How To Clean And Maintain A Fabric Sofa At Home: Easy And Quick Solutions

Fabric sofas are one of the most popular types of sofas that are purchased, and it's no surprise given the fact that they're extremely comfortable and also require relatively little maintenance. They are also rather affordable, relative to other materials such as leather and suede. While fabric sofas are undeniably great, the key downside of fabric sofas is the fact that they are prone to developing stains that can be rather unsightly, potentially ruining the look of your whole sofa. 

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This certainly doesn't mean that you have to avoid purchasing fabric sofas! With a little time, effort as well as these easy and quick solutions to clean and maintain your sofa, you'll definitely be able to keep your sofa in pristine condition, so that it'll always look its best!

Don't clean your sofa just yet!

Before getting down to business, you'd want to take a look at the care instructions listed by the manufacturer. For sofas purchased on HipVan, these instructions are located in the "product info" section (as pictured in the image below). This way, you'll be able to care for your sofa and give it the proper care and cleaning that it deserves, without damaging it. 

Hipvan webpage with location of care instructions for sofa identified

Additionally, most sofas also come with tags that include a cleaning code  the random letters on the tag  to indicate the best and safest ways to clean your sofa. You should be able to find the tag under your sofa or your sofa cushions. Here's how to decode the cleaning code to determine how to clean your sofa: 

Code What it means 
  • "W" refers to water-based cleaner so sofas with this code can only be cleaned with either a water-based cleaning solution or water
  • To clean specific spots, use a brush to work the water-based cleaner directly onto any stain on your fabric sofa but take note to avoid using too much water on the stain 
  • "S" refers to solvent-based cleaners; Sofas with this code can only be cleaned with either a dry cleaning or water-free solvent
  • For these sofas, ensure that they are placed in a well-ventilated room, and away from open flames 
  • A sofa with this code can be cleaned with either water-based or solvent-based cleaners
  • To clean specific spots, you can either opt to use upholstery shampoo, mild detergent or a mild dry cleaning solvent
  • "X" indicates that you should avoid the use of any sort of cleaning agent for your sofa 
  • To keep it clean, you should only either lightly vacuum or dry brush it

Make cleaning your sofa a part of your weekly cleaning routine 

In general, a good way to keep your sofa clean and in pristine condition is to clean it on a weekly basis, or as often as possible. You don't have to do a thorough and deep clean of your sofa every single week but it'd be good to give it a light vacuum every once in a while to get rid of any dust, pet hair or dirt that may accumulate throughout the week.  

Spilled something on your sofa? Don't panic!

Growing up, your parents have probably nagged at you to avoid eating or drinking on your sofa but let's be honest, most of us have probably ignored their words and continued doing so. (To be fair, the sofa's a pretty comfortable place to enjoy our food and drinks, while catching up on some of our favourite TV programmes.) However, if you're someone who's rather clumsy and accident-prone, you've probably encountered a situation where you've accidentally spilled something on your sofa and panicked out of fear that you've left a stain on it. Unfortunately, if your sofa has a code "X", it might be a little more challenging to get rid of the stain, especially if it's a liquid stain. In such cases, it'd be best to avoid trying to clean it using any store-bought or homemade cleaning solutions. Instead, it'd certainly be better to engage a professional ASAP before you ruin your sofa any further. 

On the other hand, if you currently have a fabric sofa with codes "W", "S" or "WS", you'd be pleased to know that you'll probably be able to completely get rid of the stain relatively easily, with either store-bought cleaning solutions or homemade ones. All you have to do is to tackle the stain as quickly as possible, before it has the chance to seep into the rest of your fabric. To completely eliminate the stain, follow these steps: 

  1. Using a clean cloth (choose one that's the same colour as your fabric sofa to avoid any potential colour transfers) or some paper towels, gently dab the affected area to absorb as much liquid as possible from the stain. 
  2. In a bucket or bowl, mix 2 cups of distilled water with 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. (If your sofa has an "S" code, feel free to replace this cleaning solution with any store-bought chemical solutions) 
  3. Lightly dampen a clean microfibre cloth (same colour as your sofa) with your cleaning solution.
  4. Gently blot the stained areas with the cloth but be careful not to rub or scrub as this could damage the fibres of your sofa. 
  5. Moisten a fresh microfibre cloth with clean, distilled water (no dishwashing liquid or vinegar this time), and blot the affected area to remove any remaining cleaning solution.
  6. With a clean and dry microfibre cloth, blot the area one more time before allowing your sofa to dry completely. Either let it air dry or use a fan (or hair dryer) to quicken the process. 
  7. Once your sofa is completely dry, give it a quick brush. 

As always, if you're unsure of how to get rid of the stain, it'd always be best to engage a professional, as you probably wouldn't want to risk destroying your precious sofa! For more questions on how to take care and maintain your fabric sofa, feel free to reach out to our customer support team at or our live chat and we'll be more than happy to assist you!


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