain.
  2. Scrape off the excess. If the chocolate has solidified, use a blunt knife or spoon to gently scrape off the excess. Be careful not to damage the fabric, and scrape in the direction of the fibers.
  3. Prepare your cleaning solution. Mix a solution of mild dish soap or laundry detergent with warm water. Avoid using hot water, as it can set the stain. Stir the solution until it forms a gentle lather.
  4. Pre-test the cleaning solution. Before applying any cleaning solution, test it on a small, inconspicuous area of the upholstery to ensure it won’t cause discoloration or damage. This is especially important for delicate or vintage fabrics. The mild dish soap solution we are using in this method should be safe for most upholstery fabrics, but you can never be too careful!
  5. Apply the solution. Dip a clean cloth or sponge into the soapy solution and gently blot the chocolate stain. Work from the outside of the stain toward the center to prevent spreading. Avoid vigorous rubbing, as it may damage the fabric.
  6. Rinse and blot. After treating the stain, rinse the area with a clean cloth dampened with water. Blot the upholstery to remove any soap residue. Continue blotting until the fabric is no longer soapy.
  7. Absorb excess moisture. Place a clean, dry cloth or paper towels over the cleaned area and press down gently to absorb excess moisture. Allow the upholstery to air dry completely.
  8. Consider professional cleaning. If the chocolate stain persists or if your upholstery is made of delicate or vintage materials, consider consulting professional upholstery cleaners. They have the expertise and tools to tackle stubborn stains without causing damage. If you’re in the Asheville, NC area, give Five Step a call at 828.237.3237

How to Remove Coffee Stains from Upholstery with Common Household Ingredients

coffee stains from upholstery

Accidents happen, and a coffee spill on your beloved upholstery is a common mishap. The good news is that you can effectively tackle coffee stains using non-toxic cleaning solutions or items already found in your home. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to remove coffee stains from upholstery while keeping your cleaning routine eco-friendly.

Steps to Remove Coffee Stains:

  1. Blot immediately. Act swiftly as soon as the coffee spill occurs. Grab a clean, white cloth or paper towel and gently blot the stain. Avoid rubbing, as this can push the coffee deeper into the fabric.
  2. Create a cleaning solution. Mix a solution using equal parts of cold water and white vinegar. Alternatively, you can create a mixture of mild dish soap and cold water. Both solutions are non-toxic and effective at breaking down coffee stains.
  3. Test in an inconspicuous area. Before applying the cleaning solution to the stained area, test it in an inconspicuous spot on the upholstery to ensure it doesn’t cause any color fading or damage.
  4. Blot and lift. Dip a clean cloth into the cleaning solution and gently blot the coffee stain. Work from the outside of the stain towards the center to prevent spreading. As you blot, you’ll notice the stain transferring from the upholstery to the cloth.
  5. Let sit. If the stain is particularly stubborn, or if the coffee spilled had creamer or other dairy products in it, the vinegar solution will still work, but it will take longer. After the first blotting, you may need to reapply the solution and let it sit for a few minutes before blotting again.
  6. Rinse and repeat. After several rounds of blotting, rinse the area with cold water using a damp cloth to remove any cleaning solution residue. Blot the area with a dry cloth to absorb excess moisture. If the stain persists, repeat the process until it fades.
  7. Allow to air-dry. Once the stain is gone, allow the upholstery to air-dry naturally. Keep the area well-ventilated to speed up the drying process.
  8. Fluff and restore. After the upholstery is dry, gently fluff and restore the fabric’s texture using a soft brush.

Removing coffee stains from upholstery doesn’t have to involve harsh chemicals or toxic cleaners. With non-toxic solutions like vinegar or mild dish soap, you can effectively tackle coffee stains while being mindful of the environment. Remember, prompt action and gentle blotting are key to successful stain removal. By following these steps, you can preserve the beauty of your upholstery and enjoy your favorite beverages worry-free!


How to Clean a Fabric Sofa

how to clean a fabric sofa

A fabric sofa is an attractive and comfortable seating option, so popular that almost every home has at least one. However, fabric upholstery can attract dirt, dust, and stains over time. Here are some tips on how to clean a fabric sofa to keep it looking fresh and new.

