Upholstered Furniture Care from Actona Featured
Upholstered furniture in the home
No two families use upholstered furniture in the same way so it is important to take note of how the furniture is being used. For example, does the house have a lot of visitors? Are there children, dogs, cats etc. in the home? In which case, foam and covers will wear faster than in the home of someone living by themselves and who rarely uses the upholstered furniture. All furniture is affected by sunlight and even the most colour-fast material can fade. Therefore, all furniture should be protected from direct sunlight. When we sit or lie on furniture, our bodies come in close contact with the cover. Sweat can affect leather and fabric. Spills on the settee cover should be avoided since even small quantities of fat can start a breakdown process. Choose a cover which is hard-wearing, light-fast and which does not chafe, and give the best possible care to leather and fabric.
Keep the above in mind and always make sure your upholstered furniture is properly cleaned.
Nozag springs and steel springs are used, with padding made from polyether foam or polyurethane and fibre wadding. Polydown, which is a combination, can, if used in seat cushions, have a slightly shorter life than other types of cushion padding. All padding changes with use, so move cushions around if possible and don’t always sit in the same place which will allow the padding to “settle” more evenly over the seat area, and it will become less ”out of shape” with use. A lot of loose cushions should be plumped up to prevent them from collapsing. If the padding is to be exposed to hard wear, e.g. due to heavy people, or continuous use throughout the day, a harder padding should be chosen with good reshaping ability. Pay attention to furniture with fixed upholstery rather than loose cushions as small creases in the leather or fabric can occur with use.
Furniture fabric in general
Take care when spot-cleaning furniture covers. Spot-cleaning agents should only be used after first testing on a less visible area of the fabric. Blotching can be avoided by carefully rubbing the fabric using circular movements working inwards towards the stain. Warning! Never use solvents. Please consider protecting the fabric with textile protector in order to make the fabric more resistant to stains and dirt.
Cotton is fairly hard-wearing, but printed patterns are not very resistant to wear or sunlight. Rough fabrics such as denim are particularly wearing on cotton. Cotton is not ideal for furniture exposed to a lot of sunlight or a lot of daily wear. Cotton is susceptible to dirt and should therefore be protected against staining (dirt-repellent).
Polyester, nylon, polypropylene and polyamide are generally hard-wearing and easy to maintain. Furniture covers with a nap, for example velour, appears to change colour when light shines on it from different directions. The same can happen if the nap is pressed down. This is natural for the fabric and is not a defect.
Take care not to weaken the microfibre by exposing it to damp conditions and avoid rubbing or brushing it when spot-cleaning. The fabric may be vacuumed and, if necessary, spot-cleaned. Liquid such as alcohol, wine, beer, coffee, milk and tea should be removed using a piece of absorbent kitchen roll and cleaned with mild soapy water. Chocolate and suchlike can be removed by dabbing the stain with a sponge dipped in mild soapy water (water and non-coloured washing-up liquid). Jam or syrups should be removed with a spoon and then cleaned with warm water.
Furniture leather in general
Leather is a natural product. It’s therefore quite natural that the effects on the skin over the lifetime of the animal appear as ”marks” on the prepared furniture leather. The appearance of the skin and its characteristics also vary depending on what part of the animal the skin has come from and what conditions it has been exposed to. Cutting the skin to avoid the worst of the irregularities can make the leather very expensive, or the leather can be coated and coloured, but this makes the leather slightly stiffer and more plastic-like, but at the same time less delicate. Usually, the manufacturer tries to position the most obvious irregularities at the back or on the outside of the furniture. Irregularities are therefore natural and not defects and include: Wounds from gashes or scratches caused by branches, thorns or barbed wire. If the wound has closed up there won’t be any weakness in the leather. Wrinkles can vary in nature from animal to animal. Irritation from for example fertilisers plus fungi and ringworm can be found on a lot of animals. These marks in a piece of prepared leather are the sign of genuine leather as opposed to artificial leather (plastic) which has an even structure.
All leather should be protected against sunlight and strong heat. Leather tends to be less resistant to sun than fabric, with soft anilin leather being the most prone to the affect of sunlight. Fat breaks down leather in the same way as it breaks down fabric. Avoid spilling or dropping crumbs of food with a fat content, snacks etc.
By-cast leather is a leather with a laminate/film on the surface (polyurethane). Lamination gives the leather an exclusive appearance and also makes the leather a lot stronger
than the regular leather types. Other advantages include a high resistance to sunlight and an excellent dirt-repelling surface. Be aware, however, that the surface is prone to heavy scratching from for example sharp nails, dogs/cats, knives and suchlike. Such scratches can be removed with gentle heat treatment, for example using a hairdryer.
Corrected leather (standard leather)
Leather with surface protection – corrected leather – is well-protected against the external environment thanks to the protective qualities of the surface. It has greater resilience to sunlight than anilin-coloured leather and the surface protection helps prevent water, dirt, etc. from penetrating the surface, which can be ground and embossed
with a pattern (called graining) to conceal defects.
Semi-anilin, for example Quattro leather
Semi-anilin has a thinner surface protection than corrected leather. The surface has certain level of protection against external influences. Semi-anilin is a natural product with a natural grain which can breathe and become slightly darker with use.
For all above leathertypes: Care for the leather with leather conditioner. We recommend applying leather conditioner before using the furniture for the first time.
PU Leather look
Use a soft, clean cloth to wash/wipe the furniture with Guardian leather soap, which both cleans and nourishes the PU surface. (Please follow the instruction on the bottle.) The furniture must be protected against direct sunlight, otherwise the surface will dry and break up, due to the sun’s rays. The furniture should be treated 4-6 times annual.
Strong chemicals (spirits, alcohol, chlorine, ammonium chloride and similar) may not be used, as these will break up the surface, and spoil the PU cover.