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Tackle Mold and Mildew in Your Bathroom Once and For All

Posted January 21, 2023 by Mike Lewis under Tips

Tackle Mold and Mildew in Your Bathroom Once and For All

Why Mold and Mildew Form in Bathrooms

Mold and mildew thrive in warm, damp environments like bathrooms. As I shower and bathe, moisture builds up on surfaces like tile, grout, walls, and ceilings. If the moisture lingers, mold and mildew can start to grow within 24-48 hours.

Mold and mildew release spores that can cause allergic reactions, aggravate asthma, and lead to other health issues if inhaled. It’s important to tackle bathroom mold and mildew before it becomes a big problem.

Routine Cleaning and Maintenance

To prevent mold and mildew, I need to routinely clean and maintain my bathroom. Here are some tips:

  • Ventilate the bathroom by running the exhaust fan during and after showering. Letting the moist air escape prevents buildup.

  • Clean surfaces like tile, grout, caulk, and windows with a homemade vinegar solution. The acidity of vinegar kills mold and mildew.

  • Dry shower walls, floors, and basins after use with a squeegee or towel. Leaving pools of water allows mold to thrive.

  • Recaulk areas around sinks, tubs, and showers every 1-2 years. Cracked, old caulk provides places for mold to grow.

  • Dehumidify the overall bathroom with a dehumidifier or by keeping the door open to allow air circulation.

Deep Cleaning Existing Mold and Mildew

If despite my best efforts mold and mildew have taken hold, it’s time for a deep cleaning:

Supplies Needed

  • Protective gear like gloves, goggles, and mask
  • Mold killing products containing bleach, borax, or hydrogen peroxide
  • Scrub brushes and sponges for scrubbing
  • Vacuum with HEPA filter to capture mold spores

Process

  • Mix my cleaning solution according to product instructions. Bleach solutions should be no more than 1 part bleach to 10 parts water.
  • Use the vacuum to remove any loose mold from surfaces. This minimizes contact.
  • Scrub affected areas with the cleaning solution, using the scrub brush for textured surfaces like grout.
  • Allow the surfaces to sit for 10+ minutes so the cleaners can work.
  • Rinse everything thoroughly with clean water to remove mold and cleaning solution.
  • Let the area dry completely before using again.

Preventing Recurrence

To prevent mold and mildew from recurring after deep cleaning:

  • Identify and fix any bathroom moisture sources, like leaks under sinks or tile.

  • Consider installing an exhaust fan with higher capacity or a timer to run it longer.

  • Apply anti-mildew paint on problematic drywall or tile grout. This resists mold growth.

  • Recaulk and regrout areas mold had penetrated. This provides a fresh moisture barrier.

  • Check bathroom corners, ceilings, and walls monthly for any new mold or moisture. Address right away before it spreads!

By staying vigilant with routine maintenance and doing periodic deep cleans as needed, I can keep bathroom mold and mildew at bay for good. Taking these preventative steps also improves overall bathroom hygiene for myself and my family.

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