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Eliminate Musty Smells from Water Damage with These Tips

Everyone has experienced water damage at some point in their home.  It is the most common type of property damage and nearly impossible to prevent because it can come from so many sources.  Excess water causes problems in homes by getting absorbed into various materials where it can cause damage and mold growth.  The carpeting in your home is especially vulnerable to water damage because the water gets soaked into the carpet and may even get trapped under the carpeting or padding.  Trapped moisture under your carpet will not only lead to further damage but also produce a musty smell in your home that is highly unpleasant.  Mold and mildew tend to grow in confined, moist spaces and any mildew growth under your carpet can result in foul odors.

If you have experienced water damage in your home that has affected your carpet, you must call a water damage restoration professional like ServiceMaster of North Texas for thorough drying.  Following these tips will help you eliminate musty odors from your carpet.

Removing Musty Smells from the Carpet

Before you can remove the musty smell from your carpet, you must deal with the water damage and any possible mold or mildew issue.  You should call our mold remediation professionals if you discover a mold problem when inspecting your carpet.  After taking care of the water damage source and any mold problems, you can remove or prevent musty smells in your carpet with these tips:

  • Thoroughly dry the carpet: Using dehumidifiers and floor fans will help remove moisture to speed up the drying of the carpet. You can also open your windows to bring in fresh air if the weather allows.
  • Use a cleaning solution on affected areas: Create a solution composed of one cup of vinegar and 2 cups of warm water and put it in a spray bottle. Spray the areas of the carpet where the smell is the strongest.  Be careful not to spray the carpet too heavily because the moisture may cause further mold growth.
  • Sprinkle baking soda over affected areas: Baking soda absorbs odors and excess moisture. Sprinkle baking soda over the most affected areas and let it sit overnight to absorb as much of moisture and odor as possible.  You can simply vacuum the baking soda the next day.

DIY Odor Removal

There is a chance that the mildew smell from your carpet can affect the air space in your home.  If the smell persists after treating your carpet, try removing the smell from the air with these remedies:

  • Vinegar: Put white vinegar in bowls and place the bowls throughout the room. The vinegar will remove the odor within a couple of days.
  • Cat Litter: Put clean cat litter in small, open containers and place the containers around the room. Make sure you change the cat litter for better deodorization.  If you have a cat, this method may not be a good idea as your cat may use the litter.
  • Baking Soda: Put open containers of baking soda around the affected area and change the baking soda regularly.

If your carpets are affected by water damage, you must first call a professional to fix the source of the water and take measures to prevent mold growth.  Following the steps listed above after the professionals have left your home will help eliminate lingering musty odors.  However, some odors may be too strong to eliminate simply with household methods.  Our professionals at ServiceMaster of North Texas provide deodorization services to remove all types of foul odors using advanced methods and technology.  We are ready to help you deal with the most stubborn odors.