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How to Clean a Wool Rug


There are many intricate details that go into caring for a handcrafted item such as a wool rug. These rugs are not like a generic synthetic fiber rug that can take a lot of use and abuse. Wool rugs require tender love and care, and will reward you with their beauty and longevity. Below are some care instructions that are best suited to these

Determine Your Pile Height

All carpet has a specific Hight of the material (pile) based on the way it was constructed. The two common types of pile heights in wool rugs are flat.

A flat or low pile height looks like the picture below. This ranges from ¼” t0 ½”. It is a tighter weave, therefore more durable. The next size up is a medium pile height which ranges from ½” to ¾”. This type of rug


Rug Pile Height


Vacuum it off

Vacuum both sides of your rug about twice a month. Your wool rug will look cleaner for longer because of small air pockets within the wool fiber where dirt can hide. Only vacuum twice a month to preserve the wool fibers, they can pull out or become torn and ragged if over vacuumed. Don’t forget to use your vacuum attachment when vacuuming the fringe.




Vacuuming Wool Rugs



Shake it out

Sometimes your best bet for a quick clean is a 30-second shakedown outside on a sunny day. This will quickly release any loose dirt within your rug.


Shake out your Wool Rug



Rotate your Wool Rug

This is a quick way to wear patterns from furniture and traffic, discoloration, and excessive dirt in one area.



Rotate your Rug



Spot Clean

Spills are part of general wear and tear on any piece of furniture. You should take them extra serious with your wool rug though. You only have about 15 minutes to address any spill before it sets and stains your rug. Spot clean immediately with carpet cleaner or a homemade mix of 8 parts water, 1 part white vinegar, and a small squirt of mild dish soap. It’s important to avoid harsh chemicals which will damage the wool fibers.



Spot Clean with Care

Bonus Tip!

Here is what not to do if you value your wool rug. Do not steam clean it or wet the entirety of your wool rug. Why? You cannot dry it fast enough to prevent mold and mildew and this will ruin your rug. Steam will damage the wool because it is too hot and create a larger mess of the trapped dirt than when it was dry.  Also, be sure to avoid colored soaps due to the dye they contain.



Never steam clean your rug!


Thanks for taking the time to learn about cleaning wool rugs from us. If you have a topic you would like to hear about from us than please email Stay tuned for more tips, tricks, and design inspiration from Ida York Design Group.