How to clean a fabric sofa – easy cleaning hacks to get rid of stains and smells

Mrs Hinch tests out a variety of new cleaning products from B&M

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As careful as you might be, there’s no avoiding the stains, spillages and grime that can build up with everyday use. Over time, your sofa can develop some bad smells too. But while you might be tempted to splash out on a new sofa, thinking yours has reached the end of its life, that’s not necessary just yet. Try some of these easy cleaning techniques and the fabric will look and smell good as new in no time.

How to get rid of stains and smells on your fabric sofa

To make sure you’re really administering a deep clean, the first thing to do is remove any crumbs or dirt from both the surface and in-between the cushions.

To do this, you’ll need a clean, dry cloth, and brush the upholstery, ensuring you reach into all the nooks and crannies.

For stubborn areas, such as dried-on spots, you may need to use a stiff brush.

To remove stains, you will need:

  • Washing up liquid
  • White wine vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Warm water

Take a teaspoon of washing up liquid, white wine vinegar, baking soda and warm water and mix together into a lather.

The mixture should froth up as the baking soda and vinegar react with one another.

After, apply directly to any stains or smudges that you can spot on your fabric sofa. Leave to dry for about 10 minutes or so.

When it’s dry, wipe the surface with a clean cloth to wipe away any residue, you should be left with a beautiful stain-free sofa.

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To get rid of smells, you will just need some baking soda or dry carpet cleaner, but that’s purely optional.

So, to remove smells, start by removing any crumbs from your sofa’s surface area.

After this, sprinkle the whole thing with baking soda and leave to sit in for at least 20 minutes.

Once the time is up, hoover the sofa using the brush attachment, ensuring you get all the powdery residue off.

If you have really stubborn smells on the fabric, there’s an additional step you can take.

Mix the baking soda with dry carpet cleaner and leave that mixture to sit on the sofa.

Again, leave it for at least 20 minutes but if you’ve had a hard time removing the stains after previous attempts, leave it for longer.

If that’s not enough, you should get a handheld steam cleaner to remove any lingering odours and render your sofa good as new.

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