Removing Carpet Smells

Why does my carpet smell worse after a deep clean and how to get it out?

You have the carpets and upholstery professionally cleaned to remove smells and soiling and make your environment cleaner and healthier, right?

However, there are scenarios in which you have the service carried out and the carpets cleaned and instead of getting a nice and fresh smelling carpet, you end up with a wet dog type smell or carpet smells like stinky feet, so how can you remove carpet smells?

Don’t panic, if you have had the carpets professionally cleaned then this is usually part of the drying process for some types of carpet or upholstery that contain natural fibres like wool. We always pre warn our clients that this is normal and part of the drying process and will usually last a few days. To speed the drying process air flow is essential, open a window, even in winter, heat will only create humidity and isnt recomemended but increased air flow is, we use an industrial turbo fan. Any issues call us and we will come straight back.

Why does my carpet smell worse after a deep clean and how to get it out?

But how to make your carpet smell good?

Removing carpet smells after washing

So your carpet or upholstery hasn’t been cleaned by us and you happen to have smelly carpets or upholstery there is no room for panic. Its actually more common than people care to admit. Now, put on your detective hat and let Carpet Pro help you find the culprit for this nasty odour and help in removing carpet smells.

Where is that awful smell coming from in your rug?

In order to remove a nasty smell from your fibres, you need to understand the origin. Many odours are pet related and easy for us to remove – there are cases that appear much more frequently than others. Book professional rug cleaning with Carpet Pro and let the experts fix the issue for you.

Low-quality carpet cleaning

We get many calls from clients who have hired rug doctors or used vax carpet cleaning machines who then end up with bad smells, read on for why and how to get rid of damp carpet smell and removing carpet smells. Often people tend to put the price of a service before the quality and this applies to professional carpet cleaning.

The most frequently seen issue with cheaper cleaning services is that the equipment that’s used isnt powerful enough to fully extract all of the leftover soiling and water and the carpet isnt flushed correctly and left with the correct PH, leaving your carpet soaking wet which will smell. Too much water left in the carpet will cause it to shrink when drying and can damage fibres, the water can also seep into the underlay which means no matter how many times you clean the carpet you cant remove the smell. We have a 6 stage carpet cleaning process, the final stage being the extraction stage where we use an industrial machine with twin vacums and steam to get the best results possible, often the carpets are dry with an hour. For some cleans like a tenancy cleaning service, we use a turbo fan to ensure the carpets are dry before we leave the property.We have also seen other cleaners who are inexperienced using too much detergent and / or not rinse the carpet or the rug thoroughly leaving the carpet in an acidic state rather than being PH neutral. The right solutions also need to be used depending on the type of fibre to be cleaned, we carry over 30 on the van.

removing carpet smells

Drying problems

Another reasons why carpets can smell after a deep clean is the underlay. A carpet that’s been poorly cleaned and excess moisure is left in the underlay, we commonly see this with Rug Doctors as the underlay or carpet paddings hasn’t been exposed to direct light or air, so it takes a lot more time to dry properly.And you know what excess moisture in the underlay leads to? Yes a mould and mildew smell after carpet cleaning. These types of fungi are responsible for the musky smell coming out of your carpet, rug or upholstery.

The more time fibres spends wet, the more chances of it developing mildew and mould. Any smell that lasts more than a week souldnt be ignored, phone a professional.

Persistent stains and removing carpet smells

Another good reason for smells can be old stains. Many decide to choose a deep cleaning service exactly because something, or someone, stained the floor. The only sure way to get rid of the stain and its contents is to have the carpet professionally cleaned.

If the stain has been soaked up by the underlay of the carpet, like dog urine another really common one we see, it will remain there, and so will the smell. That’s why only hire a professional with the right equipment to deep clean the carpet. We only offer a six stage deep clean, no point offering an inferior service as the reults arent there.

