How to remove mould from the ceiling

Reach for the skies with our tips on how to clean ceiling mould quickly and easily.

Updated 23 September 2023


AuthorBy Cleanipedia Team

Reading Time5 minutes

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Key steps to remove mould from ceilings:

  1. 1

    Gear up with gloves, goggles and face mask.

  2. 2

    Stand on something sturdy, such as a stool or stepladder.

  3. 3

    Spray the mould with white vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, or a baking soda solution.

  4. 4

    Scrub with a brush or scourer.

  5. 5

    Rinse and dry thoroughly.

It’s hard to have a relaxing bath or drift off in bed when you’re staring up at a mouldy ceiling but it’s not just an aesthetic issue; mould can also cause health problems. Try our tips to remove mould on tIt’s hard to have a relaxing bath or drift off in bed when you’re staring up at a mouldy ceiling but it’s not just an aesthetic issue; mould can also cause health problems. Try our tips to remove mould on the bathroom ceiling and rest easy.

When scrubbing to remove mould from ceilings, keep a bucket of clean water to hand so you can rinse your brush or scourer regularly. Otherwise, you’ll just spread the mould around.

Check your ceiling first!

If your ceiling is made of a porous material, such as wood, consult an expert as mould can be very difficult to remove from these materials completely. Check other surfaces for signs of mould too – and try our tips for getting mould and mildew off walls if needed.

How to get rid of mould on the ceiling in bedrooms or bathrooms

Where non-porous materials are used, you can learn how to remove mould from the ceiling yourself. Here’s how to clean ceiling mould in 7 simple steps:

  1. 1

    Before you start, choose your cleaner. White vinegar, baking soda, and hydrogen peroxide are all suitable options.

  2. 2

    Close the door and open the window. You don’t want mould spores to float elsewhere in the house while you’re at work.

  3. 3

    Put on gloves, goggles and a face mask. This may sound excessive but mould can be dangerous so it’s best to be safe. Wear old clothes too.

  4. 4

    Use a stool or stepladder to reach the ceiling. Make sure it’s secure and stable on the floor. You may need to ask someone to hold it for you.

  5. 5

    Scrape away any paint in the mouldy area to expose mould that might be growing underneath it.

  6. 6

    Apply your chosen cleaner. You’ll need to scrub them into the surface, rinsing your brush or scourer regularly.

  7. 7

    Dry the area thoroughly when finished. Leaving a wet surface will just encourage more mould to grow.

What can you use to remove mould from ceilings?

There are a few different substances you can use to tackle mould and it’s always worth testing your method on a small area first to make sure it doesn’t cause damage.

Warning! Never apply bleach and vinegar together as combining these products can create a deadly chlorine gas.

  • White vinegar. Apply it neat using a rag or a spray bottle. Leave it to work for an hour then clean with warm water and a scrubbing brush or scourer.

  • Baking soda. Dissolve half a teaspoon in a spray bottle of either water or white vinegar. Spray onto the mould, then scrub and rinse.

  • Hydrogen peroxide. Spray 3% hydrogen peroxide onto the mould and leave for 10 minutes. Scrub and rinse.

When you’ve finished scrubbing away the mould, rinse the area using a sponge dipped in clean water and dry it with a clean cloth. If you used baking soda and water, give the ceiling one last spray before drying the ceiling to prevent the mould from returning.

How to prevent mould on ceilings

Knowing how to clean mould off the ceiling is only half the battle; once it’s gone, you need to make sure it doesn’t come back or you’ll find yourself asking ‘how to get rid of mould in bathroom ceilings’ all over again.

  • First, check to make sure your roof isn’t leaking.

  • Make sure your home is well ventilated as poor ventilation will cause damp to settle.

  • Leave the bathroom and shower door open when they’re not in use.

  • Turn on the extractor fan or open a window when bathing so steam can escape.

  • If your bedroom has damp, reduce water vapour in the air with a dehumidifier.

  • Leave your bedroom door open in the daytime to allow air to circulate.

  • Improve your insulation to avoid damp. It might even save you some money!

Image of a clean ceiling

Is mould on the ceiling dangerous?

Mold on the ceiling can pose potential health risks and should be taken seriously. While not all molds are toxic, they can still trigger respiratory issues, allergies, and asthma symptoms in susceptible individuals. If left untreated, mold can spread and cause structural damage to the ceiling. Additionally, it may indicate underlying moisture problems, such as leaks or poor ventilation, which can lead to more severe issues. Promptly addressing mold on the ceiling is crucial. Professional remediation may be necessary for extensive or recurring mold growth. It's essential to identify and fix the source of moisture to prevent future mold outbreaks and maintain a safe living environment.

Can you paint over mould on the ceiling?

Painting over mold on the ceiling is generally not recommended because it doesn't address the underlying issue and can lead to more significant problems down the road. Mold thrives in damp and humid conditions, and painting over it doesn't eliminate the moisture source, allowing the mold to continue growing beneath the paint. Moreover, mold can release spores that may be harmful when inhaled.

Once you’ve successfully treated the mould, keep an eye on affected areas so you can tackle any regrowth before it has time to spread.

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