How To Remove And Clean Up Mold From Wood
Mold! Its nasty. Its ugly. You dont want it in any part of your house. Especially on woods. There is not undoubtedly a home that is immune to mold growth. While not all mold is dangerous, how can you tell?
Thats what this article is all about. Since wood is porous and the material itself is hygroscopic, it has a tendency to soak up water and retain it.
Think of it like a sponge. Makes sense? Now, what any of these have to do with mold?
Good point. Before I answer this question, lets see actually how mold forms in the first place.
Mold grows in damp places where moisture builds up the most. Before you can clean up the mold, you need to estimate the situation.
Start by distinguishing the full extent of mold growth in the affected area. This could be either easy or difficult depending on your situation.
If the contaminated area is small, like the size of plywood, you can deal it with yourself. For bigger infected areas, its better to leave it to the pros.
How To Identify Mold On Wood
Wood is notorious for mold growth as it easily absorbs water making it a perfect environment for mold to grow . If you notice patches of black dots, green streaks or white discoloration on your wood surfaces, this is a sign of mold growth. Youll need to take action immediately.
Hundreds of species of mold are present in indoor and outdoor environments. While many mold species are safe, some can be hazardous to your health, especially if they grow inside your home .
Use A Dehumidifier To Prevent More From Growing
Once your job is complete , taking some preventative measures might be worth your time so that you arent going through this again.Your top priority for mold prevention is humidity in your home. This is often an issue in basements during warmer months. Mold and mildew are going to thrive in moist environments, so dont let them!
A dehumidifier will help keep the humidity down and mold from growing.Another top priority is fixing anywhere that does have a dampness problem. That may mean getting some paint to seal basement walls or having areas of your home fixed professionally if its a severe problem.
Last but not least, make sure to get plenty of ventilation in your home. Fresh air and air flow will help prevent things from settling down and keep your house nice and clean.
Also Check: How To Clean Mold Off Plastic Cutting Board
How Do You Identify Mold On Wood
Perhaps the scariest thing about black mold is that even with the significant hazards it poses, it is not easy to identify. For most people, the first sign that warns them of mold is the musty and earthy smell associated with mold. Mold generally prefers damp places and will typically start from the corner and spread out. If you can see discoloration on the wood surface, accompanied by the smell, that is usually a pretty good indicator of dealing with mold.
Dark spots and discolorations can also get confused with mold. These discolorations on wood can be due to natural wood staining, iron stains, sun exposure, and mineral discolorations. If you can see streaks leading from where you have fasteners in your wood, it is probably just iron stains, while greyed wood can be because of sun exposure. Discoloration on a moist piece of wood and the production of a musty smell is the best mold indicator.
If you are still having a problem confirming the presence of mold on wood, you can invest in a mold testing kit or call in a professional to look at it.
How Do We Detect Mold In Places Where It Is Not Visible
Mold is hard to detect because it can also be formed in places out of sight: after large furniture objects, for example.
It is possible to have mold under the parquet, in case you do not see it, but it can affect your health, as well as the one from visible places.
You can realize that there is mold in your house if you feel a specific smell of moisture.
The smell of mold resembles that of moist soil. If you spend a lot of time at home, there is a chance you will not feel it.
However, if you return home after spending some time away, you smell this smell, but do not find the place where it formed, you should investigate its source. If you do not see it behind the furniture items, you should also check the floor.
Don’t Miss: How To Clean Mold Off Canvas
Identify The Right Solution
There are a lot of commercial products that will tell you how to clean mildew from wood furniture, and they can be great pre-mixed solutions for tackling your mold problems.
But, before you begin, make sure your cleaning solution is appropriate for your wood furniture. We have a great index of cleaning solutions here.
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.
Don’t Miss: Marine 31 Mildew Remover Ingredients
Physically Clean Moldy Wood Surfaces Dry The Wood Flooring Before Installation
Here we describe cleaning mold off of wood flooring products that have not yet been installed in a building.
Except where major costs are at issue that would be effected by a determination of the type of material or mold present, or where there are other reasons to test for mold, in our opinion testing is not necessary for small mold cleanup jobs .
In any case you can physically clean the surfaces to remove the mold.
Physically cleaning means wiping, scrubbing with a scrubby sponge and any household cleaner. Don’t waste money or time with mold killing washes, it’s not necessary, and using bleach or similar agents can create a cosmetic problem or a problem with future adhesion of finish coatings on the flooring upper surface after installation.
