Moldy Carpet Stains
The Smiths Shop for Carpeting
Buying Carpet Direct
I have recently carpeted a Florida room and I am getting a dark gray to black stain on the carpet all along the perimeter where the carpet meets the baseboard. The stain is only about 1/2" wide but it occurs along all four walls. The room is on a cement slab with a particleboard sub floor. I suspect that the stain has something to do with the cement underneath. I am willing to re-carpet the room but what can I do to keep this stain from recurring? I'd appreciate any help you could offer.
LI from Dearborn, MI
Water (or water vapor) bringing "something" through the subfloor into the carpet is probably causing the stain. It could be mildew growth or it could be some sort of chemical stain. Since it is only around the perimeter, I am wondering if perhaps some sort of sealant or plastic tarp was used to cover the slab and moisture is leaking around the edges, producing the damp spots.
You may want to take up some of the subfloor and look underneath the see what's going on. If there is excessive moisture, you might want to remove the entire subfloor and seal the slab with waterproof cement paint. I would consult your local hardware or home store to find the correct product for this application in your area.
If they are not already installed, laying overlapping plastic tarps on the slab will also decrease the moisture infiltration. They should overlap at least a few feet and be pressed tightly around the perimeter of the slab. Ideally, the perimeter should be held in place mechanically with wood strips nailed to the slab. In inaccessible areas, one trick that can be used is to pour sand or gravel over the tarp to stabilize it.
You could, of course, consider putting down heavy plastic tarps underneath the carpet and padding. My advice is... DON'T DO IT! This would indeed isolate the carpet from whatever is causing the problem, but... a really BIG but... you will also be sealing the subfloor as well, and the additional persistent moisture will speed the growth of wood rot fungus.
copyright 2000 G.G. Alonzy
Have a small home repair question for THE NATURAL HANDYMAN? Just click here www.naturalhandyman.com/aitikia
For more home repair information, visit NH's growing list of original home repair articles and quality links www.naturalhandyman.com
If this information has been valuable to you, please consider making a small donation to support NH's free service to the home repair community! For more information, please visit our "Friends" page www.naturalhandyman.com/friends
The Natural Handyman Site Directory
- Home Repair Articles www.naturalhandyman.com/iip
- Home Repair Links Library www.naturalhandyman.com/linkslibrary
- NH's Bookshop www.naturalhandyman.com/bookshop
- Find a handyman at www.naturalhandyman.com/network
- Win unique home repair gifts and prizes at www.naturalhandyman.com/contest
Please read the important copyright and disclaimer information is located at www.naturalhandyman.com/copyright
More Tips & Tools to Help You
Live Better...For Less
- 6 cheap, effective home security solutions
- 5 frugal ways to expand your living space
- Top 10 DIY mistakes made by home 'handymen'
- What's that little switch on my ceiling fan?
- Tips for cleaning home siding
- How to decorate a backyard gazebo Readers' Solutions
- Should I use a HELOC for home remodeling and repairs
- Find the best mortgage rates in your area
- 3 ways to use a mortgage calculator
- Mortgage calculator: Calculate your payment and more
- Home equity calculator: HELOC vs. line of credit
- How much can additional payments save me on my mortgage?
- Who offers the most home insurance discounts?