How to Clean Pleather Upholstery

Kathy Adams

Pleather, also known as faux leather, is a durable material meant to look like leather. While it is designed to resist spills and won't absorb liquids like woven fabrics, pleather furniture still requires cleaning. A thorough dusting, vacuuming and wipe-down every week or two ensures it stays looking its best. More thorough cleaning methods may be used when spills or stains occur.

Step 1

Dust all exposed surfaces of the furniture with a feather duster or soft dust cloth. Remove the cushions, if possible, and vacuum the exposed area. Use a crevice tool to get between non-removable cushions and in areas difficult to clean with the duster.

Step 2

Pour a few inches of warm water in a bucket and add a squirt of mild dish soap, swishing it around with your hand. Dip a soft white cloth into the liquid, wringing out most of the water, and wipe down the faux leather for a basic cleaning. Wipe it down again with a damp cloth, then dry it off immediately with another soft white cloth. Using white cloths ensures no dyes transfer onto the pleather.

Step 3

Dip a toothbrush into the soapy water solution to treat areas that are extra dirty, such as an area where sticky food or drink spilled. Wipe the area afterwards with a damp white cloth, then dry the faux leather.

Step 4

Remove stubborn buildup with a vinyl upholstery cleaner, available from an automotive or furniture store. Pour some of the cleaner onto a soft white cloth or directly onto the problem area, as directed on the package instructions. Rub the solution over the affected area with the soft white cloth; then follow up with a damp white cloth. Dry with another white cloth.

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