How to Clean a Leather Sofa

Whether it is the classic all white leather sofa and loveseat on plush white carpet for that luxurious, upper- tax bracket effect, or the black leather sectional in front of the home theater that makes a basement the epitome of entertaining, leather furniture is a common centerpiece in the fashionably decorated American home. Besides being stylish, leather furnishings can be the ultimate in comfort as well as very long-lasting, if it is taken care of properly. And even though this material is relatively high maintenance, most consumers agree that any effort invested is well worth the returns in the assurance of quality home decor for decades. In reality, leather can improve upon the interior of any home, even one where furniture maintenance is not the top priority, because caring for and cleaning a leather chair is easier than one might think. If a person is aware of the responsibilities and stays on top of them, their leather furniture will remain the heart of a well decorated room for many years.

Keeping a leather recliner, leather sectional or leather couch clean and sharp looking is of the utmost importance considering the initial investment usually associated with this type of furniture. There are many different types of leather, and different ways to prepare leather furniture, as well as different types of leather furniture cleaners, buffers, varnishes and so on. To avoid damaging one’s leather chair, it is imperative that any and all substances used to clean it be tested first, on a small, inconspicuous portion of the furniture, prior to actual use. A common way to glean information about the type of cleaning product required for an individual piece of leather furniture would be to read the tag, usually found on a cushion. The directions printed there might provide advice, or warnings against specific cleaning methods that would harm that particular type of leather sofa. If no tag can be found, making a call to a professional might be the best course of action to keep a leather couch looking pristine, although this is usually reserved for particularly difficult situations. Most leather furniture can be cleaned with ordinary household items.

leather sofaThe first step of regular maintenance that should occupy a consumer after buying a leather sofa would be vacuuming. A soft-bristled brush attachment used with the hose will eradicate the cushions of any dirt or debris that could get ground into the leather, causing scratches or stains. Make sure to vacuum between and under all the cushions and folds. Regular vacuuming will make cleaning easier when the time comes. As a rule of thumb one should vacuum their leather furniture every time they vacuum the room it is in.

For regularly scheduled cleaning, as opposed to stain removal or spot treatment, it is recommended that a little bit of a gentle, moisturizing face or body soap should be mixed into distilled water and then wiped onto the leather with a clean soft cloth. Only enough soap to make bubbles is necessary, and using distilled water will keep minerals or chemicals like chlorine or fluoride from causing lasting damaging effects. After the surface is wiped down with soapy water, another clean damp cloth should be used to wipe away the soap. It is important to only use enough moisture to do the job. Excess water should be avoided as it can damage the leather. After the soap is removed, a third cloth should be used to dry the surface being cleaned. Removing all the soap and totally drying the leather are both important steps, and ensuring they are done properly will keep the leather in good shape.

Some people might avoid leather furniture all together, having heard some of the more common horror stories concerning how difficult it is to clean, or maintain, or fix once something has gone wrong. But any concern for this aspect of ownership is needless. Leather does take a little more care and consideration than some types of upholstery, but with regular vacuuming, a simple recipe of soap and the right water, and the tenacity to maintain this major home investment, and a leather sofa can be kept beautiful forever.