  1. Remove loose dirt and dust. Use a vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment to vacuum the entire surface of the sofa. Be sure to get into all the nooks and crannies, including the crevices between cushions.
  2. Check the care label. Before you start cleaning the sofa, check the care instructions to ensure you are using the right cleaning products and techniques. The care label should provide directions for cleaning the particular type of upholstery fabric and may indicate whether the fabric is water-safe or dry-clean only.
  3. Spot-clean stains. If your sofa has stains, use a stain remover that is suitable for your fabric type. Many types of stains can be removed with simple household ingredient cleaners like a solution of vinegar and water, or diluted dish soap. Test the stain remover on a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure it does not damage the fabric. Apply the stain remover to the stain and let it sit for a few minutes before gently blotting it with a clean cloth.
  4. Clean the sofa. To clean the entire sofa, mix a small amount of mild soap or detergent with water. Use a clean, soft cloth to gently clean the sofa, working in sections. Be sure to wring out the cloth so that it is only damp, not soaking wet. Avoid using too much water, as this can damage the fabric and cause it to shrink or stretch.
  5. Dry the sofa. After cleaning the sofa, allow it to air dry completely before using it again. Avoid using a hair dryer or other heat source to dry the sofa, as this can damage the fabric.
  6. Protect the sofa. To keep your fabric sofa looking its best, consider using a fabric protector spray. This can help repel spills and stains and make cleaning easier in the future.
  7. When in doubt: If you have old, set-in stains on your sofa or stains that are just too stubborn to remove, it may be time to call in the professionals!

In conclusion, cleaning a fabric sofa is a straightforward process that can be done with simple household items. Just follow these steps and you can keep your sofa looking clean and fresh for many years. If you want to save time and skip the DIY route, call in the professionals. Five Step Carpet Care is the top source for sustainable, eco-friendly upholstery cleaning in the Asheville, NC area. Give us a call at 828.237.3237 today!



How to Clean Velvet Upholstery

clean velvet upholstery

Who doesn’t love the beauty and luxuriousness of rich, velvet upholstery? No one! But this upholstery can be one of the trickiest types to clean. Stains don’t only stick to the surface of the velvet, they also coat the individual fibers and seep into the backing, causing quite a mess! So how do you clean a velvet sofa, chair, or ottoman? Follow these tips to find out how to clean velvet upholstery.

What type of velvet is your upholstery?
If your upholstery is synthetic velvet (or velveteen), you should be able to DIY it without too much trouble. If, however, the velvet is made from cotton, silk, or wool, you may want to call in an expert. Cotton velvet is especially finicky, and the fibers can bunch and kink when they come into contact with soap, water, or cleaning solutions.

To get stains out of synthetic velvets:
Clean the fabric as soon as possible after staining occurs. Do not allow the stain to dry on its own, as it will set into the fabric and become much harder to clean. With a clean cloth or towel, gently press the stain to absorb any moisture and wipe away any loose debris. Prepare a mixture of lukewarm water and dish soap, then apply the suds to the stain. Rinse by dabbing with a damp, soap-free cloth. Allow the velvet to dry and then gently brush it.

For regular maintenance:
Clean your velvet upholstery with a furniture brush to remove dirt, lint, and fuzz. Vacuum regularly with the furniture attachment on your vacuum cleaner. Velveteen can be safely steam cleaned. For cotton, silk, or wool velvet, check the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions.

If you’re not sure whether your upholstery is synthetic velveteen or natural fiber velvet, you’re likely better off calling a professional upholstery cleaning service to handle the job. If you live in the Asheville, NC area, we would be happy to help you with your velvet couch, chair, or other furniture.

Give us a call at 828.237.3277 or drop us a line for an estimate today. We look forward to hearing from you!



How to Clean Red Wine from Carpet

clean red wine from carpet

Wondering how to clean red wine from carpet?

There’s no problem with enjoying a nice glass of red wine in the evening, but sometimes imbibing can result in a dark red mishap. If you end up with a red wine stain on your carpet, don’t worry! Chances are, you can get it out with just two simple cleaning ingredients if you act quickly.

Try to attack the stain as soon as you notice it. The less time the wine has to absorb and set into the carpet fibers, the better your chances of successfully removing the stain.

Follow these steps to clean red wine from carpet:

  1. Blot stain immediately with a clean cloth.
  2. Slowly add water and continue to blot.
  3. Apply a paste of 3:1 baking soda and water to the stain, making sure to cover it completely.
  4. Allow the paste to dry, then vacuum.
  5. If the stain has not been completely removed, apply a spot cleaner, making sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  6. If the stain is still there, call your friendly local carpet cleaner!

If you didn’t discover your wine stain until it was too late, or if you’re having trouble with the above steps, it’s time to call in a professional!

