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Living room furniture can be a big purchase. For the cost of a decent couch or loveseat, consumers generally expect to be able to use a piece for years—sometimes even decades. But as much as we use these comfortable sitting areas in our homes, cleaning the upholstery is often put off or forgotten—especially when it is difficult to do it yourself.
Fortunately, many carpet and upholstery cleaning companies offer couch cleaning services to remove the pet dander, dirt, and stains that can accumulate on a well-loved sofa. Here, read about the best couch cleaning services.
Best Overall: Stanley Steemer
Why We Chose It: This trusted brand in upholstery and carpet cleaning has solutions for many different kinds of fabrics, with couch cleaning methods that dry in less than six hours.
24/7 scheduling available by phone or online
Longstanding and trusted brand
Cleans leather, polyester, linen, cotton, wool, and microfiber sofas
Offers upholstery protector to guard against future spills
Often more expensive than competitors
With more than 70 years in the carpet and upholstery cleaning business, Stanley Steemer boasts franchises in all 50 states and a whole host of services to keep your textiles looking and feeling fresh. For furniture and upholstery cleaning, the company offers services for leather, polyester, linen, cotton, wool, and microfiber couches, with experts on call to determine the correct course of treatment for even “dry-clean only” fabrics and unusual textures.
Setting up an appointment with Stanley Steemer is easy, with around-the-clock scheduling by phone or online and more than 300 local franchises. Each cleaning appointment begins with an inspection of the couch, checking for age, color, and fabric type to ensure that the best approach is taken. Next, Stanley Steemer uses a spot-treatment for any problem areas or stains before moving on to deep cleaning. Stanley Steemer doesn’t use steam cleaning on the upholstery—the company’s method is considered “water extraction,” during which the company uses hot water and a special solution to loosen dirt, allergens, and odors from within the couch before drawing them out with the water. Once the process is finished, Stanley Steemer will again inspect the couch to confirm you’re happy with the results, and the furniture should be dry within six hours.
For more delicate fabrics, Stanley Steemer has solutions beyond water extraction, so confirm with a representative if you have worries about the compatibility of your couch with the company’s methods. To keep your couch clean long after your appointment, consider adding on some of the company’s other offerings, from the SuperShield Plus protector treatment, which guards against stains and spills, to deodorizer application, which can neutralize smells from pets, food, and more.
Best for Quick Service: Zerorez
Why We Chose It: Zerorez’s cleaning process is safe on even the most delicate fabrics, with a 30-day “Gotta Love It Guarantee” on all services and immediate online estimates to get the job done quickly.
30-day “Gotta Love It Guarantee”
Emphasis on leaving no soap residue during the cleaning process
Instant online estimates
Extra cost for pet stains
Zerorez is the brainchild of co-founders Gaylord Karren and John Hopkins, who came up with the business idea while managing thousands of rental properties in Texas. When they realized that their largest expense was carpet replacement, they wondered if the method for cleaning textiles could be improved—and so the “zr process” was born.
Zerorez abandons the soaps and detergents long favored by other cleaning companies; those materials rarely wash all the way out, and once they’re dried into a surface, dirt and residue can stick to them, making stains harder to remove. Instead, Zerorez’s “Powered Water” is safe enough to drink, so its water extraction method—which loosens dirt and grime before pulling it out along with the water—leaves nothing behind. Skeptical? If you use Zerorez and are unhappy with your service, the company will return to your home for another cleaning as a part of its 30-Day “Gotta Love It Guarantee.”
Every sofa cleaning appointment features a three-step process. First, the company pre-sprays the couch surface; many locations use a natural orange peel extract* to neutralize odors. Next, the representative will “agitate” the surface with a brush, allowing packed-in grime or particles to loosen. The final step is water extraction. In addition to the standard cleaning, Zerorez customers can opt to add a special protectant to guard against future spills. Note that there may be additional charges for pet stains or residue.
*Cat owners beware, as oranges are toxic for cats and orange-scented sprays are used as cat repellents.
Best for Allergies: Chem-Dry
Why We Chose It: With more than 3,000 locations worldwide, Chem-Dry’s “green-certified” cleaning method claims to eliminate almost all allergens from upholstery and carpets.
Removes 98 percent of allergens from upholstery
”Green-certified” carbonated cleaning solution
Additional cost for pet stains
Chem-Dry explains that many of the textiles and fabrics in our home act as defacto air filters, catching bacteria, grime, and allergens that might otherwise remain floating in the air. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but without cleaning your upholstery, couches can accumulate a lot of residue over time—and become less effective at helping clear the air.
