Mold Why It Grows, How To Clean and Prevent It

Photo Credit: Nadra

When it comes to you and your family, it's important to know the dangers of mold in your home, what kills mold and how to remove mold. Mold is the term that is used to describe a growth that is on the surface of organic matter, caused by fungi, especially in the presence of dampness. Mold is mother nature's way of helping to recycle organic matter. Every cubic square foot of air has thousands of mold spores that floats around in it. Every surface, whether that surface be natural or man-made, inside or out also has thousands of mold spores that have settled onto it. Mold is often water repellent and resistant to drying out which makes it tricky to remove.

Mold is often a word that is used interchangeably with the word mildew. These words are simply generic terms that are used to describe a variety of microorganisms, to include fungi, algae, rusts, yeasts, and bacteria. Under a microscope, mold and mildew have somewhat of an octopus-like structure. Its legs attach to all sorts of surfaces in a web-like manner. Once mold or mildew has successfully colonized, it then turns a dark color and releases thousands of new spores. It does sound a bit like out of a horror movie. Mold and mildew need three things to successfully grow to include food, temperate weather and most importantly water. When the mold spores are in a favorable growing environment, they will germinate.

There is nothing quite as disheartening in your home than the appearance of mold beginning to grow. That you why you will want to know how to remove mold and what kills mold. Some ways how to remove mold are to try fully remove the web-like legs of the mold colonies, and to penetrate the water-repellant outer surface of the mold, and to remove the food source for the mold. The idea on what kills mold is a steam-power sprayer, although standard power washers also work well. Another way to remove mold is with the combinations of liquid chlorine bleach, laundry detergent and water. In all cases, you want to be sure and use the right protective equipment such as gloves, safety glasses, and a dust-mask. Since mold and mildew will die at temperatures that are above 140 Fahrenheit, you should also have great success with a steam-power sprayer at about 250 degrees in removing the mold and mildew. Preventing the growth and reoccurance of mold is as simple as preventing the three factors that it needs to live.

Some of the proper ways in which you can remove mold include gapping the outdoor deck properly for drainage. Assure that the gutters on your house do not drain onto the outdoor deck. Check that your house gutters are not backed up and clogged and overflowing onto your outdoor deck and that the dryer vent does not flow directly onto or around the outdoor deck. Avoid the use of bark mulch on or underneath the outdoor deck (bark mulch is typically laden with mold spores). Avoid the use of lawn or plant fertilizers on the patio or deck (such as overspray from lawn fertilizer or Miracle-Gro for potted plants). Sweep the outdoor deck every week, especially when pollen is heavy. For ways on how to remove mold and what kills mold, you will want to look on the Nadra site. Nadra stands for North American Deck and Railing Association. Knowing how to remove mold in a safe and effective manner can offer you peace of mind in the safety of you and your family health and well being. **

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