Emergency Antique Rug care

Authentic antique rugs can last a long time when they are properly cared for. Protecting them from premature wear and damage can save a lot of money in repairs. Water, pet, and stain damages are common forms of emergency damage that should be taken care of immediately to avoid the devaluing of an antique rug. Antique rugs, such as antique Persian rugs, are hand knotted and require special and attentive care during the cleaning and drying processes.

Water Damage

Water damage can lead to genuine antique rugs becoming wet, stiff, and cause breakage. Foundation can weaken and ultimately become rotted when the rug in exposed to water and not dried properly. There are a lot of ways your antique rug can become damaged by water. It is common that people place plant pots directly on top of oriental rugs, and though this is appealing to the eyes, it’s not healthy for the rug. Pottery can leak and dampen the rug, causing the water damage. In an antique Persian rug for example, the knots may begin to clump off. In overdyed rugs, the dye may run off onto flooring and cause color alterations. Flooding and damp floors such as cement flooring can also cause water damage. Cement floors harbor moisture, and though you may not feel it yourself, there could be enough moisture to warp and degrade the strength of the foundation.

If your rug becomes wet or damp, the proper way to ensure its longevity is to properly clean and thoroughly dry the rug. Bring the rug to a dry place and lie it flat. Remove creases and crinkles, then try to squeeze out the water using a squeegee if you have access to one. If you have a vacuum that will help pull water from the rug, use it! Remove as much water as possible. After the water is squeezed out, roll the rug up (not fold!) and let it stand until there is no signs of water drainage. Now that the rug is damp, continue to dry it with whatever you can (i.e. fans, etc.). If needed, you can contact a professional specialist to help wash and dry the rug.

Pet Damage

Pets tend to do damage to our furniture because of their growth and natural habits. Teething can cause dogs to chew on rugs, and cats habitually sharpen their claws on anything available. The best way to prevent pet damage is to gain control over your pet’s habits. For example, when and if your cat is clawing at the rug, squirt them with a bit of water to redirect their activity. Providing chew toys for your dog can distract them from wanting to chew on your rug. Teach your pets the rules and boundaries by training them.


Accidents happen, but those accidents can ruin beautiful pieces such as oriental rugs. Keep calm and no matter what, do not scrub the rug! Instead, start by blotting the area that has been stained with paper towels or a clean, dry cloth. You want to try and remove as much as possible before attempting to dilute the stain. Test a small area of the rug with a rag dampened with water – if any dye comes off onto the cloth, do not continue. This is common in overdyed rugs. You may need the assistance of a professional rug cleaner. Use a mild detergent or vinegar mixed with part water and apply small amounts to the stain. Be careful to not soak the rug. Continue blotting and applying the solution until the cloth is no longer picking up the stain. Next, blot the remaining fluid with a clean, dry cloth. Make sure that the rug dries thoroughly.

Are you having difficulty removing a stain from your antique rug? Call us at 626-796-7888 for professional assistance.