How to Kill Mold in Carpet in 10 Easy Steps

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How to Kill Mold in Carpet

Mold can be a major problem in carpets, as the spores thrive in moist environments. Not only is it unsightly, but it can also cause health issues if left untreated. It can affect your carpeted floors, house rugs and any other small carpets you may have in your home.

But, the main question is how to kill mold in carpet. Fortunately, there are several DIY ways, but if the situation is extreme, then you can seek the assistance of a professional. Just before we delve into how to kill mold on carpet, let’s understand what mold is and how it grows.

Why does mold grow on carpet?

how to kill mold in carpet

Photo credit: Macroscopic Solutions / CC BY-NC

You cannot destroy something you know little or nothing about. In a nutshell, mold is a notorious fungus, which eats into surfaces. But, not just any surface – only those which are damp.

Mold is a common problem in many homes, and carpets are one of the most prone surfaces to mold growth. This is because carpets are great at trapping moisture, making them an ideal environment for mold spores to grow and develop into mold. If a carpet gets wet and is not properly dried, it can quickly form mold.

Mold can also grow on carpets in areas that are not regularly inspected, such as under furniture or behind walls. This gives mold plenty of time to spread and grow before it is noticed.

Even if the carpet does not get wet, humidity levels in the home can be enough for mold spores to thrive.

This can particularly be a problem for rooms with carpets on concrete floors in summertime. Warm humid air makes its way through the carpet and the underpad before coming into contact with the concrete below. The concrete is cool enough to cause moisture to condense out of the air and create a damp environment for mold propagation to begin.

Section through carpet above concrete floor

Mold can take up to three weeks to become visible, but may be present even if not seen. Signs of mold include dampness, musty odors, discoloration, and mildew-like smells. It is important to address any moisture detected within 24-48 hours before it has a chance to develop into mold.

Is Carpet Mold Dangerous?

Mold can be a serious health hazard, especially when it is found in carpets. Carpet mold is dangerous because we are exposed to it frequently and can lead to respiratory tract symptoms and asthma attacks. People with mold allergies or compromised immune systems are at greater risk of developing internal infections from exposure to carpet mold.

Carpet mold is especially problematic due to its ability to spread quickly throughout the home. Carpet mold can cause a variety of health problems, including allergies, cancer, respiratory diseases, and even death. Symptoms of mold exposure include asthma, coughing, eye irritation, skin irritation, sneezing, sore throat and stuffy nose. 

Black mold is particularly aggressive and should be removed as soon as possible to avoid potential health risks. Mycotoxins produced by black mold can cause severe health issues if left unchecked. It is important to take action quickly if you suspect you have black mold in your home or office as the longer it remains the more likely it will cause serious health problems. 

When should you call a professional carpet cleaner to get mold out of carpet instead of cleaning it yourself?

carpet being professionally cleaned

Mold in carpets can be a serious health hazard and should not be taken lightly. If the mold is smaller than 10′ x 10′, it can usually be handled by hand, but anything larger should be treated by a professional carpet cleaner. It is important to identify the source of the mold before attempting to clean it, as this will help prevent further spread. If unsure of the source, double-check for growth and consider peeling back the carpet to identify it. In cases where the mold has spread to other areas of the house, a professional mold remediation or removal service may be necessary.

How to kill mold in carpet effectively

If you have to remove mold from your carpet completely, you need to employ a number of strategies. In as much as you need to remove mold from the carpet, you also have to prevent it from building up again. Hence, you must implement mold prevention strategies once you have removed the problem. 

How to kill mold in carpet effectively

If you have to remove mold from your carpet completely, you need to employ a number of strategies. In as much as you need to remove mold from the carpet, you also have to prevent it from building up again. Hence, you must implement mold prevention strategies. But, while at it, just make sure you are using the right products.

Easy 10 Step Guide for removing mold in carpets

Step 1: Identify the Source of Moisture

The first step in removing mold from your carpets is to identify and address the source of moisture that is causing the mold growth. This could be a leaky pipe, a humidifier, or even condensation on windows. Once you have identified the source, take steps to fix it and reduce humidity levels in the room.

Step 2: Wear protective gear

Before you venture into mold removal, put on protective gear. This should include clothing, face mask and a pair of goggles. This is because as you touch the mold, it releases spores in the form of dust, which can affect your health negatively.

