You left your car window open while it was raining or drove through a flood, and now your carpet is wet. The clock is ticking, and you know the longer your carpet stays wet, the more damage it will do to your car.
How do you dry the carpet without removing it? What do you do?
You can get water out of a car carpet without taking it to a professional. Simple methods such as baking soda, a heat gun, a dehumidifier, a fan, or a heater are effective at drying car carpets.
A car’s carpet gets wet in the following ways.
When you drive through floods, water can leak in if the seals under your car are worn out. A rusty underside can also chip away when the water level rises during floods and cause water to seep into the vehicle.
Leaking windows are also to blame for your wet carpet. The black rubber seals bordering the glass wear out with time and start seeping in rainwater, dripping it down to the rug.
A heater core is prone to frost damage and corrosion. If the coolant is not changed every three years, corrosion occurs. The metal breaks down, and the heater core releases the coolant, leaking it all over the car carpet.
The air conditioner’s evaporator pulls out humid air and drains it out. The evaporator sits behind the dashboard on the passenger’s side.
If it’s clogged by debris, condensation starts leaking into the car and collects as a puddle on the carpet.
Water runs down from the windshield into a cowl drain preventing debris from going through the firewall. If the cowl drain doesn’t catch all the debris, the firewall gets blocked, and water leaks downwards to the carpet.
Here are tips to help you if you ever find yourself in such a situation because, sooner or later, it happens to most car owners.
Use any of these methods if your car’s carpet is not soaking wet. But if the carpet is dripping wet, get rid of excess water using a wet vacuum or towel, then proceed with any of the methods below:
A heat gun can speed up your carpet’s drying time. Start drying at the lowest setting and increase the heat. Move the heat gun around at all times to avoid damaging one spot, and don’t use it near gasoline, propane, or other flammables.
Sprinkle enough baking soda onto the wet carpet and wait at least an hour for the baking soda to absorb moisture. When it starts clumping, vacuum to remove it. Baking soda is also effective in eliminating foul odors that may result from the moisture.
Dehumidifiers work best in a closed environment, so there is no need to open your car doors. Just place the machine on the carpet and let the air circulate. Your carpet will dry in about 12 hours. Pair the dehumidifier with a fan for faster results.
Position two fans to blow across the carpet. Unlike the dehumidifier, fans work best when doors are open, so keep the car doors open. Move the fan around the car’s interior to dry all the areas equally. Let the fan run for two or three days.
Hot air works faster than cold air when drying out your carpet. However, the hot air needs an escape route. You can leave the car doors open or pair the heater with a dehumidifier to pull out the hot air.
You don’t have to remove your car carpet whenever it gets wet. Follow these steps to a dry carpet and an odor-free car:
- Open your car doors and take the mats out. Most car mats are made of plastic and will dry fast.
- If there’s a lot of water, check for drain plugs on the floor of your car and open them to release the excess water.
- Use a towel to absorb as much of the remaining moisture as possible. Keep wringing and absorbing until the towel can’t absorb any more water. Alternatively, use a wet vacuum to suck out the water.
- Take baking soda and pour it all over the wet areas, leave it to absorb the remaining water until it clumps, then vacuum it.
- Set up a fan or two and point them towards the floor. Leave to blow until the carpet is completely dry. Use a dehumidifier or a heater to speed up the process.
- Finally, use a hairdryer to dry those hard-to-reach places, like behind the seats. You can also use more baking soda in these areas.
Several things happen if you don’t dry car carpets immediately:
- Mildew and mold will proliferate. They will then cause nasal stuffiness, wheezing, and irritation of the skin, eye, and throat.
- Your car’s floor may start rusting and chipping away, causing flood water to seep in.
- Water is an electrical hazard. If it stays on your carpet, it may trigger electrical accidents.
- The water can leave permanent stains on your car carpets.
- Your car will have a musty smell that doesn’t go away.
If you drove through a flood or left your sunroof open and your car’s interior is wet, you can use carpet drying services to save time.
We recommend the following car carpet drying services.
- Carpet Dry-Tech: Carpet Dry-Tech offers you top-skilled carpet cleaning services for your vehicles. They’ll make your car, boat, and RV carpets look new.
- Carpet Care Plus: Carpet Care Plus will rescue your car carpets by sanitizing and bone-drying every nook and cranny. They will also neutralize the terrible smell.
- Pristine Green: Get your car carpet professionally steam-cleaned or dried. Whether your entire car is wet and needs to dry or you need minor cleaning, Pristine Green will take care of your car’s interior.