Our Proven Rug Cleaning Process in Bellingham & Mount Vernon

Certified Oriental Rug Cleaners

At Steam Sweepers Rug Cleaning, we clean rugs from all over the world, regardless of the material, weave, or dyes involved. Our family business collectively has over 60 years’ experience in the rug cleaning profession.

We clean all types of hand-made or machine-made rugs. Eight of ten rugs on the planet are candidates for a centuries-old method utilizing cold immersion-washing practices that we have mastered over the decades. This technique is widely used in the Middle East today and has been for over a thousand years.

While most rugs can be immersion washed, for the small percentage that can’t, we have other methods. Many companies that clean rugs do not have the skills or knowledge to determine which rugs can or cannot be immersion washed and if they did have the knowledge, they do not have the facilities, wisdom and experience to immersion wash a rug.

Our rug cleaning methods and steps will differ from rug to rug depending it’s origin, condition, and materials used in the weaving of your Oriental, Turkish, Persian,Chinese, Silk, or Antique rug. We clean rugs from all around the world, even department store rugs.

For three decades we have been the only Oriental and Specialty rug cleaners north of Everett WA that truly immersion-wash fine rugs. You can always visit our wash plant before noon Monday thru Friday or utilize our pick-up services in Bellingham, Mount Vernon, Anacortes, Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County. For our customers in the San Jaun Islands, we can meet with you in Anacortes for our pick-up services. To learn more, dial 360-762-3020 or click here. For nearly three decades, our satisfied customers have relied on our time-tested rug cleaning process for every unique type.

Pre-Rug Cleaning Inspection

Steps 1 & 2: Pre-Rug Cleaning Inspection

  • We make every effort to determine the origin of your Oriental carpet.
  • A close inspection of the foundation, knots, fringe, kilim, colors, patterns, pile fiber, and pile density can reveal clues of origin.
  • Determining the correct wool shampoo requires an experts evaluation of colorfastness as it relates to composition and PH.
  • The overall condition, origin, colorfastness and construction will provide us with the information we need to determine the correct area rug cleaning process.
  • Unlike clothing we do not have the luxury of referencing a tag for instructions. Our certified IICRC rug cleaner will outline the rug cleaning instructions once a pre-cleaning inspection has been completed.
Dusting Oriental Carpet

Step 3: Reasons We Dust Rugs Before Cleaning

  • Most Oriental rugs include a high percentage of wool. By its nature, wool hides dirt, debris, and other insoluble substances that must be removed before a proper washing can take place. Can you imagine washing a pair of jeans with pockets full of dust and dirt?
  • More than 75% of soil found in wool rugs is deeply embedded particulate matter at the base of the rug’s foundation. If not removed, this debris can cause abrasive damage to the rug’s fibers. Basically, the dirt acts like sandpaper and with each step you take on a dirty rug it slowly wears on the rug, shortening the rug’s life span.
  • Using our Tumble Duster (Big Blue) can remove several pounds of dirt, debris from large pile rugs. We have actually filled half a dozen five-gallon buckets with dirt and dust from a single Chinese rug. Also, insect larvae, and other contaminants are removed in the process rug before washing. We remove thousands of pounds of contaminants from rugs every year with this amazing piece of equipment.
Evaluate Colorfastness & PH

Step 4: Evaluate Colorfastness & PH

Select the correct shampoo by evaluating colorfastness and PH

Evaluating a rugs colorfastness for immersion washing is the most critical component in restoring beauty and value to fine rugs. It truly is an art/craft very few people or companies possess. We have a commanding confidence working with natural and synthetic dyes, and the natural fibers they bind with, such as, wool, silk, cotton and linens. This single step separates Steam Sweepers Rug Cleaning from others.

Rugs Submersion Washing

Step 5: Rug Cleaning & Washing Procedures

  • Immersion Washing

    Cold water immersion is a hands-on method where your rug is laid flat so the fibers, foundation and fringe can be completely immersed in cold water. A gentle shampoo formulated specifically for natural fibers such as wool, silk and cotton is used to release dirt, grime and odors. Once soiling is removed from your rug, the washing vat is drained and filled with freshwater for a complete rinsing. Water is then extracted from the rug and hung on a drying rack in our temperature-controlled drying room where your rug is able to completely and properly dry.

    80% percent of all rugs in the world are candidates for immersion washing. The processes below are used for those particular rugs. For rugs that are not a good fit for immersion washing, we have other methods as well.

