How to Wash Rugs in Washing Machine

Dr. Harry Noland
10 Min Read

If you’re in search of an easy and effective way to clean your rugs, look no further than your washing machine. It’s a great option to save both time and money. But, the big question is how to wash rugs in washing machine and, more importantly, how to avoid damaging them in the process.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through all the necessary steps to properly wash your rugs in a washing machine, from gathering the supplies to pre-treating stains, selecting the appropriate washing cycle, and air drying them. So, let’s get started on making your rugs look and feel as good as new.

Key Takeaways

  • Washing rugs in a washing machine can save time and money.
  • It’s important to follow the rug’s care instructions to avoid damage.
  • Pre-treating stains and spots before washing can help remove them more effectively.
  • Select a gentle or delicate washing cycle and use cold water to prevent damage.
  • Avoid using harsh chemicals or bleach and air dry or use low heat to prevent shrinkage.

Gather the Necessary Supplies

Before you start washing your rugs, it’s essential to gather all the necessary supplies. This will help you prepare a washing machine and avoid any last-minute hiccups. Here is a list of supplies you should get ready:

  • A washing machine – avoid using top-loading machines if you can help it, as they can be too rough on your rugs.
  • A mild detergent specifically formulated for delicate fabrics. Avoid using regular detergents or bleach, as they can damage your rugs.
  • A soft brush or sponge – to pre-treat stains and spots, if necessary.
  • Cold water – hot water can cause your rug to shrink or discolor, so opt for cold water instead.

Once you have all the necessary supplies, you’re ready to begin the washing process. But first, check your rug’s care instructions to ensure it’s safe to wash in a machine.

Check the Rug’s Care Instructions

Before washing your rug, it is crucial to check the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. Different rugs may have specific washing instructions or may not be suitable for machine washing altogether. If the care instructions indicate that the rug is not machine washable, do not attempt to wash it in the machine, as this may cause damage.

If the care instructions do allow for machine washing, make sure to follow the recommended guidelines to avoid any potential damage. Some rugs may require a specific type of detergent or water temperature, so pay close attention to the details.

If the care instructions are not available or unclear, it is best to consult a professional rug cleaner for advice before attempting to wash the rug in a washing machine.

Pre-Treat Stains and Spots

If your rug has noticeable stains or spots, it is best to pre-treat them before washing. Take care to handle the stains gently. Using a mild detergent or a stain remover suitable for rugs, apply the product to the stain. Make sure to test the product on a small, inconspicuous area of the rug first.

Gently work the product into the affected area with a soft brush or sponge. Avoid scrubbing aggressively, as this can damage the rug’s fibers. After applying the product, allow it to sit for a few minutes to penetrate the stain fully.

Once the product has been fully absorbed, lightly blot the area with a clean, dry cloth or paper towel to remove any excess moisture. Avoid rubbing the stain, as this can cause it to spread.

If the stain persists, repeat the pre-treatment process until the stain has been fully removed. After pre-treating, you can proceed with washing the rug in the washing machine with confidence that the stain is gone.

Load the Rug into the Washing Machine

Now that you have gathered all the necessary supplies, it’s time to load the rug into the washing machine. Make sure the rug is evenly distributed in the machine, and avoid overloading it, as this can affect the quality of the wash.

Ensure that you have followed the care instructions provided by the manufacturer before loading the rug. Some rugs may not be suitable for machine washing, and you don’t want to cause any damage to your rug.

Take care when loading the rug into the machine, and make sure it is not scrunched up or rolled too tightly. This can prevent it from being properly cleaned, resulting in an uneven wash.

Once the rug is properly loaded, you can select the appropriate washing cycle and add a mild detergent to get that spotless-clean you’re after.

Select the Appropriate Washing Cycle

When it comes to washing rugs in a washing machine, it’s important to choose the right washing cycle. Select a gentle or delicate cycle on your washing machine to avoid damaging the fibers of your rug. This will not only ensure that your rug is clean, but it will also prolong its lifespan.

Additionally, using cold water is crucial to prevent color fading or shrinking. Hot water can damage the fibers, causing them to shrink or lose their shape. Always follow the guidance provided by the manufacturer, and if in doubt, choose a gentler cycle.

Select the Appropriate Washing Cycle

It is important to choose the right washing cycle when washing your rugs in the machine. Select a gentle or delicate cycle to prevent any damages to the rug’s fibers. Avoid using hot water, as it can cause the rug to shrink or fade. Cold water is the optimal choice for machine washing rugs.

Use a Mild Detergent

When washing your rugs, use a mild detergent specifically designed for delicate fabrics. Harsh detergents or bleach can cause damage to the rug’s fibers and color. Be sure to follow the recommended instructions on the detergent’s label. Less is more – use only as much detergent as necessary to prevent any residues or buildup.

Air Dry or Use Low Heat

Once the wash cycle is complete, remove the rug from the washing machine and place it on a flat surface.

If you choose to air dry your rug, make sure it is placed in a well-ventilated area and out of direct sunlight. Rotate the rug frequently to ensure even drying. This is a great option for delicate rugs, as it helps to avoid shrinkage and maintain the rug’s shape and texture.

If you opt to use a dryer, select the low heat setting and place a clean towel or two in with the rug to reduce friction. Check the rug regularly to avoid overheating or damage.

Remember to never use high heat, as this can cause shrinkage and damage to the rug’s fibers.


In summary, washing your rugs in a washing machine can be a convenient and effective way to keep them clean and fresh. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can simplify your home care routine and maintain the quality and appearance of your rugs for years to come.

Remember to always check the care instructions provided by the manufacturer and use mild detergents specifically formulated for delicate fabrics. Pre-treat any stains or spots before washing and load the rug evenly into the washing machine. Select a gentle or delicate cycle and use cold water to prevent damage.

After the wash cycle is complete, air dry the rug outdoors or use a low-heat setting in your dryer – avoid high heat to prevent shrinkage. By taking these steps, you can ensure that your rugs remain clean, bright, and plush for a long time to come.

Thank you for reading our guide on washing rugs in a washing machine. We hope you found it helpful and insightful. Happy cleaning!

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