Can Fabric Blinds Be Washed & Cleaned? (Explained)

Using fabric blinds and curtains can give your home an upscale and sophisticated feel, that is, until your beautiful fabric blinds become dirty and stained.

Because it can be wasteful and expensive to replace your blinds every time they get a stain or begin to look dirty, you will probably want to wash them.

Can Fabric Blinds be Washed & Cleaned?

Fabric blinds can be washed and cleaned either by you, a professional, or a company that specializes in caring for fabric. If you are interested in doing it yourself, invest in preventative measures to keep your blinds as clean as possible, such as watching for dust, handwashing, and spot cleaning.

Read on to find out a safe and non-damaging way to wash your fabric blinds that will have them looking good as new!

What is the Recommended Way to Wash and Clean Fabric Blinds?

How you care for your blinds can depend on what style they are and how they are designed.

Some fabric blinds require minimal care, while others that have more detail like embroidery, brocade patterns, layers, or lining can require a more detailed cleaning and might even require a professional.

There are a few things that you will want to keep in mind while trying to keep your fabric blinds clean and looking good.

Stay Ahead of Dust:

It is very important that you do not let dust and dirt get the best of you or your blinds.

Even if you do not want to wash your blinds regularly, you can still get rid of the dust by using the vacuum cleaner.

To do so, take your blinds down, lay them flat, and gently vacuum both sides of the fabric. Pay extra attention to the areas that have creases or pleats because these areas are prone to collecting more dust than the rest of your blinds.

These areas include cornices, swags, valences, cascades, etc.

Spot Cleaning:

Another way to help keep your blinds clean, without having to completely wash them, is to spot clean them.

You can do this by using a mild detergent, a sponge, and water. Simply clean the stain or spot with a sponge that has your detergent and water solution and blot dry with a towel.

You can also use fabric cleaners that are specifically made to clean fabric spots. These normally come in an aerosol spray foam or other types of cleaners.

To use these, you will spay them onto your blinds and immediately rub the area with a clean, damp sponge.

Make sure you rub back and forth gently and that you rub parallel to any pleats until you see the stain had been removed. Do not wrinkle the fabric while doing so, and make sure you dry the fabric when you are done.

Handwash Your Blinds:

It is recommended that when you do need to wash your blinds, you will want to wash them by hand. It can be very easy for your blinds to snag or fray when they are put in the washing machine.

The best way to deep clean your blinds by hand is by washing them in the bathtub.

Machine Washing:

If your blinds say they are machine washable, then you should be able to throw them into the washing machine, but you will want to take a few extra precautions.

To keep your blinds safe in the washing machine you will want to:

  1. Roll your blinds up into a coil.
  2. Place them in a pillowcase.
  3. Put them in the washing machine with only a few towels.
  4. Make sure you set your machine cycle to delicate.

Even though this will help protect your blinds while they are in the washing machine, it is only ideal for certain types of blinds. Make sure you only machine wash fabric blinds that specifically say they are machine washable.

If you feel uncomfortable with machine washing, because it can fray and snag your fabric, you might want to consider handwashing anyway.

Dry Naturally:

Whether or not you machine wash or hand wash your blinds, you will want to make sure that you let them dry naturally.

Drying your blinds in the washing machine can cause them to dry at different rates and can even cause shrinking. You also do not want to hang dry them.

The best way to let your blinds dry is to lay them flat on some towels and let them dry naturally.

How to Wash Fabric Blinds in a Bathtub:

Washing your blinds in a bathtub is a great way to hand wash them without bunching them up and wrinkling them.

To wash your blinds in a bathtub, you will:

  1. Remove them carefully and unstring them if necessary.
  2. Vacuum them well to remove all the dust that you can.
  3. Make sure your bathtub is completely clean.
  4. Fill your bathtub with soapy water and place your blinds in.
  5. Let your blinds sit in the soapy water for a while.
  6. Gently clean your blinds with a sponge.
  7. Rinse your blinds until there is no more soap running out of it.
  8. Lay flat to dry on towels in a well-ventilated area for one to two days or until completely dry.

