Mold and mildew infestation in the carpet is a problem that should not be taken lightly. Since mold and mildew are types of fungi, they consume everything they settle upon and eventually ruin walls, ceilings, draperies, clothing and carpets. They grow and develop in areas with increased levels of heat and moisture and are highly adaptable. That is why dehumidification is a crucial part of mold and mildew removal and prevention.
Safety Factors to Consider for Carpet Mold and Mildew Removal
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), protective clothing and gear is required prior to any mold removal process. Mold and mildew are known to cause health hazards, especially respiratory problems, skin allergies and decreased immune system. They can also aggravate symptoms of asthma. Thus, it is really important to take precautionary measures and wear appropriate clothing and protective gears whenever removing molds and mildews.
Assessing Mold Infestation
Homeowners need to determine the extent of the mold infestation before doing any cleaning and dehumidification. If the damaged area is less than 10 square feet, then the homeowner can manage doing task. But for mold and mildew infestation that covers more than 10 square feet, hiring the services of a professional that specializes in dehumidification and large scale carpet mold removal is the most practical thing to do.
It is essential to locate the main source of the carpet’s moisture to make it easier to rid off the problem. Look around the room for any leaks in plumbing or air conditioning systems. In most cases, a faulty sump pump is the cause of the flooding or water leak. Mold and mildew may also develop in floor air ducts. Whatever the cause is, the whole area dehumidification is the best way to keep the area dry.
Assess the mold damage in the carpet. If the carpets have been thoroughly soaked due to flooding, they most likely cannot be salvaged. As mentioned, mold and mildew consumes the fibers in the carpet and cleaning will not restore it. If the mold infestation is severe, dispose the carpet in a sealed plastic bag to prevent further health hazards. The carpet can be salvaged if the damage is not too severe.
The Cleaning Process
The whole carpet area should be cleaned with a steam cleaning machine using a detergent and water solution. In more serious cases, such as toxic black mold, a stronger solution that kills mold and mildew would be best.
One effective home solution for mold removal is bleach. Combine one cup of bleach with 4 liters of water and spray the solution to the moldy area in the carpet. Let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes. After letting it soak, scrub the carpet with a heavy duty brush. Rinse the carpet completely and hang it out to dry.