We've been asked several times about the best ways to softwash a canvas canopy to remove green and black staining.
We've used Benz Lightning Cleanze on canvas at a dilution of 10:1 but we only suggest using it as a “rescue” cleaner on old canvas that is in a very bad way.
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You need to be very careful when softwashing canvas because:
1. Treatment could change the colour. A small unseen test patch will tell you what the results will be. It all depends on the condition of the canvas and if the material has a coating.
If the canvas has a coating then it will more likely to be okay to softwash.
2. Lightning Cleanze could potentially damage natural fibres like cotton and hemp, and could lighten the colouring of non-porous artificial materials. This is especially true if used to regularly maintain canvas.
Over time the stitching and canvas fibres may start degrading.
So to reduce the possibility of damaging the canvas, keep the contact time of Lightning Cleanze to a minimum and rinse thoroughly.
3. Benz Bio Cleanze diluted 40/50:1 would be our preferred choice for cleaning canvas canopies, awnings and umbrellas, especially for repeated maintenance treatments.
Bio Cleanze will take slightly longer to work than Lightning Cleanze. So we suggest treating the canvas, allowing it to activate and dry for up to a couple of hours, then lightly rinsing it.
Usually Bio Cleanze does not need rinsing. But in this situation we suggest rinsing to prevent any possibility of customers sitting under the canopy or umbrella when it is raining, and being subjected to drips of diluted Bio Cleanze run-off. The danger is extremely small but better to be safe than sorry.
Quick tip: You may need to spray canvas with a water-proofing agent following cleaning. Waterproofing agents for canvas are often added during manufacture but wear off over time because of natural weathering and repeated cleaning.
We hope you found this information helpful and inspires you to succeed in softwashing.
Ben, Leo & Fiona