how to get mold out of carpet

How to Get Mold Out of Carpet and Prevent Future Growth

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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The presence of mold and mildew on your carpet's surface can make your home less conducive to live in. Mold can destroy the condition of your carpet and spread to other areas in your house, making it harder to eliminate. Fortunately, you can learn how to get mold out of carpet in this post. Additionally, we'll cover the causes of carpet mold and how to prevent mold growth in the future.


Causes of Carpet Mold

Your carpet is one of the furnishings in your home that can promote mold growth. You'll especially notice mold growth in areas that are cool and moist, like your bathroom or basement. The carpet backing and fibers can absorb moisture over time, and because it has a dense construction, it won't dry easily.

Once the carpet becomes damp, it creates the necessary conditions for growing mold. Once mold spores land on the carpet, they'll absorb the moisture inside the fibers to jump-start the germination process. So some of the causes of carpet mold include leaking pipes, flooding, or partial drying after washing your carpet.

Mold spores take several days to develop into the visible mold, but it could take a few weeks before you can notice it on the carpet surface. When it grows under the carpet, it can easily spread and get worse since it's basically undetectable.

Is Carpet Mold Dangerous?

You should learn how to get mold out of carpet because mold presence can be a health hazard for you and your loved ones. Since it's a natural fungus, the mold spores could make the air inside your home unsuitable for people with mold sensitivity or a weakened immune system. Mold contains mycotoxins which can make you experience allergy-like symptoms like upper respiratory problems, severe asthma symptoms, and even eye irritation.

If you have children around, you'll want to remove the mold because kids tend to play on the floor and could easily inhale the spores. Additionally, mold can also cause a musty odor to develop in your home, and it could easily spread to other areas if you don't take swift action. Plus, mold can damage the surfaces it grows on, so it could affect the condition of your floors or baseboards.

How to Identify Mold Growth on Your Carpet

Before you learn how to get mold out of carpet, it's essential to know how to identify mold growth. Mold takes a long time to spread to the surface of the carpet, which is why you shouldn't wait until you can see it to start treatment. There are several signs that could inform you of mold presence on your carpet. Some of these signs include:

1. Visible Mold Growth

One way to know when you have a mold problem is by identifying mold on your carpet after inspection. Since mold can grow undetected underneath your carpet, you should regularly check it to ensure you aren't setting yourself up for a moldy surprise. If your carpet has mold on the surface, you should consider replacing it since cleaning mold from a fully infested carpet can be time and energy-consuming.

2. Check for Water Damage

If you have leaks or experience flooding, any carpet subjected to excess moisture will be predisposed to mold development. You'll need to ensure the carpet dries in 24 to 48 hours since if it stays any longer, mold could start growing, and you wouldn't even know it. So, if you notice water damage or have a wet carpet, you should start preparing yourself for potential mold growth.

3. Odd Odors and Stains

Mold presence is normally characterized by strange odors and stains that you can't explain. The odors that mold releases are musty and sour, making it difficult to stay in your home. Additionally, you could notice certain stains or discolorations that indicate mold presence. However, you'll need to find further evidence to ensure it's really a mold problem.

4. Mildew Presence

The presence of mildew, a white, powdery growth that stems from fungal growth, is another sign that mold is about to develop on your carpet. The primary difference between mold and mildew is that mold presents in black, blue, green, or red colors, while mildew is exclusively white.

How to Get Mold Out of Carpet

Once you've identified mold on your carpet, it's time to find ways to eliminate it. As we mentioned earlier, removing mold can be challenging and risky. So, we recommend you wear protective gear to prevent mold spores from entering your eyes, nose, or mouth. It's also necessary to ensure you have proper ventilation. Here's how to remove mold from the carpet at home.

1. Baking Soda and Vinegar

If you are looking for a homemade treatment to kill mold, you should try using baking soda and some white vinegar. The mixture is a great way to treat mold presence at home without investing in over-the-top methods. It can also help get rid of the musty smells that come with a moldy carpet.

First, sprinkle baking soda on the affected area and add the vinegar into a spray bottle and spritz it on the area. Then take a stiff brush and use it to scrub the mold loose from your carpet fibers. Once the mold has cleared out, blot the area and use a blow dryer to ensure the carpet is completely dry. You can use a vacuum cleaner to remove any leftover baking soda. Unfortunately, this method won't work for cases of advanced mold infestation.

2. Use a Steam Cleaner

Another way to clean mold from carpet is steam cleaning. Heat is an effective mold and mildew treatment that kills fungi without hassle. So, if you have a steam cleaner lying around, you have a great way to kill mold and ensure it won't return. This method involves applying the heat to the affected area for at least 12 seconds.

Once you've heat treated every part of the carpet, you'll need to dry it since the steam cleaner could add moisture through the steam. Ensuring the carpet is thoroughly dry is the only way to guarantee that new mold won't develop.

3. Anti-Fungal Spray

You should also try anti-fungal treatment for your mold issues. These treatments work as anti-fungal coatings that add a chemical mold barrier on your carpet to stop mold growth and prevent future problems. When using an anti-fungal spray, you'll need to wet the affected section and the surrounding areas with the solution and blot it with a dry cloth.

You shouldn't walk around on the carpet when using this method since you could unknowingly spread surviving mold to unaffected areas. Be sure only to use carpet-safe products since some anti-fungal treatments can discolor your carpet.

4. Hire Professional Carpet Cleaners

If your efforts aren't bringing the results you want, one method won't fail, mold remediation. Removing mold from carpet can be a lifelong battle since it's easy for mold spores to spread and start the infestation elsewhere in the house. The most effective way to ensure you kill mold and prevent regrowth is by hiring professionals to clean the carpet.

Expert carpet cleaners use advanced knowledge, equipment, and products to safely kill the mold and spores without causing damage to the carpet. The process also sanitizes the carpet fibers ensuring they don't provide a suitable environment for growing mold.

5. Vacuum

You can use a HEPA vacuum to remove mold spores from your carpet fibers. This vacuum isn't a standard model on the market; it comes with a HEPA filter that makes it especially suited for cleaning mold spores without spreading them all over the house.

This vacuum provides a great way to finish your mold treatment process since it can prevent mold growth by ensuring you don't have any spores left inside your home.

How to Prevent Future Mold Growth on Carpet

After removing mold from your carpet, the next thing is to put mold prevention measures in place. So, here are some of the things you can do to prevent mold from growing again after mold removal.

1. HEPA Vacuum Cleaner

This is an excellent way to get rid of the remaining mold spores in your carpet. Since HEPA vacuum cleaners can suck spores and trap them to ensure they don't re-enter the air, they are the ideal choice for mold prevention.

2. Reduce Moist Surfaces

Something else you can do is ensure you deal with any leaks in your home. If you can add moisture-resistant sheets between the carpet and floors, you can prevent future mold growth. This will be especially useful for carpets close to the bathroom or in the basement. Reducing moist areas will ensure your carpet has fewer chances of getting mold.

3. Use a Dehumidifier

If you want a way to keep moist conditions at bay, you should use a dehumidifier. This device can keep the air fresh and moisture-free, making the carpet unsuitable for growing mold. You could place the humidifier to face the carpet to ensure it stays dry.


Removing carpet mold isn't an easy task. It requires quick and effective treatments to ensure it doesn't become a recurring problem. The methods in this post can help you eliminate mold without hassle. However, if it's a challenge, you can always hire professionals and let them do the work for you. 

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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