Mold Removal Safety Tips
You wont know the full extent of the mold growth in your unit unless you remove it from the window. Grab some help to safely remove the AC and place it in a sturdy spot for cleaning, like the garage or outdoor work bench. Its best to remove the mold from air conditioner parts outdoors so you have plenty of fresh air to combat the mold and any fumes from the cleaner.
Why Should I Be Preventing Mold
Your health and wellness is the first and foremost reason that mold growth in your home should be taken seriously. Mold reproduces by making spores, small airborne particles that are easily inhaled by the human body. Once in the body, mold spores can cause anything from mild to serious health issues, such as:
- itchy, watery eyes
- increased respiratory illness
- increased asthma attacks
While some types of mold may cause symptoms no more serious than that of the common cold or flu, other types – such as stachybotrys chartarum, or black mold – may cause life threatening health problems, or even death.
S To Take To Confirm The Presence Of Mould In Your Air Conditioner
You should inspect your air conditioning ducts and inside the unit itself for visible signs of mould. Mould can also be located on the air conditioning coil, the drain and on the fan itself.
If you suspect youve got a mould problem, you can also arrange for professional testing to confirm its presence and what type of mould it is. This can be done via a spore count. Its effectively an audit of the number of airborne mould spores and the collection of a sample for laboratory analysis.
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Scrub The Moldy Areas Of The Ac
You need to get a sponge, brush or cloth to soak up the solution and scrub down the affected areas of your AC. You also want to clean the front grille with the same solution. Even if you do not see any mold, it may still be a good idea to scrub down the area just to prevent mold from growing in the future. You should allow the solution to sit for at least 10 minutes. After this time, you need to rinse the AC down with a damp cloth and water. If you still see mold on the unit, you can repeat the scrubbing steps until it goes away.
How To Detect Mold In Your Air Conditioner
Every homeowner should know how to spot mold in their cooling system. It may be difficult to detect that a problem is growing in your house. The more time
spent undetected the more time that the mold can spread, so be careful and check your units on a routine basis.
You can test for mold in your AC system by being aware of what to look for, and what smells occur in your home. Here are some signs that there may be some fungi lurking there:
- A noticeable musty smell near the air vents in the indoor environment.
- The distinct odor increases when the air is running.
- Patches of black fungi are visible around the vents, evaporator coils, or drip pans.
- You or your family have an irritated throat, nose, eyes, or sinus passage when the cooling is on.
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Build A French Drain System
Building a french drain system is one of the most common ways you can push water away from the house.
If you dont know what a French Drain is, it involves digging a trench on the exterior sides of your home.
There are a few different ways in which the French Drain can be built. Sometimes it will be right beside the footing, other times it will be on top of the footing. This is something that your contractor will determine.
Once you dig the trench, you have to lay a pipe down and then fill it back up.
It can be more involved than that and it is not too very hard to do, but it is something better left to a professional.
What Are The Signs Of Mold In Air Conditioners
Its highly unlikely that you will notice black mold in your air conditioner until the infestation has reached a certain level. Common signs to look for include an earth-like, musty smell and flaring up of allergies whenever its in use. Also, its important not to run the system if you are reasonably confident that the ac unit is the source of the problem.
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What Not To Do If Your Air Conditioner Is Mouldy
A strategically sprayed air freshener, scented candle or diffuser is only a band-aid solution to the problem of a mouldy air conditioner. It will only temporarily mask the odour caused by the mould. You need to eliminate the mould and the smell will go with it.
You shouldnt use generalised anti-mould sprays either, because they contain a toxic cocktail of chemicals. Theyll inevitably get into your air conditioning system and from there, become airborne. You, your family or pets will inhale the fumes and can suffer adverse health consequences as a result.
Other chemical cleaners on the market are caustic or corrosive and can actually cause long term damage to the inner workings of your air conditioner, shortening its lifespan and leaving you vulnerable to breakdowns. Thats why you should only ever use a product designed for air conditioners. Otherwise, you might void your warranty.
How Do I Prevent Mold From Growing In My Air Conditioner
Controlling moisture is the key to preventing mold in air conditioners. Unfortunately, air conditioners can also be a source of moisture. Here are some steps you can take to control moisture when using an air conditioner.
Mold growing in an AC unit or in your homes HVAC system is a serious problem, because it allows mold spores to be spread throughout the house. Cleaning up an HVAC mold problem is a difficult and possibly expensive task. The best way to deal with mold in an air conditioner is to control moisture and prevent it from happening at all.
