If you’re wondering how to remove mold, well, it’s more complicated than you may think. If you just have a tiny trace of mold on the grout between your shower tiles, mold removing may just involve spraying the area with a household cleaner and scrubbing a bit. You should be aware, though, that sometimes you only see a little mold but there’s more there that cannot be seen.
Before beginning the process of mold removing, you should remove excess moisture from the area. Dehumidifiers can help.
Next, you need to seal off the area in which you’ll be working. Use large sheets of plastic and duct tape to block doorways and heating vents. That’s because as you clean up the mold, mold spores will become airborne and you don’t want them drifting into other rooms or areas of the house. Turn off the HVAC system so mold spores are not drawn into the air ducts or blown about. If the room has a window, open it and place a fan in front of it, to help draw mold spores outdoors.
If the mold is dry, you’ll need to mist it lightly with water, using a spray bottle. Dry mold spores are more likely to become airborne and contaminate other areas.
Prepare yourself for the job, as well, with all the requisite safety gear. You need an N-95 face mask, rubber gloves and clothing you will wash as soon as your task has been completed.
If this is starting to sound like a lot of work, you don’t have to do it yourself. Follow this link to find a list of licensed Mold Removal Specialists in your area. They’ll give you a free estimate and some tips in case you do decide to handle the job on your own.
The first step of mold removing is to scrub the area with soap and water. Scrub the surrounding area, too, not just the visible mold; sometimes small amounts of mold cannot be seen but if left alone, they will grow and spread. After scrubbing the area with soap and water, scrub it again with a disinfectant designed to kill mold. You can find such disinfectants at most hardware or home improvement stores.
When you feel confident you’ve removed all the mold, dry the area thoroughly. Moisture allows mold to regrow.
Because mold spores easily become airborne, they can easily get inside air ducts and heating vents (see picture). Then every time you turn on your heat or central air conditioning, mold spores blow all over the house. It’s imperative to clean out the air ducts as soon as possible, but very difficult to do if you don’t have special training and equipment.
If you think you might have mold in your air ducts, or if you aren’t sure, we recommend calling in a professional. He or she will know how to remove mold from the air ducts and how to do it safely.
There are some other materials that are more difficult to clean. Porous materials like drywall, sheetrock, insulation inside your walls, carpeting and the backing under the carpeting, furnishings and papers often cannot be cleaned. Instead, they have to be carefully removed and replaced. Mold removing specialists know how to get these contaminated items out of your house without spreading mold to any other areas or further endangering anyone’s health.
It’s tempting to want to take care of a mold problem by yourself to save money but unless you really know how to remove mold properly and safely, it’s not worth the risk. If cost is a concern for you, check with your homeowner’s insurance; your policy may cover mold removal.
Most mold removal professionals offer free consultations, so even if you’re not sure you want to hire a professional for the job, we encourage you to take advantage of the free information and advice you can get from a consultation. A professional will come to your home, assess the problem, make sure all the mold in the home has been located, and explain to you the extent of the work that needs to be done. For a list of mold removal professionals in your area that offer free consultations, just follow this link.
The Mold Removal Guide has valuable information on when its safe to remove mold yourself, the health risks of mold exposure, and how to properly remove mold.
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