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How to Clean a Jute Rug?

Among the various materials from which area rugs are made, jute is all-natural. Jute is also known as burlap or hessian. A jute rug not only creates a cozy and classic atmosphere in the room but it also gives a soft feel. What’s more, it’s durable too and has a golden shine.

But to maintain its appeal, softness, and strength, a jute rug has to be properly cleaned, which is not the same as that of woolen or synthetic rug. If taken care of properly, a jute rug can provide the best look and luxury for a long time. The homeowner has to get acquainted with the method of cleaning a jute rug in order to keep its natural fibers safe and beautiful.

Published: July 26, 2022.

jute rug 1

What is Chenille in Jute Rugs?

Chenille is a natural cotton fiber that is added to some jute rugs because the chenille material gives the rug a silky finish and added softness.

Chenille is very soft and is often used in blankets, scarves, and sweaters. When added to a jute rug, it makes the rug soft and comfortable underfoot.

Thus, if one needs an extra soft yet durable area rug, for example, for their child’s room, they can choose a jute rug with a high proportion of chenille material.

Are Sisal and Jute Same?

Many homeowners confuse between jute and sisal. However, sisal is a different material made from a species of Mexican agave and is durable but stiff. Thus, it may be uncomfortable and scratchy.

Regarding ease of cleaning, sisal fibers are naturally more absorbent than jute, and hence sisal rugs may hold more dirt and show more stains than jute. Thus, if a homeowner is looking for a rug that is less likely to get stained and is easier to clean, they should opt for a jute rug.

One can clean a jute rug at home on their own or get it cleaned by professional cleaners.

If the rug is excessively soiled, getting it dry cleaned professionally is the best option. If that isn’t the case, one can clean it on their own at home. If done independently, the homeowner will have to keep certain objects at hand. These include water, baking soda or dry carpet shampoo, vacuum cleaner, white vinegar, microfiber cloth/s, and a broom or rug beater.

One should remember that anything that includes excessive moisture, such as steam, wet shampoo, etc., is bad for jute rugs as the fibers may be damaged and/or discolored with these objects.

Start Cleaning by Hitting the Rug

To start with, one should give the rug a good shake first. For this, one can take the rug outside of the house and beat it.

Having an open weave, a jute rug has most of the dirt on its underside. The dirt that is embedded into the fibers will come loose and fall off with the beating.

For a large rug, one can take the help of another person and hang it over on a table, a railing, or a few chairs, etc. Then with a rug beater or broom, they should hit the rug all over to loosen the deeply embedded dirt.

Some experts, however, don’t recommend beating a jute rug because, according to them, beating causes the natural fibers to loosen. Therefore they recommend vacuuming the rug with a suction setting to maximum and with the brushroll turned off.

Hang in the Sun

By hanging the rug in the sun for some time, one can get rid of the odor to a large extent. The sun will act as a deodorant. It’s also an effective germ-killer.

Thus, if the rug houses any mites and bacteria, they too will be cleaned with the sun’s rays.


The user should now disengage the beater bars and set an upright vacuum to its lowest suction setting.

Then they can carefully vacuum the rug in the direction in which fibers are woven. Since jute rugs are woven, one can use a brush attachment during vacuuming. It will pull out trapped and ground-in dirt and debris.

If the rug has residual dirt that the vacuum cannot access, one can consider hanging up the rug and brushing it with a stiff-bristled fabric brush.

Dry Clean

As mentioned earlier, cleaning a jute rug should not involve any liquids. If used, they should only be limited to spot cleaning. Users can use a dry rug shampoo or baking soda instead.

They should just sprinkle the dry shampoo on the rug and let it sit on it for a few hours. Then they should vacuum up the shampoo. Then they should flip the rug and repeat the process on the other side.

How to Clean Rug Stains?

A jute rug's spills, mud, or pet accidents will need immediate cleaning to prevent permanent stains.

Spot cleaning works well when the stains are small. Here’s what one should do to spot clean:

For liquid spills, one should blot the spill immediately with a paper towel or microfiber cloth. They should work from the outer borders of the spill towards its center.

For solid spills, one should remove as much of the solids off the rug with the help of the blunt edge of a spoon or spatula.

In any case, one should not rub the stain. Rubbing will only push the dirt deeper down into the rug’s fibers.

In case of a mud stain, it’s a good idea to let it dry. When it’s dried out, it will come off easily.

In case of acidic spills, such as tomato sauce, fruit juices, or red wine, one can use club soda to neutralize the acid.

The user can use a mild detergent designed for cleaning natural fibers. Or they can use a mixture of water and white vinegar in a 50:50 proportion.

Now they should dip a clean microfiber cloth in the detergent or white vinegar mixture and rub the stained area gently, but not vigorously, as that will push the stain down the rug’s fibers and will be difficult to remove.

Then they should dry the area with a hair dryer to prevent staining.

How to Remove Mildew?

The user should mix 1 part of bleach and 6 parts of water in a spray bottle. Before using this mixture on a visible part of the rug, they should test it on an unseen part, and if that part is discolored, they should dilute the mixture and retest.

Once the mixture is desirable, they should spray it a little on the mildew and try to remove it with a soft brush. After 10 minutes, they should rub the spot with a dry microfiber cloth.

If mildew is a regular problem on a jute rug, the user should move the rug to a drier location or use it only during dry seasons.

Use a Jute Sealer

A jute sealer can minimize the absorbency of the jute fiber and thus protect the rug from stains. This will offer a little more time to clean up any stains before they set into the rug.

jute rug fibers

Maintenance of a Jute Rug

Depending on the foot traffic it receives, a jute rug needs to be vacuumed only once or twice a week. While vacuuming, the user should do it in different directions and pass the vacuum over the rug several times.

The user should vacuum both sides of the rug as well as the floor underneath. One should ask family and guests to avoid wearing shoes while walking on the rug. They should rotate the rug every six months for even wear.

To make one’s jute rug last longer, they can do the following things:

- Rolling out a high-quality rug pad underneath the rug. This will protect the rug and the floor beneath and reduce friction and shedding.

- Clipping loose fibers. Instead of pulling loose fibers, known as sprouts, the user should clip them. Pulling can cause the unraveling of the rug.

- Avoiding direct sunlight for too long as it can fade the rug

- Avoiding moist environments like bathrooms or near the pool or kitchen sink

- Rotating the rug regularly for even wear

One can maintain the great look and softness of their jute rug and be a proud owner of a comfortable house by following the above tips for cleaning and maintaining a jute rug.


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