After experiencing any sort of water damage, either from flooding or even something as minor as high levels of humidity, your carpet is at high risk of developing mold growth, which can leave a lingering smell in the material even after the mold has been removed. Thankfully, there are a couple of different things that you can do to treat your carpet and eliminate the musty smell of mold.
Removing Mold Odors from Carpeting
The first thing that you should do to eliminate the smell of mold from your carpet is remove all the moisture from the area. There are several ways to do this: standing water should be removed with a shop vacuum, while high levels of humidity should be dealt with by a dehumidifier, opening up the windows, and a series of fans.
Once the area is dry, you should vacuum the entire area of carpet that the smell is emanating from. This will remove any debris that will get in the way of the cleaning process, and can also help remove mold particles which may still remain.
Next, you'll want to mix a disinfecting and deodorizing mixture to spray onto your carpet. A mixture of half and half vinegar and water in a spray bottle is a good general-purpose cleaning solution. For white carpeting, or for particularly bad cases of odor, you can make use of a mixture of one part bleach in four parts water instead.
Spray the area liberally, and work it into the carpet's material using a soft-bristled brush or a sponge. Alternatively, you can use a steam cleaner to clean the carpet after applying your mixture to ensure a deeper clean: steam cleaners can be rented from most hardware stores.
Dry the carpet out again, and then apply baking soda to the affected area as soon as the area of your carpet that you just cleaned is completely dry. The baking soda should be allowed to sit on the carpet for an hour or two to absorb the odor, and can then be vacuumed up.
Once you've removed the baking soda, smell the carpet: if it still smells, you may need to apply your cleaning solution and baking soda again. If repeat applications won't penetrate your carpet, you may want to consider replacing the carpet entirely: chronic mold and mildew problems in a specific area of carpeting can point to the fact that absorbent flooring materials may not be well suited for that area of your home. For more information, contact companies like The Professionals Kauai, LLC.