Five Step Carpet Care is the leading professional carpet cleaner in the Asheville, NC area. We will have that red wine stain out of your carpet in no time! Give us a call at 828.237.3237 or get in touch via our contact form today!


Best of the Five Step Blog – DIY Edition

We’ve published some great how-to articles over the years. It is always our goal to help our customers, even if the best help we can offer is to tell them how to complete a small project on their own. In fact, we’ve written on many diverse How-To topics, such as ‘how to get poop off carpet’ and ‘how to get a bad smell out of a wool rug’!

So we thought it would be neat to curate some of our very best How-To articles into a single post to help all the DIY-ers out there with their flooring and upholstery projects. Below are our top eight.

Click the image to view the full article!


how to clean a fabric couch








We hope this helps you in all your DIY flooring and upholstery endeavors. But if you get stuck, or just decide you don’t have the time or energy to go it alone, don’t hesitate to give Five Step a call at 828.237.3237 (or drop us a line via our contact form.) We’ll be happy to help!

How to Clean a Hardwood Floor

One of our specialties is the deep cleaning of hardwood floors. Over the years, we’ve cleaned thousands of wood floors, restoring beauty and luster to even the most hopeless of cases.

But as miraculous as the results can be, you still need maintenance care in between your professional cleanings in order to protect your wood floor. Our clients often ask our opinion about the best way to keep their wood floors looking clean and beautiful, so here are some tips.

  1. Before cleaning, remove dirt, debris, dust, and pet hair from the floor with a dust mop or the floor brush attachment of your vacuum. Do this weekly or as needed, and avoid using a broom with very coarse bristles, as it may damage your floor!
  2. Once or twice a month, clean the floor using a liquid cleaner or oil soap specially formulated for hardwood floors. Follow the instructions on the container and make sure to dilute with water so as not to leave a sticky or filmy residue behind.
  3. Use a bucket to mix your cleaning solution and a sponge mop to clean the hardwood floor, wringing out the mop after each dip in the solution to ensure the floors do not get too wet. Once the entire area has been mopped with the cleaner, rinse the mop thoroughly and wet-mop the floor with clear water.
  4. Leaving your hardwood floor damp may damage it, so make sure to dry the floor thoroughly using a dry towel.
  5. Prevent scratches in your floor by providing interior and exterior doormats and using protective pads or discs on the feet of tables, chairs, and sofas.

And there you have it! Follow these simple steps and your hardwood floors will stay bright and lustrous between deep cleanings.

If you live in the Asheville area, give us a call at 828.237.3237 or get in touch via our contact form today to schedule your wood floor cleaning! (And yes, we clean pine and laminate floors, too!)

How to Clean a Fabric Couch

how to clean a fabric couch

There’s nothing like sinking into a comfy couch to watch your favorite show or read a good book after a long day of work. But after a couple of years of use, the upholstery on your comfy couch can start to feel not-so-comfy. Over time, the fabric collects spills, dirt, oil from your skin, and pet dander, leaving it looking—and feeling—grimy. Luckily, if the damage hasn’t gone too far, it’s a fairly simple DIY matter to clean a fabric couch. Here’s how to do it.

  1. Vacuum first. Thoroughly vacuum the cushions, arms, and back of the couch, and don’t forget to remove the cushions and vacuum underneath to get rid of crumbs and dirt that might be hiding there.
  2. Stain removal. Most types of fabric upholstery (both cotton and synthetic) can be cleaned with a mixture of vinegar and water. Use one part vinegar to three parts warm water, and squeeze a small amount of dish soap into the mixture. Dab the mixture onto the stains, or mist the area with a spray bottle. Use a clean cloth or towel to wipe the stain until it lifts, then rinse the towel and dab the area to remove any soap residue. Pat dry. (Note that this method might not work for certain types of stains, like ink, or for stains that have set for a long time. If you have stains that won’t come out with vinegar and water, your best bet is to call Five Step! We’ll get the stains out in no time.)
  3. Allow for drying time. Once you’ve patted all of the excess moisture out of the upholstery, allow the couch to air dry for 3-4 hours. You can direct the airflow of a fan toward the couch to speed up the process, or if you live in a very humid climate.

The above method works great for periodic maintenance of your cloth-upholstered furniture, but it’s intended to spot clean stained areas, and not the whole couch! Your fabric couch will still benefit from professional upholstery cleaning on occasion, to deep clean it and make it look like new.

If you live in the Asheville, NC area and are in need of top-notch upholstery cleaning services, give Five Step a call at 828.237.3237 or get in touch via our contact form today!