How to Get Rid of Mold in Your Home

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Humid bathrooms are a hospitable environment for mold and mildew.
Humid bathrooms are a hospitable environment for mold and mildew. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Some people are sensitive to molds. For these people, mold exposure can cause allergic reactions, asthma or other breathing problems. It is important to control the growth of the microscopic fungus that settles on dirty or moist surfaces and becomes large colonies of mold. Mildew, a common sight in bathroom areas, is a common mold. It’s impossible to get rid of all mold and mold spores in your home, but by keeping your home clean and dry you can control mold.

Things You'll Need

  • Bleach
  • Detergent
  • Trisodium phosphate
  • Borax
  • Soap
  • Scrub brush
  • Dehumidifier

Run a fan or open a window during and after showers. Wipe the shower area dry after use and hang towels and other textiles so they can dry. Wash bathroom surfaces regularly with a solution of 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of household bleach and 1 tablespoon of ammonia-free detergent. Machine wash shower curtains, adding bleach to the detergent. Hang while still warm to release wrinkles. Frequent cleaning will keep the mold from getting out of control.

Clean, dry and disinfect the area quickly if you have a water leak. Turn on air conditioners and use fans and dehumidifiers to pull out the moisture. For floods or areas that have been wet for more than a few hours, floors, carpeting and dry wall may have to be removed and the area dried. Use a scrub brush to clean the area with a mix of detergent, water and trisodium phosphate (TSP), a granular stain remover and degreaser, or Borax. Read the manufacturer’s recommendations for dilutions.

Keep air circulating and moisture away from the exterior of your home. Clean out and repair your gutters every year. Clogged or damaged gutters can cause water damage to your home, leading to mold. Remove or cut back heavy vegetation against your home so moisture is not trapped and air can circulate freely. These moist areas are a haven for mold growth.

Prevent moisture from entering the house by directing water away from outside walls and drains. Promote drainage away from the foundation of your home by sloping the earth away from the house. Redirect downspouts so rainwater flows away from the house. Clean air conditioning drip pans. Make sure the drain lines are not clogged or sluggish.

Add a humidifier to your home if the humidity is above 70 percent to bring humidity down to between 30 and 50 percent. Relative humidity levels above 70 percent create an ideal environment for mold growth.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear a mask and gloves when using strong cleaning chemicals like trisodium phosphate.

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