Rugs that are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use are convenient for both their versatility and their durability, and they can usually withstand more wear and tear than rugs that are meant simply for use inside. However, that doesn’t mean that indoor/outdoor rugs don’t need to be cleaned on a regular basis to maintain their quality and appearance. After all, especially when used outside, these rugs see quite a bit of moisture, mud, dirt, and other factors that can result in quite the mess. Cleaning these carpets is a straightforward process, but it does require care and diligence, as outlined below.
Step 1 - Pick the Right Day for Cleaning
Before you even get started on your cleaning process, choose the right day to embark on this project. You’ll want to pick a span of a couple days without rain in the forecast to ensure you have good weather conditions for washing and allowing your rug to dry.
Step 2 - Remove Furniture and Debris
The first step in cleaning your rug is to take any furniture that sits on top of it off so that you can reach every inch of the space. Next, use a broom to sweep away and debris—such as leaves, loose dirt, and so on—off of the indoor/outdoor rug. You may also want to pick it up and shake it off if possible.
Step 3 - Prepare the Cleaning Solution
Use a big bucket and fill it with warm, clean water, measuring how many gallons it takes to fill it. For every gallon, put one teaspoon of a mild and clear dish soap into the water and mix it well.
Step 4 - Dampen the Rug
Use your hose on the sprayer setting to dampen the entirety of the rug.
Step 5 - Scrub the Rug
Using a soft scrub brush, dip it into the soapy mixture you created and let the excess water drip off into the bucket. Scrub the rug well, either completing a spot treatment where stains exist or scrubbing every inch of the carpet. If your rug hasn’t been cleaned in a while, you may just want to go to town scrubbing the entire thing to get it as clean as possible.
Step 6 - Rinse the Rug
Using your hose and the sprayer setting again, rinse the rug thoroughly to ensure that all soap has been removed.
Step 7 - Hang the Rug to Dry
Find a space—perhaps over the railing of your deck or top of a fence—to hang your rug to dry. After it’s hung, you may want to give the carpet one more quick spray down with the hose to get rid of any lingering dirt. Allow the rug to dry for a day or so to ensure that it’s rid of all moisture.
Other Maintenance Tips
There are a few other things you can do and keep in mind to ensure your indoor/outdoor rug lives a long life in your yard or home.
Vacuum the Rug Regularly
It sometimes doesn’t occur to homeowners that their outdoor rug should be vacuumed with regularity. However, doing so is important to not only removing debris from the rug, but also to get rid of excess moisture on the carpet that could promote the growth of mold. Vacuum your rug regularly to keep it dry and clean.
Getting Rid of Deep Stains
While indoor/outdoor rugs are very sturdy and are made of materials that are stain resistant, it doesn’t mean that stains on these carpets are impossible. Especially if someone drops something that is dark in color on the carpet, it’s likely to stain. Luckily, there are methods to getting rid of those stains successfully. To spot-clean these areas, try to attack the stain soon after they occur. Use a clean and damp cloth that has been dipped in club soda. If this doesn’t remove the stain completely, use a soft brush with a mixture of water and dish detergent on it to scrub at the stain. If the deep stain you’re removing is a result of food, use a knife to scrape food and crumbs from the rug before using these same methods of removal. Doing this first prevents crumbs from ending up deep in the fibers of the rug.
Keep the Rug Dry
After a rainstorm, you’ll want to make an effort to remove excess moisture from your outdoor rug to keep it clean and mold-free. Do this by pushing a plastic broom over top of it to squeeze water out to speed up the drying process.
Cleaning and maintaining these durable rugs is an easy feat when these steps and regular maintenance efforts are followed.