How To Clean A Carpet That Smells Dirty After Washing


You might expect that your carpet will end up smelling better after you thoroughly wash it, but occasionally washing your carpets may make them smell even worse after you're finished. Carpets stubbornly hold in odors even if they're washed, and adding water to the carpet and carpet pad can make those odors more noticeable. These odors can still often be removed without you needing to replace your carpet, though it will take a little more work than a standard cleaning.

Use Vinegar and Water Mix

If you live in a humid environment, or if your carpet was not dried properly, you may get the smell of mold and mildew. Use a mixture of one cup of white vinegar and three cups of water in a carpet cleaner and repeat the cleaning process. The vinegar kills off mold and can remove many foul odors. Make sure every part of your carpet is covered and move furniture as necessary.

For smaller, concentrated spots, use white vinegar by itself on your carpet. Use enough to get down to the carpet pad, but without soaking your carpet. Let it sit for about fifteen minutes, then use a dry, clean cloth to pick up the vinegar. Use a spray bottle with water to rinse, then use another dry cloth to pick up the remaining water and vinegar.

Spread Baking Soda

Baking soda is effective at sucking up odors, but you need to use enough in order for it to be effective. Sprinkle the odorous area liberally with baking soda, then gently brush the area with a broom to help the baking soda get down into the threads. Let the baking soda sit for 1-2 days — the longer the better. Brush up the top layer of baking soda with a broom and dust pan to prevent any damage to your vacuum, then vacuum up the rest.

Dry Carpets Properly

Steam cleaning your carpet won't do much good if the carpet remains too wet after you're finished. This is especially true when the carpet padding gets soaked; the pads are harder to dry because they are more effective at soaking up liquids, and don't get much air through the carpet threads. When carpets remain wet they can hold in odors and attract mold.

When using your steam cleaner, make sure it is picking up most of the water and cleaning mixture. Don't be afraid to go over the same area more than once just to suck up more liquids. When you're done cleaning, use portable fans to blow over the carpet to help it dry faster and circulate air. If you want to be sure your carpet is getting enough air, rent an industrial fan or two for extra wind power.

Finally, use a dehumidifier during the cleaning process to keep as much humidity out of your home as possible. Turn it on before or as you are steam cleaning, not after you are finished, to make sure it is operating effectively. 

If your carpet is beyond help, consider buying a new one from stores, such as Carpet One Of Mobile Floor & Home.


1 December 2014