How to Clean a Shaggy Rug

How to Clean a Shaggy Rug

If you are like most people, you love your shaggy or sheep-style rug, which brings a warm atmosphere to the home. However, a shaggy carpet quickly turns out to be a nest of dust and dirt if it is not maintained regularly. So how do you clean and keep your carpet looking good? This article will give you tips on how to clean a shaggy rug.

Guidelines for Cleaning a Shaggy Rug

The different ways to clean shag rug depend on the quality and shape of the fibres.

#1. By Beating the Rug

  • Hit the shaggy rug with a brush

Hang your shaggy rug on a strong branch, on drying wires, or on the floor, and then hit the rug with a brush. Beating is the best solution to rid the carpet of dust and other residues that is along the fibres.

  • Wait for the dust to settle

Next, wait for the dust to settle that you have hit out of the rug.

  • Repeat the whole process

Start again until there is little dust that comes off of the rug.

#2 Use the Reverse Vacuum Cleaner Function

After the threshing, the last resistant residue can be pushed through with a vacuum cleaner that is used as a blower. This function is mainly found on canister vacuum cleaners. If you have a leaf blower for the garden, even better!

  • Plug the hose of the vacuum cleaner into the air outlet filter

You might need to look for this, as it is not used much because many are unaware that it exists.

  • Make use of the small brush for drapes and armchairs.

You can use the brush attachment for your carpet, too.

  • Put the hose into place and use another brush, carpet, or no brush at all to vacuum

Take your time, the more time it takes to move the brush, the more efficient the work. At this point, you can replace the hose in its place and use another brush, carpet, or no brush at all to vacuum.

#3 Use a Bathtub

To fully wash the carpet if removing the dust isn’t’ enough, the bathtub is the best. For synthetic carpet, you can go up to 50°C without problem, but for wool, keep a maximum of 28°C to be sure that there are no issues. Here’s what to do:

  • Make use of Archimedes Principle

Fill the bathtub while thinking of Archimedes’ thrust theorem; in other words, remember that the weight of the shaggy rug balances the water so it does not overflow!

  • Add lanolin to the washing powder or washing powder rich in lanolin

For wool, add lanolin or take a washing powder rich in lanolin. It softens both animal and synthetic fibres, allows the detergent to enter and clean well, and when wringing or drying, it expels the rest of the water while protecting the fibres.

  • Remove the excess water

To remove the excess water, it can be wrung out by rolling it on itself, the fibres inward.

  • Use shower head for rinsing

When the shaggy rug has been washed, the rinsing is done with the showerhead. Do this until there are no more bubbles, and then wring out the rug, again.

  • Press the shaggy rug

Once the bathtub is empty, press the shaggy rug to remove more water, the less there will be, the less it will be heavy to carry.

  • Pull the shaggy rug and fold it up

Still in the tub, in pairs, pull the shaggy rug up and roll it up. When it’s just a big sausage shape, take it outside. It is best to have a large, clean tarp before laying the carpet on the ground.

  • Jumping on the rug does it well!

If you have children, ask them to jump on the mat and rest for a while! This helps to dry it!

  • Air-dry the shaggy rug

When most of the water is out, you can unfold the mat and finish air-drying it before brushing it off.

#4 Using 2 in 1 Shampoo

If you really need some cleansing, you can use a 2 in 1 shampoo. This must be a washing and detangling shampoo. For some fibres, a sponge will be used, for others, a nail brush for example, because the work is more precise than the brush broom.

  • Clean the shag rug in all directions.

You should clean the shaggy rug in all directions and do not rinse! Sponge as much as possible with absorbent towels by pressing on the carpet, or by walking on the towels. Remember, you can ask the children to do it, too! They love it.

  • Brush the fibres

Once dry, you can brush single fibres, but not take care with curly ones. For those, you can use other dry towels to rub vigorously on all sides of the fibres to restore their vigour. It’s not a job to be done every day, but the results are rewarding.

#5 Freshen the Rug by Using Washing Powder or Baking Soda

Use these at the same time. These are powders that are sprinkled over the entire carpet. The washing powder works on grease stains by absorbing them, and deodorizing the carpet, while removing the dust from the weft of the carpet, because it sticks to it and when vacuuming or beating.

  • Remove the powder from a shaggy rug with a vacuum cleaner

The carpet should not be kicked or beaten to remove the detergent; it must be removed with the help of a vacuum cleaner.

  • Add baking soda

Baking soda is a food product, but it can also be used for odour removal. The baking soda deodorizes and revives the fibres without really cleaning them. It is a product that can be used regularly but not for deep cleaning.


Dust and other dirt that is allowed to sink into the carpet can prematurely wear out the threads and knots at the base of the shaggy rug with time. It is therefore advisable to shake it regularly, clean it with soapy water, rinse, and brush your carpet in the direction of the pile to restore its beauty.

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About the Author

Hi, you can call me Steve. I have been with Clean Group for almost four years now and work as a Regional Operations Manager in Sydney. I manage a team of 10 and am responsible for the day-to-day management of cleaning operations, planning, online assessment for clients, overseeing operations, collecting clients' feedback and ensuring proper & regular maintenance of cleaning equipment. Having more than 30 years of experience in the commercial cleaning industry, I am familiar with my clients’ needs and always able to meet their expectations. Do reach me for a quick chat about your cleaning needs.

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