How To Clean Your Sofa In 4-Steps

Couch potato or not, you need to do sofa cleaning – all the crumbs and chips from last year’s World Cup could be turning green in between the cracks and cushions. That coffee stain from last week is starting to look like an outbreak on the sofa, what would your friends say?

Keep your most frequently used furniture clean and hygienic to last many more movie nights. Although you should be getting your sofa professionally cleaned every 6-12 months, giving your sofa a good DIY clean in between can prevent stubborn build-ups that could potentially damage the upholstery material.

Follow these 4 steps to get your sofa smelling and looking new again:

Step 1: Vacuum All Over

Vacuum everything – the cushions, in between the cracks, and all over the surface of your sofa. Remove any large debris, coins, pens, paperclips, crayons or keys from the sofa (did we miss anything?). You can cover the vacuum nozzle with an old stocking or pantyhose and secure it with a rubberband to stop coins from being sucked up while you’re vacuuming.

Don’t forget to remove the cushions and vacuum the base of the sofa. Make use of your vacuum attachments to get into those tiny crevices.

Vacuuming might not get out all of the lint and pet fur that’s stuck to your sofa, use a lint roller instead.

Step 2: Identify Your Fabric

Your sofa should come with a care tag that gives instructions about what to do and more importantly, what not to do!

Read the cleaning instructions carefully and identify what cleaning products you should use for your fabric to avoid permanent damage. As a general guide, most tags would indicate this as:

  • “W”: It’s okay to use water to clean, or a water-based detergent if you’re using a steam vacuum
  • “S”: Use only a solvent-based cleaner or a dry-cleaning detergent
  • “SW or WS”: You can use either water or a solvent cleaner/dry-cleaning detergent
  • “O”: Indicates the material is ‘Organic’ (natural fibers) and should be washed with cold water
  • “X”: Only vacuum or use a brush to clean, get a professional upholstery cleaner if it needs shampooing

If the sofa has covers that can be removed, check whether you can wash them in the washing machine or if you should dry-clean them.


Step 3: Spot Sofa Cleaning

To clean small stains on sofa made from fabric, you can use warm water mixed with some dishwashing liquid to remove them. If you’re not sure about using the mixture on your fabric, test a small batch on a hidden corner of your sofa to check for discolouration or any damage. Without soaking your sofa, apply the mixture gently onto a clean cloth and blot the stain out. Leave it to dry.

Use a bristle brush to break up cakey dirt, do this gently so you don’t damage the fabric.

Get to know your stains and what type of cleaning solution you need to use to remove them effectively without damaging your sofa material.

Step 4: Use Baking Soda for Sofa Cleaning

Baking soda is a cleaning miracle and it helps to break up stains and release any bad smell that’s stuck in your sofa.

Sprinkle your entire sofa with a good amount of baking soda. Let the baking soda sit in for about 20 minutes to one hour.

To finish, vacuum the baking soda off using a brush attachment.


You can follow these steps for a quick clean every now and then. For stains that are stubborn or you can’t even identify anymore, send it to one of our professional sofa cleaning and upholstery cleaning companies in KL.

Let them know if your sofa also needs some good deep-cleaning treatment – just submit a sofa cleaning services request on Kaodim Malaysia.