The Best Tips on How to Clean Fabric Dining Chairs at Home

The Best Tips on How to Clean Fabric Dining Chairs at Home

Fabric-covered dining chairs are a popular choice for many people who wish to have both style and comfort in their dining spaces. 

These chairs stand out for several strong reasons. They are available in a wide array of colours and patterns allowing homeowners to include elements of their personality and taste into their dining areas. Besides making a furnishing statement that complements their overall décor, these chairs are also very comfortable. The soft, padded seats and backrests on fabric chairs are perfect for long, enjoyable meals and engaging conversations. 

lean Fabric Dining Chairs at Home

Increasingly, many fabric dining chairs are designed with stain-resistant fabrics or protective coatings, making them practical for everyday use.  It is easy to wipe away spills or stains, making them a good choice for commercial dining spaces, too.
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The combination of aesthetics, comfort, and functionality makes fabric dining chairs a perfect choice for creating a welcoming, visually appealing dining room ambience that is easy to maintain.

Popular Materials for Covering Dining Chairs

When it comes to covering dining chairs, there's a wide array of materials to choose from, each offering unique characteristics. Upholstery fabric remains the most popular choice, with options like cotton, linen, velvet, and leather to cater to individual styles and preferences.

If durability and easy maintenance are priorities, vinyl or faux leather can be excellent selections, ideal for households with kids or commercial use. Other possibilities encompass canvas for its sturdiness, suede for a touch of luxury, silk for elegance (though it requires more care), and microfiber, which is known for its stain resistance. 

For a more natural and eco-friendly aesthetic, bamboo or rattan can be used, especially in outdoor dining settings. Different materials, such as wool, cotton duck, and lace, offer distinct textures and moods to complement your decor and ambience. 

Ultimately, the choice should align with your home style, maintenance needs, and the chair's design, ensuring both aesthetics and practicality come together to transform your dining area.

Do You Need to Clean Fabric Dining Chairs

As we mentioned earlier, modern chairs are usually stain-resistant. However, you cannot always stay free from dirt or unidentifiable smears of food. 

Cleaning fabric dining chairs can be a slightly daunting task, especially when faced with stubborn stains and grime. However, with the right techniques and products, you can easily restore the beauty of your chairs and keep them looking fresh for years to come. 

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore various methods and tips to effectively clean fabric dining chairs and maintain their pristine condition. These are simple tips that can help save on a hefty cleaning fee.

1. Understand the Cleaning Requirements

Before starting the actual cleaning process, it's important to understand the specific cleaning requirements of the fabric covering your dining chairs. 

Different types of fabrics may require different cleaning methods and products. Check the manufacturer's instructions or tags on your chairs to determine the recommended cleaning techniques. This will ensure that you clean your chairs effectively without causing any damage. If in doubt, google for the closest match for your chairs to see if you can figure out the best way to clean the fabric, without damaging it.

2. Gather the Necessary Cleaning Supplies

To clean your fabric dining chairs effectively, gather the following cleaning supplies:

Gather the Necessary Cleaning Supplies

  • Mild dish soap
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Stain remover or upholstery cleaner
  • Microfiber cloths or soft-bristle brush
  • Spray bottle
  • Vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment
  • Steam cleaner (optional)
  • Stain guard treatment

Having these supplies on hand will make the cleaning process much easier and more efficient. These are regular household cleaning supplies and should not be very difficult to collect.

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3. Start with Regular Maintenance

Prevention is better than cure and this adage holds good in this instance too. Regular maintenance is the best bet to keep your fabric dining chairs in good condition. 

Start by vacuuming the chairs with an upholstery attachment to remove loose dirt, dust, and food crumbs. This will prevent the dirt from embedding deeper into the fabric and making the cleaning process more challenging.

Start with Regular Maintenance

4. Spot Cleaning for Stains

If you notice any stains on your fabric dining chairs, it's essential to address them promptly. Spot cleaning can effectively remove stains and prevent them from setting into the fabric. 

