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How Long Does it Take for Carpets to Dry After Cleaning?

Whether at home or in a professional space, carpets are always vulnerable to regular wear and tear. Your carpet can be a magnet for dirt, dust, food particles, pet urine and dander. These substances leave stains on the carpet that can be challenging to remove.

No matter what type of carpet you use, regular professional carpet cleaning services are essential to keep them looking clean and fresh. However, once the cleaning session is over, you must ensure they are completely dry before reentering the room.

One concern that remains is the carpet not drying after cleaning. This is especially true for homeowners trying to keep their children out of the way while the carpet dries or when anticipating visitors.

Steam cleaning is among the most effective methods for cleaning carpets. This technique, also known as hot water extraction, is the only method that thoroughly removes debris and bacteria from deep within the carpet fibres. However, this method requires the use of water, which can cause carpets to remain damp for an extended period of time.

Dry Carpets After Cleaning

What is the Drying Time for Carpet Cleaning?

The drying time for different types of carpets varies depending on the material. Carpets made from manufactured materials tend to dry faster than carpets made from naturally-found materials.

Nylon Carpet

Nylon is the most common synthetic fibre used to make carpets. Nylon carpets are durable, affordable, and stain-resistant. If you have a nylon carpet, the best method to clean your carpet is through hot water extraction or steam cleaning. Nylon carpets usually take 4 to 8 hours to dry after cleaning.

Polyester Carpet 

Similar to nylon carpets, polyester carpets are also durable, affordable, and stain-resistant. However, polyester carpets are softer and more environmentally friendly compared to nylon. The best way to clean this type of carpet is by using a combination of vacuuming and low-moisture cleaning methods, as they have a higher absorbency rate than nylon. Polyester carpets tend to take longer to dry, at around 8 to 24 hours.

Woollen Carpet

Wool is a natural material known for its durability and sustainable nature. It is stain-resistant and does not require frequent cleaning. It is also more flame-resistant compared to synthetic carpets, making it a safer option. 

However, woollen carpets can be quite hard to maintain as the fibres are more delicate and prone to shrinking when exposed to excessive moisture. The best techniques for wool carpet cleaning are dry cleaning or cleaning methods that require low moisture. After cleaning, woollen carpet takes at least 24 hours to dry properly.

Cotton Carpet

Cotton is another natural material that is entirely organic and can be extremely soft. However, cotton carpets may also be some of the most expensive carpets you can buy. 

Unlike wool, cotton easily stains. However, cotton carpets are relatively easy to clean. To clean a cotton carpet, it’s best to employ gentle cleaning techniques. These carpets generally take 8 to 24 hours to dry completely. However, thinner cotton carpets may dry faster than thicker ones.

Olefin Carpet

Olefin carpets are made from a synthetic type of carpet fibre created from plastic which makes it water-resistant. In comparison to natural fibres, Olefin fibre is solution-dyed, which means it will not fade quickly under direct sunlight. 

However, olefin is not as resilient as nylon since it is sensitive to friction. To clean an olefin carpet, it’s best to use hot water extraction or steam cleaning. Olefin carpets dry relatively quickly; the drying time usually ranges from 2 to 4 hours after cleaning.

Dry Carpets After Cleaning

Why It’s Important to Dry Your Carpet Properly 

Steam cleaning and other traditional carpet cleaning methods can leave your carpet and the padding underneath saturated in water for at least 24 to 48 hours.

Carpets that take too long to dry are more likely to harbour bacteria, mould and mildew. It is dangerous because it can trigger asthma attacks, allergies, and other health issues besides emitting a foul odour.

Factors that Affect Carpet Drying Times

Drying a wet carpet can be stressful and challenging. The drying time for carpet cleaning varies greatly depending on various factors. Multiple circumstances could influence how long a carpet takes to dry. The most important aspects that determine carpet drying times are the cleaning and drying procedures, but there are other factors to take into account as well, such as:

Carpet Materials

The type of material your carpet is made of affects drying time the most, as some carpets dry faster than others. Drying time might vary from a few hours to a few days. Wool carpets can take up to 24 hours to dry or even much longer in lower temperatures.

