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How to Clean Draperies With Water Damage

Step 1

Read the fabric care label. Not all drapery fabrics are washable. If your draperies are dry clean only, you will need to take them to a professional. Not all water damage can be removed, but your dry cleaner should be able to tell you if he or she will be able to remove the stain.

Step 2

Identify the fabric type of your washable draperies. Cleaning agents affect fabrics differently, so it is critical to use the proper agent.

Step 3

Treat the affected area. If your washable draperies are silk, wool or acetate, use white vinegar on a damp sponge to blot the stain. If you have a fabric other than silk, wool or acetate, use rubbing alcohol on the sponge instead of white vinegar.

Step 4

Dry the treated area with a hair dryer set to the lowest, coolest setting. If the stain is gone and the fabric is a uniform color, you can stop here. If the treated area looks different than the rest of the drapery, you should continue with a full laundering.

Step 5

Wash the entire drapery either in your washing machine or in your bathtub. Your machine’s load capacity may be too small for a large window treatment, so it’s better to wash them in your bathtub where there is room for fabric movement. Select cold water and the gentle cycle for a washing machine.

Step 6

Dry and iron curtains according to care instructions. As a general rule it's always best to use the low or no heat option and to remove the drapery from the dryer as soon as the cycle ends to reduce wrinkling.

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