Finding mold on your carpet or on virtually
any other fabric is a huge annoyance to any home owner. Finding mold on a
bathroom wall is irritating enough, but at least there you can just spray and
pray. What do you do with a carpet?
Well, relax. It’s true that finding mold on
a carpet does complicate some aspects of the cleaning process, but it does make
some others significantly simpler. It is still a pain to deal with – mold
always is – but often time it is not an impossible mission.
So, without further ado, let’s get into the step-by-step process of dealing with mold in our carpets specifically, and you can replicate the same process with basically any other fabric, including your clothes.
1. Determine The Exact Severity Of The Mold Infestation
- With fabrics you have the advantage of being able to see how far into the fabric the mold has gotten. With walls, you never know how far into the surface the mold has spread its roots until you start digging. On the other hand, fabrics go “beyond repair” much faster than a regular bathroom tile, so catching the contamination early is vital.
- So, simply examine the carpet from both sides. If the mold infestation has grown through a significant portion of the carpet’s back side, you might as well stop reading here and throw away your carpet. At the very least, if the mold has reached the back of the carpet but you are still overly optimistic, you should call a professional mold cleaner.
2. Ventilate The Room With The Carpet
- The increased air flow will reduce the humidity in the room and help dry the carpet. More importantly, however, it will help get rid of most of the airborne mold spores and prevent the further spread of mold throughout the rest of the room and your home.
3. Check The HVAC System For Any Mold Contaminations
- If the mold on your carpet hasn’t appeared after a recent leak on the carpet or a flooding of the room / house, then there is a high chance that the initial mold contamination is actually in your air conditioning system. You’d still want to clean your carpet, of course, but you need to make sure that this is the only problem – if there is mold in your HVAC system, then your home is literally sprayed with mold spores on a daily basis.
While you are at it, check the rest of the room as well, even if the air conditioner is clean. If there is mold on the carpet, there might be more under or behind the furniture that’s around it.
4. Take The Carpet Outside Of Your Home If Possible
- Now that the initial investigations are complete, it is time to start dealing with the problem. The further away from your home – or anyone else’s – the better. This is done for several different reasons:
- When mold is being cleaned off of any surface it starts to rapidly release its spores into the air. This is a simple defense mechanism, designed to continue the life of the mold infestation by helping it spread elsewhere. This is why you don’t really want to be inside your home when cleaning mold, so if the mold is on a removeable object like a carpet – that’s one of the silver linings. If you can’t move the carpet outside, isolate the room as well as possible. Duct tape and plastic sheets can help you isolate any air vents that lead into the rest of the house, as well as any doors and windows. Keep the outgoing windows open for ventilation and put a fan on them to further help getting rid of the airborne mold spores.
- Additionally, the natural elements that are outside can greatly help you battle mold, especially on something like a carpet. In fact, you might consider sunning the carpet for 24 - 48 hours if you are not in a hurry. The wind will dry the carpet off, preventing its spread and the direct sunlight is downright deadly for mold, as it can’t survive ultraviolet light. After 24 – 48 hours you can proceed with the actual cleaning of the mold – don’t be as optimistic to think that a little sun will always solve the problem. Sometimes it will, if the problem isn’t that severe, but not often.
And there you have it. As you can see, depending on the severity of the condition, cleaning mold from your carpet can range from a mild annoyance, to a completely impossible situation. We sincerely hope for the first scenario and we wish you luck!