how to wash sofa covers without shrinking
Kristina Davis

Couch covers often get dirty, and people mostly assume that they aren’t easy to clean, which often leads them to ask, “How to wash sofa covers without shrinking?

Sofa covers are difficult to wash because they can shrink quickly when put in the washer due to the high pressure the machine sets off.

Though the size of sofa covers seems intimidating, there are numerous ways to wash this without shrinking and in this article, we’ll go over all the methods to do so.

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So what are you waiting for? Read on!

Wash Sofa Covers Without Shrinking Using a Washing Machine

Washing with a washing machine without risks of shrinking is indeed possible, but certain precautions need to be followed.

For instance, your covers must be both pre-shrunk and colorfast if you plan to launder them in the washing machine.

Pre-shrinking is the process of shrinking the fabric before it is put into an industrial washer and dryer. This process helps to prevent your material from wrinkling, shrinking, or stretching even more after laundering.

On the other hand, colorfast is a test to see if the color of your fabric is not going to fade after laundering. If it does not bleed and change colors after placing a swatch of cloth into a glass of water, then it is considered colorfast.

But enough with the reminders, let’s get on with the process!

Cold Washing Cycles With Your Washing Machine

wash sofa covers without shrinking

Right after you’ve determined that your couch covers are indeed washable, you’ll need to know how to properly wash them so that they are not just clean but also free of stains and odors.

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Here’s how to do it:

Step 1: Before putting the covers into the washing machine, make sure to first remove loose dirt and pet hair from the covers with a vacuum cleaner to avoid having them stick from the machine’s agitator.

Step 2: Next, place a mild detergent into the drum of your washing machine and turn it on during the cold wash cycle. Ensure not to add too much laundry detergent because it may leave residue and stickiness on your covers.

Step 3: Let your fabrics stay in the washing machine for a whole cycle before taking them out. When drying, avoid placing your covers in the dryer since this might risk shrinkage.

Just because the washing machine is known to shrink clothes doesn't mean you can't prevent it from happening to your couch covers. 

In this section, we showed you the proper way to use your washing machine and the precautions needed when going for this method.

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Handwashing With Vinegar and Baking Soda

handwash with vinegar and baking soda

When washing sofa fabrics, it’s best to go by handwashing since it helps you control the situation and avoid any risk of shrinkage.

Baking soda and vinegar are fantastic natural stain removers for couch covers because baking soda acts as a natural fabric softener. In contrast, vinegar is an absorbent and oxidizer that breaks down stains, causing a foul odor.

To begin, take note of the steps below:

  • First, add one part of baking soda in a small tub filled with water.
  • Stir it until you get bubbles all over the place.
  • Next, add 3 to 4 drops of vinegar.
  • Then dip your covers into the mixture and gently wash.
  • Once done, just let it air dry, and you’re all set!
Pro Tip: If time permits, you may let the covers soak overnight to ensure the surfaces are thoroughly cleaned.

In this section, we have provided why handwash is a much more preferable method.

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We were able to understand how baking soda is a natural fabric softener that lifts stains and dirt, while vinegar, on the other hand, is an absorbent and oxidant that breaks down odor-causing stains.

Washing Sofa Cover Stains That Won’t Come Off

washing sofa cover stains

Accidents and spills frequently cause stains on cushion covers, and you may become frustrated if you are unable to take soiled surfaces from the cushions to clean them.

Luckily, you can clean your covers that have stains that won’t come off without shrinkage by following these three methods below:

Method #1: Blotting

Blotting absorbs as much of the stain as possible because it doesn’t spread the stain and causes it to become more prominent, unlike sponges. You can do blotting by following the steps below:

  • To begin, use a spoon to scrape any residue from the stain.
  • Then, using a dry white towel, blot the stain.
Pro Tip: If the stain still remains even after blotting, you may blot with another white towel dampened with cold water.

Method #2: Detergent For Stain Removal

Some stains may be removed with water, while others would require a thorough cleaning. For those that do, make a solution of detergent and water for this. The detergent will break down the stains in your fabric and remove them for good.

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Be sure to follow these steps:

  • Just add a tiny amount of detergent to the water and dilute it.
  • Then, using a white cloth, apply the solution to the soiled area
  • Wait 5-10 minutes for it to dry.

Method #3: Baking Soda Paste

Some stains retain their odor/smell even after they have vanished. So you’ll need to develop a remedy to get the scent out of the cushion cover. If this happens, make a paste with baking soda and water.

Baking soda is a great deodorizer thanks to its antibacterial properties that kill invisible germs which cause the terrible stench.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Take 2 tablespoons of baking soda and 3 tablespoons of water.
  • Mix these ingredients in a bowl until you make a paste.
  • Apply the paste where stains and foul odor are.
  • Let sit for 10 minutes before wiping off and drying.
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We have unraveled how you can clean your couch covers by blotting, using a detergent, and even a baking soda paste.

Now you’re aware that these cleaning methods can remove the stench, the stain, and even kills germs in your fabrics.

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Unshrinking Sofa Covers to Get Them Back To Their Natural State

unshrinking sofa covers

Cushion coverings for couches that have shrunk significantly will not return to their previous size. Fabrics that have shrunk somewhat or lost their original form, on the other hand, maybe pushed back into acceptable dimensions.

It’s critical to follow fabric care instructions to avoid shrinking in the first place. When trying to second-guess alternative cleaning methods, knowing the fabric content and how materials should be cleaned might help.

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To unshrink sofa covers, make sure to…

Identify The Fabric

Know the fabric content of your cushion cover before attempting to unshrink it. Synthetics, such as polyester, nylon, and acrylic, are made to be easy to care for and do not shrink.

Cotton and wool blends can also shrink, although they’re usually simpler to pull back into shape once they’re on the cushion.

Relax The Material

There are numerous methods for loosening and stretching the fibers in a cloth. When you use a wrinkle releaser on a moist sofa cover, the fabric relaxes, giving it more length.

If you want an eco-friendly alternative, then try mixing one part vinegar to three parts water, spray on the fabric, and stretch.

Stretch Out The Material

It’s never easy to get back to your previous shape, but a simple hand stretch can assist. See how you can do it by following the steps listed below:

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Step 1: Soak the sofa cushion cover for several hours in a combination of cold water and fabric softener. Remove the item and put it flat to dry.

Step 2: Working around the cushion cover, gently pull opposing corners and edges at the same time.

Step 3: While the cover is curing, do this regularly. Take note that if you rub or agitate the wool, the shrinking process will start repeatedly.

The Final Sayings

We hope that this article has helped show some ideas on how to wash sofa covers without shrinking.

Now that you know all the steps and tips, you won’t ever have to worry about cleaning your covers when guests are coming over!

As this article draws to a close, remember the important points we’ve discussed and save this page for future use!