How to Clean an Outdoor Rug — Remove Dirt And Stains by Following These Steps

Outdoor rugs can collect quite a bit of dust and dirt — here is a method you can follow to clean up your backyard in time for those special alfresco nights

Outdoor rugs make for a nice indoor outdoor look
(Image credit: Go Modern)

Outdoor rugs are a great way to elevate, add color and style to the exterior of your home. They should be fairly low maintenance, however, that doesn't mean you won't have to clean an outdoor rug from time to time to keep it looking its best.

'Cleaning outdoor rugs is super easy! No matter if your rug is made of olefin, polypropylene, or other outdoor materials, you can clean it up nicely with just a few simple steps and tools', Hyacinth Tucker a cleaning expert and the founder of Laundry Basket, LLC tells us.

So, how exactly do we tackle the stains, debris and dirt? Here's how you can clean up your outdoor rug — according to an expert.

What you'll need to clean an outdoor rug

Colorful outdoor rug on small patio

(Image credit: Nani Marquina)

Your backyard is an extension of your home, and the items it holds should be taken care of the same as your indoor appliances and furniture. Whether you're learning how to clean a blackstone griddle or you simply want to understand how to clean your outdoor rug. We've got you covered on all your backyard needs.

But before you start cleaning your outdoor rug, you'll need the right tools. Cleaning expert Hyacinth Tucker from Laundry Basket, LLC says all you need is:

How to Clean an Outdoor Rug

Jaipur Rugs - The Zig Zag collection

(Image credit: Jaipur Rugs)

It's time, you've got your tools at the ready and as you find your way through your backyard, you come eye to eye with your outdoor rug. In need of some tender love and care, it's time to give it a good clean.

1. Preparation - Before you even begin to scrub away at your outdoor rug, Hyacinth says: 'Check the care instructions on your rug. Some smaller or braided rugs might be machine washable'. Once you've done all your precautionary checks the expert says you should shake off any loose dirt or debris from the rug. You can then proceed to lay the rug flat on the ground and 'use a garden hose or pressure washer to soak the rug all over'.

2. Stain Removal - It's time to remove the stains, grime and dirt! Hyacinth says: 'For tough spots, mix baking soda and vinegar, or dish soap like Dawn with water, and put it on the stained areas. Then, begin to scrub the spots gently with a soft brush'. For a stronger cleaner, Hyacinth recommends sprinkling OxiClean on stain spots. 'Scrub it in, and let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing'.

Step 3: Rinse and Dry - Now that you've done the tough work of scrubbing off those stains, it's time to rinse it off. Hyacinth says the best way to do this is by using a garden hose or pressure washer to ensure that all the soap and extra product is washed out of the rug completely. Once it's had a rinse down, 'lay the rug flat or hang it over a railing or clothesline to dry. Let the sun help dry it, as sunlight can also kill germs and get rid of bad smells'.

And that's it folks, you can now enjoy and embrace your freshly cleaned outdoor rug!

Hyacinth Tucker
Hyacinth Tucker

Hyacinth Tucker, affectionately known as the Laundry Lady, founded The Laundry Basket, LLC, a premier laundry delivery service, and lives by the motto, "No laundry left behind." As a proud military veteran, Hyacinth brings the same discipline and dedication to her work in laundry care. Based in the Metropolitan Washington, D


Should You Pressure Wash an Outdoor Rug?

Cleaning a carpet with a pressure washer

(Image credit: Getty Images)

'Yes, you can use a pressure washer on an outdoor rug' says Hyacinth. She notes that this is a great way of getting rid of dirt that may be hidden deep into your rug.

However, If you are going to pressure wash your rug, Hyacinth says you should make sure to 'use a lower setting so you don't damage the rug and test a small hidden spot first'. This will help you get a better idea of what steps to take next.

How to Keep Your Outdoor Rug Cleaner for Longer

If you're looking to keep your outdoor rug cleaner for longer, Hyacinth says the best thing to do is to first, shake off or vacuum your rug often to get rid of dirt and debris. Once that's done you can start to clean up spills and stains right away using a mix of dish soap and water, or baking soda and vinegar. If you are not using your outdoor rug, the cleaning expert says you should store it indoor to help protect it.

She also recommends putting a 'rug pad underneath to stop dirt from building up and to let air flow'. And last but not least, Hyacinth says you should 'turn your rug regularly to make sure it wears evenly and to help stop fading from the sun'.

For all your outdoor rug needs

Advice & Gardens Editor

Faiza is the Advice & Gardens Editor at Livingetc. She previously worked for The Independent as a News Feature Writer, where she wrote articles on lifestyle, entertainment, news and more. She also worked as an Audience Editor for the newspaper for over two years. Spending a few years in the newsroom, Faiza also previously worked for Sky News as an SEO reporter, where she produced stories based on trending topics. Lifestyle and Interior design is a space Faiza has been interested in for quite some time and as she continues to grow in the field, she will be diving into an interior design course to further her skills. Faiza has a background in SEO, social media and reporting. Her passion for writing goes beyond her work as she loves all things poetry and creative writing.