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Does An Air Conditioner Kill Mold
Your air conditioner can do several thingskeep your homes indoor air cooler than outdoor temperatures, help to keep indoor airborne allergens at bay, and control your homes humidity levels. But one thing it cannot do is kill mold. It can help prevent mold, but once it exists, your air conditioner cannot kill it. If you find mold somewhere in your HVAC system, particularly in your air conditioner or ductwork, call Arise Services for assistance. We can guide you on how to rid your home of the mold and help maintain your HVAC system to prevent the mold from recurring.
Why Should You Worry About Mould In Your Air Conditioner
Not all moulds are created equal. Mould is a microscopic organism a fungus. There are good and bad moulds. For example, your camembert or brie cheese relies on mould for its distinctive flavour and texture. And where would we be without the wonder-drug penicillin? Its derived from a type of mould that scientist Alexander Fleming stumbled across. Unfortunately, the types of mould you might discover lurking in your air conditioning unit arent particularly friendly or useful ones. In fact, theyre much more likely to cause you harm than good.
Mould spores are the mechanism through which mould reproduces. When your air conditioning unit is at rest, its the perfect petri dish for a wayward mould spore to grow on. Once comfortably at home in your air conditioner, a mould spore will reproduce. Further spores will be released and become airborne. Theyll spread throughout your home, landing on your food, your clothes and you. And from there youll eat them and breathe them in. If you have an allergic sensitivity to mould, its presence in your air conditioner is likely to trigger a significant reaction. Likewise, if you have asthma or any other respiratory illness, mould is a risk factor that can put you in hospital.
Some moulds are also thought to be responsible for the production of mycotoxins, a leading contributor to serious and life-threatening illnesses such as pneumonia, particularly in children, the elderly and the immune-supressed.
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Removing Molds From Air Conditioner Ducts
How to remove mold from air conditioner ducts? There are various methods that you can find with the help of the internet today, and thanks to that, people will not have a hard time looking for ways to do it. Though there are only two issues with these, and that is if you can do it with ease and if it is convenient and applicable to your situation currently. Well, some may be applicable, and some maybe not.
So dont you worry we can help you out with that if youre finding a worth trying and effective method. For some of you who dont know how molds are produced in a particular area like the ducts, a humid place that has increased water vapor is usually the reason.
If the air thats cold travels through the duct system, water vapor can develop, and when the outer system contains a lot of water vapor.
The droplets of water tend to accumulate rather than evaporate, forming an area where molds can inhabit easily. So with that, make sure to prepare the exact amount of money for materials that you will need furthermore, otherwise you will have a hard time finishing this.
To stop your worries, stand up and start doing some work using the steps that we provided to avoid these pesky molds from growing furthermore. Regardless, here is how to remove mold from air conditioner ducts:
Mold In Central Ac Systems
It probably does not surprise you to hear that mold in air conditioner systems can make you sick. Most people are aware that exposure to household mold can cause illness. Whether the mold is in your air conditioner unit or in your home heating, ventilation and air conditioning ducts, it is a health hazard. And the truth is, if you have mold in your air conditioner, there is probably also mold in the HVAC ducts, since it’s all connected.
Mold in window air conditioning units is also a problem, since window units blow mold spores out into the room. A window unit isn’t connected to your home’s heating and ventilation ducts, though. At least initially, mold blown from a window air conditioning unit affects only the room in which the window unit is installed. Mold in a central air system, on the other hand, can easily affect the entire home.
You can read more about mold in window air conditioners here.
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Illnesses Related To Ac Mold
Mold in your air conditioning system can lead to a wide range of illnesses. All types of mold can trigger allergic reactions in people sensitive to those substances, but some types of mold produce toxic compounds known as mycotoxins. These compounds can lead to serious health issues such as pneumonia and bleeding in the lungs. Mold found anywhere in the home can result in health problems, but when mold is in the air conditioning system, it can be particularly problematic. Microscopic mold spores become airborne when air blows through the ducts and then are dispersed throughout the home, where they can be easily inhaled or develop into new mold colonies. Infants, pregnant women, the elderly, and any persons who have an immune deficiency are most susceptible to mold-related illnesses, but even healthy, young adults can get sick.
How To Remove Mold From Air Conditioner Ducts And Other Parts
Youre here for this information, and we provide step by step mold removal instructions.
Heres your supply list to remove AC mold:
- Safety first Face mask and nitrile or latex gloves. You might want to slip leather/mechanics gloves over the nitrile gloves when cleaning the fins or interior of the AC. There are sharp parts to avoid.
- Window AC Cleaners Antibacterial dish soap for the washable filter, Tilex or similar cleanser that lists on its label that it kills mold. If you dont have antibacterial dish soap, the Tilex can be used on the filter. We prefer Tilex because it is specially formulated to kill and remove mold and mildew.
