Kill mold: reliable advice on getting rid of mold and staying healthy

Photo Credit: Steve Maxwell

While mould isn't always extremely harmful, but all mould should be treated and removed from your home promptly. Homes have mould spores floating around in the air, and they are always there we just can't see them. Mould spores are everywhere and what they're looking for is a nice, damp area to make their home. Mould loves moisture and humidity, and it feeds off of building materials like wood and drywall. So it can pretty much grow anywhere in the home, but it favours dark and wet environments. Many people find mould growing in their walls when they go to do some home renovations. It can especially be devastating if you find that the mould is pretty widespread and that it's likely been there for a while. If this has happened in your home or you have found mould anywhere else in your home, you need to learn how to remove mould right away and apply some of these cleaning tips from Steve Maxwell. If the area that the mould is covering is more than 10 square feet or so, you should seriously consider hiring professionals who know how to remove mould properly, so it doesn't keep growing back. Your first step in mould removal should be to remove the source of moisture in the area. It could be a roof leak, a pipe leak or too much condensation.

Then, you have to learn how to remove mould and get cleaning it right away. You may have to remove pieces of drywall or studs, even carpet or panelling because the mould may be growing too deep into the fibres of the wood to be cleaned properly. If this has happened to you, you should probably hire someone to do this work for you unless you're experienced in renovations or want to learn how to do it yourself. If the area of mould is easy enough to clean on your own, make sure that you wear gloves, a HEPA-rated respirator and eye protection when you're cleaning up mould. The first step is to completely dry out the area. So you can add a heat source such as a space heater in the area to help speed up the drying time. Make sure that all leaks and humidity is gone and then bring in a heater and monitor it as it's drying the area. You may have to wait a few days or more for the water or moisture to completely dry up, but once it does you can then being to remove the mould. Contrary to popular belief, bleach actually isn't the best thing to use when it comes to mould removal. Not only will it bleach the surface and discolour it, mould treated with bleach usually always returns. This is because mould is actually water based and water feeds mould which is not what you want.

Steve recommends using a registered fungicide to remove mould in your home. Many of them are odourless and kill all parts of the mould including the spore. You can also use natural cleaners like vinegar, baking soda and tea tree oil to remove mould and kill it completely. There are many nature cleaning tips and recipes for killing mould so follow those or the directions on the package of fungicide you use. To prevent the mould from coming back monitor the area and also make sure that you clean any mould with your cleaning products the minute you see it returning. Ventilation in your home is key to preventing mould from returning too. A heat recovery ventilator (HRV) is the best thing to have in your home to prevent mould. You can also get a high-quality dehumidifier to dry out the air in your home too.***

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