Congratulations on your new leather furniture! Leather is a time-tested material, is aesthetically pleasing and will greatly outlast a fabric sofa if properly cared for. Leather is neither self-cleaning nor self-maintaining. To ensure longevity of your furniture please follow these guidelines:
- Try to maintain at least three feet between your furniture and heating sources. Prolonged exposure to heat vents, radiators or wood stoves will cause your leather to dry out.
- Avoid placing your furniture in direct sunlight. All materials will fade over time when placed in direct sunlight. Do not place leathers near windows or under skylights. If you have multiple windows in your room use blinds during hot months.
- Like all items in your home, leather can accumulate dust. Dust weekly (Swiffer dusters work great) or you may also use the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner.
- Use distilled water to remove body oils and other buildups. To do this get a clean cotton cloth and wet with distilled water. Wring out and wipe down your leather, concentrate on the head/neck and arm areas as these areas tend to accumulate the most oils. Some leathers may darken when you wipe it down but will dry clear. For heavy use clean once every other month. If rarely used clean once or twice a year. If you do not clean your leather the oils will end up discoloring the leather over time and cracking.
- The proper order to care for your leather is:
- First- remove dust and other buildups.
- Second- Use distilled water and rag method to remove oils.
- Third – use a leather cleaner
- Fourth- use a leather conditioner
- The top layer protects the leather and simplifies cleaning, but is nonetheless vulnerable to soiling and wear. If the top layer/top color is destroyed, the leather may deteriorate faster. Penetrating spills/damage/scratches are normally irreparable and may result in the top color changing character, cracking or peeling off.
- Never use harsh chemicals or cleaning agents on your leather furniture. Avoid all products containing solvents or oils because they may negatively affect the surface of the leather. Avoid using your leather furniture with wet hair or with freshly applied hair care products or cosmetics. Only use approved leather cleaners and conditioners when maintaining your leather furniture. Never use car or saddle leather cleaners, as these leathers are treated differently than furniture upholstery leather.
- Never leave newspapers directly on the leather for an extended period of time. Dye transfer will happen, especially during the warmer months. Same goes for blue jeans.
- Leather is not resistant to animals. Do not allow pets on your leather furniture. Their claws may scratch the leather which can lead to an expensive repair. Their saliva is acidic and may also attack the leather finish.