How to Get Rid of Black Mold Naturally and Safely
Mold is a serious problem in homes, especially in basements, bathrooms, kitchen, and crawlspaces. Although there are many ways to control it, most are not safe. You might access cheap products to kill mold but they might have a serious effect on your health and that of your loved ones. Most cleaning products are toxic for indoor use, hence the need to consider natural methods that are safer and environmentally friendly.
With the use of simple household products, you can eliminate this problem before it escalates. Here, let’s discuss how to identify this common household hazard and how to treat a breakout. If you are not in a position to do it yourself, don’t hesitate to contact mold removal experts like us at All Dry USA.
What is Black Mold?
Black mold, also known as Stachybotrys chartarum, is a type of toxic molds that can cause damage to property or serious health concerns. You can easily identify its blackish-greenish blemishes common in ceiling tiles and water-damaged places. It flourishes in drywalls, gypsum boards, moist and cellulose-rich surfaces. Although black mold is not dangerous, it can cause various health risks to sensitive groups like people who suffer from respiratory conditions.
Besides health concerns, the unsightly presence of mold on your walls is something you don’t want. Mold infestation can damage the good look of your home, which might reduce the value of your property.
Mold spores can creep into your home in many ways. They can hitchhike on pet fur, air currents or clothes. However, what promotes the formation of mold is the presence of water or moisture. This explains why the most prone places are water-damaged areas. Moisture problems normally arise from leaking pipes and flood water.
Materials like carpets, gypsum boards, and drywalls encourage mold development when they soak up water. Mold can develop within 24-48 hours if the conditions are favorable. It’s, therefore, crucial to get rid of damp materials within your house.
How to Identify Black Mold
One of the easiest ways to identify black mold is through its distinctive color. Unlike other mold species that have gray, pink, brown or white color, stachybotrys has a distinctively black color.
Although it’s not easy to identify this species by its smell, you might notice some musty odor as a result of the mold and mildew. However, if you’ve experienced it before, you will notice a sort of musty and earthy smell straight away.
You can also identify black mold by noting its texture. Unlike other species that have light, fuzzy texture, black mold has a wet, slimy texture. Do not use your bare hands when observing the affected surface. Instead, use a cloth to wipe the surface.
Some of the signs of black mold on different surfaces include:
Black mold on wood
Stachybotrys will only develop on wooden surfaces when moisture is present. In case you identify moisture on wooden surfaces, there’s a high possibility black mold is present. The presence of water sources or placement of fans around your house can accelerate this problem. Since wood has natural variations that could pass for mold, it’s crucial to have your wooden surfaces tested before making any conclusions.
Read more: How to remove mold from furniture
Black mold on drywall
It’s easier to identify this problem on drywall because it causes severe discoloration. However, it’s not easy to identify how deep the mold has infected the wall. Cleaning mold damage might be easier when only the surface is affected. You will need a qualified professional if it’s inside the drywall.
How to Kill Black Mold
As mentioned earlier, natural solutions are the most preferable when trying to eliminate black mold from your home. Don’t forget to wear protective gear when doing any cleaning. Some of the known solutions include:
White-distilled vinegar is an affordable and environmentally friendly product for eliminating black mold in its initial stages. Although vinegar doesn’t smell so great, its mild acidic properties make it a great remediation for mold in your home. This product is especially helpful when cleaning kitchen sinks and bathrooms.
The cleaning process involves spraying white-distilled vinegar on the affected area and wiping it using a damp cloth. In case you don’t have a spray bottle, pour the vinegar on the cloth and use it like a cleanser to keep an area clean.
If the stains persist, try a mixture of baking soda, vinegar, and hydrogen peroxide.
2. Tea Tree Oil Solution
Tea tree oil is a natural fungicide that works great as a cleansing product. Besides cleaning mold, it also helps to prevent mold spores from re-infesting surfaces.
Mix one teaspoon of the oil with one cup of water, shake it up and apply on the affected area. A spray bottle is preferable when pouring the solution. However, you can use a dampened towel in case you don’t have a spray bottle. After pouring the solution, give it an hour to dry before wiping the surface with a dry towel.
3. Hydrogen Peroxide
One of the most effective solutions in cleaning kitchen appliances, floors, walls and bathroom fixtures. It is an antiviral, antibacterial and anti-fungal solution with the ability to eliminate mold growth on such surfaces.
Mix 3% hydrogen peroxide with 2 parts water and pour the solution into a spray bottle. Pour the mixture on the affected surface and give it 5 to 10 minutes before wiping the mold off.
4. Baking Soda
Baking soda is a great alternative to ammonia and bleach. It can be used in bathrooms, closets, and basements. It does not only remove mold but also absorbs any dominant odors.
Mix equal amounts of baking soda and water and apply the paste on the affected surface. Give it a few minutes to dry before scrubbing the mold using a small brush. Use a dry towel to wipe any remaining debris.
5. Grapefruit Seed Extract
Just like tea tree oil, grapefruit seed extract oil is a non-toxic green solution that is effective in removing black mold. It deodorizes and disinfects affected surfaces perfectly.
Mix 10 drops of grapefruit seed extract oil with a cup of water and use a spray bottle to saturate the mold area. Give the solution one hour before wiping the remaining mold residue using a dry towel.
Black Mold Prevention
Once you know how to get rid of black mold in your home, it’s vital to prevent it from re-infesting your surfaces. Some of the ways to prevent mold spores is through:
- Properly ventilating your house
- Cleaning damp areas regularly
- Using a dehumidifier to minimize moisture levels in your house
- Keeping check of water leakage, flooding or malfunctioning appliances
The rule of thumb to prevent their growth is to keep your home clean and dry.
What to Do If You Have Mold?
Don’t let black mold wreak havoc on your home and health. Take the right measures to solve the problem before it escalates. Don’t forget to take the necessary safety precautions such as wearing protective gear. In case the problem is beyond your control, do not hesitate to seek professional assistance from us at All Dry USA. We can treat any outbreak you have and restore your home to its original state.