- Cleaning Tools & supplies Nylon scrub brush, cloth rag or paper towel, vacuum cleaner with crevice tool and upholstery brush.
- Hand tools Screwdriver set.
How to Clean the Washable Filter:
This is an easy first step to get you rolling.
If there is black mold on the frame of the filter, spray it with Tilex, let it sit a few minutes, and wipe it off.
Then proceed with general AC filter cleaning:
1). If you have antibacterial dish soap, put the stopper in a utility tub, bathtub or large sink. Fill it with 2 of water, and pour in a liberal dose of dish soap. Swirl it to mix the soap.
2). Remove the grille from the front of the AC and remove the filter, or simply slide the filter out of its slot . Most grilles have clips a few have screws.
3). Drop the filter in the soapy water or spray it on both sides with Tilex. Let it sit for 15 minutes .
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What Causes Black Mold In Air Vents And Ducts
Mold in air ducts most commonly occurs when there is moisture inside the ductwork. As cool air flows through the vents on hot days, the moisture in the air can condense inside the air vent. You can see the same principle at work when you drink an icy beverage, and water beads up on the outside of the glass. When moisture is present, mold can flourish inside vents. The mildew can be introduced into the vents in several ways.
Mold spores are generally air borne, or spread through air. Spores can enter the duct work by simply blowing in from another area of the home, or from outside. The conditions need to be right for the spores to develop, however. A single mould spore can blow inside your home and begin to develop into a colony if the conditions are right. Warmer, moist environments are ideal for mildew spores to grow.
How To Remove Mold From Your Air Conditioner
If you think there is mold from your air conditioner, we highly advise addressing the issue right away.
However, considering the risks involved in the job, its best to leave this work up to qualified and experienced HVAC contractors. These people have the necessary skills and expertise to correctly handle any air conditioner problems, including mold growth issues.
So, contact a qualified HVAC contractor to come, insect, clean, and maintain your air conditioner. The best part here is that they wont only remove mold but also prevent further infestation.
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How To Clean Mold In Air Ducts
When cleaning and disinfecting ductwork, you will need to have a chemical cleaner. The most budget friendly, and also the most effective, solution to choose is a mixture of chlorine bleach and water. For each gallon of water you use, you will add one cup of bleach. Make sure that you can reach all the duct work or you may not eliminate the spores. It is important to know that you cannot simply remove the mildew using a cloth or mop. All the spores must be killed for the problem to be fully resolved.
In general, do it yourself mold removal in air ducts is a difficult task that may not result in the total eradication of the spores that are present. This is particularly true if you have insulated vents. Any insulated vents that you have will need to be totally replaced in order to kill the mold that is present in the home. You will also need to fully inspect the interior of the furnace or heating system, including the coils, to determine the root cause of the mold contamination.
Prevent Mold Growth Indoors
Mold grows indoors for a number of reasons. First, our homes are made up of organic materials that would normally be growing in the wild – wood and wood products, for example. Secondly, our homes often prevent fresh air from reaching all spots, and motionless spaces that collect humidity are prime locations for mold to begin growing. The magical ingredient for mold growth is moisture, and warm air is one of the ways water can move around your home.
Trapped humid air can begin to help spawn a mold colony in two ways – it can condense onto a colder surface or it can be absorbed into another material. However it travels, mold is an unwanted and dangerous thing to have growing in your home. Prevention is, as they say, nine tenths of the cure, and with mold this is equally as true.
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Signs Of Mold In & Around Your Ac Venting
There are various signs of mold in and around the AC venting, including odor, visible mold, mildew, and allergy reactions.
Mold smell coming from AC vents is usually the first sign one experiences. The trapped moisture becomes stale in a poorly ventilated home, and soon there will be a persistent foul odor, especially if the AC is running.
Usually, the musty smell becomes quite strong near the AC unit. If the mold stays there for long, the whole house will soon be in havoc. I recommend you call for professional help the first day you smell this musty odor to prevent mold from spreading further.
Visible Mold & Mildew
Sometimes, mold and mildew in vents and around the air ducts become so big that one can easily spot them. This formation happens after the AC condenser coils extract moisture from the warm air, settling in and around the AC vents.
Here is another obvious sign of mold growing in and around the AC vents. The biggest side effect of being exposed to mold is feeling sickly. Whoever breathes in tiny mold spores will most likely suffer from allergy-like symptoms.
Homeowners might experience headaches, nasal congestion, nausea, itchy eyes, irritated throat, and skin rashes.
With such illnesses, I highly recommend stopping using the AC unit until the mold is cleaned out. Prolonged exposure to mold spores can make the situation even worse.