How Long Does it Take Carpet to Dry After the Flood

how long does it take carpet to dry after the flood

Dealing with a flood caused by a tap leak can be quite devastating. After such an experience, you probably won’t want a reoccurrence ever again. The first step in dealing with a flood is to find the source immediately and stop the leak. The next step will be to dry out your home.

If your floors are covered with carpet, this might not be easy; this leads to the question: how long does it take carpet to dry after a flood. Depending on how big the flood is, it will probably take the carpet 3 – 5 days to dry completely.

This post will provide all the necessary information on how to dry your carpet after a flood or water leak. Stay with us.

Read: How to dry a carpet after cleaning

How Long Does it Take Carpet to Dry After the Flood?

There might not be a straightforward answer to this question as many circumstances will determine how long a carpet will take to dry after a flood.

The current humidity levels, temperature, and texture of the carpet itself play a role in how long the carpet will take to dry. Also, another crucial factor will be how serious the flood is and how wet your carpet is.

Below is a rough estimation of drying time for your carpet in different situations:

  • A flooded carpet will take about 3-5 days to dry
  • A partially wet carpet will take 12-24 hours to dry
  • A damp carpet will take about 1-3 hours to dry

Have it in mind that these estimations provided here are based on a low pile carpet in a continental climate. So, they may vary for you depending on where you live and the type of carpet you own.

Read: How to get wrinkles out of carpet

How To Dry a Wet Carpet After a Flood

Below are steps you need to employ in drying a wet carpet after a flood:

1. Extract the Water

Once you have stopped the flood, the next step should be extracting the water. The equipment you will use to extract the water depends on the amount of water on the carpet. A submersible pump and a shop vac are effective if your carpet is completely saturated with water.

You can use only a shop vac if the water doesn’t completely cover your carpet.

2. Use Absorbent Towels

Do you think the work is done after extracting the water? No. you will need a good absorbent towel to soak out water that wasn’t extracted with the shop vac and submersible pump. Place and press down absorbents on the carpet to soak up the remaining water on the carpet.

Note that if there is too much water after using the shop vac and submersible pump, it might be time for you to call in the services of professional cleaners.

3. Air Dry the Carpet with Fan and Dehumidifiers

After soaking out as much water as you can with absorbent towels, place fans and dehumidifiers in the room to assist with evaporation. Always check in every few hours to reposition the fans.

Alternatively, you can use a hairdryer to speed up the drying process. This method is, however, recommended if the water damage is minimal. Hold the hair dryer a few inches from the carpet and move in a back-and-forth motion.

4. Replace the Carpet Padding

This method becomes almost mandatory if the water damage is severe. Sometimes, you may succeed in drying out wet carpet, while the padding might still retain some water.

This can result in mold damage that will ultimately spread to the carpet. To avoid this type of scenario, you will need to replace the carpet padding.

Read: Do rug pads damage hardwood floors?

Things to do Before Drying your Wet Carpet

Dealing with a flood in your home can be quite disconcerting. However, you can easily salvage the situation to the best of your ability. Before drying your wet carpet, you need to follow the steps below:

1. Stop the Flood

This goes without saying, yes? You need to find the source of the leak or flood before you even think of drying your carpet. The cause of the flood might be a broken pipe, a leaking roof, or other issues. For a broken pipe, you will need the services of a plumber.

2. Remove all Items from the Room

You cannot dry a wet carpet properly if you have furniture and items sitting on it. Remove everything on the carpet before any other step.

3. Dispose of the items damaged by the water

For items in the room that cannot be salvaged, it will help speed up the process if you simply dispose of them. Items like magazines, newspapers, cardboard boxes cannot be salvaged after a flood.

4. Limit Traffic on Wet Carpet

You should avoid repeatedly walking over the carpet after clearing up the room. Not only will you bring in dirt, walking on a wet carpet can wear it out due to its fragile state.

Read: Does water stain carpet?

Does Mold Grow in Wet Carpets?

This definitely has a straightforward answer. Mold thrives in wet areas; this simply means that your wet carpet will definitely encourage mold growth.

Mold reproduces through spores, and thus in less than 48 hours, you might be dealing with the growth of mold on your wet carpet. Know you see, why it’s important not to leave your carpet wet.

Mold will not only destroy your carpet, but it can also cause mild to severe health issues like sneezing, runny/itchy nose, irritated eyes, skin rashes, and itchy throat. It can also cause shortness of breath and trigger asthma attacks for extremely sensitive persons.

Read: How to dry wet carpet padding


The most important thing to know about drying a wet carpet is when to call in the services of professionals. Have it in mind that it’s not all wet carpet situations that you can deal with yourself.

How long does it take carpet to dry after a flood? Now you know that the answer to this question is dependent on lots of factors that have been discussed extensively in this post.

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