What Causes Mould And Mildew
Mould and mildew are both caused by humidity a high level of moisture in the air. Mould only starts growing on a surface once its been wet for over 24 hours, so its usually a symptom that your property has a problem with damp. If it does, youre not alone. Its estimated that 1 in 18 properties in England suffers from damp of some description.
Mould and mildew can often be a problem in houses that have naturally high humidity levels, like those near the coast or beside a lake. The moisture levels in the air can increase during long periods of unpleasant weather, and if mould spores get into your property, it can lead to patches appearing.
There are different types of damp, and finding out which one is causing your mould problem is the first step towards stamping it out for good.
Kill Mold Naturally With Tea Tree Oil
Believe it or not, one of the uses for tea tree oil is a fungicide thats surprisingly effective at killing molds and mildews on many different surfaces, from clothes to walls to shower stalls. If youre looking for a healthy, holistic, pleasant-smelling way to kill mold in your home, tea tree oil might be just the ticket.
- Scrub brush, sponge, or rag
If youre cleaning mold in a shower or other well-traveled area, you may be able to spray the area with the tea tree oil solution and leave it. Since youre only using one part tea tree oil for every 48 parts water, theres no need to rinse!
If the area is visibly moldy, you may want to scrub the mold away with a sponge or rag soaked in the tea tree solution instead. In both scenarios, leave the cleaner on the surface without rinsing to help discourage future mold growth. Watch tea tree oil use around pets, as it can be harmful to them if ingested.
How To Get A Professional Company To Cure Penetrating Damp
If your home suffers from damp and mould, I have to be honest with you, there is no cheap, quick fix to the problem.
Damp is usually caused by poorly maintained exterior walls, and no, putting some ordinary paint on the walls will not cure the damp, ever.
The best and most permanent way to cure instances of damp and mould in your home is to choose a Never Paint Again exterior wall coating, which is supplied and applied by our expert team.
It is available in a coloured textured coating, or a clear, transparent and damp proof coating, and if you click those links, you will learn more.
If the product interests you, do get in contact with us.
P.s. our company cannot and will not cure damp from inside, we always treat the walls externally, and the damp will then go.
Please also note this is not a cheap job, nor a 5 minute task. Thank you.
NOTE: If you are browsing for info only, we appreciate your visit to our website, but please do not click to contact us if you only want advice.
Drop a comment on our for information and advice.
However, if you are looking for a reputable company to come around and cure the damp in your home, then please do
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Tip One: Ventilate The House
Mould spores dont like fresh air and yes even though it may be cold outside, you can start by getting some fresh air into the house.
If your bathroom has mould, this is an indication of bad ventilation inside the bathroom and you should always in future open the windows after having a bath or shower, to allow the damp air to dissipate out the window, and not to condense on the colder wall surface.
In future, if your windows have trickle vents, open them!
Bathroom Mold Prevention And Remediation
After you learn how to remove mold, youll want to prevent mold in the future. The key to stopping most mold is to control dampness. The worst infestations usually occur in damp crawlspaces, in attics and walls where water has leaked in from the outside, and in basements with poor foundation drainage. Stopping leaks, ensuring good ventilation in attics, keeping crawlspaces dry and routing water away from the foundation are the best defenses on how to get rid of mold.
Almost every home gets mold, and that means theres a need for mold remediation. Well show you how to remove major mold infestations.
Mildewcide in paint is usually effective for controlling surface mold in damp rooms like bathrooms and outside in shady areas. Many paints already have mildewcide in them. Check with your paint dealer to be sure of mold removal products. You can add mildewcide, although you might void the paint warranty.
Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Read Also: What Causes Mold And Mildew In Your Home
How To Get Rid Of Mould In Shower Heads
Mould can build up inside the shower head and although its usually hidden, it releases harmful spores every time you shower. The best method is to remove the head from its hose and unscrew the section where the water comes out. Immerse both parts in one of the treatment solutions and leave it for several hours. Then scrub the mould away with an old toothbrush.
How To Clean Mold From Wall
Cleaning mold from your wall is the same process as removing it. This cleaning method is a general cleaning method that can clean any kind of mold. White molds, green molds, and black molds.
