Mildew is a black fungus that can grow on most surfaces. It will spread rapidly and prolifically in dark unventilated places. It is unsightly and emits an undesirable odor. The spores can cause allergic reactions and breathing problems. It is possible to remove mold and mildew from a variety of surfaces.
Things You'll Need
Dawn dish detergent
Ceramic Tile, Vinyl and Grout
Combine 1 qt. of chlorine bleach with 1 gallon of water.
Coat the area with the bleach solution. Allow it to soak in for 10 minutes.
Re-dip your brush into the solution and scrub until clean. You may also find using an old toothbrush will help focus your efforts.
Type of Surface: Leather.
Cleaning Solution: Mix 1 cup of rubbing alcohol with 1 cup of water.
Method: Apply the solution to the stain with a clean cloth. Allow the surface to air dry. If there are remaining stains, wash with dawn detergent and allow to air-dry.
Type of Surface: Raw wood - unpainted.
Cleaning Solution: Mix 1 quart of chlorine bleach with 3 quarts of water.
Method: Scrub the area with your cleaning solution. After it is clean, consider coating with a mildew resistant paint.
Clothing and Fabrics
Apply a mixture of Dawn dish detergent and warm water to any initial stains. For any remaining stains: mix lemon juice and salt. Alternatively, mix 2 tablespoons of bleach and 1 quart of water. (Don't use bleach on colored fabrics)
Method: Mix Dawn and warm water in your sink or a bucket. Using a clean scrub brush, gently work to remove the stains. Be careful not to damage the fabric. Adjust your scrubbing pressure to match the fabric. Rinse the items well.
Allow them to dry in the sun. Sunshine is a great helper in these efforts.
If stains remain, dampen the spots with the lemon juice solution. Again dry in the sun.
If you use the bleach solution, allow bleach to soak in the fabric for 5 to 15 minutes. Then rinse well and allow to dry in the sun.
Vinyl Siding, Metal Siding, Plastic Laminate, Plaster
Cleaning Solution: 1 cup of chlorine bleach and 1 gallon of water. Alternately you can make a vinegar and borax solution. Just add as much borax as will dissolve in the vinegar - not a real technical formula!
Method: Before you begin, cover any plants, bushes, shrubs, grass with plastic or other protection. Bleach is harmful to plants. Bleach also can stain plastic laminate, so the borax solution may be a better option here.
Wear gloves. Use your scrub brush and the mildew should come off with a little effort.
1 US cups = 0.25 US quarts
Don't use bleach on non-colorfast fabrics, silk, wool; always check the label.
Never mix ammonia and bleach.
When working with bleach, wear rubber gloves. Open window and provide good ventilation.