Your microfiber cloth is an industry standard for wiping water on cars, so we can say that it’s super soft and shouldn’t scratch anything. But some people still notice little scratches and dents after they use their microfiber cloths and rags in cleaning their house or washing their cars. What can go wrong?
In our today’s article, we’ll tell you more about the microfiber material and what can actually go wrong with it making it one of the worst options to use on a painted surface or on lacquered furniture. Sometimes it’s all about the product features, but most often you just use the cloth incorrectly or don’t change it over time.
Let’s find out the following:
- Can a microfiber cloth scratch your furniture or car?
- What is microfiber cloth made of?
- How often should you change your cleaning rags?
- What to do after you noticed some scratches?
Let’s get started!
Why does my microfiber cloth keep scratching?
We’ve found two main reasons why your microfiber rags may scratch any surface:
- Dust and hard particles between fibers. This means you were using your rag for wiping some dirty surfaces and didn’t clean it properly after that.
- Bad microfiber cloth that was produced with cheaper materials and with no production control. Some fibers have got harder over time and started scratching surfaces.
The first way is much more realistic. In most cases, some particles were stuck between the fibers of the cloth. You may not even see them, but when you press your cloth over some surface, the particle shows up and starts scratching. It may be OK for your wooden table or wooden floor, but it will be a bad experience for your car, fridge, lacquered wood with a shiny finish, etc.
The second way is something unbelievable, but it still happens. Remember that any microfiber cloth has a certain lifespan. This means that you shouldn’t use your rag in cleaning for more than its lifespan offers. Some rags may have been made of worse materials that harden over time. The cloth may also change its structure after being washed a lot of times. Especially, if you use some strong chemical products for washing your rags.
What is microfiber cloth made of?
Microfiber is not made of natural materials. If you try to live an eco-friendly life, you would love to choose cotton instead. But we all know that cotton rags are much less convenient in cleaning your house and car. You will have to replace them very often and find some ways to buy more of them. While microfiber ones are readily available in supermarkets in large quantities.
Microfiber rags are usually made of polyester and nylon. These materials are partially safe for nature because they contain some synthetic materials that never biodegrade in nature. So using these rags is not eco-friendly at all. But still, science tells us that these rags aren’t as bad as you can think of them, so many people all over the world still prefer them for cleaning.
Synthetic materials withstand literally anything, they are durable and can serve for months without any special care. But bear in mind that sometimes manufacturers want to save up their money and they use cheaper components to produce their microfiber rags. Well, there is no certain formula of what a microfiber cloth should include in its materials list, so these manufacturers don’t deceive us, they just invent their own microfiber types. But with these rags, you are more likely to scratch something.
Once some materials get wet and then undergo some drying, they may become harder than they initially were. Sometimes they will dry to a so hard material that it will even scratch the painted or lacquered surface. So if you want to use microfiber household rags, you shouldn’t opt for the cheapest options. Sometimes this is the key to why your microfiber cloth is scratching something.
Dust and hard particles in the cloth
One more way to spoil the surface you clean is to avoid paying attention to the cleanliness of your cloth. If the rag was used for cleaning and wiping extremely contaminated surfaces like car rims, for example, it will apparently have a lot of hard particles inside. They may be some stones, metal parts, etc. The worst thing is that you aren’t likely to be able to feel them with your hands when you take the rag. They may hide between fibers and be not visible at all. In this case, you will start wiping your table or even the car hood and will then see some scratches.
To avoid this, stick to these simple rules:
- Use your rags for a specific range of purposes. If you use one cloth for your car rims, let it be only used for the rims. Then you should have some other rags for different purposes.
- Clean your rags thoroughly with warm water and dish soap after you use them, this will help you eliminate most particles.
- Never use a rag on some painted surface until you are sure that the cloth doesn’t have any hard particles in it – just check it once again.
- Don’t press your rag too hard when you wipe something. This way, you will avoid scratching if a tiny stone is hidden between fibers.
- Always fold your microfiber cloth at least twice before applying. The chances of scratching anything in such a way will be much lower.
Never use your rag if you see that it’s dirty. Clean it once again before you apply the cloth because otherwise, you will need to cope with those scratches. Also, replace your rags if you see that they are worn out, thin, not efficient anymore, etc. If you see that after cleaning your rag is still very dirty, it’s time to replace it with a new one.
How long can a microfiber cloth survive?
Manufacturers insist that their microfiber cloths can be re-used at least 400 to 500 times. They also claim that such a cloth is basically one of the most economical cleaning options you can get as it can serve you for years. But we have diverse experience with one cloth surviving of up to 300 times of using and the other one surviving only 1 month of daily use.
Here we have some tips to make your microfiber cloth last longer:
- don’t put your microfiber rag in your laundry with other towels and clothes;
- better wash the cloth in cold water under a tap using any regular detergents;
- don’t ever use fabric softeners if you want your cloth to live longer;
- don’t put it on a radiator or under heat for drying, this will destroy the fibers.
Also, you can turn your microfiber cloth into a one-time use rag if you clean oil and grease with it. Unfortunately, those substances can’t be properly removed or cleaned after that from the cloth. So make sure you use paper towels to absorb the grease and then clean the leftovers with the microfiber cloth if you need.
How to deal with scratches?
If you got the scratches already, we will recommend you some ways to remove them or hide them without paying much for this.
Unfortunately, paint scratches are really hard to remove or hide. You will need to use special equipment and techniques for this. But the good news is that you can find the equipment in any paint shop.
If you have some scratches on a wooden lacquered surface, stick to these rules:
- buy some lacquer you can use to cover the surface after repair;
- use sandpaper of fine grit to carefully sand away the scratched spot;
- clean the surface with mineral spirits to avoid any dust and grease on it;
- cover the surface with the lacquer you have bought before.
If the scratches were made on a metal surface, here are the tips:
- go to a local paint shop and buy materials and instruments for manual buffing;
- clean the spot thoroughly to avoid any dust or hard particles;
- apply some buffing paste and any instruments you have bought;
- repeat the procedure if the scratch is still visible;
- clean the surface to wash off all the buffing paste;
- inspect the surface to ensure that everything looks good.
Be careful and always read instructions for the materials you buy. Because different paste manufacturers will give their own tips which should be a priority for you.
If you clean your house and wash your vehicle, you may know that microfiber cloths are the most convenient types of rags to use in your cleaning routines. But sometimes you may scratch paint or lacquer when using a rag of that type. It means that the rag is full of hard particles or it’s not very good in terms of quality. The best option, in this case, is to replace the cloth and to repair the scratch. In our article, we have explained how to avoid scratching your surfaces with a microfiber cloth and also how to hide the scratches you may have already made.