How to Wash an Outdoor Rug


Outdoor rugs are a great addition to any patio, deck or backyard. They add color and texture to your outdoor space and make it feel more inviting. However, outdoor rugs are exposed to the elements, which means they can get dirty and stained over time. In this article, we will show you how to wash an outdoor rug to keep it looking clean and fresh.

Step-by-Step Guide to Washing an Outdoor Rug

Follow these steps to clean your outdoor rug:

Step 1: Remove Loose Dirt and Debris

The first step in cleaning your outdoor rug is to remove any loose dirt or debris. You can do this by shaking the rug or using a broom to sweep it off. This will make the next steps more effective.

Step 2: Hose Down the Rug

Next, you will need to hose down the rug to remove any remaining dirt and debris. Use a garden hose to spray the rug with water, making sure to cover the entire surface. If you have a pressure washer, you can use that instead for a more thorough cleaning.

Step 3: Apply Cleaning Solution

After hosing down the rug, you can apply a cleaning solution. There are many commercial outdoor rug cleaners available, or you can make your own by mixing equal parts water and vinegar. Apply the solution to the rug with a brush or sponge, working it into the fibers.

Step 4: Let the Solution Sit

Once you have applied the cleaning solution, let it sit on the rug for 10-15 minutes. This will give it time to penetrate the fibers and loosen any dirt or stains.

Step 5: Rinse the Rug

After the cleaning solution has had time to work, rinse the rug thoroughly with water. Use a hose or pressure washer to make sure all the soap and dirt are removed.

Step 6: Dry the Rug

Finally, you will need to dry the rug. Hang it over a railing or clothesline to air dry. Make sure it is completely dry before putting it back on the ground.

Tips for Cleaning Outdoor Rugs

Here are some additional tips to keep in mind when cleaning your outdoor rug:

  • Always read the care instructions on your rug before cleaning it.
  • Test any cleaning solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the rug first to make sure it doesn’t damage the fibers.
  • Avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals on your outdoor rug.
  • Don’t use a high heat setting on your dryer to dry the rug, as this can damage the fibers.

Related Questions

Here are some common questions about washing outdoor rugs:

Can you wash an outdoor rug in the washing machine?

It is not recommended to wash an outdoor rug in a washing machine, as the agitator can damage the fibers. Stick to hosing it down and using a cleaning solution.

How often should you clean your outdoor rug?

You should clean your outdoor rug at least once a year, or more often if it gets heavily soiled or stained.

Can you use a steam cleaner on an outdoor rug?

It is not recommended to use a steam cleaner on an outdoor rug, as the high heat and moisture can damage the fibers.


Keeping your outdoor rug clean is important for both its appearance and longevity. By following these steps and tips, you can ensure that your rug stays looking its best for years to come.

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