When you get mold on your food, you throw it out. But when you get mold in your house, you can’t simply toss the affected area in the garbage. So what do you do? You get rid of that mold the hard way. There are a few different ways to get rid of mold and it may primarily depend on the type of mold you’re looking at. That said, it’s almost always best to call a professional to remove the mold for you.
What Is Mold?
Mold is a type of fungi that grows in multicellular structures. Mold spores are found everywhere, but in order for mold to grow, it needs moisture. This is why it is so commonly found in basements, bathrooms, and other moist areas.
While mold can cause damage to your home, what’s more concerning is that it can cause health problems in your family. Among the most severe reactions to mold is breathing problems, especially in those with intense allergies to mold.
Types Of Mold
While there are many species of mold that exist, only about a dozen can be found in your home. In alphabetical order, let’s take a look at each of these molds to help you learn the risks and possibly identify each of them.
This mold is generally pink, grey, orange, or white. It prefers tight, wet areas like humidifiers, drain pans, and window sealants. It can cause problems such as bone marrow and immune system diseases.
This mold is only dangerous to those with allergies or asthma. It will begin by causing coughing, itchy eyes, and other issues. These are warning signs. It is usually found in bathrooms and is seen as green and brown hair.
This type of mold appears in flask-shaped spores. It can be found in tons of different colors as it is a species of mold. For more info, take a look at the disease that this type of mold can cause as told by the CDC.
Another mold that is a common allergy is most often found on wooden surfaces. It usually looks pink, brown, or black at first but gets darker and darker as it gets older. So the lighter it is, the sooner you’ve caught it.
This type of mold looks like cotton at first but can darker over time, much like other molds. It usually only grows after severe water damage is done, so keep an eye out in these spots to catch it early to remove it. Never touch this mold!
This mold can be quite attractive as it takes on the qualities of suede or leather and is a medium green or brown color. This is one of the reasons carpet is becoming less popular because this type of mold grows underneath carpets.
This is a lighter mold that is pink, white, or red. It is most often found in food, and though it can be dangerous, it’s generally not fatal. Still, avoid any food that has any type of mold at all on it, even if you cut that part off. There can still be traces.
This thick white mold is often found in carpet or near softer areas that are prone to condensation, like air conditioning units. This mold can be very dangerous so do mold tests regularly on your carpet and keep an eye on any HVAC units.
This blue-green mold is velvety and smooth. It is another mold most often found where any water damage has been done. It can be quite dangerous as it travels through the air. It’s a good idea to do mold checks regularly.
This slimy green or black mold is what we know as Black Mold. It is dangerous and is often found in dark, humid places. Keep an eye out in bathrooms, basements, and near any damp area to combat this mold early.
This wooly white and green mold can be found in wallpaper and fabric alike. It is most often found near HVAC units because of the high moisture content. It can cause health issues but rarely are they serious if the mold is taken care of.
This black mold is often confused with Stachybotrys because they look so similar. However, this mold isn’t as dangerous as the other type of black mold. To ensure you know what you’re dealing with, hire a professional before trying to remove it.
Why Mold Grows In The Bathroom
If you know much about mold at all, you will know that mold grows in bathrooms because of the high moisture content. Some molds are also attracted to darker areas and bathrooms are often left dark when not in use.
However, this doesn’t mean you should leave a light on in your bathroom, but it does mean that you should try to prevent moisture from building up. Keep everything as dry as possible when not in use.
Removing Mold On Bathroom Ceiling
According to the EPA, or the Environmental Protection Agency, as long as the mold is less than a 3 x 3-foot patch, or a 9sqft area, you don’t need to hire a professional. But if it is bigger, then it is best to contact someone to help you out.
Otherwise, you can follow these steps to remove the mold yourself.
Step 1: Don Protective Gear
The first thing you should do is don your protective goggles, gloves, and mask. This is both for the mold and the bleach. Both can cause health issues if inhaled so make sure you protect yourself. If your bathroom has a window, open it and put a fan blowing out.
Step 2: Create The Mixture
The mixture is usually 25% bleach and 75% water. Though this can vary slightly. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and lightly swish it around. Try not to shake it violently, but lightly so as not to foam it or aggravate the bleach.
Step 3: Spray It On
Now it’s time to get spraying. Spray the surface of the ceiling that contains the mold, soaking it thoroughly. However, since it is on the ceiling, it is best to not spray it so thick that it drips down onto the floor.
Step 4: Let It Soak
This step is important and forgetting it is often the reason people say that this solution doesn’t work. Let it soak for 10-15 minutes. Longer can damage the ceiling while shorter time may not be effective.
Step 5: Lightly Scrub
Finally, time to lightly scrub the molded area with a scrub brush. Don’t damage the ceiling, but give it enough pressure that the mold peels up without lifting up the paint on the ceiling. Though you may need to repaint anyway.
Alternatives To Bleach When Killing Mold
There are other ways to kill mold even if you prefer to keep bleach out of your home. All of these are natural ways you can get rid of mold with household products. Staying away from bleach is rarely a bad thing.
Hydrogen peroxide is a great solution that you probably already have at home. Just put a 3% concentration of hydrogen peroxide into a spray bottle. Test the spray on the surface to make sure it doesn’t discolor it.
Once you find out it is safe, spray the area with the peroxide and let it soak for 15 minutes. Then lightly scrub it with a cloth or scrub brush. The mold should come right off unless it is been growing for too long.
Vinegar is another wonderful option that isn’t too strong for inhalation but can remove most molds, especially if the mold is caught early. It is safe to use and can be sprayed directly onto the surface.
Let it soak for a few minutes and wash it off. It should do the trick for 80% of molds, with stronger solutions needed for the other 20%. But it never hurts to try vinegar before using chemicals or even peroxide.
Baking soda is a magic ingredient that has many useful properties that don’t involve baking, though it’s great for baking too. It works by soaking up the moisture and using its texture to pull the spores up when you wash the baking soda off.
Fill a spray bottle with water and add a tablespoon or two of baking soda. Spray it onto the surface and scrub it off. If this doesn’t work, let it soak for a few minutes before scrubbing it off. If this still doesn’t work, move to something stronger.
Can essential oils do anything? According to essential oil advocates, yes. They are using tea tree oil to get rid of mold on the spot. Combine a teaspoon of the oil with a cup of water and spray it onto the surface.
Let it dry for an hour or so then wipe it away with a dry cloth. If you are prone to breakouts, then wear gloves as essential oils can irritate those with sensitive skin. If this works, then you are home-free and safe as can be.
Lemons are a natural deodorizer and cleaner. Spray lemon juice onto the area and let it soak for a few minutes before trying to remove the mold just like you did with the bleach, peroxide, and vinegar.
Should I Be Afraid Of Mold?
While being afraid of the mold won’t help anything, it’s a good idea to be wary. Call a professional to help you identify the type of mold you have and the best way to tackle it. They can also offer tips on how to prevent any more mold from appearing!