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How to Clean a Lampshade

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How to Clean Lampshades

How to Clean a White Lampshade

How to Clean a Fabric Lampshade

What's in the article?

Lamps are terrific in providing a calming ambiance to any room, particularly in bedrooms, dens, and libraries. They give off extra light during the night without being too bright, and lampshades come in a variety of designs and materials. 

Since lamps are often untouched even when in use, they can accumulate a lot of dirt, dust, and cobwebs. These can be a fire hazard, as well as an eyesore when you're trying to enjoy a good book under the light of the lamp. Learn how to clean lampshades to completely clean your home!

Before you do any sort of cleaning, make sure your lamp is turned off and unplugged to prevent electrical shock. Even lamps that are kept for decorative purposes, but are still plugged into an electrical power source should be unplugged to prevent accidents. 


How to Clean Lampshades

Cleaning a lampshade is simpler than you may think, just unplug the lamp before you remove the shade. Different lampshade materials are cleaned differently, and it is important to know whether your lampshade is waterproof. 


Dry Cleaning a Lampshade

Step 1: Vacuum up the loose dust from the lampshade. Use the upholstery brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner to suck up the cobwebs, dust, and dirt even through the small corners of the lampshade. 

Step 2: Use a lint roller, soft brush, or dry microfiber cloth to gently wipe away the dust on the lampshade. A sticky lint roller can be used to capture pieces of debris so they don't fall to the floor, but a brush or cloth works just as well if you don't have a lint roller on hand.

Step 3: Use your vacuum cleaner to once again suction away the now-loosened dirt. Go all over the entire area until the lampshade is visibly cleaner than it was before. 

This dry cleaning method is the optimal way to clean parchment lampshades as a paper shade cannot be washed or get wet. For fabric lampshades, glass lampshades, and other materials, however, you may opt to wash the lampshade after dry cleaning. 


Washing a Lampshade

Step 1: If your lampshade is made of fabric, plastic, glass, or resin, then you may wash these with some soap and water. Do not wash paper or parchment lampshades as these cannot get wet. 

Step 2: Make a solution of soapy water using laundry detergent, and gently wipe the lampshade with the soapy solution. Use a soft-bristled brush to get the soapy water into the fibers of a fabric lampshade, or use a soft cloth to wipe the lampshade clean if the surface is smooth. 

Step 3: Rinse the lampshade until the soap suds are completely gone, and use a clean towel to dry the lampshade completely. 


Drying a Lampshade

Make sure you dry your lampshade before you place it back on the lamp base. For smooth-surfaced lampshades, you can use a towel to dry the entire lampshade. However, a fabric lampshade will need to be air dried or dried under the sun before placing back onto the base. 


How to Clean a White Lampshade

White lampshades accentuate cleanliness and brightness in a room, but these can get dirty easily, and can have dusty fingerprints, stains, and discoloration especially if the lightbulb emits heat. As always, unplug the lamp before removing the lampshade to clean.


Using a Baking Soda Paste

Use a paste made from a solution of baking soda and water. Apply the paste directly on stained areas and discolored areas of your lampshade. Allow the paste to dry, then use a soft-bristled brush to gently brush off the excess.

Using Hydrogen Peroxide

If cleaning a fabric lampshade, you can use hydrogen peroxide to bleach out stains without damaging the fabric. Apply hydrogen peroxide onto the stained or discolored areas, and allow the solution to bleach them. Wash as usual, and dry before placing back onto the base. 


How to Clean a Fabric Lampshade

Fabric lampshades can have different designs, and are generally eye-catching as they provide a unique opacity in lamps that are dimmer than paper shades or glass shades. You can easily wash a fabric lampshade, provided that you dry them before you use them again. 


Dry Cleaning Fabric Lampshades

For shades that you cannot remove from the skeleton, you can dry clean these using baking soda. Place the lampshade in a large container, then sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda in it. Shake the container, and allow the baking soda to gather up all the dust. Remove the shade from the container, shake off the excess powder, and place back onto the base. 


Washing Fabric Lampshades

For shades that you can remove from the skeleton, you can wash the fabric parts alongside your laundry. Hand wash or machine wash the fabric until clean, then allow the fabric to completely dry before placing back on its structure. This method deep cleans your fabric lampshade.


Drying Fabric Lampshades

Fabric has the tendency to retain water used to wash it, which can become a problem when the moisture comes in contact with electrical devices. Avoid electrical accidents, and allow your fabric lampshade to dry completely through sun drying or air drying. The lampshade should be dry, not even the slightest dampness should be on the shade. 

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Staff Writer

This article is written by our passionate staff writers who seek to share our knowledge from our business

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