Other common reasons for a bad carpet smell and removing carpet smells

According to Grant Norton, a spokesperson and Carpet Technician on behalf of Carpet Pro, there are a number of other reasons for your floor covering to smell right after cleaning:

  • Cigarette smoke has the ability to penetrate all kinds of fabrics and fibres even paint on a wall. That’s why if you smoke regularly inside your home, even a professional carpet / upholstery cleaning will not help removing carpet smells im afraid.
  • If you own a pet which is not properly trained or a puppy whom often makes a mess on the carpet, professional cleaning is a must. Urine has a unique makeup and structure and needs specific treatments to break it down for removal. Some dog urine can be very acidic and can permanantly bleach carpets so remove it as soon as you can.
  • A nasty spill penetrating the underlay of the carpet is not always the culprit. Stains that you don’t clean thoroughly and quickly will get soaked into carpet’s fibres and start to smell. Like milk, for example, has a very specific sour smell and can be very hard to get rid of once its been left in the fibres. So always take care of stains as soon as possible.

Smoke is also very quick to penetrate all kinds of fabrics from an open fire. Knowing the origin of the smell and what to use to remove it and doing this quickly is the best advice we can give.

What to do and not do when you have a smelly carpet

Knowing what not to do in a certain situation is just as important as knowing how to act. So before we start with some remedies that may help, let’s cover some methoids that would only make things worse.

  • Covering the problematic spots isnt a great idea, we have seen clients cover these stains with a rug or furniture. Whenever a child or pet creates a a stain, the first thing that they will try to do is hide it somehow. When we need to deal with it and leave it to breathe and dry our naturally.
  • Stepping on the carpet when it’s wet. The pressure from your weight will only further push moisture and new dirt into the carpet fibres unless its been professionaly cleaned as carpets cleaned by Carpet Pro in Kent can be used right away as we leave very little moiseure in the carpet, the benefit of extracting with stea and using a very powerful extraction machine. So if you don’t use a professional then keep foot traffic at a minimum or wait until the carpet is dry.

Learn more about our carpet cleaning process and how to make carpet smell good naturally by removing carpet smells.

Lets now look at some of the effective home remedies that may help in removing carpet smells.

How to get rid of carpet smell with vinegar is one such solution

You can use vinegar for practically anything, and removing awful carpet odours is one of these on the list.

Method #1

  1. Make a solution from equal parts of lukewarm water and white vinegar.
  2. Apply the solution to the whole area with a soft carpet brush, dont over wet, less is more.
  3. Thе mixture will not only kill any potential mildew formations but can also absorb some odours.
  4. Let the carpet air dry. Help it by opening all the doors and windows in the house. If you have a fan, use it to help circulate air flow around the house to speed up the process. Heat wont help, it will just cause humidity.

Method #2

  1. Fill a couple of bowls with white vinegar.
  2. Place them all around the smelly carpet.
  3. Leave them overnight and make sure that nobody trips on them.
  4. The vinegar will can absorb smells.

How to remove bad carpet smell with baking soda / how to get smell out of carpet with baking soda

  1. Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda all over the smelly carpet to remove carpet smells.
  2. Leave it there to work until the flooring is dry.
  3. Vacuum up the residue, pass over the carpet multiple times.

Other solutions for removing carpet smells

  • Spread kitty litter over the carpet. It can soak up the moisture from the carpet along with removing carpet smells.
  • Pour Borax over the smelly areas and with the use of a dry brush or a soft broom, scrub it in the carpet, this can also damage carpets but also good at removing carpet smells.
  • Use a dehumidifiers in the room to pull out moisure and smells to removing carpet smells.


How do I get rid of bad smells in my carpet? Read above

Will carpet odors go away? Read above

Will wet carpet smell go away? Read above

Does baking soda get rid of carpet smells? Read above

What can I do to keep my carpet from smelling bad? Have them professionally cleaned every year

What if nothing works?

If you have tried everything you could find on the internet in removing carpet smells, but the smell is still there, then it’s time to call a professional. Make sure you use a NCCA qualified professional and do check their reviews. Worse case scenario is to replace the carpet and the underlay.