Couch Cleaning Tips

Scotchgard Basics: What It Is and How To Use It

Scotchgard is a fabric protectant you can spray on your upholstery to help prevent stains. Here's everything you need to know about Scotchgard.

What is Scotchgard?

The best place to start is by answering the most basic question: what is Scotchgard? Let's take a peek into the protective realm of Scotchgard and see how it keeps your new sofa looking spiffy.

  • Stain Shield: Scotchgard is a stain repellent and water-resistant treatment designed to shield fabrics and upholstery from spills, stains, and general wear and tear. It's like a suit of armor for your furniture.
  • Easy Application: How to Scotchgard a sofa? Applying Scotchgard is a breeze. It usually comes in spray or liquid form, allowing you to evenly distribute the protective magic over your sofa, chairs, or any upholstered piece. Just spray, let it dry, and let the defense mechanism activate.
  • Versatile Defender: While commonly associated with furniture, Scotchgard isn't limited to sofas alone. You can use it on carpets, rugs, and even clothing to repel stains and maintain that fresh, just-bought look.

So, whether you're safeguarding your favorite couch from accidental spills or preparing your dining chairs for the dinner party of the year, Scotchgard is your trusty sidekick in the battle against stains. Here's to a cleaner, more worry-free living!

How do you spray a couch with Scotchgard?

Ready to unleash the protective powers of Scotchgard on your beloved couch? Follow these simple steps on how to Scotchgard a couch and transform your sofa into a stain-resistant fortress.

  • Prep Like a Pro: Start by cleaning your couch thoroughly. Remove any dust, dirt, or existing stains. If your couch has removable cushions, take them off for a more thorough application.
  • Ventilate the Area: Ensure proper ventilation in your space. If you're indoors, crack a window or turn on a fan. A well-ventilated room will provide a much more pleasant Scotchgard experience.
  • Spray in a Sweeping Motion: Hold the Scotchgard spray about 6 inches away from the surface of your couch. Apply it in a sweeping motion, covering the entire area evenly. Keep the spray can in constant motion to avoid oversaturation.
  • Don't Drench, Just Spritz: Remember, a little goes a long way. Avoid drenching your couch with Scotchgard. A light, even spritz is all you need for optimal protection.
  • Let It Dry and Set: How long does Scotchgard take to dry on sofa? Once you've sprayed your couch, let it dry completely. This usually takes a few hours. During this time, your couch is absorbing the protective powers of Scotchgard. The smell should also dissipate as the upholstery dries. NOTE: your fabric may appear darker after a full Scotchgard application, which is normal and expected, though may not be desirable.

Congratulations! Your couch is now a fortress against stains and spills. But we still wouldn't recommend that you jump up and down on it with muddy boots.

How long does Scotchgard last on a sofa?

Wondering how long your Scotchgard treatment will stand up against stains and spills on your sofa? Here's the breakdown.

  • Frequency of Use: The durability of Scotchgard's protection depends on factors like usage and cleaning. For high-traffic sofas or those frequently subjected to spills, consider reapplying Scotchgard every six months to a year.
  • Impact of Cleaning: Regular cleaning and maintenance impact Scotchgard's longevity. If you've recently deep-cleaned your sofa or had it professionally cleaned, you might want to give it a Scotchgard touch-up for sustained protection.
  • Watch for Warning Signs: Keep an eye out for signs of wear and tear on high-contact areas. If you notice the protective shield waning, it's time to reapply Scotchgard and fortify your sofa against potential stains.
  • Environmental Factors: The environment plays a role too. In homes with kids, pets, or frequent entertaining, more frequent applications might be beneficial. On the flip side, in low-traffic areas, the protection could last longer.

While Scotchgard for couches doesn't last indefinitely, it's a reliable guardian against stains for 6 months to a year. When it comes to reapplying, stay vigilant, assess your sofa's needs, and unleash Scotchgard when necessary. Your sofa will thank you with years of stain-resistant service!

Does Scotchgard change the feel of fabric?

a woman holding an aerosol can of stain protection product

Curious minds want to know: does Scotchgard alter the feel of your favorite fabric? Let's unravel the mystery.

  • Worry Free Feel: Fear not! Scotchgard for couch leaves the natural feel of your fabric untouched. Just like its protection against stains and spills, Scotchgard doesn't leave a trace on your fabric.
  • No Crunchy Conundrum: Worried about that dreaded crunchy or stiff texture? Scotchgard doesn't play that game. Your fabric stays soft, cozy, and oh-so-inviting, just the way you love it.
  • Invisible Armor: Scotchgard for sofa works its magic invisibly, forming a protective shield against stains without announcing its presence. Your fabric's original texture remains intact, ensuring a seamless tactile experience.
  • The Comfort Continues: Whether your sofa is ultra plush velvet or a woven tweed, Scotchgard lets the comfort flow. Feel free to sink into your favorite spot without any unexpected texture surprises.

You can rest easy knowing that Scotchgard won't alter the luxurious feel of your fabric, all while warding off potential stains.

Does Scotchgard have forever chemicals in it?

