The rolling shade has long been around in home function and fashion and probably will continue to be a staple in home design for years to come. They are a great way to provide shade from the glaring sun, give you some privacy and at the same time, look good doing it.
Roller shades are made from different materials: fabric, vinyl, wood or plastic. The cording is either nylon or cotton. Over time, as with all window treatments, they do accumulate dust and dirt.
To give a light dusting, simply use a feather duster or use the attachment on the vacuum cleaner.
For stains and spills, use a clean, soft, damp cloth. This will clean most stains. If the cord is stained, a bleach pen can be used. Remember to follow up with a damp cloth to remove as much of the bleach as possible. Test a piece of cord first, though. Sometimes bleach will dissolve certain types of cording.
If the roller shade is very dirty, begin by dusting. Once your shades have been dusted, you’ll need to dampen a sponge or washcloth in mixture of warm water and mild soap. Next, proceed to gently wipe down shades in small circular motions. When performing the cleaning process, make sure to pay special attention to any areas of your shades that feature caked-on dirt or dust deposits. Once you’ve vigorously cleaned your shades, dry them with a clean cloth before proceeding to roll them up.
For roller shades too big for the tub, take them outside and clean them on the patio. Here’s what you do: clean the patio first so you have a clean workspace, then lay the shade down with most of it rolled up. Say you have about a two-foot long section to work with. Clean that section, roll it up, unroll from the bottom, and so on. It takes time, but you will end up with clean shades.
Fabric roller shades can be cleaned in the same way. If the shade contains removable metal or plastic pieces, remove them first. Some fabric shades are machine washable; be sure to read the instruction leaflet first.
If a fabric shade has instructions that state it should only be dry-cleaned, then take the shade to a reputable business. Do not attempt to wash this in the tub or washing machine.
For vinyl shades, never use alcohol, ammonia or bleach. These substances will cause the material to deteriorate over time. Stick to mild soap and water. Before using a commercial cleaner, check the ingredients to ensure it does not contain these substances.
Room-darkening shades are coated with a special substance that should be cleaned with a damp cloth only. Placing this in a tub with a scrub brush or washing machine may remove this coating and ruin its effectiveness.
No matter what type of roller shades you have, regular cleaning will keep them looking great.