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How Do I Clean a Sheepskin Rug?

Sheepskin rugs are indeed perfect pieces to put in your living room or even bedroom to make it look warmer, cozier, and generally home-like. And sure enough, if you are lucky to have already had an encounter with this magnificent decoration before, you must know how easy it is for them to collect all dust and dirt, and how hard it can be for you to clean them off the usual way. We are here on a super important mission – to teach you how to clean sheepskin rug.

There are 6 simple steps you can follow:

  1. Mix water and wool wash product (you may need to vary the amount of the potion depending on how big your rug is, but as standard, we recommend starting with 500 ml of water and a cap’s worth of the wash)
  2. Apply the mixture to all the stains on the rug (please do not waste it on relatively clean spots)
  3. Let the mixture sit for some time, and wash it away with clean water (any remaining residues are to be removed at this stage as well)
  4. Leave the rug in a place away from sunlight and direct heat to get dry
  5. Shortly before the rug gets completely dry, brush it with a wool wire brush (be careful here to not use brutal force to untangle any knots if there are any; your hands will be much more of a help in this situation)
  6. Shake a rug thoroughly, to let it get its fluffiness

This is an optimal way to clean a sheepskin rug – of any shape, size, and color. However, there are many others too. If all this made you wonder about things like “Can I put my rug in the washer?”, or “Can I use stuff like Woolite to clean it?”, or “Is it possible to tumble dry it?”; please keep reading. We will explain how to clean a sheepskin rug without ruining it.

Can I wash my sheepskin rug?

The 6 steps we gave you are perfect to deal with some stains on the rug, however what if the whole piece could use some perking up? Putting it simply, can I hand-wash an entire sheepskin rug?

The answer is: yes, of course, you can! We recommend using a basin for this important mission; it will make the process numerous times easier. Another thing you will need is a wool wire brush to clean sheepskin rug. Do not worry if you have not yet had an opportunity to buy one – there are plenty of these traded on Amazon.

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Once you are all armed and ready for adventures, take four liters of warm water and add in it a teaspoon of your wool wash product. Mix it well! And make sure that the water is not warmer than 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Now, fill the basin with the washing mix and soak there your sheepskin rug. Let it sit for half an hour so that the mixture has a proper opportunity to clean the rug thoroughly. Once the time is out, take the rug out of the water and squeeze it hard to get rid of extra water that is left in it. Remember to never wring the rug, it can damage it!

As you already know, a sheepskin rug is to be left to line dry away from sunlight and direct heat. To avoid knots and have a nice and fluffy rug, brush it through shortly before it is completely dry and shake it.

How to clean a sheepskin rug?
White, brown, and grey sheepskin rugs

Can I machine wash my sheepskin rug?

Indeed, many of us do not have a basin in our apartments waiting for its glory hour to be used to clean sheepskin rugs. So you would not be the only one wondering “Will the washing machine rip the wool in the rug apart, or is it ok to try to clean my rug in it?”

As a rule, a sheepskin rug can stand a machine wash without getting ruined. But remember, once again, the water must not be warmer than 100 degrees, and the amount of wool wash product to be used should not exceed two tablespoons. If you are sure you want to try out this method, make sure to use the gentlest setting.

It is possible that machine wash will not take off all the dirt from your rug; in this case please bring your rug to a professional to get it cleaned for you.

Can I tumble dry my sheepskin rug?

Imagine, your rug appearing from the washing machine all clean and as good as new, together with other gentle pieces of laundry, that go directly to the dryer to get all the hard work to be done by the machine. It should be a great plan for the rug to, shouldn’t it?

As good as it sounds, putting a sheepskin rug in the dryer is a terrible idea. Your least cost of this adventure may be a ruined rug, the biggest… Hard to tell. Like you were told to do in all the previous methods, this time we will tell you once more – line-dry your rug. You can hang it if you want, but it is the only other option than the line-drying that you have. Please remember (and we continue repeating it because it is important) to avoid exposing your rug to sunlight or direct heat while drying it.

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Can I vacuum my sheepskin rug?

