Rugs To Keep Out Of The Sun.

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A little sun never hurts, right?

Well, with rugs, that depends. Some rugs , you could put them in the sun for ages with no affect. While others can’t last even a few hours.

Take a look at this rug. It appears to be a nice beige Chinese sculpted wool rug. (They use a hand tool to carve out those floral designs.) These are plush rugs, with nice BRIGHT white fringe tassels.

Chinese rug popular in the 1980s-1990s

Chinese rug – popular in the 1980s-90’s and found in many homes.

This particular rug was cleaned by a professional cleaner – one who had cleaned this rug several times before over the years. But this time, he made the decision to put the rug into direct sunlight to dry it out. Something that normally would not be a bad decision – but with this particular type of rug, it was, because the rug USED to be not beige, but blue – take a look:

Back of sun faded rug

The original color can be seen on the back of the rug – pastel blue.

Many contemporary rugs are chemically washed with a chlorine-bleach solution before it is sent to market. This process can lighten up strong colors and because it strips scales off of the wool fibers to make them smoother, they reflect more light and appear “shinier.”

With certain rugs from China, and this particular type shown in the photos – the chemical processing is aggressive, and while it makes the rug very attractive, it also makes it very reactive to many things. It permanently stains very easily with acid sources (coffee. tea, soda, juice, and pet urine), it reacts horribly to any spot removers (coffee stain remover will strip color out completely), and it is VERY sensitive to sun fading.

This rug in the photos was only in the sun for a few hours, yet that color change was severe, and also not reversible. And I receive photos like these several times a month from cleaners who want to thoroughly dry a rug for a client, and end up having a surprise like this result.

I have not found any rug more reactive to sun that this type of Chinese rug, and it has a very distinct fringe style, a wide white fringe base, with a knot style that looks like a fist. Print the photo for your files so you can watch out for these in your cleaning business so that you don’t get yourself in trouble when you decide to place a rug in the sun.

– Lisa