Mold and mildew are types of fungus that grow in households. Even though the terms mold and mildew are often used interchangeably, there is a visible difference between mold and mildew. Mold is mainly black or green tone, whereas mildew is mostly white, yellow, or grey in shade. They have different textures as well. Mold usually has either a slimy or a fuzzy texture. Mildew, on the other hand, has mostly a powdery or fluffy texture. Both mold and mildew grow in moist and humid conditions. Even both of them are virtually the same, mold is known to be a more severe problem than mildew.
Mold is a nightmare for every household. Mold spores enter your home either by air through open windows and doors or with people, pets, or various objects. Moreover, these spores are completely invisible to the naked eye. That makes them virtually impossible from intruding into your home. Once these spores reach inside your home, they can find plenty of places to grow. There are many areas in your home that are common breeding grounds for mold. Following are some of these areas:-
- Under the sink. This area provides a perfectly moist, humid, and dark condition for mold to grow.
- Inside refrigerator drip pans. If you leave the water gathered in a refrigerator drip pan without draining it, it becomes a potential breeding ground for mold. Moreover, the inside of a refrigerator is also a potential breeding ground for mold.
- Leaking water pipes. The moisture offered by leaking pipes offers a perfect environment for mold and mildew to grow.
- Carpets and upholstery. The dust gathered on carpets and upholstery is food to some types of molds.
- Mattresses. Mold and mildew can also grow on mattresses. The foam used in mattresses offers a perfect condition for mold and mildew to grow. Once they get a foothold in mattresses, it becomes quite difficult to remove them.
- Bath toys. The moisture that can be found in bath toys offers a favorable condition for mold and mildew to grow.
- Walls. Mold and mildew can also grow on walls, both exterior, and interior, that have water damage. They can also find suitable conditions to grow in the moist building materials and drywall.
- Air conditioners. The moist and warm environment offered by an air conditioner is also ideal for mold and mildew to breed. When inspecting your home for mold, you might also want to look into your air conditioner.
- Potted plants. The dead organic matter in the plant-soil is food for all types of fungus. They also provide sufficient moisture for mold and mildew to grow.
- Ceiling tiles
Among the different types of mold, black mold or toxic is the most harmful one. It is also capable of causing health hazards in a person having a weak immune system. They also cause allergic reactions in people who have mold allergies. But regardless of the type, toxic or non-toxic, you must get rid of the mold of all types from your home.
Tips for mold and mildew removal
1.Get rid of moisture
The very first and important tip for the intent of killing mold and mildew is to remove moisture. The surface that is infested with mold and mildew must be freed from moisture. Moisture is the main condition for mold and mildew to grow. Some types of molds can grow in cold as well as warm conditions. But none of them can grow without moisture. You must dry the surface completely before restoring it to ensure that there is no future growth of mold on it.
2.Products to use in mold removal
For the effective removal of mildew and mold, it is necessary that you use the right products. You can effectively kill mold in your home with the help of household products. The following products would be enough to do the job of getting rid of mold:-
Hydrogen peroxide: Hydrogen peroxide is used as an antiseptic for cuts and wounds and also as an oxidizer and bleaching agent. It can also be used to remove mildew and mold. A hydrogen peroxide solution consisting of half a cup of hydrogen peroxide and a gallon of water can effectively remove mold stains from a hard surface. Moreover, you can prepare it at home.
Baking soda: Baking soda is another commonly and easily found household product that can be used in mildew and mold removal. You can effectively remove mold from clothing by spraying it with baking soda solution. You can easily prepare this solution at home by adding a 1/4 tablespoon of baking soda to a spray bottle filled with water. You have to shake it well and it’s ready to go.
White vinegar: White vinegar is yet another effective product for the removal of mildew and mold. Moreover, it is also capable of preventing any future growth of mold. You can simply pour undiluted white vinegar into a spray bottle and use it in a moldy area. This is a very effective product to kill mold once and for all.
Lemon juice: If you don’t have the above-mentioned products or are running short on them, you don’t need to worry. You can just use lemon juice as an effective substitute for them.
Tea tree oil: Tea tree oil mix can also be used to effectively remove mold from a surface. You can domestically prepare a tea tree oil mix by mixing 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil in 1 cup of water. After applying it to the affected surface, you must let it sit for the whole night before cleaning it off.
Bleach: Bleach and water solution is a viable alternative to the other products mentioned here. You can prepare this solution domestically by mixing one cup of bleach and 1 gallon of water. It is useful when dealing with porous surfaces.
3.Use Anti-Microbial Spray
Antimicrobial sprays are used to kill various types of harmful microorganisms, mildew, and mold being two of them. Spraying anti-microbial spray on the affected area will prevent the growth of the mold as well as kill it off. It works effectively in killing molds that are present in bathtubs and showers.
4.Fix water leaks
Water leaks provide a favorable condition for mildew and mildew to grow. So you are advised to fix your water leaks to prevent the future growth of mold. Otherwise, the moisture will return and the mold problem will return too along with it. If you solve the mold problem and ignore the moisture problem, it will only be a temporary solution.
5.Use anti-mold building materials
Building materials containing moisture provide a suitable breeding ground for mildew and mold. To counter this problem, you will find building materials that are resistant to mold. They ensure a mold-free home. For the best results, you are suggested to get the best ones that you can find and can afford.
6.Use wall paints that contain a mildewcide
Rather than repaint your wall with regular paint after cleaning, you are advised to use a paint that contains mildewcide. Paints with mildewcide don’t let mildew and mold grow on them. This would give you relief from the worry about the bad-looking mold and mildew stains.
7.Use cleaning solutions on painted wall
For the effective cleaning of a painted wall, you must use a cleaning solution. Bleach solution, hydrogen peroxide, or white vinegar solution can perform this task effectively.
8.Don’t ignore the ductwork
When inspecting your home for the presence of mold, you are advised not to ignore the ductwork. Badly insulated ductworks can cause mold growth on ceiling tiles. It is oftentimes the case that mold growth is found on ceiling tiles without any roof leak. So if you face such a problem, it is probably the badly insulated ductwork that is causing it.
9.Vacuum wooden surfaces
If there is mold growing on wooden surfaces, you can simply use a vacuum cleaner to clean it. All you need is a HEPA filter and an arm attachment to effectively suck up all the mold spores present on the surface.