Is Woolite Upholstery Cleaner Water Based?

It’s not only important to keep our homes and furnishings looking fresh and clean, but also to be conscious of the impact our choices have on the environment. 

Woolite Upholstery Cleaner, a popular choice for maintaining the cleanliness and appearance of our carpets and furniture, is a product to consider very carefully when it comes to this regard. 

A common question that arises concerning this product is whether Woolite Upholstery Cleaner is water-based. 

In this article, we will explore whether that is so and discuss the benefits and drawbacks of water-based cleaning agents in comparison to their solvent-based counterparts.

What Is A Water Based Upholstery Cleaner?

A water-based upholstery cleaner is a cleaning solution that uses water as its primary solvent to dissolve dirt, stains and other contaminants on various types of upholstered furniture. 

These cleaners are formulated with a combination of water, surfactants and other additives that work together to break down and lift away dirt, grime and stains from the fabric’s surface without causing damage or leaving behind a residue.

What Other Form Of Upholstery Cleaner Exist?

Aside from water-based upholstery cleaners, there are other types of cleaning solutions that cater to different cleaning needs and preferences. 

Some of the most common alternatives include:

Solvent-based cleaners

These cleaners use organic solvents, often derived from petroleum, as the primary dissolving agent to break down and remove stains, dirt, and grime. While solvent-based cleaners can be highly effective in removing stubborn stains, they often contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and harsh chemicals that can pose risks to human health and the environment. They should be used with caution and proper ventilation.

Foam cleaners

Foam upholstery cleaners are usually aerosol-based and use a foaming agent to create a thick, frothy solution that is applied directly to the upholstery. This type of cleaner is effective in lifting dirt and grime from the surface, and it dries quickly, reducing the risk of over-wetting or damaging the fabric. Foam cleaners can be either water-based or solvent-based, depending on the formulation.

Natural or homemade cleaners

Some people prefer to use natural or homemade cleaning solutions for their upholstery, such as mixing water with vinegar, baking soda, or mild dish soap. These options can be more environmentally friendly and less toxic, but their effectiveness varies and may not be as powerful as commercial cleaners.

Steam cleaners

Steam cleaning uses heated water vapor to deep-clean upholstery, carpets, and other surfaces. The high-temperature steam helps break down dirt and kill bacteria, allergens, and dust mites. While not a specific type of cleaner, steam cleaning is an alternative method to clean upholstery without using traditional liquid cleaning agents.

Is Woolite Upholstery Cleaner Water Based?

Woolite Upholstery Cleaner is a water-based cleaning solution. 

It uses water as the primary solvent, along with surfactants and other additives, to effectively clean and remove dirt, stains and grime from upholstered furniture. 

This water-based formula makes it a more eco-friendly and safer option for use in homes, as it typically contains fewer harsh chemicals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) compared to solvent-based cleaners. 

Additionally, its gentle nature makes it suitable for a variety of fabrics, including delicate and natural fibers. 

Always check the product label and follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure proper use and compatibility with your specific upholstery material.

Is Water Based Cleaner Better?

Water-based cleaners are often considered better than other types of cleaners, especially when compared to solvent-based cleaners, for several reasons. 

However, the “better” choice depends on the specific cleaning situation and individual preferences. 

Here are some reasons why water-based cleaners are often favored:

  • Environmental impact: Water-based cleaners generally have a lower environmental impact than solvent-based cleaners. They contain fewer volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and hazardous chemicals, which helps reduce air and water pollution when used and disposed of properly.
  • Safety: Since water-based cleaners contain milder ingredients and fewer harsh chemicals, they are generally safer for humans and pets. They pose a lower risk of skin irritation, respiratory issues, and other health concerns that can arise from exposure to toxic chemicals in solvent-based cleaners.
  • Material compatibility: Water-based cleaners are typically gentler on a wide range of upholstery fabrics, including delicate and natural fibers. They are less likely to cause damage or discoloration compared to more aggressive cleaning agents.
  • Residue: Water-based cleaners often leave behind less residue on the fabric after cleaning, resulting in a cleaner and fresher appearance.
  • Odor: Unlike solvent-based cleaners, which can have a strong, unpleasant odor due to the presence of chemicals, water-based cleaners usually have a milder scent or are even odorless, making them more pleasant to use.

However, it’s important to note that water-based cleaners may not always be the best choice for every situation. 

For instance, they might not be as effective in removing certain stubborn stains or grease as solvent-based cleaners. 

Additionally, some fabrics may require special cleaning methods, such as dry cleaning to prevent damage from moisture.

How To Use The Woolite Upholstery Cleaner?

Using Woolite Upholstery Cleaner is an easy and effective way to clean and maintain your upholstered furniture. 

It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and guidelines to ensure proper usage and prevent damage to your upholstery. 

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to use Woolite Upholstery Cleaner:


  • Vacuum the upholstery thoroughly to remove loose dirt, dust and debris.
  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions and warnings on the Woolite Upholstery Cleaner packaging to ensure it’s suitable for your specific type of fabric.
  • Perform a spot test by applying the cleaner to a small, inconspicuous area of the upholstery to check for colorfastness and fabric compatibility. Allow it to dry completely and inspect for any adverse effects before proceeding with the full application.


  • Shake the Woolite Upholstery Cleaner bottle well before using it.
  • Hold the bottle approximately 6-8 inches away from the upholstery and spray the cleaner evenly onto the fabric. Avoid oversaturating the fabric, as excess moisture can lead to damage or prolonged drying times.
  • Allow the cleaner to penetrate the fabric and work on the stains for the recommended time indicated on the packaging (usually about 5-10 minutes).


Gently work the cleaner into the fabric using a soft-bristle brush or a clean, damp cloth. Use circular motions and light pressure to lift and dissolve dirt and stains. Be careful not to scrub too hard, as this may damage the fabric or cause pilling.

Blotting and absorption

After working the cleaner into the fabric, use a clean, dry cloth or paper towel to blot and absorb the cleaning solution, along with the dirt and stains. Repeat this process as needed to remove as much of the cleaner and dirt as possible.


Allow the upholstery to air dry completely. This may take several hours, depending on the fabric and environmental conditions. Avoid sitting on or using the furniture until it is fully dry.

Final steps

Once the upholstery is dry, vacuum it again to remove any residue or remaining dirt.

Inspect the cleaned areas to ensure all stains and dirt have been removed. If necessary, repeat the cleaning process for stubborn or persistent stains.

Remember to always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and recommendations for the best results when using Woolite Upholstery Cleaner or any other cleaning product on your furniture.