Chem-Dry uses an eco-friendly carbonated cleaning solution—its own “green-certified” product, dubbed “The Natural”—to wash away buildup in your furniture without leaving behind any stickiness. And it’s effective: Independent labs deduce that the company’s process eliminates 98 percent of allergens (dust mites and pet dander, specifically) from upholstery and carpets.
Customers can opt for additional services with Chem-Dry’s Healthy Home package, which offers additional sanitizing with antibacterial disinfectant. The package also includes the application of a special protectant, which can make your couch more resistant to stains, odors, and other irritants over time. To make an appointment, enter your ZIP code to find a nearby franchise with one of its more than 3,000 locations worldwide, and book online or by phone.
Best for Leather: COIT Cleaning and Restoration
Why We Chose It: While this cleaning and restoration company can handle just about any kind of couch, it offers special attention to leather upholstery, with pH-balanced cleaning solutions and conditioners to help extend the life of your furniture.
100 percent satisfaction guarantee
Certified and background-checked cleaning technicians
Specialty cleaning method for leather upholstery
Not as widely available as many competitors
COIT Cleaning and Restoration stands out for its top-rated customer service, generous satisfaction guarantee, and a wide range of services. But what sets it apart most among its competitors is its attention to detail on leather upholstery. The San Francisco-based company, which was founded in 1950, employs certified and background-checked technicians to inspect your upholstery before deciding on a cleaning method.
COIT’s cleaning products are pH-balanced especially for use on leather, and once the solution has worked its magic and the technician has rubbed off dirt and grime, your couch will be treated with a conditioner to extend the life of the leather and keep the texture smooth over time. Leather or not, couches can also be treated with a special protectant after each cleaning, ensuring that your sofa will be more resistant to stains and buildup in the future.
If you are unsatisfied with COIT’s cleaning, contact the company immediately: Its satisfaction guarantee offers a reclean or refund for customers who don’t feel they’ve gotten their money’s worth.
Most couch cleaning services are offered by carpet cleaning and upholstery restoration companies, so the top options were all businesses that handle many different types of cleaning jobs. Stanley Steemer, a trusted name in textile cleaning for more than 70 years, got top marks for its availability nationwide, its wide range of services, and its relatively quick drying time.
Zerorez, a Texas-born company that uses zero detergents, offers instant online quotes and appointments, making it a top choice for consumers who are looking to set up a cleaning appointment quickly. Chem-Dry, which uses a “green-certified” solution for all of its upholstery cleanings, removes most allergens from couches. And COIT, a San Francisco-based operation, is an especially sound choice for consumers looking to clean leather couches, with special pH-balanced cleaning materials and conditioners to keep the material looking its best long after your appointment.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is a Couch Cleaning Service?
Couch cleaning services, which are generally offered by carpet and upholstery cleaning companies, remove the dirt, odor, pet dander, and other residue that can build up in old or highly-used upholstered furniture. They employ special solutions and tools to extract any unwanted buildup from deep within the upholstered surface, leaving behind a fresh, clean, odor-free sofa—and, in many cases, apply a protectant to ensure that the couch remains stain-free for as long as possible.
Why Use a Couch Cleaning Service?
Couch cleaning services are a great addition to your regular home maintenance routine: Cleaning your couches regularly lengthens the lifespan of even delicate or easily stained materials, and can even refresh old or worn pieces. Couch cleaning services can also help eliminate allergens for those who are sensitive to pet dander or dust mites and can be a helpful one-time resource to remove pesky stains or unusual odors.
How Much Do Couch Cleaning Services Charge?
The cost to use a couch cleaning service varies depending on your location and the job; franchise locations in larger cities tend to charge more, and the price per job can grow quickly if your couch requires a lot of spot cleaning for pet stains or other similar issues. For a basic couch cleaning service, expect to pay between $120 and $220, but check with the company to confirm any extra charges you might incur for stains or problem areas.
How We Chose the Best Couch Cleaning Services
To select the best couch cleaning services, we looked for national companies with easy-to-find information about their upholstery cleaning services. While these companies focused primarily on carpet cleaning, we specifically considered what methods they use to clean upholstery, and looked at local reviews across the country to ensure that the businesses were trustworthy and consistent.
Stanley Steemer was our best overall pick for its well-roundedness, with many different offerings and the ability to clean almost any kind of couch fabric. COIT, on the other hand, stood out for the care it takes with leather upholstery.