Troubleshooting: how to dry wet carpet
Whether the result of an external leak, a burst pipe or some other home emergency, wet carpets can be difficult to dry out. This article covers the basics you need to know and provides some helpful tips to ensure your carpets don’t suffer lasting damage.
Identify the water source
This should always be your first step and will prevent the problem becoming any worse. Your priority should be to identify and stop the source of the water and take any necessary steps to prevent further water reaching your carpet. Once this has been taken care of, you can start work on drying out your carpet.
Clear the affected area
Don’t try to work around furniture and other objects. Remove everything from the affected room or the affected area if it is just one part of the room. This will make the clean-up job much easier and will prevent water damage to your belongings.
Use towels for small areas
If your wet carpet is confined to one small area, you can mop up the water using clean towels. Lay the towels down and walk over them to soak up as much water as possible. Wring out the towels regularly as you go, replacing soaking wet towels with dry ones when needed.
Use a wet vacuum for larger areas
If you are dealing with a whole room and larger quantities of water, you can hire a wet vacuum to suck up the water. If required, a commercial fan and dehumidifier can also be hired. If you go down this route, ask the hire company for advice on using the equipment effectively, as they may have some useful tips to speed up the process.
Sprinkle diatomaceous earth
Often used in absorbent cat litters, this handy and naturally-occurring powder absorbs water. It is non-toxic and can be sprinkled liberally over wet carpet to soak up water. You can use a garden rake or a heavy-duty broom to move it around the room into the affected areas, soaking up more water as you go. Once it has done its job, simply sweep it up.
Use borax to prevent mould taking hold
Borax is often used in laundry and household cleaning and is readily available from many retailers. Sprinkling borax over your carpet will help prevent mould growing on your carpets. It is a natural product and is gentle enough to use on most carpets.