Can Your Carpet be a Breeding Ground for Allergens and Bacteria?

Can Your Carpet be a Breeding Ground for Allergens and Bacteria? 

Most of the time, whenever you look at carpets which are installed in your home, you’ll think they look clean and that they don’t have any health problems associated with them. If you’re a homeowner who regularly vacuums your carpets, you might easily be convinced that they’re all germ-free and completely healthy for your family members. However, this is a classic example of looks being deceiving, because it’s still entirely possible that your carpets are harboring a great many nasty things, deep down in the fibers.

What settles into your carpet

Any of your family members or anyone who visits your home might actually track in dirt and a variety of other contaminants that can settle into the fibers of your carpets. Believe it or not, this accumulated dirt can eventually outweigh the carpet itself, and can be a serious source of ongoing health problems. It is estimated that 75% of all people who walk on carpets have dirty shoes, and are actually tracking in various pollutants from outdoors.

But this shouldn’t make you think that the big problem lies outdoors because your own indoor air quality could be as much as 10 times worse than the outdoor air quality. Every step which you take or which someone in your home takes can trigger an invisible cloud of contaminants that rises up into the air that gets breathed by occupants of your home. It’s a fairly simple principle – dirty carpets will always mean dirty air.

You might be astounded to learn that any given carpet in your home is capable of holding up to 200,000 bacteria per square inch. While this number may not mean much to you, it will hit home more effectively when you know that this number represents about 4,000 times more bacteria than would be typically found in a residential toilet. 

A sampling of the kinds of contaminants that might well settle into the carpet fibers in your home includes food, beverages, pollen, dust, smoke, dirt, hair, skin cells, contaminants from outdoors, and pet droppings. All these materials add up and sink to the bottom of your carpet, where they slowly decay. This isn’t the end of your problems either, because all these decaying materials become very attractive to insects and other varmints who find them extremely appealing.


Your carpets are actually one of the highest risk areas in your entire home for the development and growth of mold. This is because airborne mold spores are constantly landing on your carpets, where they find plenty of nourishment to sustain them. Mold tends to flourish whenever moisture is present, which is why the carpeting in your bathroom or basement are generally at greater risk than other areas. For the most part, mold is undetectable unless you’re an expert, yet it could be spreading all the time and impacting the health of your home’s occupants. This could trigger skin rashes, respiratory issues, and other symptoms that are normally associated with colds or the flu.


As you might have guessed, carpets are ideal breeding grounds for several different types of bacteria, including salmonella, E. coli, and Campylobacter. All these can trigger illnesses for household occupants, for instance, diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramping, and even worse symptoms. If you haven’t been horrified yet by learning about all the possible contaminants which might be lurking in the deep fibers of your home carpeting, you’re probably just a fearless individual.

Remember that even daily vacuuming will not remove all these contaminants from your carpet. The very best way to keep clean carpets in your home is to have a thorough professional cleaning done periodically, because this will involve a much more powerful vacuum, and it’s a wet process which can soak out all the nasty things hiding deep down in your home’s carpets.