Carpets are among the most significant home additions today. While they were luxuries in the past, they are a choice for many people today. They play a range of roles in your home, such as adding beauty and style, creating warmth and comfort, and improving indoor air quality. Carpets minimize noise around the house by creating a cushion that absorbs sound from TVs, computers, speakerphones, among other sound systems, thereby making your home less noisy.
When your carpet moisture level is wet, or above 65%, it generally is sensitive to mold. If your carpet is soaked, first remove as much water as possible. The next step is to dry the carpet and bring the moisture level under 65%. Sanitize it to kill all remaining bacteria, and deodorize it if needed. The last step is to clean the carpet.
This blog will explain in more detail what an acceptable moisture level in a carpet is and how you can dry your carpet after a water leak. I will also give some tips on how to protect your carpet.
- 1 What causes moisture in carpet?
- 2 How do you dry a carpet after a water leak?
- 3 What is an acceptable moisture level in carpet?
- 4 How do you get moisture out of carpet?
- 5 How do you check for moisture in carpet?
- 6 Effects of humidity on your carpet
- 7 Tips for Protecting Your Carpet
What causes moisture in carpet?
Your carpet flooring carries the power to transform your home in an instant. It makes the space cozy, warm, and inviting besides the classic look that comes along. Despite all the benefits of carpets, it is impossible to entirely stay safe from carpet water damage. The latter is a common occurrence in most homes, and it may result from:
● Snow and rain
Rain is among the leading culprits for carpet water damage in most households. If rainwater leaks into your home through windows and ceilings, your carpets can quickly soak up and get damaged. To avoid such incidents, you must always check the walls and ceilings around the home for any moisture formation and other signs of water leaks.
Fix: A waterproof sealant should come in handy in addressing the leaks on walls and ceilings. Besides, you should also inspect the roof regularly for any causes of leaks and address them to prevent moisture formation on the premises.
Snowfall is another prevalent cause of carpet water damage today. Strong winds can easily blow snow particles into your home, and upon melting, they can destroy your carpets.
Fix: The secret here is to thoroughly insulate your home during snowfall by shutting doors and windows to prevent the entry of these particles. Moreover, investing in a quality dehumidifier is also a reliable technique of controlling moisture in your home and, in the end, safeguarding your carpets from water damage.
● Home appliances
Home appliances that use water, such as dishwashers, air conditioners, and washing machines, make your carpet vulnerable to water damage. They are often not in a room with a waterproof floor. All these appliances can soak your carpet, with the washing machine being the leading one. Especially when you overfill it or when there is another issue. The latter can flood your home and eventually soak up and destroy your carpet.
Fix: The secret to keeping your carpet safe when using these appliances is ensuring that they are in food condition. Do not overfill them.
One other appliance that is a major culprit of water damage is the air conditioner. Take immediate action when you notice any water issues.
Fix: It is usually the result of clogged condensate drain lines. Regular check and unclog them.
● Drainage and plumbing pipes
Poor drainage and plumbing lines can flood your home’s interior, with the carpets being no exception. Blocked drainage systems prevent the flow of water around the house, which makes it accumulate and overflow after a while. The instant overflow of the water can destroy your carpets, leaving them moist, full of bacteria, and smelling nasty. To prevent such surprises in your home, you should always check the drainage for any clogs and address them immediately.
Plumbing pipes team up to ensure a constant water supply into your home. Due to corrosion, the lines may develop tiny leaks, resulting in floods and carpet water damage. In such cases, you should constant a plumber to fix the issue instantly.
How do you dry a carpet after a water leak?
Carpet water damage is a common occurrence after a water leak. Despite homeowners’ efforts to keep their carpets safe from water damage, the incidents still happen from time to time.
The trick is always staying prepared for the day you find your carpet soaked. Taking the proper measures prevents further damage to the carpets and helps to salvage the affected ones. We will describe the steps you should follow in the event of carpet water damage in your home.
● Step 1: Locate the source of the water damage
In the event of soaked carpets, the first and most significant thing to do is locate the water source. These sources may range from leaking pipes, a roof leak, blocked drainage systems, and home appliances that spilled water. By identifying and fixing these causes of water leaks, you prevent more overflow into the home, which is a vital step towards preventing further damage.
● Step 2: Dry the carpets immediately
Upon locating and fixing the source of the water damage, the next step is to dry the soggy carpets as soon as possible. With perfect conditions, mold can start in 24 hours.
A wet vacuum will come in handy in sucking up the excess water, after which you can sprinkle baking soda and use a fan or dehumidifier to eliminate the excess moisture in the room. Excess moisture promotes the formation of molds and bacteria in wet carpets. Removing as much moisture as possible in the room minimizes the chances of molds, mildew, and harmful bacteria. For quick and effective results, you should consider using fans to dry out the carpets and eliminate excess moisture in the room.
You can use a residential dehumidifier, but I always recommend renting commercial dehumidifiers. They can remove a lot more water per hour than a residential dehumidifier.
