1. Assess the damage
Before you can do anything to your furniture, you must first figure out what you are dealing with. After checking for any obvious rodent activity, carefully take the furniture outside. This will make it easier to complete the cleaning; doing so inside closed spaces can be dangerous and difficult on the lungs. Complete a more thorough assessment of rodent activity. Study the fabric and determine if there is dust or mold present. Before you begin cleaning, put on a face mask to protect you from any mold spores.
If there are large amounts of mold, you will have to break up the patches. While this is definitely not the most fun step of how to clean your furniture post storage, it is an important one. Place some newspaper underneath the couch and make sure that your mask is secure. Use a firm brush or broom to break up the spores. Brush the spores onto the newspaper and dispose of the newspaper.
There are two avenues of completing this step: wood or upholstery.
If you are cleaning the wooden parts of the furniture, use gloves and Pine-Sol for cleaning. Use a rag or soft brush to scrub these parts of the furniture. Take your time and be sure to not damage the finish. However, if the finish becomes damaged through cleaning or the effects of the mold, re-finishing is a simple process.
If you are cleaning the upholstery, use Woolite or combination of warm water and hand soap to clean. Scrub firmly.
With this step, you may not completely rid the furniture of all mold and dust. The next steps will help remove the last remaining layers.
4. Dry it Out
Set the furniture out to dry in the sun for a a day or more until it is completely dry. This step will dry out the remaining layers of mold and mildew. Dry mold and mildew are much easier to scrub away.
5. Disinfecting Time
The final step for cleaning furniture post storage is disinfecting. Combine one cup of bleach for every 5 cups of water to create the disinfecting solution. Please use gloves and eye protection for your own safety. Wipe down the furniture completely to kill the last layers of mold and mildew. Lay the furniture out in the sun to dry one last time.
Adventures do not always come in the form of open roads and filthy nights. Sometimes, our adventures simply include furniture and those types of adventures need cleaning as well. Clean up your furniture and prepare it for its next adventure.