The process below can also be used to clean mold from brick walls, but you will have to use the brush instead of the cloth to remove the mold off the brick wall.
These are the steps you will need to take.
- Get a spray bottle and add some bleach to it or use some of the bleach cleaning products you have to clean your bathroom.
- Spray it on the surface of the mold and let it sit for a few minutes.
- Depending on how soft or hard the mold is. You will need to use a soft brush or a hard enough cloth to wipe it away.
- Wipe or brush the mold till it is no longer there.
- Repeat this process if the mold still exists.
Remember to always wear a glove when you are using any chemicals when cleaning or doing anything else that involves them.
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Removing Mold From Fabric
If your home has been flooded and mold and bacteria have been left to grow for many days, it may be impossible to salvage fabric items. However, if mildew has developed due to dampness and is caught early, it can easily be removed from most fabrics.
Begin by taking the items outside to brush away as much surface mold as possible and to prevent spreading the mold spores inside your home. If the fabric is washable, use the hottest water recommended on the care label and add a disinfectant. If stains remain, create a solution of oxygen bleach and water and allow the clothes to soak for at least eight hours. Oxygen bleach can be used safely on any washable fabric.
For fabrics that are dry clean only, brush away the mildew outside and then head to a professional cleaner. Identify and point out the stains most fabrics can be successfully restored.
Water In The Foundation
Look out for a build-up of water around your homes base. This can lead to foundational problems for your home if there is a lot of water. At your homes foundation, gathering rainwater can be prevented by sloping your yard outwards from your foundation. In the same line of thought, damp basements are another culprit. Usually, there is no good ventilation in basements. This is an indication that basements could contain higher humidity or moisture amounts compared to other rooms in the home. Also, basements are often colder which means more condensation occurs which leads to humidity and basement.
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What Are Mould And Mildew And Why Do They Occur On Walls
Mould is a kind of fungus that develops from airborne spores. It usually grows in damp, warm conditions without much airflow, which is why household bathrooms and loft spaces often suffer from mould. It is often simply caused by humid conditions and lack of ventilation, but sometimes mould on walls can be due to plumbing leaks, both inside and outside the property. Badly insulated heating pipes can also cause a build-up of moisture behind the walls.
Mildew is the name for the most common type of black mould on walls, characterised by spots that can then spread over larger areas if left untreated. To find out if you have mildew on your walls, apply some bleach onto the affected area with a cloth. If the dark colour fades after a few minutes, itâs mildew. If not, the patch is probably just dirt.
Improve Air Flow In Your Home
According to the EPA, as temperatures drop, the air is able to hold less moisture. Without good air flow in your home, that excess moisture may appear on your walls, windows and floors. To increase circulation, open doors between rooms, move furniture away from walls, and open doors to closets that may be colder than the rooms theyre in. Let fresh air in to reduce moisture and keep mold at bay.
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How To Prevent Mold And Mildew In The Bathroom
Few rooms in the home see as much moisture and humidity as the bathroom. The first step to preventing mold and mildew is making sure your bathroom stays well-ventilated. An exhaust fan will help circulate the air and remove moisture more quickly. These additional actions will help keep your bathroom fresh and mold-free.
If you’re dealing with a mildewed shower curtain made of durable fabric, follow these steps for cleaning it.
Banish Mold Infestations With Professional Help
What gets rid of black mold? Most of the cleaners weve mentioned can snuff out black mold infestations, but we recommend getting professional help for significant black mold growth. This is because Stachybotrys chartarum, or black mold, can be harmful if breathed in large quantities.
If a basement mold problem is really severe, mold removal specialists might turn to fumigation to eradicate the infestation. Whichever method they choose to take care of your mold problem, you can rest assured that a professional will do a thorough job to prevent the black mold areas from returning.
If you dont eradicate the source of the moisture that caused the mold, you could see more mold, but a professional will eradicate all mold spores and roots from an infestation so that the same colony cannot grow back, particularly in the same area.