A dehumidifier pulls in the moisture from the air and dries it out to release dry air back into the room. When used with a fan, this can be even more effective at drying out your carpet.
● Step 3: Sanitize and deodorize the carpets
Wet carpets are an ideal breeding space for molds and harmful bacteria. It can result in a horrible and unbearable smell around the home, affecting the indoor quality of air. Particularly if the water damage was from a dirty source.
After drying the carpets, Sanitizing and deodorizing the carpets will help get rid of the smell and kill most bacteria. A steam cleaner is one of the most effective ways of sanitizing your carpets as it effectively kills the bacteria leaving your home safe and healthy.
● Step 4: Clean the carpet
Despite your efforts to eliminate excess moisture and dry your moist carpets, it is often still dirty. Cleaning the carpet is the next step. You can rent a carpet cleaner for this.
But if it is really dirty, I recommend contacting a professional carpet cleaner. These service providers are equipped with the required tools, equipment, and skills.
Above all, they have the experience necessary for effective carpet cleaning. Besides cleaning the carpet effectively, they also sanitize, deodorize and fully dry your soaked carpets to kill every chance of further damage and eliminate molds and bacteria.
What is an acceptable moisture level in carpet?
Some most in a carpet does not need to be a major issue. Mold tends to grow in carpets with a humidity level of 65% or more, depending on the temperature. Generally, I recommend keeping the room humidity level around 40 to 60%. When you notice it regularly gets higher, and the humidity level outside is fine, improve ventilation. This can be as simple as opening some windows or using a fan. For a more permanent solution, add some ventilation openings.
If the humidity outside is high, you can turn on your air condition system to lower the humidity. Or use a separate dehumidifier.
If your humidity level is too low, use a humidifier to bring it back to a normal level.
How do you get moisture out of carpet?
Generally, improve ventilation to get the moisture out of a carpet. Open some windows, and use a fan to increase the airflow. To speed up the process, you can use a dehumidifier. Use a dehumidifier together with a fan for the best results.
How do you check for moisture in carpet?
Except when your carpet is wet or soaked with water, it is not easy to check the moisture level in a carpet. The easiest method to check for moisture in a carpet is to use a moisture meter. Many such devices have a pin that you can stick in your carpet and immediately show the moisture level.
I recommend checking multiple locations on your carpet to get a sort of average moisture level. Sometimes there can be some variation. You can purchase a moisture meter for around $20 and up, in many stores or online.
Effects of humidity on your carpet
Humidity causes harmful effects on your carpets. But since these changes are not instant, it is impossible to realize them until it is too late. Fortunately, there are several signs that you can look out for to safeguard your carpets from water damage. These signs include:
Excessive humidity in your carpet promotes the growth of molds. These molds can cause significant health hazards besides damaging the carpets and being unappealing. The next time you see mildew on your carpets, try addressing the excess moisture in the room to salvage the situation.
● Excessive dirt
Moisture enhances the movement of dirt around the room, which explains why the carpet keeps becoming dirty no matter how often it is cleaned. The next time you see your carpet excessively dirt, it indicates excess moisture.
● Pests and bacteria
While they are great additions to your home, carpets also harbor pests and bacteria, which are harmful to your health. Since excess moisture attracts these pests and bacteria, you should always clean the carpet and often dehumidify to eliminate extra humidity.
● Carpet deformation
Too much humidity can result in ripples in your carpet due to condensation in the dry weather or swelling up due to excessive water vapor. Eventually, your carpet loses its aesthetic value, which affects the entire room.
Tips for Protecting Your Carpet
Keeping your carpets safe from moisture and water damage is one of the key points to keep it in excellent condition. Some protective measures can help you with this:
● Optimizing Humidity Levels
The optimum humidity levels range between 40 and 50%. To keep your carpet safe from molds and other effects of excess humidity is advisable to keep the levels at 65% utmost.
● Pay Attention to Areas with Higher Humidity on the Premises
Some areas, such as the basement, record higher humidity than rooms on higher levels and open windows, promoting better air circulation. You must ensure extra care and maintenance of carpets in the high humid rooms to protect them from water damage.
● Improve ventilation, or use A Dehumidifier
Ventilation plays a vital role in controlling humidity levels in your home. When you sense excess humidity in the room, you should consider opening windows for better ventilation or using a fan to promote air circulation. If the humidity outside is high, you can also use a dehumidifier or turn on the AC if you have one.
● Regular Carpet Cleaning
To keep a carpet in excellent condition, regularly clean it. You can do this yourself or use a professional cleaning service. Experts have the right skills, experience, and equipment to clean your carpets effectively. Besides, they also follow the proper procedures, guaranteeing good results.
Besides keeping your carpets safe from water damage, you should also stay prepared on the measures to take in the incident. Staying prepared means preventing further damage and salvaging the damaged carpet to its original state. I recommend regularly assessing your home for any water leaks and fixing them as soon as possible.