How To Clean An Indoor Outdoor Rug?

September 10, 2023 by Marjorie R. Rogers, MA (English), Certified Consultant

To clean an indoor outdoor rug, start by shaking off loose dirt and debris. Then, use a mixture of mild detergent and water to spot clean any stains, scrubbing gently with a brush.

Rinse with clean water and hang the rug to dry in a well-ventilated area. Now let’s dive into the details of how to effectively clean your indoor outdoor rug. Indoor outdoor rugs are a popular choice for many homes due to their versatility and durability.

Whether you have one in your living room, patio, or entryway, regular cleaning is essential to maintain its appearance and prolong its lifespan. We will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to properly clean your indoor outdoor rug, ensuring that it stays fresh and looking its best. Let’s get started!

How To Clean An Indoor Outdoor Rug?


Reasons To Clean Your Indoor Outdoor Rug Regularly

Regular cleaning of your indoor outdoor rug is essential to maintain a fresh, allergen-free environment and prolong its lifespan. By keeping your rug clean, you can prevent odors and allergens from building up, as well as preserve its appearance and structural integrity.

Here are the reasons why regular cleaning is crucial:

  • Prevention of odors and allergens buildup:
  • Dust, dirt, pet dander, and other particles accumulate over time, leading to unpleasant odors and triggering allergies. By cleaning your rug regularly, you ensure a healthier living space for you and your family.
  • Regular maintenance helps eliminate mold and mildew growth, which can emit musty smells and cause respiratory issues.
  • Maintaining the rug’s appearance and longevity:
  • Dirt and debris can become embedded in the rug’s fibers, causing it to look dull and worn. Regular cleaning helps in restoring its vibrancy and maintaining its original beauty.
  • Over time, accumulated dirt can scratch and damage the rug’s surface, leading to fraying or tearing. Cleaning the rug regularly prevents these issues, extending its lifespan.

Remember, the key to enjoying a fresh, long-lasting indoor-outdoor rug is consistent cleaning. Incorporating a regular cleaning routine will not only enhance the rug’s aesthetic appeal but also promote a healthier environment for all.

Gathering The Necessary Tools And Materials

Gathering the necessary tools and materials:

To effectively clean an indoor-outdoor rug, you will need the following tools and materials:

  • Vacuum cleaner with upholstery attachment: Start by removing loose dirt, dust, and debris from the rug’s surface using a vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment. This will help prep the rug for a deeper clean.
  • Mild detergent or rug cleaner: For a gentle yet effective cleaning solution, opt for a mild detergent or a specific rug cleaner. Avoid using harsh chemicals or bleach, as they may damage the rug’s fibers.
  • Soft-bristle brush or sponge: To tackle stubborn stains or soiled areas, use a soft-bristle brush or sponge. This will help to loosen and lift dirt and grime without causing damage to the rug.
  • Clean water: Have a bucket or access to clean water handy to dilute the cleaning solution and rinse the rug thoroughly after cleaning.
  • Garden hose: If your rug is particularly dirty or has accumulated a lot of debris, using a garden hose can be helpful. Gently spray the rug with water to remove loose dirt or debris before cleaning.
  • Stain remover (optional): In case you encounter tough stains or spills on your rug, having a stain remover specifically designed for rugs or carpets can be beneficial. Make sure to follow the instructions on the product and use it sparingly in a well-ventilated area.

Remember to always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for any cleaning products or equipment you plan to use on your indoor-outdoor rug. Having the right tools and materials at hand will make the cleaning process much more efficient and effective.

Step-By-Step Cleaning Process

When it comes to cleaning your indoor outdoor rug, following a step-by-step process ensures that you effectively remove dirt, stains, and debris. By following these guidelines, you can keep your rug looking fresh and clean for longer. Let’s dive into the step-by-step cleaning process:

1. Vacuuming And Shaking

  • Start by removing loose dirt and debris from the rug’s surface using a vacuum cleaner.
  • Use the appropriate attachment to gently vacuum the rug, removing any dirt that may be embedded in the fibers.
  • Additionally, take the rug outside or in an open area and give it a good shake to dislodge any embedded dirt.

2. Spot Cleaning

  • Treat stains and spills promptly to prevent them from setting into the rug.
  • Blot the stain with a clean cloth or paper towel to absorb as much liquid as possible.
  • In case of tougher stains, use a stain remover specifically designed for rugs or a mixture of mild detergent and water.
  • Apply the stain remover or detergent solution to the stained area, and gently work it in with a clean cloth or sponge.
  • Allow the solution to sit for a few minutes and then blot the area again with a clean cloth to remove the stain.

3. Hand Washing Or Machine Washing

  • Check the care label on your rug for specific washing instructions.
  • If the rug is suitable for handwashing, fill a basin or bathtub with lukewarm water and add a mild detergent.
  • Gently agitate the water to create suds, then immerse the rug and soak it for a few minutes.
  • Use a soft brush or sponge to scrub the rug gently, paying extra attention to stained or soiled areas.
  • Rinse the rug thoroughly with clean water to remove all traces of detergent.
  • For rugs that are machine washable, place them in a mesh laundry bag to protect the fibers.
  • Set your washing machine to a gentle or delicate cycle with cold water and a mild detergent.
  • Once the washing cycle is complete, remove the rug from the machine and check for any remaining stains or dirt.

