Mold is everywhere. Airborne mold spores exist in almost every environment, so when conditions favor its growth mold can take hold, and quickly. This can happen in humid weather or after heavy rain, and often is the result of water damage. In the following read, we will take you through a how-to remove mold DIY.
Moldy areas are typically found on porous surfaces such as grout or the drywall in your home. Mildew is one of the most common types of mold, most often found in your shower. Mildew can sometimes be seen on old woodwork as well and, causes surface stains but not rot. Ventilation is the key to prevention in these situations. Make sure you open that shower curtain or door after use and use your exhaust fan to help prevent mold growth in the bathroom. There are hundreds of cleaning products available to handle minor cases of bathroom mold, but when it comes to mold stains on your walls, the problem can be a little harder to handle.
Mold Removal Preparation:
Before attempting to remove mold be sure that neither you nor anyone else who will be in the area has health issues, as mold can exacerbate specific health problems. If you are at all concerned about the removal process, or what type of mold you have, you should call an expert in mold remediation such as Branch Services to handle the problem.
Surface mold, such as mildew, or the mold you get on your deck or siding can also be cleaned with a solution of bleach and water. Using a 1-to-8 ratio—1 part bleach to 8 parts hot water—and a scrub brush. This will take care of the mold stain problem in minutes.
You’ll want to wear gloves when you are looking to remove mold and avoid breathing in the bleach solution as even a mild bleach mix can irritate your lungs and skin. After treating these areas, wipe them down but don’t rinse! The remaining bleach will kill the mold that is left. You should protect yourself even when dealing with these simple mold problems by wearing long sleeves, long pants, rubber gloves, and goggles.
When looking to remove mold for larger areas, such as water damaged carpet, drywall, or other mold affected areas, you will need to use even more caution and put in a lot more work. Experts recommend a respirator be worn, specifically one rated for mold spore protection, in addition to covering the rest of your body with clothing you can either immediately wash in hot water and bleach or throw away.
First, make sure the source of water has been removed; if the mold is caused by a leak fix it before dealing with the mess if it’s a ventilation issue address that before you dive into remediation.
When you work, you’ll want to set up a fan in a window as an exhaust fan to ventilate the room while you work. Use a cheap fan, as it will have to be discarded after use due to infestation with spores.
Once you’re dressed appropriately, and you’ve set up your exhaust system, you’ll want to rip up and discard any moldy carpet or drywall. Make sure it’s wrapped and taped inside the plastic and be sure to double bag any debris.
Keep the area you’re working with damp with a gentle spray of water to help keep spores from going airborne, and turn off the AC or heating system, so they don’t take up residence in your ducts.
Once you’ve removed the carpet or drywall, you’ll go about sealing off the rest of the room. Cover the doorway and floor registers with overlapping plastic. Tape it down to ensure that the plastic stays in place; it’s your first line of defense against spreading the mold.
Moldy walls will likely need to be opened, and insulation will have to be replaced. If the problem has been going on for a long time, you may even find that beams inside the wall have begun to rot. If so, they will also need to be removed. Additionally, there are wood preservatives available which can help preserve the existing wood. Once they have been applied, you’ll want to double up damaged studs with new, pressure-treated wood.
Finally, after all of that is done, you can vacuum out the remaining mess with a shop vac. Be sure to keep the shop vac outside and only let the hose inside. If not, you’ll end up spreading more spores all over the area.
Once that is all done you can begin the process of rebuilding from the damage.
This will involve scrubbing exposed surfaces with a mold cleaner made of bleach mix, sealing areas you have cleaned once they dry out, and beginning a new installation of drywall.
For some, the DIY method to remove mold may simply be too labor-intensive or intimidating. Whatever aspect gives you pause, it is often best to leave big jobs like this to the professionals. A company with experience in mold remediation and reconstruction can be a one-call solution to handle the issue without putting your health, or the health of your family, at risk.
No matter which option you choose, the longer mold sits, the worse the damage can be, so deal with the issue sooner rather than later.