Dehumidifiers and waterproofing paint can be useful for helping to stave off future mold issues. Wet, moldy surfaces like carpeting and drywall are often too far gone to be salvaged and need a replacement instead.
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What Is Black Mold
Black mold is often found inside houses with excessive moisture damage to wallboard and other surfaces. Much is made of this type of molds toxicity but the mold itself isnt harmful. It does however have the potential to produce mycotoxins that can cause harm to people and pets, depending on the particular species of mold. A rule of thumb should be use caution when removing all molds, especially when in abundance.
Removing Mold From Painted Or Wallpapered Walls
For mold on painted walls, try a natural remover like white vinegar, borax and water. Youll need a spray bottle and a few other items to scrub the walls.
- Combine two tablespoons of borax with 1/4 cup white vinegar and two cups of hot water in a bowl.
- Pour into a spray bottle
- Liberally apply on painted walls.
- Scrub thoroughly and wipe clean, then spray again and let sit for 10 minutes before wiping dry.
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Types Of Basement Mold
Various types of mold will infest your basement. While they are all hideous, not all of them are toxic to humans.
Molds can be divided into two categories:
Allergenic molds usually pose no health risk unless you are extremely sensitive to molds or asthmatic. Black molds, on the other hand, produce a toxic chemical called mycotoxins and are particularly harmful to humans and pets.
Here are the common types of molds that can infest your basement.
Aspergillus is one of the most common household mold species. There are different types of Aspergillus, and most of them thrive well indoors. Some of the Aspergillus molds are allergenic, but some are mycotoxin and should be removed by a specialist, especially if it is something like black mold.
This fungus is dark green and found on damp walls, ceilings, and even furniture. It flourishes in humid environments, but can also grow in areas that are dry with high levels of humidity or condensation.
How Does Mould Affect Health
Mould can cause a whole host of health problems and the following individuals are especially at risk:
- babies and children
- people with existing skin problems, such as eczema
- people with respiratory problems, such as allergies and asthma
- those with a weakened immune system, such as those undergoing chemotherapy
According to the World Health Organisation, a large chunk of the worlds 300 million cases of childhood asthma is linked to prolonged exposure to indoor dampness and mould. Individuals with asthma tend to be allergic to mould and breathing in spores can cause asthma attacks.
But mould doesnt just affect those living with diagnosed respiratory conditions, it can also cause ill health in otherwise healthy people and lead to symptoms including upper respiratory tract problems, shortness of breath, wheezing and coughing.
Similarly, people who live in damp and mouldy homes face an increased risk of depression, as well as increasing the risk of respiratory symptoms and asthma.
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Removing Mold From Books And Papers
Mold will eventually destroy paper, but it can be successfully removed. For expensive books and historically significant papers, consult a professional curator.
Never try to treat damp paper. The mold will smear and become nearly impossible to remove. Allow the paper in books to air dry thoroughly in the sun or place in a sealed container with moisture absorbent material like silica gel or cornstarch sprinkled between the pages.
When the book is dry, head outside and use a soft paintbrush or cloth to gently brush away the mildew from the cover and each page. Slide a sheet of waxed paper under each page to protect the page behind it. Slightly dampen a clean, soft cloth with hydrogen peroxide and gently wipe down each page, allowing it to air dry completely before moving to the next page.
Don’t Finish Your Basement Unless It’s Very Dry
Don’t finish the walls of your basement with insulation and wallboard unless your basement is very dry. Also avoid putting wall-to-wall carpet on your basement floor. If your basement floor is concrete, you can paint it and use area rugs instead. Then you can take the rugs outside to clean and dry them the rugs aren’t as likely to get moldy.
Wanda Olson McGregor Pearce and Dick Stone
Reviewed in 2018
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Coated Or Painted Drywall
How To Treat Damp Walls Before Painting
Before you treat damp, you need to address the source of the problem first. Identify what it is thats causing mould to develop and fix it. If its condensation, follow our recommendations above.
The good news though is that treating a damp wall is really easy and will take next to no time at all.
This should stop damp from coming through a wall. Once the damp has been removed and cured, you should find that the damp smell disappears too.
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