What Causes Upholstery Fabric To Fade? And What Can You Do About It?

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What Causes Upholstery Fabric To Fade? And What Can You Do About It?

What Causes Upholstery Fabric To Fade? And What Can You Do About It?

Not so bright and shiny anymore are we?

Do you remember that time when you brought your couch home for the first time? It was so vibrant and beautiful and clean. There was so much promise with everything to look forward to from awesome family memories to a cozy friend to welcome you home every day. 

Then things started to go south. It was either this stain or that funky smell but the bottom line is that things were never the same again. And then the couch started to fade. The patterns were not as distinct and the colours were not as bright anymore. And now you are left with something you do not even recognize. 

This, unfortunately, happens to be the trajectory that most upholstery follows. However, with a proper understanding of what causes this fall from glory and an appreciation of the value of professional cleaning, you should be able to keep your couch looking awesome for longer. 

What causes it to lose its intensity and vibrance?

Fading is one of the most common upholstery issues that homeowners have to deal with. Like stains, it significantly compromises the aesthetic appeal. What is worse is that when left ignored for long periods of time, fading can be permanent; and no one wants it to get to this point.  Understanding what causes the problem could definitely help you prevent it or at the very least keep it from getting worse. Therefore, here are 6 of the main causes of upholstery fading and what you can do about it. 


  • Sun exposure


A lot of fabrics are sensitive to light exposure. These include nylon, grass-based materials like sisal and jute as well as acrylic. When exposed to UV, the intensity of the dye lessens leaving you with fade spots. You will notice this a lot with the couch surfaces facing your windows.


  • Incorrect cleaning methods


This is one of the main dangers of DIY upholstery cleaning or working with amateur crews. It happens when there is a lack of understanding of the specific fabric’s needs. As a result, improper methods and cleaning tools are used which strip the dye out of the fibres. This can fortunately very easily be avoided by investing in professional upholstery cleaning services. 


  • Stains that aren’t handled promptly or properly


Fading may also be as a result of stains that were left ignored for a long time. When it comes time to clean these spots, more effort is required which could ultimately lead to fading. Sometimes the spills themselves contain chemicals that discolour the couch and cause fading and these include vinegar and bleach. 


  • Lax maintenance practices


If you do not take care of your couch then it will definitely fade. Maintenance can be something as simple as regular vacuuming to prevent the accumulation of dirt. However, the best way to show some tender loving care to your couch is by having it professionally cleaned on a regular basis. This will help maintain the integrity of the upholstery fibres and the dyes that keep them vibrant. 


  • Low quality fabric and dyes


Sometimes, it is the type of couch that you chose that determines the fading. Some fabrics and dyes are just more prone to the problem no matter how often you get it cleaned. The important thing to do here is to understand the fabric’s needs and factors that may cause fading to accelerate. With the latter, all you have to do is avoid the triggers as much as you can and you should get decent service from your couch. 


  • Age


Finally, another common cause of couches fading is age. The truth is that the older fabric gets the worse it is at holding onto fibre. Therefore exposure to anything from UV sunlight to liquid stains causes fading a lot easier than on a new couch. Thankfully, with regular professional upholstery servicing, you should slow down the effects of time and keep your couch looking awesome for longer.

Is there anything that you can do about it?

In some instances, as with age and fibre quality, there is not very much that you can do as the homeowner to get rid of the stains. However, most causes are well within your control and there is therefore a lot that you can do to stop the progress into fading. Here are a few useful tips. 

  • Take care of your couch on a regular basis

The best way to do this is by regularly dusting and even vacuuming the upholstery. This helps to get rid of dust that can contribute to fading in the long run. The dust also hides the glory of the vibrant fabric underneath so a little soft cleaning every now and then will make a huge difference. 

  • Do not ignore spills

Stains are your enemy if you want to keep your upholstery looking bright and beautiful for a long time. Therefore, you need to ensure that you clean up any spills as soon as they happen. This counts whether you spill a harmless cup of tea or actual bleach. 

  • Flip the cushions every once in a while

No, this is not just to hide the stains. Flipping your cushions could help limit the exposure of the surfaces to UV light which causes fading. This will definitely help keep the surfaces looking nice and even. Unfortunately, you cannot flip all the upholstered parts of the couch which is where the last and most important tip comes in. 

  • Get the upholstery cleaned professionally

Professional upholstery cleaners understand exactly what each individual couch needs. They have the experience and skill required to ensure that your couch not only gets cleaned but also gets preserved. So if you are worried about your couch fading you should definitely give your local upholstery cleaning pros a call. 

Bottom line

Fading should not be inevitable. All it takes is just a little hard work. The most important thing when it comes to ensuring durability is the willingness to invest in it. Just let some professionals take care of it and you will be surprised how much they do for that couch that you fell in love back then. Enhance the longevity of your upholstery’s vibrancy by considering our expert Carpet Cleaning services as part of your comprehensive home care routine.

What Causes Upholstery Fabric To Fade? And What Can You Do About It?

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