How to clean suede

bryonb03

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I am looking for some help with upholstery cleaning!! I have a customer tomorrow that would like her sectional cleaned. Customer believes that it may be suede. It looks to me to be micro fiber. I have never cleaned suede before so I was looking at the expertise of this group for any help possible. Is it as simple as pre-spray and HWE?

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John Rockwood

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Even if it's Micro Fiber you should not use your TM. You will destroy and change the nap because of the vacuum produced with your TM. I would use a good upholstery shampoo with sponge then extract with clean towels followed by grooming. You could try with a hand held extractor but it may still cause damage to the nap (cleaning lines). Be sure to explain why you have clean with upholstery shampoo. The picture looks like MF and not Suede. Should you discover it is in fact Suede then clean as you would NuBuck.
 

Darthmaeglin

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In my experience HWE is not a problem with MF as long as you groom it before it dries. I clean it like most synthetic upholstery (ie. not full heat or pressure) and have had no problems. The important part is the grooming, I'll generally clean a section then groom, clean the next section then groom, etc.
 
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Luky

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Even if it's Micro Fiber you should not use your TM. You will destroy and change the nap because of the vacuum produced with your TM. I would use a good upholstery shampoo with sponge then extract with clean towels followed by grooming. You could try with a hand held extractor but it may still cause damage to the nap (cleaning lines). Be sure to explain why you have clean with upholstery shampoo. The picture looks like MF and not Suede. Should you discover it is in fact Suede then clean as you would NuBuck.
I kindly disagree with hesitation to use TM on microfiber furniture. I have plenty ( 3) upholstery tools with a double vac relief, so there is no risk of engraving nasty lines.
I believe that furniture in question is suede, so one way or another, your advice to use old school method is right on the money.
 
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bryonb03

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I kindly disagree with hesitation to use TM on microfiber furniture. I have plenty ( 3) upholstery tools with a double vac relief, so there is no risk of engraving nasty lines.
I believe that furniture in question is suede, so one way or another, your advice to use old school method is right on the money.

How would I be able to tell if it’s suede? By smell
 

John Rockwood

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I kindly disagree with hesitation to use TM on microfiber furniture. I have plenty ( 3) upholstery tools with a double vac relief, so there is no risk of engraving nasty lines.
I believe that furniture in question is suede, so one way or another, your advice to use old school method is right on the money.
True about Micro Fiber in general. I've never had a problem using TM. When dealing with a Suede (NuBuck) texture you will change the texture of the nap when using extraction vs Uph shampoo. Mfgs have gotten really good about imitating the real deal. One could always test and see.
 
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John Rockwood

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How would I be able to tell if it’s suede? By smell
Do you have any leather protector cream? Just apply a small amount in an inconspicuous area if it is NuBuck the cream will dry dark. You can use a hair dryer to speed dry the test area. Aniline will be dark when applied and lighten as it dries. Both NuBuck & Aniline are cleaned the same.
 
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Luky

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Thank you for the help!! I'm thinking MF also and would have tried HWE. Would that have damaged the fabric?
Little advice, my friend You'll benefit from hitting search button , it's a great feature, that TMF provides. I'm not calling you lazy, though..
As far as cleaning goes, if you hit suede with hot, or any water, you gonna end up with sand paper as a final product. This soft material will turn to a brittle mess, that's all.
Good luck!
 

sbsscn

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Even if it's Micro Fiber you should not use your TM. You will destroy and change the nap because of the vacuum produced with your TM. I would use a good upholstery shampoo with sponge then extract with clean towels followed by grooming. You could try with a hand held extractor but it may still cause damage to the nap (cleaning lines). Be sure to explain why you have clean with upholstery shampoo. The picture looks like MF and not Suede. Should you discover it is in fact Suede then clean as you would NuBuck.
Sorry to disagree with you John,

As long as its synthetic or a cellulose then there is no reason why it cannot be cleaned with hot water extraction. leather is different it is cleaned different to prevent problems or the nap issue.
I would be more concerned about high temperature (depending on the type of fiber) if you are worried about the streak marks then run your TM at half rpm, or use a vac release. I never control the vacuum, but what I do, do is card/ post groom it well but the absolute best thing to do after cleaning micro fiber or suede or even velvet is do a post wipe with a clean white terry cotton towel, one direct and streaks are gone!

Also always test for fiber.
 

sbsscn

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How would I be able to tell if it’s suede? By smell

Take a small sample and burn it. how it burns and smells and the deposits will tell you what it is.

Just by looking at your photo I can tell its not leather. but always test first!

I strongly recommend that you take a IICRC class but in person! or find someone that is certified and willing to teach you.