The Difference Between Mildew And Mold
Mold removal can be serious business, so before you begin, its important to know if you are dealing with mildew or mold. Both thrive in warm, damp areas of your home.
Mildew is typically white, gray, or yellow, grows on the surface of warm, wet areas of your home, like bathrooms, kitchens, and basements, and has a powdery, almost fluffy appearance.
Mildew frequently occurs on fabric, paper, leather items, floors, walls, or ceilings in humid places like the bathrooms or laundry and utility areas. Mildew can also grow on potatoes or grapes that are not correctly stored.
Mold tends to be green or black, grows underneath the surface of anything that has gotten wet, especially carpets or behind drywall, and looks slimy or fuzzy. Most often found on food such as bread, cheese, or meat that are beyond their fresh date, mold is prevalent in sheds, garages, and crawl spaces. Boats and vehicles are susceptible to mold as well. A good deep cleaning is usually all thats needed to get rid of mildew stains and odor. Apple cider vinegar is arguably better than bleach due to its antibacterial acidic nature. Fill a spray bottle and saturate the area, let sit for a half-hour, wipe and rinse well. Dry all surfaces well to prevent future occurrences.
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How To Remove Mold Smells Around The House
Treating Clothing Clothing that has gotten wet and not dried promptly will often have a damp, icky odor. Think wet towels or a load of laundry forgotten in the washing machine.1 Rewash using the hottest water possible.2 For white clothes, chlorine bleach works best.3 For darker colors, add one cup of vinegar or 1 cup of baking soda to wash water.4 If the odor is particularly bad, you can add ½ cup pine-scented cleaner. The pine smell and any other offending traces will be gone after a cycle in the dryer.
Removing Mold/Mildew from the Washing Machine Sometimes the mildewy smell is coming from your washing machine itself.1 Always leave the lid open when not in use so that the drum can dry naturally.2 For top-loading machines, pour ½ cup of baking soda and 2 cups of vinegar in an empty washer.3 Run a cycle using hot water.4 For front-loading washers, wipe the gasket around the door with warm soapy water.
Other Helpful Tips: Ensure you are using the proper detergent. High-efficiency appliances must have detergent designed for them. Regular formulas can produce an excess of suds, leading to residue being left behind.
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How Do You Clean The Drain Pipes
I recommend that you inspect your drains often for any signs of leaks, microbial growth, and foul smells. If any leaks and or smells are found, fix or clean them immediately.
Contrary to popular belief, you do not want to pour bleach down your drains. Bleach is made with highly toxic chlorine that can produce gasses that you are your family breathe in and it also contaminates our environment and;our oceans. People who use bleach in their homes and poisoning themselves, their families and the world so dont let that be you!
A quick, safe and easy fungicide you can make that will kill the mold and get rid of the smell is a;combination of baking soda, white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide, and hot water.
Here are 3 quick steps to cleaning your drains:
Step 1:;Get a half a cup some baking soda and slowly pour down the offending drain and let it sit overnight. This will start to kill the mold and dry up the slime.
Step 2:;The next day, get 2 cups of white cleaning vinegar or hydrogen peroxide and pour it down the same drain. It should start to foam. This will also kill the mold and start to loosen the mold colonys hold on the inside of the pipes.
Step 3:;Next, get about 5-6 cups of very hot water and then pour it down the drain to wash away the dead mold, baking soda, and vinegar or hydrogen peroxide. You do not want to use boiling water because it can damage your pipes and connections. Especially if they are made of PVC.
Why Does My Home Smell Like Mold
The reason your home smells like mildew or mold is because it is likely there are spores floating around in the air. Your homes ventilation system could be causing a little bit of humidity to get trapped inside, which breeds these moldy smells.
These mold spores can grow anywhere, but they tend to grow most often in places with less traffic or extra moisture .
You might think that mold and musty odors only happen in old homes, but they can grow even in new houses and buildings. Mold just needs darkness, air, moisture, and warmth to grow.
So, if you have begun to smell mold in your home, how do you get rid of it?
Dont worry there are a few ways you can get rid of that musty smell quickly and easily!