Watch out: be sure that your wood flooring has dried properly before it is installed or flooring shrinkage, gaps, or even more serious problems may occur.
The wood should be below 18% moisture before any coatings are applied, and it should be thoroughly acclimated to the building interior where it is to be installed before it is secured in place. This can mean storing the wood in the destination building for days or longer before it is installed.
If an exposed flooring surface remains stained even after surface mold has been removed, you will need to sand that surface – a step typically performed after the flooring has been installed.
Dealing With Heavier Mold
Even after all that, if the mold still wont go away, it means you are dealing with heavy mold. What I mean by that is the mold is more likely to have penetrated the wood surface.
It doesnt matter if the wood is raw or finished, you need to deal with it with a stronger solution. Here are the main ingredients for that
- 1-part detergent,
Don’t Miss: Cleaning Mold On Boat Seats
Is Vinegar More Effective Than Bleach
Vinegar truly is better than bleach at killing mold. The EPA does not recommend using bleach to kill or remove mold, except in special circumstances. In most cases, a background level of mold spores will remain after the application of bleach.
Bleach only kills surface mold, not the membrane underneath, according to ServiceMaster. That means the mold will grow back. In fact, recognizing the bleach as a threat, the mold will grow back even stronger. When bleach is used on porous surfaces like drywall or wood, mold membranes will move deeper into the surface to avoid the chemical.
Sand The Affected Area
As we mentioned above, there are varying levels of fungi growth and different mold species. If you catch the problem soon enough, the mold on wood may just be on the surface. But if its been growing for a while, the fungi roots may have penetrated deeper into the wood.
If thats the case, a single scrubbing will not prevent mold re-growth. To get deeper into the wood, you need to use a sanding process. This process is the same as you would use if you were to research how to remove mold from drywall. The treatment needs to penetrate deep into the affected material.
At this stage, youll want to put on the safety goggles to prevent wood chips from getting in your eyes. Either by hand or using an electric sander at a low-abrasive setting, lightly sand the area you cleaned in Step 3. Then apply the solution in the spray bottle and scrub again in the same area.
Repeat the process until you have scrubbed away any remaining fungal residue.
TIP: Start with the lowest level of grit in your sanding material and build up from there. Start with #100-grit sandpaper for the first pass. If this doesnt penetrate deep enough into the wood to get rid of all the mold, move up to #220-grit sandpaper and repeat the scrubbing and sanding process. Also, remember when dealing with furniture that some types of wood damage more easily from sanding than others. When in doubt, consult a professional before you start to avoid damaging your furniture.
Don’t Miss: How To Clean Mold Off Canvas
Cleaning And Drying The Contaminated Area
Once you are done with the scrubbing and sanding, it is high time to clean up and dry your working area.
The first task you need to do is to pick up any residue or items that have direct contact with the fungi during the mold removal process. This task is a great preventive action for mold regrowth.
Drying the area you worked is essential as well. Regardless of the wooden objects you are dealing with, whether they are wooden furniture, walls, or floors, they should be air-dried in well-ventilated areas.
Finally, ensure the area is dried entirely by seeing or touching the surface.
Missing Insulation Feeds Mold
Warm air seeks gaps in the insulation, and when it hits colder surfaces as it flows out of or into the house, water condenseswhich then feeds mold. These spots often occur on outside walls near floors or windows, at corners and around outlets and lights. If the mold disappears after cleaning it and lowering indoor humidity with a dehumidifier or vent fan, just keep an eye on it. If it recurs, open the wall and fix the problem. Learn how to properly use expanding foam.
Don’t Miss: How To Get Rid Of Airborne Mold In House
Best Ways To Remove Mold From Wood
Because black mold on wood can cause harmful health affects, is unsightly, and can potentially weaken wood structures, it is very important to remove it as soon as possible. Although black mold removal may seem daunting, the job can be completed with just a few steps. There are several techniques that can be used for to remove black mold from wood.
Reader Question: How Should We Clean Moldy Wood Framing In Our New Home
We are building a new home, the wood framing has mold, the walls are still open. How should the builder clean or remove the mold? – Linda Lewis 4/7/2013
Thanks for the question Linda.
