If you have a mold contamination in your home or office, there is good news. Small mold contamination’s (less than 10 square feet in overall size) can be cleaned on your own with common household products.
Before you attempt to clean mold using any of the products below, remember to prepare yourself with protective gloves, eye wear and an approved breathing mask.
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When excessive moisture or water accumulates indoors, mold growth often will occur, particularly if the moisture problem remains uncorrected. While it is impossible to eliminate all molds and mold spores, controlling moisture can control indoor mold growth.
All molds share the characteristic of being able to grow without sunlight; mold needs only a viable seed (spore), a nutrient source, moisture, and the right temperature to proliferate. This explains why mold infestation is often found in damp, dark, hidden spaces; light and air circulation dry areas out, making them less hospitable for mold.
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Borax, a natural cleaning product, is one of the better (more suggested) household products that you can use to kill mold. Because it does not give off harmful off gases like bleach, it can be safer to use when killing mold. Because of its high PH level, Borax when mixed with water is ideal for killing mold, insects, weeds and other invasive things. Best of all, you can buy it at any supermarket for very little money.
Although vinegar is great for killing mold, it is not a guarantee. Vinegar can only kill about 80% of known mold species. In order to determine if your mold type can be killed, and if it is non toxic, a professional mold test is required.
On the plus side, vinegar, unlike other household products like bleach, does not give off harmful off gases and is generally safe to use. It is still recommended to wear protective gloves and eye wear when using vinegar to kill mold as vinegar is an acidic product.
If you have unsightly mold in your home or office, then reach for the bleach. Before you it though, you must be aware of a few things.
- Bleach produces toxic fumes and residue so be sure to use it only in a well ventilated area. Open windows or doors if possible and wear protective gloves and glasses. Also be sure to use an approved breathing mask to avoid inhaling harmful off gases.
- Bleach is only useful for killing mold on select surfaces. Anything that is a porous material such as wood or drywall should be handled by a certified mold remover. Non porous or solid surface materials like porcelain, tiles, glass or countertops can successfully be treated.
When using ammonia to kill mold, be sure to wear protective gloves, eye wear and an approved breathing mask as ammonia will produce harmful off gases. Like bleach, ammonia will only effectively work on non porous surfaces like tiles, porcelain, glass or metal. Porous surfaces like wood or drywall only allow water into the pores (where mold hides). This gives the mold he moisture it needs to grow.
CAUTION: Never mix ammonia with bleach. The combination of the two produces a highly toxic chemical off gas That can be detrimental to your health.
Hydrogen peroxide, which is anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-bacterial, is one of the more ideal household products that you can use to kill mold. This is because it does not produce harmful chemical off gasses, chemical residue, is safe for the environment and is safe to use.
Not only does hydrogen peroxide kill surface mold on fabrics, tiles, porcelain and metal (any non porous material), it also acts as a bleaching agent which can reduce or remove the stain that mold leaves behind. For this reason, you should test hydrogen peroxide on a small, unnoticeable area first before committing to it. This is to ensure that it will not fade colors or textures.
One of the most preferred products to kill mold is baking soda. This is because the product is completely safe for humans and pets, is moisture absorbing and it acts as a deodorizer. The latter helps to remove that musty smell that mold leaves behind.
This essential oil is considered by many to be the most effective natural mold killer available. Since it is anti-bacterial, antifungal and safe for humans, many bear the high costs of this product for their mold problem.
Similar to tea tree oil, grapefruit seed extract is a very effective natural mold killer but with no odor. The mold killing ingredient is its citric acid which also acts as a disinfectant and deodorizer.