Mold Cleanup Guidelines


Mold Cleanup Guidelines

Tips and techniques

The tips and techniques presented in this section will help you clean up your mold problem.  Professional cleaners or remediators may use
methods not covered in this publication.  Please note that mold may cause staining and cosmetic damage.  It may not be possible to clean
an item so that its original appearance is restored.

Mold growing on the underside of a plastic lawn chair in an are where rainwater drips through and deposits organic material. Click on the image for a larger version.

Mold growing on the underside of a plastic lawn chair in an area where rainwater drips through and deposits organic material. Click on the image for a larger version.

Fix plumbing leaks and other water problems as soon as possible.  Dry all items completely.

Scrub mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, and dry completely.

Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy.  Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or impossible to remove completely.

Avoid exposing yourself or others to mold (see discussions:
What to Wear When Cleaning Moldy Areas
and
Hidden Mold).

Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces.  Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces before painting.  Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.

If you are unsure about how to clean an item, or if the item is expensive or of sentimental value, you may wish to consult a specialist.  Specialists in furniture repair, restoration, painting, art restoration and conservation, carpet and rug cleaning, water damage, and fire or water restoration are commonly listed in phone books.  Be sure to ask for and check references.  Look for specialists who are affiliated with professional organizations.

BATHROOM TIP

picture of running water

Places that are often or always damp can be hard to maintain completely free of mold.  If there’s some mold in the shower or elsewhere in the bathroom that seems to reappear, increasing ventilation (running a fan or opening a window) and cleaning more frequently will usually prevent mold from recurring, or at least keep the mold to a minimum

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