It is quite easy to procrastinate post-holiday clean ups but when you see even a tiny speck of mold, well, it’s time to get down on your knees and begin. Mold can easily cause a myriad of health problems. They also tend to destroy the surfaces where they grow on.
Mold spores also float on the air and when these adhere to any damp surface, then they can gradually grow and begin the damage that will soon become your problem. They can also produce allergens that can elicit grave health reactions including hay fever-like symptoms.
Even biocide or chemical treatments can lead to allergic reactions in some people so it’s still not a good idea to be exposed to such for a long period of time. The key to keeping molds at bay, therefore, is to do the cleanup before the spores even appear.
Find out where molds commonly grow
To have proper maintenance against molds, you need to know their favorite homes or breeding grounds. These could be a leaky roof, damaged surfaces caused by floods, faulty plumbing, around air-conditioners, around window sills and baseboards, under carpeting or even high humidity indoors can all lead to spore growth.
Minus proper ventilation, these cases can lead to mold occurrence in just 24 hours so be sure to check out areas that remain damp as well as unventilated. Practically anywhere water travels is a vulnerable spot.
Areas that could also be vulnerable include incorrectly sealed tubs, crawling spaces, walls, drains, crevices, and nooks.
Mildew is a cousin of mold that is a coat that you can also see on damp surfaces. This grows on flat patterns and appears grayish or powdery white. Mold comes in a darker color, often green or black. Mold penetrates the surface where in lives on so be sure to clean up immediately.
Search for hidden mold
Don’t think that when you don’t see them that they don’t exist. Mold can go undetected behind wallpapers and baseboards. If you happen to walk inside foreclosed properties, you will see that the wallpapers turn blackish after months or years of being unoccupied.
The temperature change between the outdoors and the indoors contribute greatly to the fast growth of the spores. Glue also acts as a nutrient for mold.
Decide whether to clean or throw away
If the mold grew on a porous surface like ceiling tiles, carpets or the drywall, then it is best to throw away the said items. It can get difficult (if not impossible) to remove the mold from such a surface. Be sure to check the drywall because mold tends to cultivate on the back part before it even begins to show on the surface.
Use some DIY mold removers
- Mix a cup of bleach with ample water to make a gallon. Use a spray bottle to spread the solution or use a cloth or sponge.
- Mix a cup of borax with ample water, again, to make a gallon. Compared to bleach, borax is a less corrosive chemical so you can apply the water and borax solution to the affected surface then scrub with a brush. Do not rinse, just wipe dry the cleaned up surface.
- Put vinegar in a spray bottle and spray the full-strength onto the affected area. Wipe off afterward.
- If the mold grew on a nonporous and smooth surface, then you can use ammonia. Make sure that you DO NOT USE IT WITH BLEACH. Leave the ammonia on the surface for 10 minutes then rinse with water.
Mix half a teaspoon of baking soda with a gallon of water then scrub the solution onto the affected areas. Rinse afterward with water.