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Oriental rugs are generally made of natural fibers and natural dyes. These give them their rich luster and warm feel. Most are hand made and thereby are always imperfect. Their imperfections are part of their charm. An Oriental area rug can easily cost more than a whole house full of wall-to-wall carpet. The natural fibers and dyes along with their intrinsic value mean Oriental rugs need (and deserve) special care.
In cleaning we use an acronym: TACT. It stands for Time, Agitation, Chemical, and Temperature. All these elements must be present when cleaning, but they must be modified to clean an Oriental rug correctly.
Oriental rugs are not bothered by water. However, it is important that the rug be dried as quickly as possible. An Oriental rug can get wet, but it must never stay wet. We take steps to ensure accelerated drying.
Agitation is the physical action involved in loosening the soils for removal. Harsh scrubbing can damage the fibers. Older or damaged Oriental rugs require gentle agitation. In some cases all or part of the rug has to be gently scrubbed or even stroked by hand. This kind of attention to detail assures the best results.
The cleaning products we use on Oriental rugs are specially formulated to clean the natural fibers we find in Oriental rugs. The products must ensure a pH balance that will loosen the soils, and leave the fibers soft without harming the dyes. The cleaning agents must rinse freely to leave the fibers clean and natural.
For some commercial carpets, we sometimes need as much heat as we can get. Oriental rugs are different. If the cleaning solution is too hot, fibers can be damaged and left feeling like straw. With excess heat, dyes can also be removed. If the solution is too cold, the cleaning agents may not completely remove the soils. Control over the temperature is very important.
The colors of an Oriental rug are often the most striking part of its beauty. Rich reds and deep blues can be truly beautiful. Rich colors can also create problems. Dyes have to be “set” in a fiber. Oriental rugs are often hand made and that hand craftsmanship can lead to inconsistencies. If too much dye has been added to the fiber, it will bleed into the surrounding fibers while being cleaned. The white areas around a red area may turn pink from traces of fugitive dye.
To avoid unpleasant surprises, we have to pretest any colors we think might give us trouble. If any sign of potential bleeding is noted, special steps have to be taken in the cleaning procedure.
The fringe at the ends of many Oriental rugs is another area of special need. Some short-cut cleaners use chlorine bleach on the fringe. Chlorine weakens the fibers. It is foolish to damage a fine rug to get it cleaned fast. We would never do that.
Area rugs need special care, but they are worth it. They add beauty to our homes and, if taken care of correctly, they will last for generations.
Area rugs take approximately 4-7 days to complete. Our rates include pick-up and delivery to and from your home. Area rugs start at $2.50 square foot. You also have the option of Scotchgard and/or deodorization of your rugs at an additional cost. Please e-mail or call if you require additional information.