If you have recently had a water leak that has soaked your carpeting you need to work quickly to get it dried up. Leaving water to naturally dry out can become a haven for mold and mildew. If properly dried out quickly, the carpeting can be re-used or re-laid, if it has been pulled up, with no further problems. The key to this however, is the speed needed to effectively dry out the carpeting as quickly as possible.
Rent a carpet cleaner water extractor from your local hardware store. This is the easiest and most effective way to remove water from a saturated carpet. It works like a giant sized vacuum cleaner and will literally suck the water out.
Pull back the carpet for the entire area that is wet. Also pull back the carpet pad. Place towels between the wet carpet and the dry carpet that you are pulling it back onto. Later you will need to re-attach the carpet to the nail strip after it is completely dried.
Suck-up standing water with a wet-dry vacuum. These are commonly called shop vacs and they will hold up to 5 gallons of water before they need to be emptied. They work great for removing standing puddles and will remove the water from soaked carpet padding.
Use fans after the water has been extracted. Place a fan aimed directly at the wet area. Use multiple fans if possible. If the area is large you may need more than one fan. Make sure that the fan hits both the carpeting and the pad. Open windows to ventilate the moist air.