Everyone should know how to get rid of mold. If left untreated, these little black spots can spread and cause serious damage to your home, not to mention your health. This chore is not as simple as clean a glass shower door — you will need to take precautions and wear protective equipment. But the good news is that you can get rid of mold yourself.
Mold spores can cause allergic reactions if inhaled or touched, so it’s imperative that you take care of them as soon as possible. It thrives in areas with high humidity, such as the bathroom or basement, and can be found on all kinds of surfaces, from carpet to paint to wallpaper. If you’ve noticed mold in your home, don’t worry. Here we tell you exactly what you need to do to get rid of it and how you can prevent it from coming back.
How to get rid of mold
What you will need
Mask, gloves and goggles
dish soap or
Bleach / white distilled vinegar / mold and mildew cleaner
The best way to get rid of mold will depend on the surface you are cleaning.
Before trying any of the following methods, you must first wear protective gloves, a mask, and eye protection. This is because the spores will move through the air as you clean the mold.
How to remove mold from the shower
Bathroom tiles and grout are one of the most common places you will find mold. This is because this room is daily filled with humidity.
You can scrub mildew with dish soap, warm water, and a scrub brush such as the Amaze Scrub Brush ($7.99, Amazon), then rinse and then dry with a microfiber cloth. You can also use a dedicated mold and mildew cleaner such as Tilex Mold & Mildew Remover ($18.69, Amazon).
If you want a longer lasting remedy, you can also use distilled white vinegar, but keep in mind that this method will require more elbow grease.
How to remove mold from walls
Mold can often be found on walls closer to the ceiling or windows where a leak may have formed. If so, you must first have the potential leak assessed and repaired, otherwise removing the mold will be counterproductive.
If you’re cleaning mold from drywall, you’ll need to use a gentler application. Stick to dish soap and water and apply using a sponge or microfiber cloth. Don’t scrub too hard, but work into the solution as best you can. Then rinse and let dry.
If that didn’t work, you can also use diluted bleach. Mix one cup of bleach with one gallon of water and apply to mold. Leave for a few minutes before rinsing and drying. Remember that if you plan to repaint with a fresh color, you will need to wait for the wall to dry completely to prevent it from chipping.
If you have spotted mold on ceiling tiles, you better replace them as the surface is too porous to clean.
How to remove mildew from wood
If mold has appeared on your favorite piece of furniture, don’t throw it away just yet. First, using the upholstery attachment of your vacuum cleaner, suck up any loose spores from the surface.
After that, you can eventually remove mold with a simple combination of dish soap and water. Apply the solution using a microfiber cloth and a spray bottle, but try not to saturate the surface as you do. Dry as well as possible with a towel then let air dry.
Diluted vinegar can also be an effective cleaner in this case, although the wood may absorb the smell for some time. Apply again with a microfiber cloth, then rinse with a damp cloth and allow to dry.
Don’t use bleach to remove mildew from wood – it will have a hard time penetrating the surface and therefore won’t clean effectively.
How to remove mildew from clothes
Yes, it’s true, mold can even make an ugly appearance on your clothes. It looks like small black or white spots and often appears on damp laundry that has been forgotten, such as wet towels.
To remove mildew from clothes, bleach is your best bet. If the item is machine washable, wash it at the highest temperature allowed with regular detergent. You can also add a cup of vinegar or bleach after the machine is filled with water for extra cleaning power. After the cycle is complete, dry the items outside in the sun. Otherwise, transfer to your dryer.
If the item is not machine washable, you can also wash it by hand or use the dry cleaner to remove mildew. In extreme cases, you can let the item soak in hot water mixed with a cup of bleach for a few hours before machine washing.
How to Prevent Mold
- Repair leaks to prevent mold from growing back.
- Keep areas that see a lot of moisture well ventilated by opening doors and windows.
- Invest in one of best dehumidifiers to help keep humidity levels down.
- Clean and repair gutters.
- If you plan to apply a new coat of paint, add mildew inhibitors to the paint to deter it in the future.
For more cleaning tips, tricks and how-to’s, check out our guides on how to clean a glass stove, how to clean painted walls and how to clean a washing machine.