When the washing machine runs over and the water goes up the hall about four feet and soaks the carpet, is it sufficient to just vacuum out the water then run a fan until it dries, or do I really need to pull it up to make sure it is really dry under there?No wall damage and the carpet is over a slab, so I don't have to worry about that. Just concerned about mold or it starting to smell.thanks,wolferd
This happened to me in a downstairs area and the insurance covered all the repair....it was extensive.what they did was lift the part that was wet and proped it up with whatever they had available and set the fan(they had a heated fan) to blow under it until it dried, then they lowered the rug in place when it dried.....about 2 days. The floor was concrete.
You only get mold with repeated cycles of wetness, one incident is not going to make the difference. If you don't get it dry you can get mildew, however, which can smell. Usually it's enough to vacuum up as much as you can, then run a fan over the wet area for a few days. When you think it's dry, run the fan for a few more days to insure that the wet pad wicks up the moisture and releases it.If the area is really extensive and/or there's other damage, you may want to think about insurance. Remember that the water can travel horizontally before it travels vertically in the carpet, so it may be moist in a larger area than you can see.If you're nervous about it, see if you can lift an edge at a doorway (where you can easily put it back down with a new trim piece), hold it up an inch or two with a wood block or something and get some air down below. Rental places have special fans designed for exactly this purpose, they look like a giant hair blow dryer, upside down, where the nozzle slides under the carpet edge and delivers big volumes of air at high pressure. (Not usually necessary except for the most extreme cases.)
I would try renting a carpet cleaner. It will do a good job of sucking the water out of the carpet. You don't have to clean the carpet but you may also want to consider rinsing the carpet with the carpet cleaner if the washing machine overflow contained any laundry detergent in it. It would be the detergent that would give food to the mold to form.PSU
One trick I learned was to take a few long screws and screw them into the carpet (not into the subfloor!) such that the carpet can be propped up a bit. Think of making a bunch of small tents with the rug/screws. this will help it dry faster.R4M
Wolferd,What is under the carpet? Padding, and then what... a wood floor, concrete, or what? Sublooring should withstand several soakings before swelling, or rotting. Is it in a basement? If it's in a basement, it will take longer to dry, thereby increasing chances of rot and mold.Like PSU suggested, if you are to salvage the carpet, a Rug Doctor type machine is a must, unless you are overstating the "flood." You can even use a deoderant additive when the carpeting is as dry as possible, by going over it quickly with a normal cleaning cycle.In addition to that, you should be willing to get multiple fans blowing on it. And in addition to that, you need to be able and willing to open all your windows. You should allow the fans to run across the carpet and out a well ventillated house, for at least 24 hours. If it's chilly outside, don't worry... it will only help if you can run your furnace while the windows are open and the fans are running.You may be able to avoid mold, odors and further damage to the subfloor if you follow this advice. But be aware that the carpet may dry to a shrunken or stretched state and you may notice a ripple or two.What caused the washer to run over if I may ask? Were you home at the time? It's never a good idea to start a load and then run out to the store.Here's a product that I think every house would do well to have.http://www.homedepot.com/buy/plumbing/pumps/basement-watchdo...Don't let the wires and tab fool you. The tab is actually the bottom of the alarm and snaps on, with the wires tucked inside. The wires are only as a convenience in case you want to put the sensor, somewhere other than where you put the box (like the sensor can go in a sump pit so that if it nears the top it alarms you before overflowing.I have one next to my washer, and also in my water heater pan. They sound off very loud at the first sign of water. A plumber friend told me he was at home and he had a water leak for about 4 hours and didn't know it until he just happened to go in the basement. Happens very easily and faster than we know it.If it's just the hallway, maybe it's just 4 foot wide and 10 foot long? Heck, you can buy remnants or even throw rugs to replace the ripped up carpeting.Paul T., fixing his own mistakes since age 4.
What is under the carpet? Padding, and then what... a wood floor, concrete, or what? Sublooring should withstand several soakings before swelling, or rotting. If you reread the OP, he said carpet over slab.PSU
Thanks for the thoughts about the wet carpet.We ended up pulling up about 4 feet of hall carpet and letting a box fan run for several days. DW is still convinced that the dampness has wicked much further up the hall. A guy is coming today with a heated fan to blow under the carpet for a couple of days and a dehumidifier to run along side.I imagine this is similar to what nutsandbolts and goofyhoofy were talking about. I thought about renting such a fan but DW has a few respiratory issues and the notion that this is being done by someone who has done it before it has a lot of value for her. Mold and mildew is her great concern.We will then put the carpet back down and give all the carpet in the house an overdue cleaning. It will end up costing about 3x what I would have thought, but not nearly as much as if it there had been floor or wall damage.Paul, thanks for the thoughts on the water buzzer to notify you if you have a leak. But the truth is I am no more apt to turn off the washing machine when I leave the house than I am to turn off the water to the ice maker to keep it from leaking while I am gone. I am not interested in scheduling my life around a load of clothes or dirty dishes. So there may or may not be someone around to hear the buzzer if it went off.On the other had I've long been intrigued by devices like this, http://www.floodmaster.com/products/washing-machine-leak-det...And your thought that you can buy remnants or even throw rugs to replace the ripped up carpeting. confirmed the fact that you are indeed a long time bachelor. That ain't gonna happen here.Anyway, the path has been chosen and dealing with it has begun. Thanks to all for your input.wolferd
Keep in mind that the device that stops supply water in the event of a leak will not stop the washing machine pump from discharging all of the water in the tub.
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