Here are a few methods you can try:

Method 1: Dish Soap and Water

Create a solution of warm water and a few drops of mild dish soap. Dampen a microfiber cloth or soft-bristle brush with the solution and gently blot or scrub the stained area. Avoid rubbing vigorously, as this can damage the fabric. Rinse the cloth or brush frequently and continue until the stain is lifted.

Method 2: Hydrogen Peroxide

For tougher stains, such as food or beverage spills, you can use hydrogen peroxide. Before applying, test the hydrogen peroxide on a hidden area of the fabric to ensure it doesn't cause any discolouration. 

If it's safe to use, spray or apply the hydrogen peroxide directly onto the stain and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Blot the stain with a clean cloth or sponge, and repeat the process if necessary. Do not repeat multiple times as this may damage the fabric.

Method 3: Upholstery Cleaner or Stain Remover

If the above methods don't fully remove the stain, you can try using a commercial upholstery cleaner or stain remover. Follow the instructions on the product carefully and perform a patch test before applying it to the entire stained area. Apply the cleaner or stain remover according to the instructions, and use a clean cloth or sponge to blot the stain. Rinse the area with clean water and let it air dry.

5. Deep Cleaning with a Steam Cleaner (Optional)

Spot cleaning only works on smaller parts of the fabric. If your fabric dining chairs require a more thorough cleaning all over the seat, a steam cleaner can be a valuable tool. 

Steam cleaning effectively removes dirt, grime, and bacteria from deep within the fabric. Here's how you can use a steam cleaner to clean your chairs:

Step 1: Prepare the Steam Cleaner

Fill the steam cleaner with water according to the manufacturer's instructions. Allow it to heat up until it reaches the appropriate temperature for fabric cleaning.

Step 2: Test on an Inconspicuous Area

Before using the steam cleaner on the entire chair, test it on an inconspicuous area of the fabric to ensure it doesn't cause any damage or discolouration.

Step 3: Steam Clean the Chairs

Starting from the top of the chair, work your way down in a grid-like pattern, ensuring that you cover the entire surface. Pay extra attention to heavily soiled areas and use the appropriate attachment, such as a scrub brush or microfiber pad, to agitate and lift dirt. Move the steam cleaner slowly and evenly to allow the steam to penetrate the fabric and loosen dirt.

Step 4: Allow the Chairs to Dry

After steam cleaning, allow the chairs to air dry completely before using them again. Avoid sitting on the chairs while they are still damp, as this can cause the fabric to stretch or warp.

Additional Tips for Fabric Dining Chair Cleaning

Here are some additional tips to ensure effective and safe cleaning of your fabric dining chairs:

  • Always read and follow the manufacturer's instructions before using any cleaning products or equipment on your chairs.
  • Perform a patch test on an inconspicuous area of the fabric before applying any cleaning solution or product to the entire chair.
  • Blot stains instead of rubbing them, as rubbing can spread the stain and damage the fabric.
  • Avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals on your fabric dining chairs, as they can cause discolouration or damage to the fabric.
  • For delicate or antique fabric chairs, consider consulting a professional upholstery cleaner to ensure proper care and cleaning.
  • Ensure that the chairs are completely dry before using them, to avoid stretching or warping of the fabric.

Maintaining the Cleanliness of Fabric Dining Chairs

After cleaning your fabric dining chairs, it's important to maintain their cleanliness to prolong their lifespan. 

Here are some tips to help you maintain the cleanliness of your chairs:

  • Vacuum your chairs regularly to remove surface dirt and dust.
  • Wipe up spills and stains immediately to prevent them from setting into the fabric.
  • Use a stain guard treatment to protect the fabric from future stains and spills. Follow the instructions on the product for application.
  • Avoid placing your chairs in direct sunlight, as prolonged exposure can cause the fabric to fade or deteriorate.
  • Follow the manufacturer's recommendations for routine maintenance and care of your specific fabric type.


Cleaning fabric dining chairs doesn't have to be a daunting task. With the right techniques and products, you can easily remove stains, dirt, and grime, and keep your chairs looking fresh and beautiful. 

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Remember to always follow the manufacturer's instructions and perform patch tests before applying any cleaning solutions or products. By incorporating regular maintenance and proper cleaning techniques, you can enjoy clean and inviting fabric dining chairs for years to come.

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