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Abaca Rug Cleaning and Care

Receiving Your New Abaca Rug

In order to protect your rug from damage in shipping, we roll it with the face of the rug on the inside. Therefore, when you receive the rug you should open it, unroll it, and re-roll it in the opposite direction, with the face on the outside. Leave it rolled up in the room where it will stay, allowing the rug to acclimate to the humidity and temperature of its new environment. After 24 hours you may unroll the rug and put it in place.

  • Natural vegetable fibers are quite absorbent; therefore they will shrink and expand a bit with changes in the humidity. As a result, Merida’s abaca rugs are for dry indoor use only. They are not appropriate for excessively moist indoor areas; and are best used in dry, well ventilated or climate controlled environments. They should never be used in bathrooms, kitchens, basements, or other damp or humid environments.

  • Exposure to direct sunlight is always a factor to consider when placing a rug in a room. All fibers, both dyed and un-dyed, will change over time, especially when placed in direct sunlight for several hours a day. If placed in a sunny location, your abaca rug should be turned occasionally.

  • The use of a non-skid rug pad is highly recommended to protect against wear, and to prevent slipping on wood and tile floors. A rug pad will provide dimensional stability and extra cushioning underfoot. Ask about Merida’s rug pads made from 100% natural rubber.

  • Some of our abaca designs reflect a relatively open weave structure. Therefore they are not suited for areas where chairs will be frequently moved across them.

Maintaining and Cleaning Your Abaca Area Rug

The first step is to use a coarse doormat or a walk-off mat at your front door. This will provide a great deal of protection for your new rug. The goal is to remove as much of the outside dirt as possible from the shoes of those entering your home.

Routine Rug Maintenance
  • Vacuum regularly
  • Remove spills immediately
  • Use a professional carpet cleaner or a dry extraction carpet cleaning method for periodic deep cleaning.

To maintain the original beauty and to prolong the life of your abaca rug, vacuuming once or twice weekly is very important. This will regularly remove the fine dirt particles that can lodge between the fibers and cause additional wear. For best results, we recommend the use of a vacuum with powerful airflow and adjustable brushes. Due to the heavy texture of this collection, do not use a beater-bar vacuum. Do not steam clean or wet shampoo your abaca rug. Plant fibers are highly absorbent, so when exposed to liquids or excessive dampness, they are subject to some shrinking and puckering. Merida recommends using a dry extraction carpet cleaning system. These dry carpet cleaning systems are by far the most successful method of cleaning all natural fiber rugs. We recommend testing the cleaner on an inconspicuous section of the rug before trying to clean a more obvious area. Such dry extraction carpet cleaners as Host, Capture and others, are available at hardware stores, home improvement centers and the home care sections of most mass retailers.

For more detailed instructions on cleaning a number of substances off of your rug, see our Natural Fiber Cleaning Chart

About Abaca Fiber

Abaca fiber, indigenous to the Philippines and obtained from the abaca, or Manila hemp plant (part of the banana family) is considered the strongest of natural fibers. Traditionally used for fibercraft and cordage due to its strength and heightened resistance to salt water decomposition, it is now more widely used in pulp and specialty paper manufacturers such as currency notes. We use abaca in a more traditional sense due to its lustrous, long staple fiber and its dramatic range of fiber color. These qualities make abaca uncommonly beautiful as woven floor covering.

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