Leather couches are a beautiful piece of furniture that add style and finesse to any lounge room.
What happens if your Leather Couch gets wet?
Leather is a stronger more durable material than other alternative fabrics.
Most leather couches have some sort of leather conditioner on them, but it is up to each individual to continue to condition the leather to keep it waterproof, and this will repel the water.
In this article we have researched are couches waterproof, whether water ruins a couch and what exactly to do if it gets wet. So let’s check it out!
Are Leather Couches Waterproof?
Leather is a very durable material, and leather couches are designed to be as strong and resistant as possible because of how much they are used.
When compared to other fabrics that are used for couches, such as velvet or polyester, leather has a much better defence against water, though the material is not completely waterproof.
A lot of the time, water will just run off leather and then the material will need to be dried out, but too much water can cause damage to a leather couch.
Some people take extra effort to make their leather couches more waterproof. You can do this by purchasing a waterproofing product, like a pot of beeswax or a leather protection cream.
Applying these products regularly as part of a care routine will make your couch as waterproof as it can be and give you more peace of mind.
Leather is a naturally porous material, which means that it has lots of small penetrable areas where liquids can pass through and get trapped.
If the leather of your couch is older, it is at even more risk of absorbing excess liquids.
Think of a leather couch like skin: it is covered in pores that won’t always pull external bacteria in, but when they do, those bacteria (or in this case, liquid molecules) can cause damage from within which will affect the look of the outside.
As previously stated, the best way to make your couch as waterproof as it can be is to treat it regularly and check for any water marks or other damage.
If you are worried about accidentally spilling something on your leather couch, try to avoid drinking or having other liquids near it.
Never leave any unattended liquids too close to a couch in case an accident happens and it does spill onto the couch, especially since you may not notice until later, when the liquid molecules have had the opportunity to penetrate the fabric.
Does Water Ruin A Leather Couch?
A little bit of water can be easily wiped off a leather couch without causing any damage, but a lot of water will definitely ruin the couch, or, at least, a section of it.
Not only does water damage look bad on a couch, it also causes the leather to change shape and texture, or even get moldy.
If your couch becomes ruined by water, you will either have to work quickly to rectify the damage, or you’ll have to get rid of your couch and buy a new one.
If too much water gets on a leather couch, it can cause the fabric to start to crack and peel.
If this happens, you will need to buy a leather repair kit and fix the damaged spot, otherwise it will only get worse as more of the material starts to peel off.
Leather is resistant to water up to a certain point, but once it has started to soak into the material of your couch, it will work away at the leather from the inside out.
Leather is most often dyed to give leather products a certain look. Water damage is deadly for these dyes because the molecules move them about and ruin the color bonding that gives your couch its pristine appearance.
Even if the leather itself hasn’t been cracked or hardened by water damage, the couch will look ruined by a shabby appearance.
If you can’t handle exposed leather on a couch then you could try covering it up whenever you are using it.
You can do this comfortably and stylishly with the addition of some colorful throw cushions and blankets, and then have the leather displayed when nobody is sitting on the couch.
If you have pets or children, this is also a good way to prevent them from accidentally damaging your couch with liquids or other things.
Will Rain Damage A Leather Couch?
Rain will almost definitely damage a leather couch because rainfall is consistent and often heavy.
Luckily, it is quite unlikely for rain to get onto your couch, but it can if you come in from a rainy outdoors and then sit on the couch, or if you have a leak in your roof, or if you need to take the couch outside for some reason, such as if you are moving to a new house.
In any case where you think that rainwater is likely to get onto your leather couch, take extra precautions to protect the material.
If you do have a leak in your roof near the couch, move it and try to catch all of the rainwater with a bucket and a sheet underneath for any drops that splash across the room.
If you have just been outside in heavy rainfall, dry yourself off and dress in clean clothes before you sit on the couch.
If, for some reason, you cannot prevent your leather couch from coming into contact with rain, wrap all the sections up in sheets or other coverings because it is essential that you keep the leather from getting wet.
A light rainfall is pretty unlikely to do any damage to a leather couch, but you are always better being safe than being sorry.
Heavy rainfall will certainly take its toll on a couch because all the individual drops will cause the water damage to spread and there is a lot more leather on a couch for absorption to occur.
Once the damage has been done, your couch might not look the same again due to discoloration, streaks or spot marks, dryness, and cracks.
You should do the same to preserve any outdoor leather furniture, such as seats in your garden. Rainfall can cause excessive water damage to leather because it doesn’t take much for the water to manifest and rot the material.
A leather couch should be moved away from windows to avoid any potential splashes from outside, and any outdoor leather furniture should be suitably tucked away or covered up.
Do Leather Couches Absorb liquid?
Though there is some inherent protection in leather because it is so robust, you want to avoid any liquids getting on a leather couch because the fabric will start to absorb them if you don’t promptly clean them off.
The water molecules that penetrate the fabric during absorption bond with the oils in the leather and then draw them to the surface during evaporation. This results in leather that is discoloured, cracked, and dried out.
Leather needs to be soft and supple, especially on a couch because you want it to look good as well as feel comfortable to sit and lounge on.
Products like leather conditioner and beeswax work to keep that suppleness, but they don’t mess with the natural oils and the dyes in a leather couch and move them around.
That’s why you need to do everything that you can to prevent other liquids from spilling onto leather because if you don’t clean it all up, it will get absorbed.
The disruption of the dyes in leather can also cause the material to appear streaky or patchy, even if the texture of the couch doesn’t change.
There’s only so many spots that you can cover up with throw cushions and other accessories, and it is especially hard to save a leather couch that has started to rot because the water that got absorbed took a long time to evaporate.
Essentially, you need to catch any liquids that have got onto your couch as soon as possible, otherwise you risk them becoming absorbed and then you won’t be able to do anything to get rid of them until they start causing visible damage.
What Do I Do If My Leather Couch Gets Wet?
If your leather couch gets wet, it is most likely to be due to a spillage. In that case, dry the material immediately and make sure that the liquid doesn’t slip into any of the crevices in the couch.
If you suspect that the liquid may have been absorbed by the couch, which is a lot more likely to happen if it was a big spillage, then you’ll have to watch out for mold growth or any unpleasant damp smells.
When leather gets wet, be gentle as you wipe off the liquid so that you take away the excess without scrubbing at the couch.
The rest of the dampness should dry naturally, so long as you give the couch plenty of space to air out and try to avoid spilling anything else on it afterwards.
Once it has dried itself entirely, you shouldn’t notice any issues with the material, but keep an eye on the spot that got wet to see if you notice any changes in colour or texture.
You should apply a leather conditioner to your couch to give it a bit more protection against future spillages if it has got wet once already.
This will soften the leather, preventing it from cracking and spoiling the look, which has a tendency to happen after the material has got wet. Also try draping something over the couch, like a blanket or a sheet, if you are going to be handling liquids near it.