How to Find and Clean Mold from Your Carpet and Home

cleaning mold from carpet

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​The last thing you want to find on your carpet is mold. Not only can it be dangerous if left untreated, but once you have mold, it can often continue to come back.

Mold is a hazardous pest that needs to not only cleaned, but also identified so that it does not come back. Mold spores are tiny and will spread very easily through the air. Finding the root of where your mold is coming from is just as important as getting it cleaned.

If left untreated then mold can ruin your carpet and put your family’s health at risk. When you need to know how to clean mold from carpet, then these easy to follow steps will show you what needs to be done.

cleaning mold from carpet

​1. Find the Origin

You would think that the first step in eradicating the mold is to start cleaning with a vacuum or brush. However, you first want to find what is causing the mold, and test it. Sometimes it might be easy to pinpoint if you recently had any water damage in that room.

Carpet that is not properly dried is a perfect environment for mold growth. It is more common to see mold appear after a flood, a roof leak, prolonged periods of high humidity, or a common spill that wasn’t cleaned up.

Some mold can be spread to your carpet via the HVAC system.

You really should test the mold to see what is causing it. Test kits can be purchased at your local home improvement stores. This way you can be confident that you are cleaning and solving the mold problem.

You can also hire a specialist to come and run some mold tests. They will be able to check your vents and pinpoint what is causing the mold to spread to your carpet.

​2. Prepare for Cleaning

First of all you will need to wear protection on your hands and over your face. Mold can be very dangerous to your health if you inhale it or if it gets on your skin. Plastic or latex gloves are good to use, preferably if you can throw them away after.

​Just like when cleaning vomit up, you should wear a face mask to protect yourself from inhaling the spores. While it may not look harmful, once you start to scrub the area, mold or mildew spores can get stirred up and into the air.

If you have protective eyewear such as goggles, then you should wear them as well. It can sound like a lot to wear and deal with, but mold is very hazardous, especially when you are up close removing it.

You will also want to open the windows in the room that you are cleaning. However, keep the doors closed off to other rooms if possible. This will keep the mold spores from spreading throughout the house.

​3. Chose your Method

There are a few different ways you can go about cleaning the mold. The easiest method is to call a professional and let them handle it. But, this can be expensive. And, frankly speaking, often times you can take care of it yourself very easily.

Whether you are cleaning mold or mildew, you will need a cleaner that can break up the spores and eliminate them. In the end, to clean mildew from carpet follows the same process as cleaning mold from carpet.

1. There are various commercial products that you can find to chemically clean the stain, such as OxB Biocide. These are specially formulated to clear the mold and to deter it from returning. Note: we said it earlier, but its worth mentioning again… using a chemical to kill the mold does not get rid of the problem, so make sure to address where the mold is coming from!

2. You can also take products you probably have around the house and use them to clean the mold. Some examples of this include bleach, borax, vinegar, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide, detergent, and baking soda. Many of these products are cheap and readily accessible.

3. Lastly, you can also make your own natural cleaning product from vinegar or baking soda. Natural products are a great alternative because they are pet and kid friendly. White vinegar is very acidic and will kill about 82% of common molds. Baking soda is a mineral powder that will dry out the damp area and kill the mold.

cleaning mold out of carpet

​4. Clean the Area

You will need a good scrubbing brush to clean the spot. Commercial cleaners will have directions on the bottle for you to follow.

If you opt for a natural cleaner, then you will spray the area and let it sit for about fifteen to twenty minutes. This will allow the cleaner to begin killing the mold.

You will want the mold to be broken down and destroyed before you start scrubbing. This will make a safer cleaning environment, since it will kill a lot of the mold spores before you begin scrubbing.

Once you start scrubbing, the mold spores will break away from the carpet fibers and begin to kick up into the air. This ​is ​also very evident in shag carpets and rugs where its fibers can easily absorb and dispose of substances. This is why it is important to wear a face mask or bandanna to protect your airways.

Also make sure that you clean the area around where the mold was, including walls and other floors if they are in close distance.

​5. Dry the Space

You will need to repeat the cleaning step at least one more time to make sure that all the mold is eliminated. Just ensure that the carpet is dried between treatments. This will prevent regrowth and will dry out active mold spores that are still in the fibers.

Lastly, run over the carpet with a vacuum that includes ​an allergen filter. The HEPA filter is designed to remove bacteria and toxins from the air.

​6. Move on from Mold

If you ran the mold tests then you know what the cause was and it should be easy to keep the mold away once you take care of the root of the problem.

Once you start cleaning, if you notice the mold has embedded itself too deep into your carpet, then you may need to pull up and replace it. This is something that you can consult a professional about before you start cutting or pulling up the carpet.

Also, renting or investing in a heavy duty carpet cleaning machine can help make some of the steps a little easier. Knowing how to clean mold from carpet ensures you are eliminating it before it grows and gets worse.

About the Author Lauren Moldvay

Lauren Moldvay is a freelance writer from Virginia and the mother of one (not always) sweet little girl. She specializes in trying to help others find easier ways to clean, manage the home and save money with DIY projects.