The Under Rug Grit

Now that the floors in the conservatory are finished we’re going to carefully put the furniture back in there.

Time to furnish the conservatory.
Time to furnish the conservatory.

Since the room is clear we decided to start by cleaning the rug very well.

The conservatory rug was originally from Pottery Barn about 30 years ago.
The conservatory rug was originally from Pottery Barn about 30 years ago.

Instead of putting down the rug pad first Charlie laid the rug and vacuumed it from the top two times.

The dust was evenly distributed under the rug.
The dust was evenly distributed under the rug.

Under the rug was a white, sandy grit.  I always thought the grit was dirt that had sifted down through the fibers.

Charlie collected the dirt which was about half a cup.
Charlie collected the dirt which was about half a cup.

Some of it is dirt but my Google search revealed that it is actually the glue from the backing that is disintegrating. (This rug does NOT have a vinyl backing.)

Dirt and grit from under the rug.
Dirt and grit from under the rug.

Then Charlie vacuumed the underside of the rug, pulled the rug up, and laid the rug pad which he also vacuumed.

We're going to use our old Bissell and my personal rug cleaner to further clean the rug.
We’re going to use our old Bissell and my personal rug cleaner to further clean the rug.

Today we’re planning to shampoo the rug.

Do you have this issue with non-vinyl-backed rugs?  Apparently it doesn’t happen to Oriental-style rugs.

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Author: Jo

Welcome to The Glade, where the second generation of renovations has just begun and the mania about our home, music and other passions fill our days and nights. We’re Charlie and Jo in the music world; Mary Jo and Charles to family; and JoJo and Charlie to each other. We are renovating a midcentury house in a Victorian historic district where we want to live there the rest of our lives. It's a 1946 house located in Maryland. We were married in this house. Thus far (pre-blog) we refinished cabinets, added a window seat (still working on the cushion), rearranged a wall in the guest house due to sink/vanity replacement, planted a vegetable garden, and other quick and not-so-quick fixes. So this latest zeal for construction is the result of my having lived here since 1997 and feeling a need to ready the house for the next chapter and beyond.

10 thoughts on “The Under Rug Grit”

  1. I recently bought a rug originally on eBay. Tons of dust was coming off of it, and I was judging the previous owners pretty harshly until I moved the rugs in our living room and saw the “dirt” under there. We have a no-shoes-in-the-house policy, vacuum regularly and all of those rugs are 100% wool Oriental rugs. I think that all carpets suffer this syndrome.

  2. When I ripped out my old carpet years ago, I discovered similar grit and grime on the hardwood. I learned that much of it is, in fact, dead skin! Yes, dander from humans and pets. Ewwww … gross! That’s why I’ll never have wall-to-wall carpet again. Rugs are easier to clean.

  3. My parents have oriental rugs but the pads make a grit like this and lost their non-slip properties. The plan was to replace them, especially for the mall rugs in the hall, but that hasn’t happened yet. My rugs of course haven’t been in place long enough for the grit to happen.

    1. Charlie had a rude awakening about the grit and grime. He never wants to remove his outside shoes but now I think he sees a need. Jo

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