Sometimes it happens that the rug gets not stained yet, but the dirt on it is accumulating, and it gets quite annoying. And you know, trying to get it out with your hands is going to simply rub in the grid and create the very stains that you will have to wash out. Do you think it is a good idea to let the vacuum cleaner do this job?

As good as it is to be cautious, you can trust most vacuum cleaners with this task; the basic suctioning will not ruin your rug. However, the cleaner should not have an attachment that rotates, since rotating joints possess a threat to the long pieces of fur and may draw them out of the rug. You can clean with the suction head only instead if the attachment of your vacuum cleaner rotates.

A good alternative to this procedure is a simple wool wire brush. You only need to rate it across the length of the rug, and the mess will be dredged up in no time.

How to clean a sheepskin rug?
Beige sheepskin rug

Can I wash my sheepskin rug with Woolite?

Even though Woolite’s FAQs states that Woolite can be applied to a variety of fabrics, and maybe you don’t have any Eucalan handy, which made you wonder if applying Woolite can work on sheepskin. Unfortunately, it does not.

The point is, even the specialized versions on Woolite have enzymes and bleach in their content that can ruin your rug. This is why it is important to avoid the cleaners containing them, including Woolite, or similar detergents, for instance, Tide.

Why we mentioned Eucalan before, you may ask; and we will answer: it is free of enzymes. This means that the wool on the rug is going to stay safe and sound while being washed by hand, in a washer, in a basin.

Can I whiten my sheepskin rug?

Absolutely yes, the good old days when your rug was crystal white and shining can be true once again, even if now it is sullen and has a hint of yellow on. And if a nice wash did not bring back it’s brightness, and you do not want to ruin the wool with the cleansers, don’t worry, there is still away.

What you have to do here is to look for hydrogen peroxide instead of bleach. Then, we take a sponge, a bucket, and put there some water. We don’t really mind the temperature this time, so you are free to choose whichever feels most comfortable for you to work with. The amount of water should be enough to cover the whole rug in the bucket, but there is no need to fill the vessel to its fullest.

Once the preparations are done, and the rug is sunk in the water, add the hydrogen peroxide in the ration 1:3 (1 unit of water to 3 units of hydrogen peroxide). You can use a cloth or a sponge to rub the rug softly to ensure that the mixture gets thoroughly into the rug. The rug should get way whiter during the procedure, and when you think the color it reached is close enough to its initial color, take your rug out and wash it as you did before, with the steps we provided earlier.

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Talking about substitutes to hydrogen peroxide, in case you don’t have a tiny bottle of it at home (if it is the case, we strongly recommend you to get it though, you will find it most handy), go to your kitchen and see if you have any vinegar. Don’t fret about how do you clean a sheepskin rug in this case, the procedure is still just the same: get a bucket, put the rug in, add water, and vinegar (a tablespoon of vinegar to 2 cups of water, you do the math).

Of course, there is plenty of colors other than white that a sheepskin rug can have – we are absolutely sure that you can find the one that suits you the best. If you wish to preserve their color, please avoid using hydrogen peroxide for sheepskin rug cleaning.

How to clean a sheepskin rug?
Grey sheepskin rug

How do I clean my faux sheepskin rug?

Sure enough, a real sheepskin rug is an expensive deal, and you always can consider getting a fake one. However, we should warn you that for fake sheepskin rugs it is common that the fibers won’t retain their shape when being pulled, according to Hunker. Real wool is also adept in moisture absorption; if you spill some water on it, it still stays warm and pretty dry, especially on underfur level.

All of the methods you learned with us today work well with the fake sheepskin too. In this case, you can also consider cleaning a rug with detergent and cold water in your bathtub.

How to clean a sheepskin rug?
White fake sheepskin rug

Let’s sum it up, or “how to wash a sheepskin rug: last words”.

Sheepskin rugs are a great decorative piece that you can use for your home. But they do ask for some nurture and care. When your rug gets stained, dusted, dirty, or sullen, there is a wide variety of ways to clean it quickly and efficiently. All that you have to do is to follow the instructions carefully, make sure you use proper temperature, right substance, correct proportions, and keep the products with bleach away from your rug. If you do so, you will have your sheepskin rug as good as new in no time!

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