3 Tips For Drying Flooded Carpet

Did you have a major water leak or intrusion in your home? Is a portion of your carpet now flooded with water? If so, you're likely looking for the fastest possible way to save your carpet. The first step is to determine whether the water is sanitary. What's the source of the water? Did it come from rain water or from a clean pipe in your home? Or could it possibly include sewage or other dangerous contaminants? If you think the water may be dangerous, don't try and handle it yourself. Call in water damage experts, who can safely remove the water and restore your carpet. However, if the water is clean, you may want to try these tips below:

Protect everything else in the room. Your carpet may already be wet, but that doesn't mean that everything else in the room has to get damaged. Remove any rugs, plants, or other accessories that sit directly on the carpet. Also remove the furniture, as the legs of the furniture can leave stains in the wet carpet. You'll also want to pull the carpet up from the tack strips along the walls. That may slow the water from getting underneath your drywall and causing damage to the wall and insulation.

Remove the padding. Much of the moisture is likely in your carpet padding rather than your carpet. Once you've removed the carpet from the tack, you can roll it off the floor and remove the padding below. If the padding is wet enough, you may find that it's basically turned to mush. Padding is usually pretty inexpensive, so it's often easier to just replace the padding rather than to try and dry it. If you feel it can be saved, try cutting it into strips and laying it out in the sun to dry. You can then lay it back down and tape it back together once it's dry.

Extract the water. Many people make the mistake of using a simple wet/dry shop vacuum to remove water from carpet. Unfortunately, those vacuums usually aren't powerful enough to get deep into your carpet and padding and get all of the moisture out. Instead, you'll want to rent a high-powered water extractor, which you can find at nearly any tool rental supply store. These devices are much more powerful than vacuums and get water out of not only your carpet but also the padding underneath. 

Run the extractor slowly across the carpet. It may take multiple trips, but you should start to feel the carpet becoming dryer. During this time, you should also have high-powered fans and a dehumidifier running. The combination of those two items, along with the extractor, should get the moisture out of the carpet and the room.

If you don't feel comfortable doing these steps yourself, call a restoration company that handles water damage. They can likely provide fast service to get your carpet back to normal.