What to do about Stinky Carpet

If your carpet has a bad smell, consider these five potential stinky sources that may require a carpet deodorizer or professional carpet cleaning.

Moisture or dampness (common in the PNW)

Moisture can get underneath the carpet and carpet pad, leading to stinky or musty odors.

Typically that is caused by over watering plants that gets water inderneath the carpet or too much steam from a shower that isnt properly dealt with ( fan or an open window makes a world of difference) or sometimes it comes from a basement.

A water leak can also cause issues as well. Sometimes pipes underneath a house or a heavy rain can cause small leaks under floors.It is the Pacific northwest after all.

If not addressed properly, continued moisture exposure can cause mold and mildew to grow under the carpet padding. Not only will it increase the smell, it also creates a health risk.

Pet odor

When pets use the carpet as a potty palace, you will notice it.

Even after a carpet cleaning, the smell of pet urine may return. This is due to the gases released by the bacteria that are digesting the urine. If any of the urine remains in the rug fibers, it will continue to smell. which is why sometimes a secondary cleaning may be required.

The same is true for vomit, another common problem associated with pets and carpeting.

These bacteria are activated by water, which is why the smell may intensify during a cleaning.

Enzyme treatments are the best solution for eliminating pet smells. Enzymes are particularly effective because they attack the bacteria, thus eliminating the source of the smell.


It might have been a homeowner that smokes or someone who lived in the home years prior that smoked. Smoke odor is more difficut to remove.

If a smoker lives in the home, the carpet can collect the cigarette smoke odor.

While the homeowners may not notice the stench because they live with it, visitors or someone who purchases the home will definitely notice the smoke smell.

There are 3 ways to effectively remove or reduce smoke odor. 1) painting 2) cleaning/carpet and home/ 3) fogging. There are specific fogging cleaning agents that are designed to breakdown smoke odors specifically. It makes a world of difference.

Old age

Carpeting is made from fibers. Over time, those fibers break down. When old carpet begins to small, not a whole lot can be done on a long term scale. This can happen in 5 years or 25 years depending on the use and traffic on the carpet.

Also when carpet is old, it holds and release dusty alergens at a much higher rate than newer carpet. Older carpet can end up costing you even more because it needs to be cleaned much more often

Food/Drink Spills

Lets face it, have you ever left food on a bowl in the dishwasher and forgot to turn it on? You check it 2 days later and it smellls TERRIBLE?! Its the same with your carpet. spilling kool aid or a cocktail along with cheesy nacho dip and your favorite ice cream, its not going to smell like fresh flowers.

Food products have bacteria. like when your pet has an accident, or when you spill food on the carpet, its the bacteria that smells. It's best do clean it up as soon as it happens.

Here is a recent video of us cleaning some carpet.

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