On the other hand, synthetic carpets are ideal for steam cleaning since they do not retain as much moisture and dry in significantly less time than carpets made with natural materials.


Carpet drying time is also affected by the temperature. The ideal temperature range for faster carpet drying is between 20 and 30 degrees Celsius.

Moisture in the carpet will evaporate faster when the temperature is higher. More water will evaporate off the carpet and be carried away by the air when the air is warmer because the air can carry more moisture.

On the other hand, if the room is too cool, moisture in the carpet may have a harder time escaping. This can make drying take longer and promote the growth of mould and mildew.

If you want your carpets to dry quickly after steam cleaning, wait for a sunny, warm day.


Humidity is crucial in drying a freshly-cleaned carpet. The carpet will dry faster if the humidity is low. This is because moisture escapes more easily into dry air, speeding up the drying process. Most areas, especially those near the shore, experience low humidity on extremely hot days, speeding up the drying process.  

On the other hand, humidity and drying time are increased by the high moisture content of the air that prevails during the rainy season. Various drying techniques are available to help you combat the extra moisture from the weather.

Fastest Way to Dry Carpets

If you notice that your carpet hasn’t dried after 24 hours, it’s time to consider additional carpet drying techniques. Here are some ways you can speed up the carpet drying process:

Improve Ventilation

Carpets dry faster in well-ventilated rooms. Keep your room well-ventilated by leaving the doors and windows open for a few hours to circulate fresh air. It’s best to do this right after a professional carpet cleaning service.

Keep the Fan/s On

Whether you have a ceiling fan or a standing fan, keep them on to speed up the drying process. Overhead fans are the best at improving air circulation in the room, but if you have a standing fan, you can point it directly toward the carpet. 

Renting carpet blowers is another option; they are more efficient at removing moisture from the carpet’s surface and underlay.

Use a Dehumidifier

A dehumidifier is a great option for people living in a relatively humid area. Dehumidifiers extract moisture from the air, storing it or directing it toward a drain. Keep in mind that you’ll need to empty the storage tank after every few hours. You’ll be surprised how much moisture it can absorb from freshly cleaned carpets.

You can use two dehumidifiers at the same time to reduce moisture faster. However, you should avoid keeping the windows open while using a dehumidifier, as this will make it less effective.

Move Your Furniture

Moving furniture away from the room can improve air circulation. When drying your carpet, move all your furniture away, including sofas and chairs. 

Although it can be tempting to put them back into their original positions while your carpet is halfway dry, only move them back when it is completely dry, or you’ll run into mould and mildew issues.

Use a Wet Vacuum Cleaner

A wet vacuum cleaner is made specifically to remove moisture and liquids from surfaces. This is especially helpful after steam cleaning when the carpet is slightly damp.

A wet vacuum can speed up drying by sucking water out of the carpet’s fibres and padding. It uses suction to extract water from the carpet, resulting in a faster drying time. The water in the carpet is sucked up into the vacuum’s collection tank by the powerful suction created by the motor.

It’s worth noting that some wet vacuums are equipped with a heater and fan to speed up the drying process. The drying process becomes more effective when directing warm air onto the carpet. While the suction draws the water out of the carpet, the heated air helps evaporate the liquid.

To guarantee every last drop of moisture has been sucked up, vacuum all four corners of the room for the best results. 

It’s Time to Hire Professional Rug Cleaning Experts 

Whether you need silk rug cleaning, or Persian rug cleaning, there are many advantages to having your carpets cleaned by experts. You must get your carpets cleaned by a professional at least once a year. Getting regular rug cleaning services helps maintain its beauty and cleanliness while protecting your house from the harmful effects of dirt and grime. Nevertheless, before putting your feet on the carpet, ensure it is entirely dry.

Whether you want your rugs dusted, cleaned, or repaired, Love Your Rug has the best technology and techniques to deliver the highest quality service.
We use eco-friendly materials and don’t leave behind any residue that could harm kids or pets. Our expert carpet cleaners will make your carpet look and smell brand new. For a free, tailored estimate, please get in touch. We know that every carpet issue is different, so we always advise calling us for a free estimate.

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