Mold and mildew are the bane of most households, but luckily, it’s possible to use everyday cleaning products to banish mold and prevent it from creeping back in again. Mold, whether on walls or other surfaces, like floors and carpets, can be bad for your health, so it’s also really important to tackle the root cause.
Read on for a quick, 3-step guide on how to remove mold from walls in your home and also learn the difference between mold and mildew.
Cleaning mold off walls in 3 steps
Before you start cleaning mold off walls, remember to open the windows or have a fan in the room. Also, make sure you wear protective eyewear, gloves, and a face-mask, as contact with the spores can be harmful. Once you are all set up, simply follow these steps:
- Make a solution of chlorine bleach and water – usually one part bleach to three parts water. A good household bleach such as Domex is ideal, as it is proven to kill mold and remove bad odors.
- Using a stiff-bristled brush, scrub the blackened area.
- Rinse thoroughly and dry.
If this doesn’t work, there are products specifically formulated for mold and mildew that may be stronger.
A word of caution: mold can cause allergic reactions and poor health, so if you have an extensive problem with mold and mildew on walls, it may be best to seek expert help.
How to get rid of mold for good: our top tips
Of course, the question of how to remove mold isn’t your only concern; you’ll also want to prevent it from recurring. Here are five options for that:
- Buy a specialised anti-mold product. An anti-microbial spray, for example, can help prevent the spores from settling again. Anti-mold paint can also be purchased from most DIY stores.
- Consider installing an electric de-humidifier in badly affected areas. This is ideal for long-term mold prevention.
- Look into upgrading your home insulation. Sometimes, but not always, bad insulation is the root of the problem. Walls and ceilings that are properly insulated will be less affected by condensation, and therefore mold.
- Let the air flow in your home. Fresh air can help reduce moisture, so open the windows and doors between rooms – including the closet doors - to improve the air circulation.
- Take care of your indoor plants. If you want to avoid cleaning mold off walls in the future, you might want to check your houseplants. Although indoor plants create a welcoming environment their soil moist can be an invite to mold growth – so be vigilant!
Mildew vs mold: what’s the difference?
- Mold is a kind of fungus that develops from airborne spores. It usually grows in damp, warm conditions without much airflow, which is why household bathrooms and loft spaces often suffer from mold. It is often simply caused by humid conditions and lack of ventilation, but sometimes mold on walls can be due to plumbing leaks, both inside and outside the property. Badly insulated heating pipes can also cause a build-up of moisture behind the walls.
- Mildew is the name for the most common type of black mold on walls. It’s characterised by spots that can then spread over larger areas if left untreated. To find out if you have mildew on your walls, apply some bleach onto the affected area with a cloth. If the dark colour fades after a few minutes, it’s mildew. If not, the patch is probably just dirt.
Don’t panic if the mold and mildew on walls returns: this is a common occurrence, and you’re now well armed with advice on how to clean mold away.