How To Get A Mildew Smell Out Of Carpets (3 Ways To Do It!)

Benjamin Wright
by Benjamin Wright

Mildew smells damp, unpleasant, and pungent. When carpet smells of mildew, finding a solution is often high on most people’s priority list. If there is mildew on your carpet, you have a problem to solve. Luckily, you can get rid of it using a few household products.

The first step to take towards getting the mildew smell out of carpet is finding the source. Inspect every part of the carpet to find the mold. After getting the mold out, several different chemicals and cleaning solutions can effectively get rid of the smell.

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What Should I Do When My Carpet Smells Of Mildew?

Find the source and dry out the area first. The primary cause of mildew is excess moisture, so you want to air out the carpet. Use an overhead fan or even the HVAC system to get rid of all moisture. If you do not have either, a regular fan works well too.

Once the carpet is completely dry, use a large vacuum to clean up debris. Add carpet shampoo. Using a sponge, rub it into the carpet. Leave the substance to settle for about 2 hours. Then, use a vacuum to lift it out.

After vacuuming, Allow the carpet to dry completely. By the time it dries, the smell should have been eradicated. However, if the smell remains, you should try using additional methods to remove the smell. Baking soda is a popular solution.

Method #1 To Remove Mildew Smell From Carpets: Baking Soda

Baking soda is known to be a highly effective odor neutralizer, so it should help get the mildew smell out of your carpet. To use baking soda on your smelly carpet, pour a generous amount on it to form a thick layer. Then, leave it to rest for two days.

Within this period, be careful not to step on the area being treated. Once the period has come to an end, get a soft-bristled brush and gently brush the carpet with it. You must be careful when doing this so as not to damage the fibers of the carpet.

After brushing, you can take the carpet outside the house and shake it vigorously to get the powder out of it. If the carpet cannot be moved, thoroughly vacuum the carpet. If the smell is not completely gone, dedicate the next few days to repeating the process.

Baking soda is gentle on rugs, so you do not have to worry about the number of times you have to use it. With time, you should be able to get the mildew smell off. However, if the smell proves too challenging for baking soda to handle, try using vinegar.

Method #2 To Remove Mildew Smell From Carpets: Vinegar

A vinegar bath can be useful in getting the mildew smell out of your carpet. Get a bottle of undiluted white vinegar and spray generously on your carpet. You can also dip a soft, clean cloth inside the vinegar and dab onto the surface of the rug.

Make sure you are generous with the vinegar application, especially if the smell has set in deep. After thoroughly dousing the carpet with vinegar, let it rest for about 20 to 30 minutes. For a particularly pungent smell, give it up to an hour.

Letting the vinegar settle into the carpet will give the acid enough time to work through the bacteria causing the odor. Then, with another soft lint-free cloth, blot the carpet to remove as much of the vinegar from the carpet as possible.

Afterward, dab a dry lint-free towel all over the wet carpet to absorb the excess water. Then, allow the carpet to dry. The odor should have been completely removed or, at least, considerably lessened.

If the mildew smell you are trying to treat is strong, it will most likely not be removed with one application. You must repeat the process once or twice. After each try, you will note significant changes that will lead to total removal.

Method #3 To Remove Mildew Smell From Carpets: Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide contains anti-fungal, anti-viral, and antibacterial properties that will fight mildew smells on your carpet. Make a solution with one-part hydrogen peroxide and four-parts water and spray under the carpet. Let it sit for 15 minutes.

Once enough time has elapsed, get a brush, and scrub the area. This will get rid of the mold spores. Then, vacuum the entire carpet to lift off the remnants of mold.

Hydrogen peroxide works effectively to get the smell off your carpet, but it can be harsh on surfaces. Before you use it, try it out on a small part of the rug. If it loses color, try another solution. But if the peroxide does not damage the material, you have found a viable solution to the disturbing odor.

What If The Smell Remains After Trying Every Home Solution?

If you have tried everything you can, but your carpet still has that mildew smell, you might want to hire a professional carpet cleaner. You can also bring in a professional odor removal company.

An expert will inspect your home to determine how best to approach the situation. Your carpet will be restored to an optimal condition. After this, you should take steps to ensure that mildew does not form anywhere in your home in the future.

How Do I Stop Mildew From Forming On My Carpet?

The presence of mildew on your carpets, or anywhere else in your home, is totally avoidable. Follow these steps to make sure mildew never forms anywhere in your home:

Always Keep Your Carpet Clean:

A carpet that does not get cleaned regularly is the perfect home for mildew. Therefore, maintain a regular cleaning routine for your carpet. Brush off dust and debris from it regularly to keep the area clear.

An effective way to keep mildew in check through cleaning is to vacuum weekly. This way, you can get rid of any mildew developing under your carpet before that musty smell begins to spread. When possible, always sun-dry properly after cleaning.

Keep The Temperature And Humidity In Check:

When the temperature in your room is 80F or higher, mold can grow quickly under your carpet. Also, a humidity of 70 percent and higher can help mildew thrive.

The best way to avoid mold growth in your home is to keep your temperature level at 75F and lower. Your humidity should also not go higher than 60 percent. Always moderate your temperature and humidity levels.

To help regulate the humidity level, you can get a dehumidifier. You can also make a habit of leaving your windows and doors open when needed. However, if the humidity outside is high, keep your windows and doors closed.

Another good alternative to regulate temperature and humidity is getting a central air conditioning system installed. An AC will perform multiple functions – keep the humidity low, and at the same time, keeping the temperature in check.

Keep Water Away:

The leading cause of mildew is moisture, so you must be careful not to expose your carpet to standing water. If, for any reason, a carpet in your home is exposed to standing water, quickly clean and dry it out.

If your home gets flooded, clean the entire floor, and dry out the furniture and carpets immediately. This can be a daunting task. To make it easier, get water damage restoration tools such as carpet-drying fans and air movers to help.

It could take several days to dry your home after flooding. But you should do the job thoroughly. It is better to get to the task immediately and adequately lest the water causes irreparable damage.

Lay A Good Carpet Padding:

Using quality carpet padding can help avoid mildew growth on or under your carpet. They are made with an extra layer of cushioning that protects your carpet from moisture that could seep in. Always make sure you use a solid carpet underlay with anti-microbial properties.

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Related Questions

Is carpet mold dangerous to your health?

Carpet mold or any other mold is harmful, especially to those who have allergies and asthma. Inhaling mold can cause a person in asthmatic conditions to suffer an attack. But you do not have to have those conditions before mold can make you fall sick.There are several respiratory problems mold can cause to your health. Mold contains airborne mycotoxins. And exposure to it can cause irritations to your lungs, throat, skin, eyes, and nose. Prolonged exposure does even worse – it gradually weakens your immune system.

Why does my carpet smell worse than it was after cleaning it?

If, after wet cleaning or steam cleaning your carpet, you find that it smells worse than it was before, do not fret. It is most likely because it was not dried completely after absorbing a lot of water. It could also be due to insufficient circulation of air.To get rid of the terrible smell, leave the windows open for proper air circulation. Then, place bowls of white vinegar or boxes of baking soda around the carpet area. Put a dehumidifier there too. Leave them overnight to absorb the wet carpet smell.

Benjamin Wright
Benjamin Wright

Benjamin is a proud homeowner who loves to write about DIY projects and home improvement projects. Traveling, perfecting his home, and spending time with his family are just a few of the many things that keep him inspired.

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