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How to flatten a rug

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A large rug that is delivered to your home or office will come neatly rolled up for ease of travel. Unless you have had the rug custom made recently, it has likely been stored for awhile in rolled form. Storing a rolled up rug in a warehouse is much easier than trying to store rugs that are all laying flat. You will find that the rug you receive is going to curl on its own when you try to put it in its place. It will flatten out as time goes on, but there are some things you can do regarding how to flatten a rug. Otherwise, you could be dealing with a safety hazard or an unsightly addition to the room you’re putting the rug in.

Step 1

Get a wet sponge or a wet towel and moisten the edges of the rug once you have it unrolled and in place. When you let it dry on its own, the rug should flatten out. Make sure you don’t soak the rug completely. Also, check to make sure that the rug you purchased is waterproof and can handle this trick. Be careful of the flooring that is underneath the rug. If you have hardwood or laminate floors, trapping water under the rug could end up damaging or warping the flooring.

Step 2

If you didn’t achieve success with step 1, you can lay a damp towel completely over the edges of the rug. Use an iron or steamer to flatten down the edges. Keep the iron on a low setting to start out with. Using high heat has the potential of causing the fibers of the rug to melt together. This depends on what material it’s made out of. You may want to test a small part before laying the iron down on a large area. Proceed to step 3 if this method doesn’t work for you.

Step 3

If all else has failed, flip the rug completely upside down. This is likely an inconvenience if you’re going to be keeping it in a living space with high traffic. The process of flattening the rug out will be much easier than if the rug is right-side up. Leave it be for the day and then switch it back to see if there’s improvement. This isn’t the best method to use if you have people coming over. It’s not good to walk on the underside of a rug. It can end up matting down the pile. This is a process that works well if you have an empty space that you can use like your basement or attic.

Step 4 

You can unroll the rug and arrange your furniture to cover up the rolled corners for the time being. If a piece of furniture is heavy enough, you can leave it in that spot and check back often to see if the rug is now flat. Some rugs may take up to 3 weeks to flatten out. It depends on the size of the rug and how heavy the pile is. You can move the furniture to its permanent location once you see that the rug will stay down once it’s in place. 

Step 5

Use heavy items to hold down the corners if you don’t have the option of holding it down with furniture. Books, weights and large storage containers will do the job for now.

Step 6

If you have a smaller rug that is rolling at the edges, you can open it up. Slide it under your mattress and above your box spring. If the rug is too large, you can always rotate it as the edges flatten out. This is a pretty efficient method that takes approximately 7 days to work. If the rug is small enough, you won’t even know that it’s there. 

Before you start trying to flatten a rug on your own, you will need to assess the situation and look at the rug you have. Some methods are going to work better for certain types of rugs. If you have a decorative rug with a very loose and high pile, you don’t want to slide it under your mattress. This could end up matting down the rug and ruining its look. A short pile rug will do fine under your mattress for a little bit of time. If you’re going to try a method that utilizes water or heat, make sure that the material of the rug will withstand those elements. Ask the manufacturer of the rug if they have any suggestions on how to flatten a rug that they are going to be sending you.

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