Curtains should be cleaned regularly to eliminate odors and allergens in your home. Learn how to do this with these tips on How to Clean Curtains.
When it comes to cleaning, I would say curtains and blinds end up being an area that I'm not very good at keeping up on. I just don't think about it often or don't think I have time. I tend to do the easier cleaning chores first and tell myself I will get to them when I have time. Cleaning your curtains is important though, because they can be a huge collector of pet hair, dust, and other allergens that effect the air quality in your home. They also absorb odors, such as those that come from cooking and lead to a stale smell in the air.
You should clean your curtains about once every 4-6 months, depending on how many people live in your home. You may even want to do it more frequently if any of them have asthma or if you have pets. If your curtains need a little TLC, follow these tips on How to Clean Curtains.
How to Clean Curtains
First, make vacuuming them something you do when you vacuum at least once a week. Just use the upholstery attachment and gently go up and down them. Make sure to concentrate on the top near the rod and at the bottom where they will pick up the most dust and hair. Do this when you go to wash them as well.
Clean curtains in a washer on the delicate or cold cycle if the fabric allows. You just want to make sure they don't spin too fast. Make sure to only wash lighter fabric curtains as they won't absorb too much water and take forever to dry and risk getting musky or mildew-ridden. Dry without heat if you must in the dryer, but the best place to dry them is actually hanging outside where they can get a breeze. This not only keeps them from getting wrinkles but also helps rid them of odors.
Consider steam cleaning for heavier materials. This is a convenient way for you to clean heavy curtains that may be too cumbersome to remove from the rods. You can find steamers online for this sort of thing and they also work well for clothes and drapes, too. Just make sure not to soak your curtains as they will easily become musty oi they don't dry well enough. Make sure to do this sort of cleaning on a sunny day so they can dry in the sun coming through the window.
If you prefer, try hand washing. If you don't have a delicate cycle on your washing machine, hand washing may be an option, but it's not the best way. It can make your curtains retain too much water or wrinkle. If you want to do it this way, make sure you get some help removing the water and then hang to dry.
Use your regular washing liquid to wash your curtains. Whether you hand-wash or machine-wash, you ca use any liquid cleaner you would normally use on clothes for the most part. Read labels, but usually a delicate soap is not required. I don't recommend powder soap simply because it can easily not dissolve all the way in the folds of the curtains.