4. Drying The Rug

  • After cleaning, it is important to dry the rug properly to prevent mold and mildew growth.
  • Air drying is the best method. Hang the rug in a well-ventilated area, preferably outdoors or in a room with good airflow.
  • Avoid placing the rug in direct sunlight as it may cause fading.
  • Allow the rug to dry completely. This may take a few hours or even a full day, depending on the size and thickness of the rug.

By following these step-by-step instructions, you can effectively clean your indoor outdoor rug and ensure its longevity. Regular maintenance and cleaning will keep your rug looking its best, even in high-traffic areas. Remember to always refer to the care label for specific cleaning recommendations to avoid any damage to your rug.

Tips For Maintaining And Extending The Life Of Your Rug

Regularly sweeping or vacuuming the rug:

  • To keep your indoor-outdoor rug looking fresh and clean, it’s important to regularly sweep or vacuum the surface. Dirt, debris, and dust particles can accumulate over time and dull the appearance of the rug. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
  • Gently sweep the rug with a broom or use a vacuum cleaner on a low setting to remove loose dirt and dust.
  • Pay extra attention to high traffic areas and any spills or stains that may require more thorough cleaning.
  • Vacuum both sides of the rug if possible to ensure a deeper clean.

Rotating the rug periodically to even out wear:

  • By rotating your indoor-outdoor rug periodically, you can distribute the wear more evenly and prevent it from developing noticeable patterns or fading in specific areas. Here’s how you can do it:
  • Decide on a rotation schedule, such as every six months or annually, depending on the rug’s usage and foot traffic.
  • Carefully lift one edge or corner of the rug and rotate it 180 degrees before placing it back in its original position.
  • This will help equalize the pressure and ensure that all areas of the rug receive fair wear and tear.

Using a rug pad to prevent slipping and cushioning:

  • A rug pad not only provides added comfort and cushioning to your indoor-outdoor rug but also prevents it from slipping or sliding on various surfaces. Here’s why using a rug pad is important:
  • Place a rug pad underneath your rug to provide a non-slip surface, especially on hardwood, tile, or laminate flooring.
  • The pad acts as a barrier, preventing the rug from scratching or damaging the flooring beneath.
  • It also adds an extra layer of cushioning, which can enhance the rug’s durability and lifespan.

Remember, by incorporating these simple tips into your routine, you can maintain the overall appearance and extend the life of your indoor-outdoor rug. Sweeping or vacuuming regularly, rotating the rug periodically, and using a rug pad will help keep your rug looking fresh, prevent wear and tear, and provide a safe and comfortable surface for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions Of How To Clean An Indoor Outdoor Rug?

How Often Should I Clean My Indoor Outdoor Rug And Why?

Cleaning your indoor outdoor rug at least once a month helps maintain its appearance and extend its lifespan.

What Is The Best Way To Spot Clean An Indoor Outdoor Rug?

To spot clean your indoor outdoor rug, gently blot the stain with a mixture of mild detergent and warm water using a clean cloth or sponge.

Can I Use A Pressure Washer To Clean My Indoor Outdoor Rug?

Yes, you can use a pressure washer on a low setting to clean your indoor outdoor rug. Be careful not to use excessive pressure to avoid damaging the rug fibers.

Is It Recommended To Vacuum An Indoor Outdoor Rug?

Yes, regular vacuuming is recommended to remove loose dirt and debris from your indoor outdoor rug. Use a vacuum cleaner with a beater bar or rotating brush for best results.

How Do I Dry My Indoor Outdoor Rug After Cleaning?

After cleaning, allow your indoor outdoor rug to air dry completely in a well-ventilated area. Avoid direct sunlight and hanging the rug, as it may warp or stretch.



Cleaning an indoor outdoor rug is a straightforward process that can greatly improve the overall appearance and longevity of your rug. By regularly removing loose dirt and debris, spot cleaning stains, and deep cleaning as needed, you can keep your rug looking its best for years to come.

Remember to always check the manufacturer’s instructions for specific cleaning recommendations, as some rugs may require special care. Additionally, using a gentle cleaning solution and avoiding harsh chemicals or excessive scrubbing can help preserve the integrity of your rug’s fibers.

So, whether you have a small area rug or a large outdoor rug, following these cleaning tips will ensure that your rug remains clean, fresh, and inviting. Say goodbye to dirt and stains, and hello to a clean and beautiful indoor outdoor rug!

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About Author (Marjorie R. Rogers)

The inspiring mum of 6 who dedicates her time to supporting others. While battling with her own demons she continues to be the voice for others unable to speak out. Mental illness almost destroyed her, yet here she is fighting back and teaching you all the things she has learned along the way. Get Started To Read …