What is Under the Covers?
A fresh, clean carpet is a delight. It filters dust and allergens out of the air. It provides protection and comfort for your feet as well as appeal for the eyes. But remember the old phrase “out of sight, out of mind”? That can apply to what lingers beneath your carpet. Many homes have carpet placed over older flooring like wood or concrete. Sometimes the carpet replaces tiles, linoleum, or other flooring that has either been ripped out, or the carpet goes directly over the top of the older flooring. Depending on the state of the old flooring or the foundation, you might have another item under the carpet – like mold or mildew.
It doesn’t take more than a few days for mold or mildew to form. They need oxygen, some sort of food source, and a secure surface that’s rarely disturbed. If the floor beneath your carpet wasn’t cleaned or treated properly, it might be a prime location for mold and mildew to grow. But one other necessary item is moisture. The more moisture that is available, the higher the risk of mold or mildew under your carpet, and the higher risk to your health.
Detecting What Lies Beneath Your Carpeting
So, how can you tell if mold or mildew is accumulating under your carpet? One way to begin is with your own senses:
- Look – keep an eye out for unexplained stains (typically off-white, black, or greenish in color) that have gradually appeared, especially if your attempts at stain removal are not successful. Since Preferred Carpet Care has many years of dealing with stains from mold and mildew, we often identify stain sources effectively with a quick analysis.
- Smell – strong amounts of mold or mildew bring odors (and spores) into the air. If your carpet has a musty or stale odor, it might be hiding some mold. Of course, since you spend so much time in your house, you might become accustomed to such an odor. A guest, neighbor or family member that doesn’t live with you might be able to pick up the odor before you can.
- Feel – if your carpet feels damp, be assured there’s much more moisture further down. If you shampooed your carpet or had it professionally cleaned within the last 24 to 48 hours, do your best to get your carpet as dry as possible. If your carpet is still damp more than 2 days after the process was completed, it might be worth taking a closer look for mold. That’s why Preferred Carpet Care uses powerful equipment and procedures to dry out your carpet quickly.
Testing for Mold
You can often find a mold test kit at your local home improvement store. These kits sample the airflow over the carpet for mold spores, and you send the sample to the kit supplier to tell you what it is. Since these tests are sampling the ambient air in a room, however, they are prone to false negatives and positives. Not only that, but returned test results are often phrased in “Scientific Latin,” listing the names and histories of the discovered mold, but rarely a population count or tips on remediation.
You can also hire a professional environment testing company to identify the type of mold and how much is present, but they can often get expensive. Most of them do not focus on mold removal, but they can tell you how and where any excess moisture is getting into your home, as well as any health risks to your family.
Preferred Carpet Care has dealt with many different mold infestations. as well as mildew. After all, we also offer tile and grout cleaning for showers and bathrooms, the number one location for mildew in a residence. With years of experience, we analyze discolored areas and verify if any stains are pointing to mold. We also follow guidelines from the IICRC and the EPA for mold remediation, and work quickly to remove the mold so you stay safe.
For more information on tile and grout cleaning, mold remediation, or any of our other services, feel free to look through our services tab here on our website. You can also give us a call or schedule an appointment using our online form.
- Posted by Rod Barth
- On March 11, 2021