When your home becomes flooded, you're probably going to have to deal with a lot of damage. One of the first issues you may have to deal with is your carpet. A damp carpet can quickly develop mildew and mold and become a hazard to your family's health. However, there are things you can do to clean and dry it out. Keep in mind that if your carpet was flooded by a sewer backup, you want to call in a professional to handle it. But assuming it's storm-related flooding, you should be able to handle it yourself using the following steps.
What You Will Need
Thick Rubber Gloves
For Carpets That Aren't Fastened Down
Step 1. Put on rubber gloves. Use a squeegee or wet vac to remove as much of the water is you can from the carpet. A flat-head attachment works best for this.
Step 2. If your carpet hasn't been secured and can be lifted, take it outside so it can air dry. Once you have the carpet outside, sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda across it and then use the vacuum again. Make sure that you turn the carpet occasionally as its drying.
Step 3. Apply a diluted solution of bleach to the floor to help kill any germs and bacteria and to prevent mold.
For Carpets That Are Fastened Down
Step 1. If your carpet cannot be taken outside, use the wet vac to remove as much water as possible. Position box fans around the carpet and turn them onto accelerate the drying process. Assuming it isn't extremely humid or raining outside, open any windows so you can get a draft running through.
Step 2. Sprinkle a lot of baking soda across the carpet, spreading around with a broom. Then vacuum up the baking soda.
Step 3. Use a knife to cut a small hole in the center of your carpet. Then insert a sturdy hook into the carpet at this point. Tie a rope onto the carpet.
Step 4. Position two chairs at either end of the carpet and lay a long pipe across them. Tie the rope to the center of the pipe so that it slightly lifts up the carpet to create a small tent. This will make it easier for air to circulate under the carpet and dry it and the padding out.
Step 5. Keep the fans running full time, as well as a dehumidifier if you own one.
Step 6. Make sure that your carpet has dried completely before you remove the hook and rope. This could take several days, depending on how wet your carpet is. Walk across the carpet in your bare feet. If you feel or hear anything squishing as you walk, this means the padding is still wet and you need to repeat the above procedure.
Step 7. Remember to clean any areas surrounding the carpet with a bleach solution.
Carpet experts like Discount Carpet can give you more advice.