Black mold on carpet – a common problem in households

Do you have black mold on carpet? Know how to remove mold from carpets and rugs. The excessive growth of mold is a common problem in many households. Mould, otherwise referred to as mildew or ‘black mold”, can become a nuisance when it has the proper conditions to grow and thrive. If you are experiencing issues with this fungi in your home, here you will find tips on black mold removal and prevention, specifically from porous materials such as carpets or rugs.

black mold on carpet

Table of contents

What is mold?

Mold is a type of fungus. There are several different kinds of common molds, but long term exposure to any of them can cause health problems. Exposure to black mold can aggravate allergies, asthma and cause other breathing problems. It is important that any mold problem be taken care of properly and quickly.

What causes mold to grow on carpets?

Mold can grow on virtually any substance or surface, as long as there is moisture. A source of moisture is the most important factor in mold growth, in addition to temperature, light and nutrients for them to feed on.

Rugs and carpets are a perfect place for molds to grow because they have the ability to retain moisture. Black mold on carpets and rugs also occurs because they can collect lots of dust. This gives it the nutrients they require to exist.

Locate and eradicate black mold on carpet

black mold under carpetIn order to remove black mold from carpet, the first thing you’ll need to do is locate and eradicate the source of moisture. Excessive moisture being trapped in the carpet is the cause of it’s growth. If the source is not identified and eliminated, the mould will be a reoccurring issue, even after the removal and clean-up.

When attempting to remove black mold from carpets and rugs, examine the material to assess whether it is damaged beyond repair. If so, it will need to be discarded.

When getting rid of material that is infested with mould, put it in a plastic bag and seal it. Mould is not hazardous material, so it can be put out with other household trash. Containing the moldy material with protect the people who handle it while transporting it to the landfill.

If the damage is not too severe, you may remove the mildew by cleaning and disinfecting the carpet or rug.

It is important to note that there are some people who should not be involved in cleaning up mold due to their health. Infants, children, the elderly, those with immune system problems or respiratory health issues should not participate or be present during the mould removal process. In fact, anyone who is not involved in the clean-up process should leave the area due to the risk of inhaling it’s spores.

how to remove mold from carpet

How to remove black mold from carpet?

Before starting the removal of the mold and disinfecting of the area, you’ll want to use safety gear to protect yourself. It is important to wear a medium or high-efficiency filter dust mask to reduce the possibility of inhaling mildew spores. The clothing worn during a clean-up should cover your entire body and be easily removable and cleaned. It is recommended that rubber gloves and goggles be worn during mold removal. Please dispose of these items after using them in a fungus infested area.
how to clean mold off of carpet
Step 1: Begin by slightly dampening the affected area. This will make it more difficult for the mildew spores to travel to other places during the removal process.

Step 2: If removing mold from under the carpet, lift up the carpet to examine the padding and flooring below. If the padding is moldy, discard and replace it. Using a stiff scrubbing brush, apply a soap and water mixture to the area. Scrub the area thoroughly until all of the residue from the mold is removed. You will want to clean the flooring below the carpet in the same manner, scrubbing it with the soapy water mixture.

Step 3: Next, using a mixture of 10 parts water to 1 part household bleach, disinfect the mold-affected area. Household bleach is fungicidal, which means that it will kill the mould. After disinfection, rinse the affected area thoroughly with hot water.

Step 4: Absorb as much of the rinse water as possible with paper towels and let the area dry completely. It may take two to three days for the area to fully dry. A dehumidifier can be used to speed the drying time. Once the area is dry, vacuum the affected area of the carpets or rugs.

3 natural ways to clean mold off of carpet

There are natural ways to remove and clean black mold from carpet and they can be very useful if you prefer avoiding chemicals, As we discuss three natural options, keep in mind that they may or may not be ideal depending on your rug and mold situation.

