Liquid spills must be soak/blotted up as soon as possible. First, remove any solid materials if present with care. Using a white towel, white cloth or white paper towel to draw up the liquid is best, as it will eliminate the possible migration of dyes to the rug. Place the towel or cloth on top of the spill and starting from the outside of the spill, apply pressure to soak up the liquid and draw it out of the wool. Never rub a wet liquid stain. Repeat this step until clean. If a stain is still evident, apply a small amount of lukewarm water and draw it out using the same method described above. Using a designated wool detergent can help remove the stain as well, but use sparingly so to avoid possible fading of dyes. Make sure all the detergent is then removed from the wool. If the stain can’t be removed using these methods, seek professional advice or have your rug professionally cleaned.
In the case of mud or dirt on your rug, brush and/or vacuum with care once dry. Always let mud dry before attempting to clean.
For small spot stains that have already dried on your rug, we do recommend that a designated wool detergent be used as per its instructions if you wish to attempt to remove the stain yourself. A mild mixture of lukewarm water, white vinegar and detergent can also be used as a homemade solution, but the use of a designated wool detergent is preferable. If using the homemade solution, wet a white cloth with this mixture and gently wipe, taking care not to spread the stain. If you have any doubts whatsoever or the stain is still evident once dry, seek the advice or service of an experienced rug cleaning professional.
Vacuuming & Cleaning at Home
Rugs in our Monte, Puna and Andes collections should be vacuumed with extreme care on a regular basis. The more traffic your rug receives the more often it should be cleaned. The build up of dirt and/or sand can drastically reduce the lifespan of your rug. Constant foot traffic on a soiled rug causes the premature breakdown of the wool fibers due to the abrasive nature of dirt and sand.
When vacuuming, take care not to use too much suction and move the head of the vacuum over your rug slowly, being careful not to catch any threads. Never use a vacuum head that has moving parts as this could damage your rug. If there is an obvious grain to the rug, always vacuum with the grain. Vacuum both sides of your rug as dirt can penetrate all the way through.
Extra care should be taken with the Puna rugs due to their softer, more delicate nature; very low suction should be used on these pieces. If damage from vacuuming starts to become evident, a careful shake or light beating with a tennis racket outside may be a better option. If in doubt, always seek the advice or service of an experienced rug cleaning professional.
Never machine wash or hand wash an entire rug with water. This could lead to deformation and/or running of dyes.
Rugs should be professionally cleaned at least once every one to three years. The amount of traffic the rug receives and the nature of the space where the rug is used, will determine how often your rug should be professionally cleaned. Some pieces may need to be dry cleaned. Always use the services of a professional who is experienced in the cleaning of flat handwoven rugs.
Pests & Storage
Pests can potentially be a problem with natural fibre rugs. The risk of damage occurring from pests is increased when the rug is in storage, especially in dark, humid spaces with little or no air movement. To prevent damage from moths, which are the worst culprits, regularly inspect both sides of your rug when it is in use and storage. In the unlikely event that you do have a problem with moths, treatments should only be applied by an experienced professional. The best prevention is to have the rug in use in a room with good ventilation and filtered light.
Never store rugs in plastic bags as this can cause discolouration over a period of time. Instead, keep in a clean and dry environment that is easily accessible for regular inspection and cleaning.
We do not recommend the use of stain preventative treatments such as Scotch Guarding. This can potentially lock in a liquid stain and make it very difficult to remove, even professionally. Wool contains lanolin, which is nature’s own stain repellent.
Placement of your Pampa Rug & Use of an Underlay
Avoid positioning your rug in direct sunlight; this will prevent premature fading of the dyes. Placing your rug in an area of high foot traffic will also reduce the longevity of your rug. Rotate your rug a few times each year to help promote even wear and prevent fading in the case that your rug is exposed to sunlight and/or high foot traffic. This is also important if heavy furniture is placed on top of your rug. Pampa rugs are only intended for indoor use. Never use a Pampa rug in an area where it might be exposed to moisture.
We recommend using an underlay to prevent premature wear and possible slips, which could lead to injury. The use of an underlay also helps to keep your rug in position and will give your rug a bit of extra cushioning. This is especially important on hard floors such as concrete and timber. An underlay offers extra cushioning which helps protect the wool fibers from being crushed or damaged underfoot or by furniture.
The use of an underlay is also necessary when using any coloured rug on a surface that could be affected by the migration of dyes, such as lightly coloured carpet. Using an underlay that has been designed for the use with carpet, will create a barrier between the rug and your carpet to prevent the migration of dyes in the event of a spill or the presence of moisture.
It is preferable to have the underlay in one piece instead of several. If more than one piece of underlay is used, do not overlap the underlay but lay the pieces together with no gaps in between. The underlay should be cut 2cms to 5cms smaller than the dimensions of your rug. Never place an underlay or rug on an uncured floor surface if it has recently been sealed, laid, treated, etc.
Suitable underlays can be found at Ikea and Bunnings stores in Australia.
Loose Threads & Shedding
In the occurrence of loose threads, which is considered normal with handwoven rugs, we recommend carefully pushing the thread back into the weave of the rug using a blunt, pointy instrument. If the thread is long and does not continue back into the weave of the rug, carefully trim with scissors. Take care not to cut any structural threads that could cause the rug to unravel. If in doubt, tie a small, secure knot as close to the rug as possible and cut off the excess thread.
Pampa accepts no responsibility for damage caused by persons following the cleaning and care procedures listed on this page. This is simply advice and you should always contact an experienced rug cleaning professional if you are ever in doubt regarding the care of your rug.