How to Clean Upholstered Wood Furniture: Step by Step Guide

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How to Clean Upholstered Wood Furniture: Step by Step Guide

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One of the most elegant types of furniture in homes or offices is upholstered wood furniture. The weight and warmth of wood furniture is comforting, while upholstered pads are both stylish and comfortable. Padded wood furniture is both formal and welcoming. It is hard to move around, but easy to nudge. This makes it perfect for many types of room decor. But keeping it clean is a little more challenging.

Unlike other office furniture, it can’t just be wiped down. Unlike home furniture, it can’t just be fabric-treated. It’s a little of both, and truly high-quality wood furniture needs quality care.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to clean upholstered wood furniture.


Supplies to Clean Upholstered Wood Furniture

  • Warm Water
  • Soft Cleaning Cloths
  • White Vinegar
  • Dish Soap
  • Oil Soap
  • Wood Oil or Furniture Wax
  • Furniture Foot Caps or Pads


The Upholstery

Start with the fabric part of the chair. It will create the most dust when cleaned and the wood can be wiped down afterward.

Brush, Lint Roll, and Lightly Vacuum the Fabric

Begin by removing as much dust and hair from the fabric as possible. Use upholstery hose attachment on your vacuum and/or a lint roller to get the fabric mostly clear of loose particles.

Spot-Treat Stains and Discolouration

Then spot-treat any stains or discolouration on the furniture pads. A light mixture of dish soap can help treat and remove light stains. You can also use a specific guide based on the type of fabric on your furniture.

Vinegar-Wash the Fabric

Now make a mixture of hot water, white vinegar, and a small amount of dish soap. Gently wash the fabric with a cloth and your mild cleaning solution to clean the fabric and remove any lingering odors. The vinegar smell will dissipate shortly, and should not be strong in the mixture.

Vinegar is both a mild cleaning acid and will kill any mildew that might try to grow in your upholstery.

Dry and Vacuum

Don’t get the furniture too wet while washing. When you’re done, pat dry with a towel and vacuum the surface when it’s dry again for good measure.


The Wood Frame and Details

While the upholstery is drying, you can clean and treat the wood of your padded furniture. This process will also work well on your 100% wood furniture, and any wood-and-metal furniture you may have.

Wipe with Diluted Oil Soap

Start with a mixture of oil soap and warm water in a 1:6 ratio. Gently wipe down the exposed wood surfaces of your upholstered furniture. Rinse and re-apply your soft cloth to remove layers of grime that build up invisibly on furniture surfaces.

Vinegar-Wash Along the Grain

Use a mild vinegar cleaning mixture to clear away any potential for mildew on the wood and to cleanse your wood or finish.

Oil or Wax the Wood

Now lay a moisturising and/or protective layer over the wood of your furniture. Light oiling will make your wood shine and will help it drink in moisture to extend the life span. Wax locks in moisture and provides a protective layer over the wood finish. Gently work oil or wax into the grain of your wood with circular motions along the grain and curves.

Cap the Feet

Finally, check the feet of your wood furniture. Add or replace the foot caps to fit the type of floor your furniture is on. This will help avoid scratching the floor. Place rubberised pads to hold the furniture in place or felt pads to help it slide.


Cleaning upholstered wood furniture is simple once you know the procedure.  Clean and oil your wood furniture between once to four times a year. Polish wood furniture as often as needed to sanitise the space and re-oil if cleaning products strip moisture from the wood. For a professional cleaning service, find great people who know how to treat classic wood upholstered furniture as part of refreshing every room.

Check out more of our step-by-step cleaning guides to fully master your space and cleaning routines.

Regional Services

Regional Services

Regional Services are an experienced commercial and office cleaning company based in London. Regional Services are an award winning and fully accredited cleaning company who provide a full range of facility management services and expertise including cleaning, maintenance, waste removal, pest control, gardening and more.


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