Tips to Cleaning Your Outdoor Rug

old rugs house cleaning in West Los Angeles

Learn How To Clean An Outdoor Rug and Remove Mildew, Dirt, and Stains

Spring presents the perfect opportunity to clean your outdoor rug to make sure it’s looking as good as new for your outdoor living space.

While outdoor rugs are created to withstand different outdoor elements, occasional exposure to dirt and garden debris can leave them looking a little grubby. Plus, if yours has been rolled up in the garage or in your backyard storage space over the winter, chances are it needs a quick refresh to get it ready for the summer.

How long has it been since you cleaned your outdoor rug?

If you can’t remember the last time you cleaned your outdoor rug, here are six basic steps to get started.

  • Ditch the Dirt

    Grab a mask and gloves before giving your mat or rug a hearty shake. Pick up the rug and hold it over grass or an open space where it’s ok for the dust to settle. Shake it a few times to release the dirt. If the rug fibers are tightly bound or it is simply too large to hold, you can drape it over a fence or railing outside. Knock loose any surface debris with your hand or sweep it with a brush or broom.

  • Vacuuming

    A fine layer of dust will remain even after shaking the rug. So using a vacuum to clean both sides will help. Handheld or battery-powered vacuums are both convenient, you’ll want to use the best suction to release deep stains or locked-in dirt. Depending on the material of your rug, consider using a wet/dry vacuum for a deep clean. For dog and cat hair or stains, bring your indoor vacuum outside to use the turbo brushes and handheld rods.

Rug Vacuuming Tips - Maggy Maid West LA

  • Rinsing

    If your rug is made of washable materials (check the care label for instructions), you definitely need to rinse it. Most rugs are made from plastic materials so it’s easy to hose down. But don’t forget to do this on an inclined surface, such as the driveway or yard, so the water and remaining dirts can drain quickly.

  • Lather and Gently Scrub

    Much like indoor rug, outdoor rugs can benefit greatly from scrubbing. First, check the care instructions to make sure that the cleaning material you will use won’t damage the rug. Always refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

    Next, choose a preferred cleaning solution. DIY cleaning solutions, like diluted dish soap, white vinegar, or baking soda, work well for most outdoor rugs. For most messes, a simple mix of a few drops of liquid dish soap in warm water should do the trick. Additionally, white vinegar and baking soda are great ways to remove mildew or mold; just be careful not to overdo it as you might diminish the rug’s original color.

    Another popular choice is club soda, especially for absorbing acidic stains like red wine. For sticky stains, tough spots, or greasy messes, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda mixed into a paste can be used as a spot treatment. Alternatively, there are many specialty or store-bought rug cleaners to consider, including pet-safe, green, and eco-friendly varieties.

    After lathering, use a soft-bristle brush to gently scrub spots or the entire surface, as needed.

  • Rinse and Dry

    Rinse with water to remove all cleaning agents and lay the outdoor rug flat to dry or pin it to a clothesline. Avoid draping rugs over railings, as they might lose shape as they dry, or transfer color from the railing. Once the top of the rug is dry, turn it over to dry the backside. If the rug material is colorfast, you should strongly consider sun drying. Make sure that both sides are completely dry before moving the rug into storage or placing back on your patio.

Outdoor Rug Storing Tips - Maggy Maid West LA

  • Store or Place Rug

    Many people change their outdoor rug with the seasons. If you’re expecting snow or heavy rain, take your rug inside to prolong its life. Use stretch cords or ropes to secure it in a roll. If it will be stored outside or in a deck or shed, consider storing it in plastic or under a tarp. If your outdoor rug is small enough to be stored in your home, put it in a place you’ll remember so you’ll easily be able to place it again for next season.

    If you decide to put your newly cleaned outdoor rug back in place, remember to wash the surface where it once was. This means washing the deck or hosing down the lawn before laying down your fresh rug. Last but not least if you need assistance with all your house cleaning needs, you can always count on Maggy Maid Referral and Housekeepers in West Los Angeles. We’ll be happy to provide you an obligation free house cleaning quote in seconds.


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