Rinsing Process

Step 6: Rinsing Process

Fresh Water

  • Rinsing and flushing with fresh clean cold water is 100% natural.
  • We keep pumping clear the water until it running clean and clear.
  • No wool shampoo, sticky residues, grime or dirt behind. It’s cleaner than when it was new in many cases.
  • In-home surface cleaners leave behind chemical residue that can lead to fading, discoloration, quick re-soiling, and possible dye bleed.
  • Without getting too technical, it’s very important to complete the rug cleaning process by leaving your rug in a state in which the dyes remain set.
  • Have you ever left shampoo residue in your hair after showering? Leaving residue in a fine rug for an extended period will damage it.
Grooming Prior to Drying

Step 7: Grooming Prior to Drying

  • After being washed, rinsed, and extracted we groom the fibers in the correct position to prepare for the drying stage of the rug cleaning process.
  • The “nap” or pile direction must be corrected by grooming.
  • Have you ever allowed your hair to dry straight out of the shower without brushing or combing? It may be clean but is sure doesn’t look good.
Tower Drying

Step 8: Tower Drying

  • Temperature, humidity, and airflow are critical factors when drying wool rugs.
  • Our Drying Tower allows warm dry air to encircle the entire rug, expediting the process.
  • Some rugs need to be dried flat.
  • We utilize increased air flow in combination with heat and low humidity to accelerate the procedure.
  • The area rug cleaning process is not complete until your completely dry.
  • If you’ve ever left your laundry in the washer for a couple days you understand the importance of speeding up the drying process.
  • Our Rugs dry in 24 hrs.

Recently Completed Jobs

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Bellingham, WA

Margo is a proud owner of a machine woven Karastan. Cold water immersion washing makes these rugs shine.

Bellingham, WA

Dixie was a first time customer and she was delighted to find a local company that specialized in immersion washing and rug repair of oriental rugs. This antique Persian Sarouk has been in her family for generations and she's getting it ready to pass...

Stanwood, WA

Roger had an emergency situation where his antique Persian rugs were effected by water damage due to a flood. Our team quick drove down to Stanwood the same day in order to extract and dry the rugs before any more damage could be done. After immersio...

Our customers love us!

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4.98 out of 571 reviews

Blaine, WA

Posted on Google

So glad that I found Steam Sweepers in Bellingham, WA. I brought in a beloved Turkish wool rug that had been stored in my shed for years and was showing signs of mold and dry rot. In less than a week I picked up the rug which smelled great and looked...

Maple Falls, WA

Posted on CustomerLobby

Quick service, great results Rugs look great and only took 1-1/2 weeks.

Mount Vernon, WA

Posted on CustomerLobby

I have absolutely nothing but good things to say about Steam Sweepers LLC! They are fabulous! Their service people are nice and professional, but that is only the icing on the cake - and that is great icing! But what I really like is their method of ...

Other pages you may be interested in...

Steam Sweepers Rug Cleaning can clean or repair your area rug. Our crews always provide a follow-up inspection before returning your fine textile to your property in Bellingham and other Washington cities.

Steam Sweepers Rug Cleaning’s experts offers rug cleaning process with fringe grooming for effective rug cleaning in Bellingham, WA.

Upgrade the look of your rug with professional rug combing and brushing by Steam Sweepers Rug Cleaning in Bellingham & Mount Vernon, WA.


What Our Customers Are Saying

We have a large contemporary wool rug. Light on color and had many coffee spills. Bryan and his team are amazing! Kind, very knowledgeable, excellent communication and customer service... Read more about Dolores W reviewRead More

Firstly, my rug came back looking fantastic. Second, the service was great. They clearly told me what to expect, timing, and building a service proposal for my rug and situation.... Read more about Cody H reviewRead More

I showed up with a rug I essentially destroyed myself. They very nicely told me I messed up and told me the risks of trying to get it cleaned... Read more about Dented LRead More

Steam Sweepers did an excellent job cleaning 3 area rugs. Extremely satisfied with the results and with the friendly professional service. Highly recommend!!... Read more about Steve E reviewRead More

Call Us for Pick-up or
Drop Off Service!

We make area rug cleaning easy for you. Whether you own a large Persian rug, a hand-knotted Chinese rug, a department store rug or maybe a house full of smaller woven rugs such as Karastan’s, we would be happy to schedule a pick-up. We service our hometown of Bellingham & Mount Vernon, all cities and townships in Whatcom, Skagit, and Island Counties. We meet our customers from San Jaun Islands in Anacortes. Also, a limited reach into Snohomish County, Stanwood. If your home is on the I-5 corridor between Blaine and Smokey Point our pick-up services can make rug cleaning easy for you.