Instructions and Directions for Using Air Movers to Dry Carpets Due to Water Damage:
Quick action is critical to reduce damage from water intrusion into a building, such as from broken water pipes, overflowing toilets, sewer back-ups, broken water sprinklers, roof damage, etc. Delaying action will make the situation worse causing damage to the sub-flooring, walls, cabinets, furniture and ceilings and allowing time for microorganisms to grow. When the moisture content of most cellulose-based materials exceed 20-25% of their weight, damage will be serious. Reducing damage is accomplished by water removal plus controlling the relative humidity, temperature and air movement.
Carpet padding cannot be cleaned - only dried. Padding tends to hold odors. Any natural fiber padding, such as jute or horsehair must be replaced.
Steps for On-Location Drying of Wet Carpet from Flood Damage:
- Step 1 in any pump-out situation is to inspect thoroughly for damage, being especially alert for microbial growth.
- Take care when removing water from carpets because they can lose up to 50% of their structural strength when they get wet and can be permanently damaged by excessive bending or folding or by foot traffic.
- After a carpet gets wet from water damage and then dries, shrinkage sometimes occurs in the backing system that will lead to wrinkling and puckering.
- Determine extent of damage to the carpet by disengaging it in the corners and inspecting. Inspect for delamination.
- Check the tuft bind by pulling on the tufts. If tufts easily pull out, the latex which binds the primary and secondary backings together has been compromised and carpet replacement may be required.
- Zippering occurs in a loop pile carpet in which tufts are pulled from the backing resulting in long, lengthwise pulls out of the carpet. Zippering occurs when the latex has been damaged due to water damage.
- Check for damage to the sub-floor - especially plywood and parquet. Is the tack strip secure to the floor?
- Move furniture to a dry area and tab or block it if it is wet. Hang drapery with a coat hanger to avoid contact with the wet floor. Extract - clear the vacuum hose at the end of each dry stroke by lifting up the cleaning tool. Using the Water Claw®(See “Related Products” below) Sub-Surface Flood Extractor will speed the operation.
- Use a 100 pound roller(See “Related Products” below) to compress the carpet and padding and force the excess water to the corners for extraction. Fold back all four corners of the room. Cut and remove the exposed padding. Release the carpet at door metals. Work the roller from the center of the room to the corner where the water can be extracted out.
- Do a final extraction of the entire area. If available, use the Aqua-Mount® Auxiliary Vacuum Unit(See “Related Products” below) with your Bane-Clene truckmount.
- Place air movers in a corner with the snout on top of the pad and under the carpet and secure the carpet to the air mover. Float the carpet 4-6 inches off the floor.
- Usually, one air mover is required for every 200 square feet of carpet.
- Avoid walking on the carpet when the air movers are lifting the carpet. DO NOT use air movers where there is active mold - You’ll spread the mold spores!
- To direct airstream as desired, this unit can be positioned flat on floor, at a 45 degree angle upward, or 90 degrees upward.
- Plug power cord into a properly grounded outlet and turn power switch to selected speed.
- For best results, you should allow the air movers to operate on a 24/7 basis for up to a week after the carpet appears to be completely dried inside and out. This ensures that no trapped moisture is remaining in the carpeting or padding.
- In some cases, a dehumidifier is required to remove excess moisture from the room.
- SATURATE the contaminated carpet with an anti-microbial such as MediClean® (Microban)®(See “Related Products” below) or Sporicidin®(See “Related Products” below). Use a stainless steel pump-up sprayer(See “Related Products” below), the Multi-Sprayer®(See “Related Products” below) or the Spray 1™ Electric Sprayer(See “Related Products” below). Wet fogging can be used for inaccessible areas, but is not as effective as spraying. Anti-microbials must contact all affected materials and be allowed at least 10 – 15 minutes dwell time. Pets, plants and animals must not be present during application of anti-microbials.
- Remove all rust and furniture stains from carpets and rugs.
“Sub-Surface” Extraction of Flood Water from Carpet
In many cases, the Water Claw® Sub-Surface Flood Extractor(See “Related Products” below) can be used with a Bane-Clene truckmount equipped with the Aqua-Mount® System(See “Related Products” below) to remove flood water without having to pull the pad or use a roller. The use of the Water Claw Flood Tool greatly increases the speed and effectiveness of water extraction. This process is deceptively fast and easy:
- To initiate flood extraction where carpet is floating on standing water, place tool in the middle of room to draw out excess water only. (At this point DO NOT allow the tool to extract water from pad or face fibers.)
- Water migration in pad is essentially stopped during the succeeding “Sub-Surface” extraction process as excess water (source water) is drawn away as described above.
- Begin the “Sub-Surface” extraction process in one corner. Then check pad to confirm extraction results and adjust to appropriate tool size as needed. (Larger tools are for speed and smaller tools for concentrated suction as needed in cases of Berber, thick pad and/or carpet, or weaker vacuums, etc.)
- Once proper tool size is determined, a rhythm of moving the tool can be quickly mastered by first standing on the tool for 3-5 seconds for extraction.
- To reposition tool, drop one foot back off the tool, then lift slightly with the adjustable waist-height handle, pushing the tool forward with your other foot still in position on the tool. Then replace the tool on the carpet while bringing your other foot back onto the tool. (Overlapping is not recommended.) The total elapsed time from one placement to the next, including extraction time, will typically take 5-7 seconds.
- After the “Sub-Surface” extraction process has been performed, a small amount of moisture will be left on the face fibers, which can then be more quickly and efficiently extracted with a floor tool. This will further reduce drying time.
- Multiple extraction passes are usually ineffective, as “Sub-Surface” extraction is best accomplished while both carpet and pad are saturated.
- DO NOT extract water from face fiber before using the WATER CLAW, as this will cause the tool to suck air through the face fibers, inhibiting the "Sub-Surface" extraction process in most cases.
- If water is present in the pad only, the Water Claw can be used in one of 2 ways:
- Pull the carpet back and extract the pad directly, or
- Saturate the face fibers with a hose or buckets of water; this will raise the water level up through the face fibers to better facilitate extraction.