Step 3: Ensure that the room is well ventilated

It is important that you kill the mold on your carpet, and not allow it to harm your health. Make sure that the doors in the rooms you are working in are closed. This way, the spores will not get to other rooms in the house. But, open all the windows, to let in enough fresh air.

Step 4: For rugs and removable carpets, move them out

Mold grows on wet surfaces. Hence, if the carpets are removable, getting them outside, can give them a new lease of life.

But, how long should you place the carpets out? Carpet cleaning professionals recommend about 48 hours of continuous sunlight.

Step 5: For wall-to-wall carpeting turn on some overhead lights 

Unlike rugs and other removable carpets, it is hard to remove mold on fitted floor carpets. Ultraviolet (UV) Light is a proven technology that has been killing mold, fungus, bacteria, and viruses since the beginning of time. UV light disinfection is a safe, non-toxic and chemical-free way to kill mold. You can hire a professional to do this for you, or you can buy a UV light and do it yourself.

Step 6: Use a humidifier to dry up the carpet

If you cannot get a UV light, you can use a humidifier to dry up the carpet. This will help to reduce the moisture levels in the room and prevent mold from growing again. You will know when the carpets are dry because the smell of mold will be reduced. 

Step 7: Use a brush sweep the mold traces from the back and front of the carpet

Use a stiff brush to dislodge the mold from the carpet. This will help to remove the mold from the carpet fibers. Make sure that you are brushing in one direction, to avoid spreading the spores.

Step 8: Use a vacuum cleaner to remove the mold traces

Once you have brushed off the mold, use a vacuum cleaner to suck up all the dust and debris. This will help to get rid of any remaining traces of mold on your carpet.

Make sure that you use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter such as a Dyson or Shark, as this will help to trap the spores and prevent them from spreading. A good vacuum cleaner will provide a deep clean of your carpets by agitating the carpet fibers whilst picking up the embedded mold with its powerful suction.

Step 9: Use anti-mold spray on the carpet

 You have cleaned your carpet already. To ensure that mold will not grow on the carpet again, use anti-mold spray.

These sprays are cheaply available at local stores or online. Get one and apply. However, ensure that you read the instructions on the label.

Make sure also that the spray gets to the bottom of the carpet. It is the only way, you can be assured that mold, will not be infesting your home again. Check the instructions on the label to know how long you should wait before you can walk on the carpet. Also, you may need to vacuum the carpet again, to get rid of the excess spray.

Step 10: Clean all the equipment used in the mold removal

 Now that your carpets do not have mold any more, you must clean the equipment you used. This way, you will prevent the residual spores, which may be attached to the equipment, from spreading to other areas of your house.

DIY Carpet Mold Removal Video

If you are looking for further guidance on killing carpet mold, check out the below step by step video guide produced by a professional carpet cleaner. The mold is removed from the carpet in the video using easily available over the counter products.

Carpet Mold Prevention

Carpet mold prevention is an important part of keeping your home safe and healthy. The most effective way to prevent carpet mold is to avoid wetting or allowing the carpet to stay wet for extended periods of time. Additionally, increasing ventilation in rooms with carpets can help reduce the chances of mold growth, as well as using a dehumidifier if necessary. Regular vacuuming can also help remove potential organic food sources and mold spores that may be present in the carpet fibers.

Furthermore, if your carpets are overlaying concrete floors, you might consider installing a subfloor product to protect from moisture build up between the carpet underpad. This is a common cause of carpet mold in basements, where the concrete floor is much cooler. 

In cases where there are already signs of mold growth, it is important to treat the source of moisture and increase ventilation in the room. Running a dehumidifier can also help reduce humidity levels and prevent further growth of mold on carpets. Vacuuming regularly and leaving lights on can also help reduce the spread of mold spores throughout your home. Finally, using a HEPA vacuum after removing major colonies can help remove any remaining spores that may still be present in the carpet fibers.


Knowing how to eliminate mold from carpets should no longer be an issue. You are aware of the steps required to remove mold from carpets. You don’t need a professional to do these things.

If you follow all the steps, you can be certain there will no longer be any mold in your house. Use the above steps to safeguard your family’s health.

Most crucially, maintain a dry environment in the house after the mold has been removed.


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