How To Clean Carpet After A Flood

Friday 20th January 2023

Joanna Grimbley-Smith

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someone touching a damp carpet CONTENTS

Even if there are only a few centimetres of water in your property following a flood, your carpet will probably have been affected. Unfortunately, drying and cleaning wet carpets can be very difficult, and in some cases, dangerous.

Here at ICE Cleaning, we offer comprehensive flood damage cleaning services. Our technicians can remove any excess water, dry out the property, and clean all affected areas to keep you and the other residents safe. They are available nationwide, 24/7, 365 days a year.

Read this blog to find out how to clean a carpet following flooding.

What are the effects of flooding on carpets?

When any liquid gets on your carpet, you must make sure it is fully dried out as soon as possible. Mould can start growing in 24 to 48 hours, and thrives in carpets. As it grows deep in the fibres, it could also spread without you knowing.

If mould is growing in your property, it can put your health at risk. It produces allergens and might trigger an allergic reaction when you inhale or touch any spores. Prolonged exposure can cause more serious health problems, like a fever and shortness of breath. 

Young children, elderly people, and people with pre-existing respiratory problems or weak immune systems are especially vulnerable to mould.

Flooding can damage your carpet, too. Should it get wet, delamination - where the secondary backing separates from the bottom of the carpet – could occur, or it can shrink after it has dried out. Mould might degrade the fibres, as well.

It is recommended that carpets that are wet for more than 48 hours should be removed and disposed of. So, you must have it cleaned as soon as possible after the flood to save it.

How to clean carpet water damage

Drying out and cleaning a carpet depends on the type you have. Typically, the process includes:

  • Removing excess water
  • Drying the carpet
  • Sanitising it with a cleaning solution to kill pathogens and remove mould
  • Making sure the affected area is well ventilated to stop mould growing

If your carpet has a pad underneath it, you must dispose of the pad. They can absorb lots of water and are very difficult to dry out. If it is professionally installed over it, the carpet will need to be removed first.

Should grey water (from drains, baths and showers, and the washing machine or dishwasher) or black water (from toilets that contains faeces and urine) flood your home, the carpets must be disposed of. Your property will also need to be decontaminated and sanitised.

Flood restoration specialists can quickly remove all the water, and use their expertise to kill any remaining pathogens.

Why you must never clean a flooded carpet yourself

Floodwater can be very dangerous, and may contain sewage, bacteria, fungi, and waterborne diseases. Exposure or contact with the floodwater without personal protective equipment could put your health at risk.

You also probably will not have the experience to properly extract the water and thoroughly clean the carpet. Professional cleaners have the expertise to decontaminate your carpet and ensure your property is safe to stay in, again.

To properly dry and sanitise your carpet, you need specialist equipment, like wet and dry vacuums and dehumidifiers. Professional cleaners will already have these tools, and should know the most efficient and effective way to use them for your situation.

What should you do when your carpet gets flooded?

If your property floods, you must contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Keep a record of any damage to your belongings and your home, and don’t throw anything out before your provider has said you can.

Only when the local authority or emergency services has declared it safe should you re-enter your home. Make sure you get your electricity and mains checked by professionals before you use them.

Bring in professional cleaners as soon as possible to assess the damage to your carpets. They will be able to determine whether they must be disposed of or can be cleaned. You can find out more about what to do when your property floods in this blog.

Our technicians can fully dry your property and then sanitise all affected surfaces - including difficult ones, like carpets. They can also provide any additional services, like mould removal and damp odour neutralisation, should they be required.

Contact us today

To book our technicians for flood clean up services, call us on 0208 066 0360 or send us an email at enquiries@icecleaning.co.uk.

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Zoe Dunning

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