One of the biggest concerns about Scotchgard is its chemical makeup. But the Scotchgard for sofa your grandparents used is a completely different formula compared to the one on the market now. Here's the truth about the chemical composition of Scotchgard.

  • No More Forever Chemicals: Guess what? Scotchgard has waved goodbye to forever chemicals. You won't find any perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) or perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) in this protective potion.
  • Modern Makeup: Scotchgard has leveled up, using innovative and safe alternatives to create its stain-fighting magic. Embracing the latest technologies, it ensures your furniture stays guarded without compromising on safety.
  • Eco-Friendly Formula: Concerned about the environment? Scotchgard has your back. It's crafted with a commitment to being environmentally friendly, so you can shield your sofa while keeping Mother Earth in mind.
  • Stain Shield, Health Shield: While Scotchgard for couches forms a formidable shield against stains, it does so without posing risks to your health. Feel free to relax on your Scotchgard-protected sofa, knowing it's a defender of comfort and well-being.

Breathe easy! Scotchgard not only shields against stains but does so responsibly, without a trace of forever chemicals. All of your prior concerns about Scotchgard are no longer an issue.

Does Scotchgard prevent pilling on couch?

We know that Scotchgard for sofa is designed to reduce the damage caused by stains and spills on your sofa. But can Scotchgard also protect your couch from pilling or tearing? Here's what you need to know.

  • Stain Centric: Scotchgard is designed to be a stain-repellant solution for your fabric. Unfortunately that means it doesn't have specific attributes to prevent pilling. You'll want to employ Scotchgard to protect your upholstery from spills, stains, and liquid mishaps, not general wear and tear.
  • Pesky Pilling: Pilling, the formation of those annoying little fuzz balls on fabric, is influenced by the nature of the fabric itself. Friction and rubbing are the main culprits that create pilling. Scotchgard won't directly address this particular concern.
  • Pill-Busting Tips: To combat pilling, consider choosing fabrics less prone to it like velvet or microfiber. Regular maintenance, like employing a fabric shaver, can also help keep pilling in check.

While Scotchgard won't directly fight the pilling battle, it's still an excellent weapon in your arsenal when it comes to keeping your couch clean.

How long does Scotchgard smell last?

Scotch guarding furniture has become infamous for its association with a chemical smell. Many people might be unwilling to use Scotchgard because they assume the smell will never go away. But is that true? Or is it all a bunch of overblown hot air?

  • Initial Impact: When you first apply Scotchgard, there is a noticeable chemical scent. It's stronger right after application but it will dissipate over time.
  • Diminishing Act: As time passes, the scent diminishes. It won't be as potent as when first sprayed, allowing the natural room smells to take over. This process takes about 24 hours. However, you may still catch a whiff of the scent if you get your face close to the treated fabric.
  • Individual Factors: The duration of the scent varies. Factors like room size, ventilation, and personal sensitivity influence how long you'll notice the fragrance. Make sure to ventilate your space when you use Scotchgard to help alleviate any olfactory concerns.

While not essential, if you have the option to Scotchgard your fabric items outdoors, we’d recommend taking care of your spraying in the open air. This could be the best way how to Scotchgard a couch, and will help speed up the smell cycle.

What can I use instead of Scotchgard?

If you love the idea of Scotchgard but aren't convinced it's the right choice for your home, the good news is that there are some alternative options you can consider. However, they might not have the same stain-fighting strength or convenience as the real deal.

  • Fabric Protectors: Consider alternative fabric protectors available in the market. Brands like Guardsman, Green Guard, and protectME offer other options to shield your furniture.
  • DIY Mixtures: Craft your protective concoction! Mixtures with ingredients like vinegar, water, and baking soda can create a DIY shield against spills. If you want to waterproof your fabric, which is especially good for protecting outdoor furniture, check out this quick and simple DIY tutorial.
  • Professional Services: Opt for professional treatment if you're looking for a heavyweight solution. Some companies specialize in applying protective coatings to furniture.

Take all these options into consideration when choosing the best way to protect your couch from stains and spills. But at the end of the day, it's hard to beat the cost, convenience, and strength of Scotchgard.

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Alex Back is the founder and CEO of Couch.com. Previously, he was the co-founder and COO of the popular furniture brand, Apt2B, which was acquired by a large US retail furniture chain in 2018. He worked to integrate Apt2B, one of the very first online furniture retailers on the Shopify platform, into the operations of the 100 year old larger business entity and was deeply immersed in the business operations of both online and brick and mortar retail for 4 years before leaving in 2023 to start Couch.com. Working in various parts of the furniture industry since 2004, he has 20 years experience in retail sales, e-commerce, marketing, operations, logistics and wholesale manufacturing and distribution. He has worked extensively with partners such as Costco, Bed Bath and Beyond and Amazon and his work has been highlighted in many publications such as Forbes, CNN and HGTV, among others. Alex is delighted to bring his experience and authority on couches and the furniture industry to this platform, along with many of his industry colleagues who are helping him keep the Couch.com audience informed and engaged on a daily basis.
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Alex Back
Couch.com CEO & Founder