“How much to clean my four seat sofa?” is a common question to get via email, Facebook or over the phone.
I can give an estimate based on averages but to give a fixed price I need to see it first. Identifying the fabric helps me to judge the effectiveness of cleaning, type of cleaning and which cleaning products to use. Then I can give a fixed price.
Easy. Well, sort of. Different fabrics behave differently. Visose is weakened by water, silk gets stronger. Cotton can tighten up and shrink a little until it dries. Linen can get stained by plain water and man-made fibres tend not to react to anything at all.
So, I’ll identify the fabric type before cleaning starts and one method is the burn test. Get a bit of the fabric and the way it burns will help identify what it is. This doesn’t help when the fabric is a mix of fibres as you can’t distinguish between them. The label helps and the one pictured is reasonably typical. Lots of furniture doesn’t have a label and it is always wise to do your own checks and tests even if it does.
My task with this is to give a general clean all over and remove the dyes that have transferred from a pair of jeans. It wasn’t a difficult clean or even very time consuming, it just needed a bit of knowledge and finesse. That is why I don’t give fixed prices without seeing a job first and won’t compete, on price, with those that do.