How to Clean an Area Rug with a Pressure Washer

How to Use a Pressure Washer to Clean an Area Rug

The correct rug can do a wonderful job of brightening up a rug or pulling your decorating scheme together, and it’s a great way to make you feel more at home.

However, it’s very easy for these rugs to lose their charm as they get dirty from dirt and debris. If your rug is looking dingy and dull, it’s time to brighten up the décor by cleaning them.

How to Clean an Area Rug with a Pressure Washer

Set up your pressure washer with the correct nozzle and add a little detergent to help loosen up ground-in debris or dirt and wash the rug. Using a 25 or 40-degree tip will ensure you have more than enough power to return your rug to a clean state and make sure to rinse it well before hanging it out to dry.

A spot or stain remover can help you clean routine surface spills, but you need something more powerful to get to the bottom of the rug. Using a pressure washer ensures that you get a deep clean that makes your run look new.

Below, we’ve outlined the steps to help you use your pressure washer on your rug without causing any damage while removing the dirt and grime.

How Your Pressure Washer Cleans Your Rugs

A pressure washer uses a strong water jet to clean any surface you point it at, and the amount of pressure from the nozzle and the machine gives you direct control over the cleaning power.

You want to get a lower-pressure tip for this project, or you’ll risk damaging and ruining the rug.

Start by getting a 25 or 40-degree tip to ensure you give yourself enough cleaning power to get through your rug’s pile.

Always start at a decent distance from the rug and slowly get closer as you work to reduce the risk of damaging the pile, and you should stay at least two or three feet away from the rug at all times.

The closer you get the tip of the wand, the more powerful your jet of water will be as it hits the rug.

Adding a small amount of detergent to the pressure washer can help loosen up some of the grime and dirt and wash the rug.

If there is an option to use detergent with your unit, you can use that. You can also add detergent to a brush and use a brush to work the detergent into the rug before rinsing it with the pressure washer to finish cleaning it.

Steps to Take to Avoid Damaging the Rug

Cleaning your rug with a pressure washer can be a fast project, but you have a very real risk of causing damage or even ruining the rug if you’re not careful.

There are a few things to keep in mind, including:

Brush and Detergent – Double-check the fabric on your rug to make sure you can safely use detergent on it without ruining the color. You can use a carpet cleaner or gel stain remover and use a soft bristle brush to work it into stained areas before you pressure wash them.

Location – Choose a space to clean the rug that is decently clean. A good place to start is in your driveway or on a patio outside with decent drainage. The rug should be able to lay flat and make sure it’s outside since the pressure washer’s jet is strong.

Pressure Washer –Although virtually any unit will do, the tip is the most important consideration. Don’t use a powerful tip right away, and make sure you start with a wider tip and gradually work your way up. You will want to use cold water with a PSI rating of 1,600 to 1,800 at the maximum, and don’t put the tip too close to the rug.

How to Prepare the Rug for Pressure Washing

Wait for a nice day with a lot of sunshine to start preparing your rug for pressure washing. It’s a good idea to vacuum the rug thoroughly before you take it out of your house because you want to get rid of as much loose debris and dirt as possible before you clean it.

Find a solid surface to lay your rug out flat on, like a driveway, patio, or concrete slab. Get your chosen stain remover and prep the rugby pretreating these areas with your chosen stain remover.

Rub or scrub in a liquid detergent if it’s safe for the rug to give it a deeper clean when you use the pressure washer.

How to Pressure Wash a Rug – Step-by-Step

There are several easy steps you should follow to correctly pressure wash your rug and bring it to a like-new state. Following these steps also help reduce the chances of causing damage.

Step One – Pick Out Your Area

The first thing you want to do is pick out an area and ensure that it’s clear and clean. If not, you’ll create a bigger mess when you bring your rug and pressure washer out, and a flat surface works best.

Don’t attempt to pressure wash your rugs inside because you can easily damage anything by the rug due to the powerful jet of water.

Step Two – Spot Clean Stains

Layout your rug and check it thoroughly for stains. Get a gentle gel-based stain remover and spot-clean the stained areas.

You’ll only use a small amount to prevent fading the rug’s natural colors, and you should let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes.

After a minute or two, gently scrub at the areas with a soft bristle brush. Wait for a minute or two if you still see the stains and scrub at them again.

Step Three – Mix Your Water and Detergent

Once you brush at the stained areas of the rug, you want to get a basin and fill it with a liquid cleaning agent and warm water.

Get a detergent with antibacterial properties to it. Stir it before soaking the rug with this solution and allowing it to soak in.

Step Four – Soak the Rug

If the rug features synthetic materials and it’s thicker, allow it to soak for up to 10 minutes. If the rug has a more delicate material like wool, you’ll only let it soak for a maximum of five minutes.

Step Five – Set up the Pressure Washer

Set up your medium-duty unit and make sure that the water that comes out is clean. Attach the 65-degree nozzle tip to the pressure washer.

This nozzle is extremely versatile, and it’ll work the detergent into your rug’s fibers while pressure washing it at the same time.

Step Six – Spray the Rug

Start at one end of the rug with your pressure washer and slowly work down to the other end.

Once you finish with one or two layers, you’ll step barefoot on the rug to squeeze the soap residue and soap out of the carpet fibers. Alternate this process between three to four times.

Step Seven – Rinse with a 25-Degree Nozzle

Once you step on the rug and get clear water with no soap, it’s time to switch to a 25-degree nozzle to rinse the rug.

This nozzle works best because it’ll push dirt out without damaging the fibers. Stand three feet away and start rinsing the rug with the green nozzle tip attachment to remove any remaining traces of soap, dirt, or residue, so it doesn’t weaken the rug’s fibers.

Step Eight – Press the Water Out

When you get all of the soap out, you want to fold the rug to press the water out. You can step on it a few more times if your feet are clean to get as much water out as you can. Don’t ring the rug out because this can damage the fibers.

Step Nine – Hang the Rug

The final step in the cleaning process is to hang the rug up to dry. Rugs do best when they dry in the sun to help get rid of any lingering odors to help keep it smelling clean and fresh.

Bottom Line

Now you know how to clean a rug with a pressure washer, and we outlined all of the steps you need to take to complete this process without damaging your rug.

Once you start the project, you’ll understand that it’s very basic and quick, even for larger and thicker rugs.

When you finish, you’ll have a beautiful and clean rug that will brighten up your home once again.

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