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How To Get Mildew Smell From Laundry
If you’ve ever accidentally left your laundry in the washer, you know that musty smell. And it seems even rewashing doesn’t get that smell out of your towels. To eliminate the musty smell, you need:
20 Mule Team Borax
After grabbing the Borax, add one cup to your laundry and wash the load as normal.
Problems In The Attic Leading To Musty Odors
Odors that are caused by issues in the attic can be a nuisance because they are not simple to diagnose.
The most issue to diagnose is of course roof leaks. You start seeing stains when it gets bad enough and you easily figure it out.
Unfortunately, it’s not always quite that simple.
There are other issues that can arise in the attic that can lead to your home smelling like mold.
It could have been a problem brewing for years since the day your house was built or it could have been due to the things moved around by people that were doing work in the attic.
Ways To Get Rid Of Moldy Odors In Your Basement Or Crawlspace
If youve been fighting mold in your basement or crawlspace, then you know how difficult it is to get the smell to go away. A few things you can try are:
- Placing bowls of apple cider vinegar around the area
- Sitting out open containers of cat litter
- Spread baking soda throughout your basement or crawlspace
If your basement or crawlspace is completely dry and mold-free, these techniques should absorb the smell. However, in spaces like this that are prone to moisture, it can be hard to tell if the problem is solved, or if youre simply covering it up.
How To Remove That Mildew Smell In 5 Steps
- Step 1: Find the source of the mildew.
- Step 2: Protect yourself with respiratory protection and gloves, and mix one cup of bleach with one gallon of warm water.
- Step 3: Dip a toothbrush into the bleach mixture and scrub vigorously.
- Step 4: Repeat until the mildew is gone.
- Step 5: Dry the area fully with a rag or towel.
Here are more details on each step of the process.
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Mold In Dreadlocks: How To Stop Your Dreads From Stinking
Do your dreadlocks get stinky whenever they get wet? Kinda like a wet dog smell? And you want to get rid of it?
You might have mold in your dreadlocks also known as dread-rot.
You will find below tips on how to avoid your dreadlocks to smell badly and how to remove the smell and mildew effectively.
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Prevention Is Better Than Cure Remember
If the problem of a musty smell recurs around your home from time to time, and you dont have enough time, patience or energy to deal with it thoroughly on every single instance, there are several prevention methods you could employ. These should serve you well for several months at a time, without forcing you to go through a rigorous cleaning regimen every time the problem arises.
Place sachets or canisters of silica gel inside safes, between clothes, and inside cupboards and other similar spaces to keep moisture, and therefore foul odors, at bay
Place a bowl of fresh coffee grounds in cupboards and other places where musty smells are likely to arise. Coffee grounds are excellent at absorbing such smells. Remove and replace as required
If books, papers and the like begin to show signs of mildew, place them in direct sunlight for a few hours, until completely dry. Make sure to remove them in time, so as to prevent the print from fading
If possible, set up small fans or heaters in areas of the house that are prone to developing mold or mildew, and switch them on from time to time, to air out these damp spaces
If you have a dehumidifier in the basement or anywhere else in the house, make sure to keep it running this will reduce chances of stagnant air allowing bacteria to thrive, and is much more convenient and time-efficient than if you keep turning it on and off at regular intervals
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How To Remove Mold From Air Conditioner
We dont recommend that homeowners attempt to clean a central air unit or ventilation . If, on an inspection of a small self-contained unit, you have decided to tackle it yourself, heres what youll need to do:
If youre intimidated by the above work, remember: hiring a mold removal expert is always a safe and sure-fire way of getting mold eradicated.
How To Prevent Musty Smells From Coming Back
Congratulations! You did the thing and banished that musty smell!Now that youâve successfully rid your home of mustiness, though, you want to keep it that way. A few rules of thumb will help keep your living space smelling its freshest:
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Deodorizing Your Carpet Why Is It Important
You need to deodorize your carpet from time to time. It is best for you to deodorize your carpet at least once per two weeks to keep the carpet clean and free from any bacteria, viruses, and other problems. Deodorizing the carpet can also help you with preventing the musty smell in your carpet, as it will prevent any mold and mildew from growing on the carpet surface. Its also easy to do, so you dont need to do various complicated steps just to keep your carpet fresh.
