Mold is a fungus that grows rapidly and prosperously in the presence of moisture. Although they have a vital function in our ecosystem where they decompose organic matter such as leaves to enrich the soil with nutrients, they can also pose a serious health hazard for people that come into close and frequent exposure with them, or their by-products – respiratory issues, congestion of the sinus, irritation of eyes, nose and throat, as well as headaches. People of all ages – babies, toddlers, old people as well as those women who are pregnant or those individuals who are ailing from a breathing condition are at a much higher risk of suffering from exposure to mold in their homes.
Why is Mold So Bad?
You need to constantly stay on the lookout for regions in your home where there is a build-up of moisture for any reason – a leaking pipe running in the walls is usually the culprit. The mold / mildew can begin to spread its roots on wooden furniture, cardboard, ceiling tiles, carpets, cardboard, plants, fabric, wallpaper, insulation and even foods! It takes around a couple of days for this growth to start and yield mold spores which travel by means of air and where, not only do they destroy anything they come in contact with, they can also lead to serious health problems for those who live in the house.
How to Keep Your House Safe:
Dealing with mold after it has done its damage to the house can be a costly and tedious affair that will definitely see you leaving the house for a while as the professional cleaners fix your home. Here are some tips you can follow to eradicate mold while it is in its early stages:
- Collect the right tools: The tools you’ll need to take out mold that has only started to grow include rubber gloves, brushes and buckets, vacuum w/ a brush attachment, sponges and mops, ammonia free detergent, commercial cleaner or soap, chlorine bleach for disinfecting, and furniture polish.
- Maintain a fresh bathroom: There is hardly any other room (perhaps the kitchen) that sees as much humidity and moisture as the bathroom. Make sure that you have proper ventilation for this room – use an exhaust fan for moisture clearance and air circulation if you have to. Also, follow these steps for further protection against mold:
- Hang wet towels out to dry / spread them so they can dry rapidly.
- Keep the bathroom utensils used in the shower to a bare minimum for ease in cleaning and improved circulation.
- After the last daily usage of the shower, wipe it down with the help of a squeegee or cleaning towel.
- Use shower curtains which are easy to clean/dry in order to avoid the accumulation of soap in their fabric – an ideal place for mold to grow.
- Should the shower curtain you’re using become infested with mildew, you can clean it up by first washing it in a mixture of ½ cup liquid disinfectant and 1 gallon of water, rinsing it with a mix of a cup of salt, a cup of lemon juice and a gallon of water, washing it with bleach and detergent (be sure to use a colour-safe type of bleach so as not to damage the shades on a coloured fabric), and finally rinsing it with simple, clear water.
- Regularly freshen upholstery and fabric: Before cleaning up the fabric / upholstery, take it outside if it is movable, so as to avoid sending mold spores into the house’s interior. Brush off as much mold as you can and then deal with each piece of fabric / upholstery as follows:
Launder the fabric in hot water and chlorine beach. Alternatively, oxygen bleach mixed with hot water can also be used. Drying the fabric in sunlight is preferable.
If you can’t take any upholstery outside, you should vacuum it first (clean the vacuum canister outside after you’re done). Next, mix a cup of cool water with a cup of ammonia (never combine ammonia with chlorine bleach because of the toxic fumes which would result), and use it to clean the mold stains by means of a white cloth. Keep blotting until the liquid is completely gone. Keep doing this procedure until the stain vanishes. The ammonia solution left afterwards can be taken off by means of blotting with a sponge dipped in cold water. A blow dryer / fan should be used to rapidly dry these items.
If the mold has gotten so bad it’s difficult for you to get rid of, consider talking us Mold Remediation Experts as we have more tools at our disposal, not only to remove but also to test for any more mold infestations.
There are several other steps to take to prevent mold from entering your home e.g. quickly cleaning any mildew stained carpets, maintain any wooden furniture stored in the basement, using proper ventilation and fixing damaged pipes ASAP etc. Moreover, you should know a lost cause when you see one and be ready to call experts as soon as you realize that things have gotten out of hand.