Can You Dry Wet Carpet? 



Can wet carpet be dried without a problem ? 

The cleaner/restorers standard answer….. IT DEPENDS! :) 



Sometimes, it's a company decision. Some dry many wet carpets while others never do. 

No two companies will have the same rate of saving it.  



Points to Consider 


  1. What is the cost? Some carpet is, almost, the same cost to replace as to save it.
  2. An expensive carpet and pad, obviuosly may be worth the money to save. Figure what it will cost to save the carpet compared to replacement. 
  3. How old is it? Older backing and pad, can have lots of food source and nastiness, not fit for humans. In this case things could be growing after adding water. 
  4. How clean is the house? If this house is poorly maintained, there could be food for mold, even in newer carpeting and backing, that can make drying it as difficult as “old”.
  5. What is the condition of the water that came in? Category 1, 2 or 3? It’s in The IICRC S500 Standard for water damage.
  6. How long has the water been there? After 12 – 14 hrs we could have non visible mold. Bacteria growth could be a problem..
  7. Was there a previous flood? Do the safe thing.
  8. Does the room have a chronic leak?  Did it have high mold count, before flooding?
  9. Was the pad improperly specified? (they got the cheap pad) There could be flexing up and down, like a trampoline, every time someone walks down the hall. The backing could be already partially de-laminated (primary and secondary backing coming apart) before the flood. The flood simply finished the job. Speak to the materially interested parties (homeowner & adjuster) about replacement.
  10. If an entire room is delaminating, it probably was a mill problem. A little tough to prove now. :) Again…speak to the materially interested parties about replacement of the carpeting and pad.
  11. The newer it is, the better the chances of saving it.
  12. Backings can get 80 – 85% weaker with water in them. Be careful about pulling up off tackstrip or folding. 
  13. Edge delaminating can occur from pulling it off the tack strip. A knee kicker is recommended to release the hold of the angled tack strip nails.
  14. If floating, keep flapping to a minimum. It can weaken the backing.
  15. In-place drying “can” be less destructive to the backing as it will not be pulled up and re-installed. Category 1 conditions would be required.
  16. Just because you removed the pad, doesn’t mean carpeting always should be floated. It can, sometimes, be laid flat and dried from the top.
  17. Know where the seams are. Water soaked seam tape tears easily! Time will be required to repair. Time is money.
  18. Using some heat, for drying, can cure the latex a little more and leave it stronger than before the flooding.
  19. Decide if the carpet and pad will be sanitary, after drying and cleaning.



          So, can wet carpet be dried out? …………… sometimes.    



             MAKE MONEY!



                 Dennis Klager


Copyright 2012 by Dennis Klager