Cleaning 101: How to Vacuum a Shag Rug

Cleaning 101: How to Vacuum a Shag Rug

Shag rugs require a little extra TLC because of the long fibers. Dirt likes to hide deep inside the rug pile, but a regular vacuum session twice a month can easily take care of 80% of the dirt inside your shag rug. But there’s an art to vacuuming, more than just plugging it in and mindlessly running it over the rug. We’re here to give you some tips on the care and cleaning of your shag rug, how to vacuum a shag rug, and, hopefully, vanish some myths along the way. 

*Important note: We suggest you rely on professional rug cleaners to avoid future damage to your precious rug and ensure its durability. Shag rugs are tough to vacuum at home. Usually, the vacuum cleaner does not have a setting for “Shag rugs.” The high pile setting is more for a 1.5-2” pile when some of these shag rugs are 5-6”. Confirm you use the proper equipment and settings before venturing into this process.

If you decide to move forward, follow the next steps for vacuuming success!

How to vacuum a shag rug

Shake Off The Dirt

Before vacuuming your rug, take it outside and shake it well. Then beat it with a broom or rug beater to loosen as many dirt particles as possible. And shake out the rug pad. Now, you’re ready to vacuum!

Vacuuming Your Shag Rug

Adjust the vacuum’s height setting to high so that the moving parts of the vacuum don’t harm the long fibers of your shag rug. It’s better to use the upholstery/comb/rug rake attachment of the vacuum. Vacuuming by hand is both more thorough and gentler on the rug fibers. You can also use an upright vacuum to clean the rug’s underside if it’s in a high-traffic area. Finally, ask visitors and family to wear only socks or bare feet on the rug and rotate it for even wear every six months. 

How Often Should You Vacuum Your Shag Rug?

Vacuuming your rug twice a month is plenty. Vacuuming too frequently, like every few days, can disturb the rug too much, causing damage. And it’s essential to remove as many dirt particles as possible before vacuuming (by shaking, beating, etc.) so as not to give your vacuum too hard of a time. And remember: not all vacuum cleaners are the same. Some have a bag, some have a canister, and some have multiple modes or different brushes. Whichever type of vacuum you have, take the time to learn to use it properly, as this will save you numerous vacuuming sessions on things you could have done once this week. 

What Happens If You Have Kids Or Pets?

If you have kids or pets, your rugs will get dirty more quickly. So this will require you to vacuum more frequently than usual, but you can still overdo it. It depends on your kids and pets, their activities, and how much they shed respectively. The minimum cleaning sessions should be twice a month and the maximum once a week. Your dog’s favorite spot on the rug will show, even if you tackle it regularly. Pets create odors because they transfer oils from their hair to rug fibers. The smell, not the hair, is the hardest thing to remove.

Does Your Shag Rug Require A Deep Cleanse?

Even if you’re regularly vacuuming, your rug needs routine deep cleaning maintenance. If it has been 2 or 3 years since your last deep clean, you must get your rug cleaned by professionals. Vacuuming is good for removing dust, but you need a deep cleanse to get those fine particles under the center of the rug. For rugs that live in your kitchen, living room, and bathrooms, they need a deep clean once a year. And rugs that decorate your bedrooms and offices should be professionally cleaned every two years.

Use the tips we shared above on how to vacuum a shag rug to keep your shag rug looking great for years to come, and if you’re wondering where to get your rug professionally cleaned and how much it will cost, get an estimate now!


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