Which Cleaners Get Rid of Mold?

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A good cleaner is essential in the war on mold.
A good cleaner is essential in the war on mold. (Image: Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

If you find mold in your home, it is important to get rid of it right away. Not only is it an unsightly guest, but it can also cause serious health problems. When you are trying to clear away mold, one of the most important things to know is what products you can use to kill it. While bleach is commonly thought of as the best thing to use to get rid of mold, this is actually a common misconception, as bleach is largely ineffective against mold infestations. However, you do have many choices when it comes to cleaners to use when you want to get rid of mold in your home.

All-Purpose Cleaners

There are plenty of all-purpose cleaners littering the shelves at the local grocery store, but in order to know which will be effective against mold, you will need to check the active ingredients list. Any cleaner that has ammonia as an active ingredient will be effective at killing mold. These cleaners will not take care of large-scale mold infestations, but if you are trying to clean up small mold colonies growing on bathroom tile or in other heavy-traffic areas, ammonia-based cleaners are cheap and easy to use.

Mold-Specific Cleaners

If you have a large-scale mold issue, you may want to use a mold-specific cleaner for best results. Mold-specific cleaners usually have a higher concentration of ammonia and other chemicals to help kill mold quickly and efficiently. These products are more expensive than general cleaners, and are a little bit harder to find (if your local grocer doesn't have them in stock, you may need to visit a hardware store or home improvement store). It is also important to read all safety warnings associated with mold cleaners, as many of them can be quite toxic.

Natural Cleaners

If you have young children in your home, or have an aversion to harsh chemicals, there are several natural cleaners that you can use that are very effective against mold. When shopping, look for natural cleaners that have vinegar or tea tree oil as active ingredient(s) as these are known mold killers. Natural cleaners can also be tough to find, but they are often fairly inexpensive due to their generic active ingredients.

Using Mold Cleaners

No matter what kind of mold cleaner you end up using, keep several things in mind. Only clean in a well-ventilated area, and make sure to keep all children and pets away from the area where you are cleaning (even if you are using a natural, non-toxic cleaner). Also make sure you never use more than one cleaner at the same time, as toxic vapors can be created from combined cleaners.

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