Let’s face it: carpets can reek.
Carpet has a nasty habit of trapping nasty smells in it. Unlike tiles or floorboards, smells can seep deep into your carpets. As such, getting rid of those awful smells can be challenging to say the least!
Common causes of a smelly carpet
You can get the dirt out of your carpets with a bit of work.
What you might have a harder time with is eliminating smell that comes with a dirty carpet.
Before we talk about how to clean carpet smells, we need to lay out what causes carpet smells. Each one has a unique smell and necessitates a different approach towards carpet cleaning.
Here are some of the usual suspects you might encounter when it comes to carpet cleaning.
“But water doesn’t smell” you might think.
That’s true. However, the problem isn’t with the water itself but with what happens afterwards!
While water mightn’t smell on its own, it does when it mixes with the fibres in your carpet. Depending on the material your carpet is made of, your entire room could end up reeking.
And unless you clean up wet carpet quickly, you may be left with…
Mould and mildew growth
Whatever the cause – humidity, flooding, leaks or rain – a wet carpet is a perfect space for mould and mildew to thrive.
While your carpet might start stinking when wet, permitting mould smells even worse. With perfect conditions, your wet carpet can start showing signs of mould within mere days.
Mould is no fun to deal with – in addition to smelling downright nasty, it also leaves spores that can discolour and damage your carpet fabric.
Not to mention, they can also cause health problems if your household includes:
- Children of seniors
- People with respiratory problems
Stain and liquid odours
On top of leaving unmissable marks, liquids like wine, milk and soft drink also leave unpleasant odours behind in your carpet.
Leave them for too long, and the smell gets even worse.
Let’s look at milk for example. In addition to smelling slightly nauseous, milk that isn’t cleaned from your carpet can go off, making your carpets smell even worse!
Any pet owner knows that even the cutest pets can cause nasty messes on your carpet – especially if they aren’t properly trained!
- Fur, fluff and dander
- Urine and feces
- Vomit and saliva
Each contains nasty bacteria and can leave stubborn stains if they aren’t cleaned up ASAP. Not to mention, they stink up your carpet too!
Want to learn how to clean wet carpet smells?
Going through the list of culprits, you’ll notice a common thread: almost all of them involve wet carpets!
Compared to a dry mess like dirt, cleaning wet carpet smells is much more involved. You can’t just go over it with a vacuum and call it a day!
Want to learn how to clean up wet carpet on your own? Here are a couple of pointers to get you started.
1) Move them out
Water-soaked carpets and rugs can reek.
As such, the first thing you should do (assuming you can) is to move them outside to dry.
There are a couple reasons for this:
- If the sun’s out, they’ll dry out faster
- Direct sunlight impedes mould growth
- It keeps any resulting smells away from your home
If possible, try to move the affected carpet outside to dry out the bulk of it. If not, open the windows and use fans to air out your wet carpet.
2) Use baking soda
After drying, consider using baking soda to disinfect and deodorise.
We recommend baking soda as a home cleaning solution a lot. There’s a good reason for that though: it’s surprisingly effective!
In addition to cleaning, baking soda is also an effective deodorizer that absorbs moisture and smell.
Apply a suitable amount of baking soda to the affected carpet or rug and leave it overnight or for 48 hours. This gives the baking soda time to get to work cleaning out your wet carpet.
If baking soda isn’t getting the job done by itself, consider combining it with vinegar. This causes a chemical reaction which provides highly potent cleaning power.
3) Choose a cleaning solution
So the baking soda, vinegar and water combination isn’t giving you the result that you want.
In these cases, it’s time to escalate to dedicated cleaning products.
Drop by your local supermarket to find an appropriate cleaning solution for your carpet. Be sure to do your research – certain carpets require delicate products, while others that disinfects and deodorize your carpet without causing any damage.
And if possible, perform a quick test on a small section of your carpet to see how well your carpet reacts.
4) Vacuum it out
The next step is to remove baking soda residue from your carpet. We recommend using a vacuum to ensure all the remaining baking soda residue is removed. Perform as many passes as needed.
Don’t worry about accidentally sucking moisture into your vacuum – with the 48 hour waiting period, it should be safe enough for any old household vacuum.
If all else fails, contact a professional cleaning service
Get rid of wet carpet smells with MasterClean Carpet Care
If you don’t know how to clean up a wet carpet, get in touch with MasterClean Carpet Care.
Our carpet cleaning experts provide top-tier service across Melbourne’s south-east suburbs.
We combine the right tools and techniques like hot water extraction. The result is a deeper clean for your carpets – no more horrible stains or smells!
Contact MasterClean Carpet on 1300 556 748 to see how we can restore your carpets today.