Mold in the shower doesn’t just smell bad and look awful. It’s also a real health problem. Bathroom mold removal is essential to keep you and your family safe.
Not all of the mold in your bathroom will be toxic, but they’re all a potential health hazard.
Your family could be allergic to mold. Look out for rashes, watery or itchy eyes, wheezing or runny noses.
It’s best to treat all types of mold as dangerous if you can’t identify them. So, always wear a mask and gloves when you’re working on your bathroom mold removal.
Why does mold build up so fast in a bathroom?
Your bathroom (or shower area) is the ideal home for mold to take hold. It only needs 2 things to survive and your bathroom provides both.
That’s moisture and food. So all of the buildup from soap scum, or hair, or bodily oils, keeps that mold going.
You’re never going to get rid of moisture in a bathroom. But you can tackle its food!
Luckily, once you start a bathroom mold removal regime, it’s easy to maintain. You can battle the mold on a weekly, or monthly, basis, depending on how humid your bathroom is.
How do I start with removal?
The first thing you need to do is actually look at your bathroom. Do you have any water leaks or bad buildup of moisture?
Fix those first. Bathroom mold removal gets a whole lot harder if you don’t.
Next, you need to work out where the mold actually is. If the smell is really bad, it could be behind your walls or under the floor.
You need to know where it is before you tackle it. You don’t want to rip out a wall and disturb the mold. Once those spores get into the air, you can contaminate your whole house.
Sealing off the area is a good idea for large areas. Plastic sheeting is your obvious choice and you can shut off your ventilation system. You want to keep that mold contained!
So, keep an eye out for red stains on your shower cuts, or black stains on the tiles.
Now get started with the removal!
If the area is bigger than 9 square feet you might want to get the mold tested for toxicity first.
But if the area is less than ten square feet, you can start removing it yourself.
Start off by running the nozzle from your vacuum cleaner over the mold to remove any loose spores. It’ll stop you accidentally dislodging them and moving them elsewhere.
Use a borax solution to dampen the stained areas. You can also use a solution of baking soda and water.
While you can use other removal products, mixing chemicals can result in toxic gasses. Never, ever mix ammonia and bleach.
Baking soda and water are by far the safest. (Here are 5 other ways to clean using baking soda and vinegar!)
You can also add essential oils if you want to improve the smell. Peppermint or lavender are good choices.
Another alternative is to use undiluted white vinegar instead of borax or baking soda.
Use a small spray bottle to stop the spores being released into the air. Leave the spray to do its job for 5-10 minutes. If you’re using vinegar, leave it for an hour.
Use an old toothbrush to scrub away the mold. Rinse the area thoroughly when you’re done.
Since mold just loves damp environments, dry the surfaces too to slow down any regrowth.
Do I need to clean the shower drain?
Definitely. Mold also builds up there, feeding on all that buildup of hair and soap scum.
You can use borax or baking soda. Whichever you choose, mix up a paste of equal parts water and your chosen mold killer.
Smear a liberal dose around the drain opening and leave it for 5-10 minutes.
Scrub it off, and rinse the area. You can always repeat the process for any stubborn mold.
Now you need to pour boiling water down the drain. A 4-6 or 8-10 quart stockpot will do the trick.
Just make sure you keep your arms, hands and face clear. That amount of water will generate a lot of steam!
The boiling water will kill off any mold spores down the drain. Next, pour down a cup of white distilled vinegar. Finish it off with a 1/2 cup of baking soda.
What about my tiles and grout?
Removing mold from tiles is pretty straightforward. The tiles are non-porous and the mold has nowhere to put down roots.
You can often simply spray on your solution and wipe the mold away.
Grout is trickier. If it hasn’t been sealed properly, mold can penetrate and put down roots.
Bleach or hydrogen peroxide can kill the mold and remove stains. But if the mold reappears, it’s a sign that its roots are deep in the grout.
You might need to replace the grout and seal it properly. Once you do, it’s best to keep tiles and grout clean to prevent the dirt buildup that mold feeds on.
Book in for a quote if you’d like to let the professionals make your grout sparkle!
Should I maintain my bathroom mold removal routine?
Absolutely! If you keep on top of the mold, you’ll need to do serious removal less often.
So repeat the drain routine 2 or 3 times a month. And apply your mold-killing solution to the underside of your bath or shower mat.
Try and reduce the humidity levels in the bathroom. 30-50% should help to keep mold growth at bay. Simply opening a window during and after showering can help.
You can actually spray your bathtub or shower every week with undiluted white vinegar. Just let it air-dry and the acids will kill mold spores.
Using vinegar as part of your regular bathroom mold removal routine is a good idea. It’s supposed to kill 82% of mold species so it’s a cheap and effective way to keep mold down!
A clean house is a healthy house. So the easiest way to keep your family safe is to keep on top of the mold. Build preventative measures into your regime and they’ll become second nature in no time.