  1. Hydrogen peroxide. This is not a good solution if you are trying to kill black mold on carpets and colored rugs. That’s because peroxide will bleach out many materials. If you are working with white or extremely light carpets, this could be a good option. Use a spray bottle filled with peroxide and spray the molded area until it is thoroughly saturated. After about 10-15 minutes, use a brush to scrub the carpet and finally blot with a towel.
  2. Baking soda. This is a good option if you have children or pets because baking soda is non-toxic. In addition to cleaning up the issue, it will also deodorize the rug. Make sure you are mixing baking soda with water so it can thoroughly saturate the carpet and reach all sources of mold. A general measurement is about one tablespoon per spray bottle of water. Spray the area then scrub with a brush. Since baking soda is safe, you can also use it diluted or in powder form regularly on the carpet for prevention of the problem too.
  3. Vinegar. Vinegar is a good product to choose if you aren’t sure what type of mold you are dealing with because it kills the vast majority of the different species including black. All you need to do is saturate the material so even the under layer is coated. Let the vinegar sit for an hour then blot with a towel.

The best black mold carpet cleaners

If you are looking for a cleaner that can handle black mold, then here are a few consider.

1. Sunny & Honey Carpet Miracle – This option will clean and deodorize the rug and it’s pet friendly too.

2. Zep Clear Shell – This cleaner actually destroys the moldy issue and also prevents and inhibits it in the future creating a shell over and under the flooring. Plus, it’s designed for textiles specifically.

3. McCulloch MC1275 – This is a professional quality steam cleaner and it can remove all types of germs and bacteria including the issue we are discussing. In addition, it will get under the flooring for a deep clean.

4. PurSteam World’s Best Steamer – This is an excellent option if you need to spot clean as it is a handheld steamer that can remove the problem and still get steam under the flooring for a deeper clean. The handheld style makes it easy to carry too.

How to get rid of mold using a carpet cleaning machine

If you are using a cleansing machine to get rid of the moldy issue, then you will want to make sure you use it properly. First of all, make sure you give the machine ample time to heat up for the best results. Additionally, you need to use a proper cleaner to remove issues from the flooring. As we discussed, there are natural and chemicals cleaners you could choose from that will remove any moldy patches. If you choose to use a steam cleaner, do not use any chemicals or anything other than water with it. And make sure you read all instructions with the machine before operating it.

If you are dealing with moldy flooring and need assistance in cleaning, reach out to us for a free quote.

How to dry wet carpet?

There are numerous ways how to dry wet carpet. We will discuss a couple of those methods below.

Blotting the carpet dry – for small areas of wet carpet, for example caused by someone spilling a glass of water the best way to dry it up and help prevent mold or mildew growth is blotting it dry with a towel. Be sure not to use a towel that has not been washed before because it could transfer coloring to the carpet. By blotting the carpet dry you will help soak up the excess moisture and allow the carpet to air dry. To assist with the drying process you can open windows or move a dehumidifier into the room.
Carpet Blowers – You can rent for a reasonable fee a carpet blower, which really is simply a high powered fan that is angled to the ground. This creates air circulation that helps effectively dry the carpet.
Wet/Dry Vacs – A wet dry vac can be used to help extract water from the carpeting if you catch it early enough. On a similar note you can also use a carpet cleaner that usually has a water extraction feature. Both methods are effective for carpet water removal.

Can professional mold removal companies help?

Not really, they can try the same methods described above. One experimental option that professionals can try is high ozone shock treatment, high ozone shock treatments or ozone blasting treatments involves using a machine called an ozone generator. The process usually takes about an hour. The whole area will need to be evacuated from people and pets to ensure safety. Take note that based on my research there is very little scientific evidence that ozone treatments are 100% effective. It is also important to understand that ozone treatments do not remove the mold and numerous adverse health effects can still occur from dead mold spores.

If you have an underlying moist issue that you can not figure out, mold removal companies can help you out. They can locate the problem (f.e. leakage, bad ventilation, etc.) and fix it for you. Also if you are not the handyman you better leave it to the professionals!


Preventing further mold in your home is possible with the right devices. Since moisture is the most important factor in mold growth, the humidity level in a living space should be assessed and monitored. Mildew thrives in environments where the humidity level meets or exceeds 55%. Relative humidity sensors, also known as moisture meters, are available for in home use.

Areas in the home that are likely to experience excessive mold growth include basements, bathrooms, closets and cabinets. Relative humidity sensors are very helpful in these areas.

If there are areas in your home that have chronically high levels of humidity, a dehumidifier can be used. Dehumidifiers reduce the amount of moisture in the air. Most of them work by using a refrigerated coil to condense the air, then collecting the moisture in a compartment. The dehumidified air is put back into the environment.