If the mold is ONLY the cosmetic black mold that we describe
at BLACK COSMETIC MOLD then it really is only cosmetic and could be left in place.
There are two difficulties with this:
- First you may have trouble recognizing the cosmetic mold I describe in that article, though sometimes the growth patterns make it clear. To address this you could spend roughly $50. to send a representative tape sample of the mold to a mold test lab for confirmation.
- Second, while the black mold I describe is indeed harmless on framing lumber and virtually always came in on the lumber from the lumber yard, also one wants toWatch out: in some cases, particularly on lumber that has been wet, or on treated lumber, my own field and lab tests have found Aspergillus sp. and Penicillium sp. growing among the harmless black mold.
So we might want to clean the lumber.
I tend to stay away from labor intensive approaches and from incomplete approaches . Keep us posted and send along some photos if you can as what you learn may help others.
This article series includes advice on cleaning mold found on surfaces of un-finished wooden building materials such as framing lumber , and building roof, wall, and floor sheathing such as plywood, tongue-and groove pine boards, and other structural wood surfaces in buildings.
You May Like: Remove Mold From Brick Pavers
How To Repair Surface Scratches On Wood Furniture
Scratching is almost inevitable with wood furniture. If the top of your piece is slightly scratched, apply paste wax or use a felt-tip touch-up pen . To treat deeper scratches that gouge into the wood, use wood filler or a colored filler wax stick available at hardware and home improvement stores. Match as closely as possible to the color of your piece, applying in several thin layers rather than in one thick layer.
S To Remove The Mildew And Mold:
Read Also: How To Clean Mold From Leather
How To Remove Mold From Wood Cabinets
Fill white vinegar in a bucket and dip a soft, clean cloth in it.First, check whether you can dismantle the affected wood.Follow us on twitter and facebook social pages to stay updated with the mold removal tips from your wooden furniture and cabinets.Hereâs 5 ways to remove musty smells from your wood furniture.
How do you kill mold on wood?How to remove a green mold from a wood deck.How to remove mold from wood cabinets?How to remove mold on wood cabinets removing surface mold from cabinets in the kitchen if the mold is truly surface mold, then you might be successful at removing most of it with the proper products and a little elbow grease.
I understand not wanting to pull out the cabinets, but it is the best way to make sure the mold b gone.If that is the case, repeat the cleaning until the mold completely disappear.If the mold has grown on painted wood or a sealed wood finish , begin by washing down with a liquid dishwashing detergent and water solution.If the mold hasnât penetrated deeply into the wood, you can probably kill it.
If your wood cabinet smells like mold, leave it in the natural sunlight to dry.Keep the cabinet door opened and let them dry for six to eight hours.Look out for other affected areas in the cabinets.Make sure there isnât any of these wood or furniture rich in cellulose to thrive the mold.
â wear hand gloves, goggles, and face mask.
How To Remove Mold From Wood Furniture
This article was co-authored by Susan Stocker. Susan Stocker runs and owns Susans Green Cleaning, the #1 Green Cleaning Company in Seattle. She is well known in the region for outstanding customer service protocols winning the 2017 Better Business Torch Award for Ethics & Integrity and her energetic support of green cleaning practices.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 89% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 778,917 times.
Mold spores float through the air, indoors and out, undetected until they start growing. Given the right conditions, like warmth and moisture, they begin to grow mold. It can be devastating to find your favorite furniture speckled with mold spots. Prep to clean the mold by moving your furniture somewhere the mold won’t spread and vacuuming up loose spores. Clean light mold with sunlight, cheap vodka, and dish soap. Remove stubborn mold with a bleach solution or by sanding the mold out of the furniture.
Also Check: How To Remove Mold From Linoleum Floors
Coit’s Step By Step Guide On How To Remove Mold From Wood
The majority of time we come across unexpected mold is on old food, right? Its never fun to discover that a bit of mold has snuck into our fridge or cabinets.
Mold is never fun to deal with anywhere in your home. Its especially unpleasant when you find mold on the wood floors you walk on every day. Its definitely tough to relax and go barefoot when youre wondering how to remove mold from wood.
Before you pull up the wood floorboards, take a few minutes to look over COITs guide to removing mold from wood. Step-by-step, well guide you through the mold removal process so you can get back to being barefoot!
Preventing Mold From Returning
Recommended Reading: How To Clean Mold From Boat Seats