This method is a great way to wash your blinds. But it is not ideal for all blinds.

Certain types of blinds can be very labor-intensive and time-consuming for more elaborate blind styles, such as those with pleats or accordion style.

If you need to wash one of these types of blinds, you might want to take them to a professional.

How Do you Get Stains off Fabric Blinds?

Getting stains off of your fabric blinds can be very similar to getting stains off of other fabrics.

The easiest way to get stains off of your fabric blinds is to do a spot cleaning with fabric cleaner or soap and water.

If that doesn’t work, you could also try to soak your blinds in a more deep-clean process.

As a last resort, you could always take your blinds to the dry cleaners to let the professionals take care of them.

How Do You Wash Pleated Blinds?

Pleated blinds are much more challenging to clean than a more simple set of fabric blinds.

This is because they are thicker, and they attract more dirt, dust, and allergens into their folds.

A good place to start before you wash your pleated blinds is to check their wash instructions. They will be able to tell you specific directions that you should follow.

After that, you should be able to clean them using soap and water unless otherwise specified. When cleaning pleated blinds, make sure that you do not submerge the headrail. If liquid gets into the headrail, it could damage the moving parts that are inside.

Does it Matter if the Blinds are Horizontal or Vertical?

Cleaning blinds, whether they are horizontal or vertical, is not too hard, but it can be a little different.

Cleaning verticle blinds is a little easier than cleaning horizontal blinds. This is because you can usually clean then in one sweep. Vertical blinds also normally only have a single track to open and close the blinds.

Even though your vertical blinds might be easier to clean, you will likely have to replace them more often because they will wear out quicker.

Horizontal blinds, however, can be trickier to clean. Horizontal blinds normally have more mechanisms and strings attached that can make cleaning them difficult.

You want to be careful when you are cleaning your blinds that have mechanisms so that you do not damage them with water.

How Much Does it Cost to Have Fabric Blinds Cleaned Professionally?

If you are not confident in washing your own blinds, or there is a troublesome stain that you cannot get out, you can always take your blinds to a professional.

Some reasons to go to a professional instead of doing it yourself can include:

  • Tough stains
  • Detailed Embroidery
  • Detailed Brocade
  • Excessive layers or linings

Getting your blinds cleaned professionally can be a great way to make sure that your blinds come out completely cleaned and good as new, but it can be costly.

The cost of getting your blinds cleaned will vary based on a few factors.

Dry Cleaning:

There are different places that you can take your blinds to be cleaned based on what you have and what you need to be done.

You can take your blinds to a dry cleaner’s so that they can professionally clean them for you. This is similar to taking in your clothes or other fabric objects that need professional cleaning.

The cost of dry cleaning can range between $1 and $6 per foot of fabric. This price can change based on the material type and size of the blinds.

You might be charged more for a different and more labor-intensive fabric.

Professional Cleaners:

You can also have professional cleaners come to your house and clean your window features for you.

This can be very convenient because they will clean all of your window curtains, drapes, and blinds in your whole house.

The average cost of having professional cleaners come and clean your window treatments for you can average between $3 to $8 per square foot.

This is more expensive than dry cleaning because of the extra time and work that is required to travel to your house and clean them without taking them down.

Ultrasonic Cleaning:

Another potential professional method to get your blinds cleaned is using an ultrasonic method.

This is a new method that uses ultrasound to agitate a fluid such as water, helping you to remove dust, dirt, grease, stains, smells, and other allergens without using chemicals and protecting the integrity of your blinds.

Some companies charge you on a per-blind basis, but other companies might charge you based on how large your blinds are and charge by the linear foot.


If you are charged on a per-blind basis for ultrasonic cleaning, the average price could be between $10 to $40 depending on the type of blind, the size, and the condition that your blinds are in when you drop them off.

If you are charged per linear foot, the cost could be between $5 to $20 per foot.

These prices are just average costs and can also vary based on the professional themselves as well as the area you live in.

Also, be aware that when you take your blinds into a professional, there is often a “minimum” amount that they will charge you no matter what.