Do-it-Yourself Carpet Cleaning and Drying After Water Damage
Water and moisture is the enemy of carpets and should be taken care of immediately. If you notice the water damage in your carpet quickly enough, you’ll be able to take care of it yourself. In doing so, this will save you time and money.
If you don’t get rid of the moisture in your carpet quickly, it can lead to the growth of mold, mildew, and other microorganisms that can cause disgusting odors. Just 48 hours after a flood, mold and mildew will begin to grow on the affected areas, leading to possible health problems for occupants. In the end, it will leave your carpet looking and smelling horrible. Once your carpet is ruined by the growths and smells, you’ll need to replace it, costing you money that could have been saved if taken care of in a timely manner.
Cleaning and Drying Your Carpet
If your carpet is soaked because of water spilled, cracked water pipes or a leaky roof, there are some things you can do to prevent further damage. For starters, you will need to get rid of the problem at its source. If the cause of the water damage is a leaking roof or pipe, then you will need to fix those problems first.
Once that is done, you can open the windows in the room of the damaged carpet and place a boxed fan in it, facing the wet carpet, so that it helps to dry the wet spot. Your best bet is to rent a carpet cleaner, such as a wet/dry vacuum or a steam cleaner. The wet/dry vacuum uses cleaning solutions that are injected into the carpet and then sucks up the solution and moisture from the carpet. The steam cleaner quickly dries, cleanses and sanitizes the rug. Some of the popular brands you can rent include Dirt Devil, Rug Doctor or Bissell, which are available at your local supermarket or home improvement store.
If you’re unable to rent a carpet cleaner, you can opt to use dry blankets and a water vacuum. Dab the dry towels on the blanket to help soak up some of the excess moisture. This is the longer route, but it is important to remove as much moisture as you can, as quickly as you can to prevent mildew and mold. You can use this with the combination of boxed fans in widows and ceiling fans, with a dehumidifier if you have one. Get as much airflow going on as you can to help the water to evaporate.
Then if you’re able to, you can elevate the wet parts of the carpet and remove the carpet padding to allow it to dry out. Fans should also be use in this scenario. You should not replace the padding and carpet unless the subfloor has dried completely.
Getting Rid of Odors
Mold and mildew aren’t the only issues involved with water damaged carpets. A foul smelling odor can also raise its stinky head. This can be very embarrassing and can last a long time if not handled properly and quickly enough. In order to neutralize the smell, you can use baking soda. This has been used for decades for getting rid of all types of smells. Just sprinkle it over the areas of the carpet and rub it in well. Don’t use too much because it may clump together into the carpet. The next morning, vacuum it up.
Once you’re sure that you’ve removed all of the liquid possible, you can use an enzyme odor remover to treat the carpet. In some cases it is enough to use carpet deodorizers or even air fresheners in the area, such as Febreze.
Worst Case Scenario
If you are unable to get the proper supplies to get rid of the water damage, you can always call a professional carpet cleaning company. Then in the event that you didn’t take note of the water damage within 48 hours, which means mildew and mold has started to grow, you will need to have the carpet replaced. Always replace the carpet if “black water”, sewage or another contaminated liquid is the cause of the water damage. This will ensure the prevention of health hazards.