Tips for Dealing with Mold and Mildew
What Causes Mold Growth?
When working to get mold growth under control, it is important to understand the situations that cause mold to grow and thrive. There are some situations that will cause mold to grow more. Mold grows best on organic surfaces. It also grows in areas with darkness, moisture, and food sources. This means that mold can be in a variety of places in and outside of your home.
Knowing where the mold comes from can help you to prevent future mold in your home. Here are a few places you should be checking. Here are a few places to check:
- Leaks - Leaks in pipes, gutters, and other areas can create an atmosphere where mold will thrive. Take some time to check for leaks and repair them.
- Standing water - Standing water is another area where mold can become a problem. Take time to seek out any standing water and clean it up. You will also want to take the extra time to add run-off pipes or other solutions that will keep the water from continuing to collect in that location.
- Humidity - Humidity can be a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Take some time to install fans and work to resolve any humidity in the home. This will help to prevent mold growth.
- Spills that aren’t cleaned - One of the biggest culprits of mold growth is spills that are not properly cleaned up. These standing spills can give mold the perfect environment to grow. Because these are often in carpet or underneath furniture/appliances, it may take some time to find this mold.
Where is Mold Growth Most Common?
When working to remove and prevent mold, it’s important to understand the common areas mold grows. When most people think of mold they think of areas such as a refrigerator with old food. While that is one place you can find mold, it is not the only place. You can actually find mold inside and outside of your home. Here are a few places mold is commonly found:
- Food storage areas - Mold can grow on food that is left out. This can include things like potatoes that get thrown in cabinets and forgotten. Make sure to check areas where food is stored and clean these areas frequently. It can also help to use sealable containers for foods that are checked less frequently or at more of a risk for mold growth.
- Under sinks and anywhere pipes are - Leaking pipes and any water flow areas can cause mold if they are left unattended. Check pipes and water areas frequently for any signs of leaking or standing water. It can help to check the pipes that run from your wall to the washing machine as those can sometimes develop leaks as well.
- Gutters and home perimeters - Mold can easily grow on gutters and along the base of the home. It is important to take time to clean gutters with a quality clean gutter bundle with all tools needed to get the mold under control and keep things clean. It is also important to make sure that water drains away from the foundation of the house to avoid mold growth.
- Carpet and fabrics - Another area that mold can grow easily would be in carpets and fabrics. This has a lot to do with standing moisture that can be harder to see. It can help to dry carpet completely after a spill, use a quality carpet cleaner, and you can also use a fan as a way to dry out this area even better.
How to Remove Mold
If you find mold in your home or on the outside of the home it can be important to focus on fixing the problem. Removing mold can be a big task. It doesn’t have to be impossible. There are some situations where you will need to hire out help. Many mold situations will let you handle removal as a DIY. Here are a few things to bring and keep in mind as you remove mold inside and outside of your home:
- Know when to hire a pro - Big jobs will require hiring a pro. For some jobs things like removal of drywall, carpeting, and larger mold infestations, it can be beneficial to hire someone who is qualified to safely remove mold and mildew. Using a professional will assure you that all work has been done with your safety in mind while also completely eliminating the issue.
- Clean Gutter Bundle - When cleaning up the mold you want a cleaner that has bleach compatible chemistry. This will allow for mold removal and also offer disinfecting properties from the bleach. Using a cleaner designed to do both will leave you feeling better about the removal and overall cleanliness after the mold removal.
- Make sure you have all the gear you need - Using items such as gloves, goggles, a dehumidifier, scrub brushes, a spray tank, shop towels, buckets, and a respirator mask will help you to achieve the job. Having these items on hand can help you to achieve the job quickly and safely. It is important to wear a face-covering while working to clean up mold as mold can be breathed in during this process.
- Dispose of all items after you have finished - Items used for mold cleaning can become contaminated with mold. This applies to items such as gloves, goggles, towels, masks, and scrub brushes. It is best to dispose of the items used to clean the mold when you are finished and replace them with fresh items for future projects.