Deodorizing your carpet should become one of your carpet cleaning routines. Here are some benefits when you keep a schedule to deodorize your carpet:
- No more unpleasant smell. You can prevent your carpet from producing any unpleasant odor, including a musty smell.
- No more dangerous viruses and bacteria. You can kill viruses and bacteria from your carpet and prevent them from becoming a risk to your health and well-being.
- Getting rid of the bed bugs. You can also prevent bed bugs from breeding inside the carpet fabrics.
- Keep the carpet fresh. You can keep the smell of the carpet fresh throughout the week.
- Keeping your home environment healthy. By deodorizing your carpet, you can also keep the home environment free from any health risks, because carpets are one of the most common sources of viruses and bacteria at home.
How To Fix Humidity Problems In The Home
A home that has high relative humidity problems indicates there is a problems with the HVAC system, ventilation or poor living habits such as running the air conditioning with the windows open. A licensed HVAC contractor or engineer may need to be contacted.
But that sounds expensive, right?
Well another option is:
Get an external dehumidifier. This is especially good if you are just having a humidity problem in one section of the home.
External dehumidifiers can work great and don’t necessarily need to be ran 24 hours a day. You can run it for a few hours in a room while you are somewhere else in the home and it can make a big difference.
The downside about external dehumidifiers is they need to be emptied because they fill up with water pretty easily.
To prevent humidity problems that can lead to condensation, you should also make sure the air conditioning is set to the “Auto” position and not “On”. You will really start to see mold growing on your clothes if you do this.
How To Treat Mold On A Plywood Subfloor: Your 10
The signs of mold under hardwood floors, carpets and vinyl are usually the same. You notice dark patches on the floor or a musty smell throughout the room. You pull up a small corner of flooring and expose the problem.
Youre looking at a big DIY project. Start by making sure youve taken care of the moisture source, and then follow these 10 steps for cleaning mold from a plywood subfloor.
Stagnant Air In The House
Stagnant air can sometimes be confused with mold. Air flow within a home is extremely important. If there have been no doors or windows open and the HVAC system has not been running for a substantial period of time, this can lead to an odor.
Each home needs many air exchanges per day.
If you walk into a home that hasn’t been accessed for at least a few weeks with a minimal amount of air exchanges you will get a whiff when walking through the front door.
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Expose The Moldy Subfloor
Depending on the type of floor in the room, use one of these techniques to remove it and any underlayment. You need to completely expose all moldy subflooring.
Pry up hardwood floors one board at a time starting at one edge of the room.
Pull back and tear out carpet and padding, and pry up tack boards.
Cut slits in linoleum floors in the bathroom or kitchen, and;scrape up flooring and backing.
Fix Any Water Leaks Or Moisture Problems
You can do all the cleaning you want, but if you do not take measures to fix any water leaks or other moisture problems, you will find yourself right back at square one. The CDC confirms this, saying, Mold will grow in places with a lot of moisture, such as around leaks in roofs, windows, or pipes, or where there has been flooding. Once you have identified the source of the musty smell in your home, decide whether it requires maintenance that you can do yourself or if it makes more sense to hire a contractor to do the work for you. If you are renting, keep in mind that most leases require your landlord to pay for the repairs.
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Products Youll Need In Order To Remove Mold Smell
Because youre just an amateur mold cleaning worker, its best to equip yourself with the things you need to protect yourself and speed up your productivity
- Face mask: Wearing a mask to avoid breathing mold spores and chemicals when cleaning.
- Protective glasses: Mold can cause itchy and burning eyes; therefore, wearing protective glasses is essential.
- Rubber gloves: You dont want your hands and skin to get exposed to strong chemicals.
- Scrubber: You will need a high-quality scrubber with soft bristles to scrub off any moldy spots, especially large ones.
- Toothbrush: If the area is quite small and narrow, a toothbrush might be a more effective option.
- Cleaning rags: After the cleaning process, you use rags or absorbent cloths to remove residual mold and moisture.
- Plastic bags: Use these to keep all the material and discard as soon as you finish.