Mold in Your Home
First it is important to realize these points: it is impossible to get rid of all mold and mold spores indoors; some mold spores will be found floating through the air and in house dust. The mold spores will not grow if moisture is not present. Indoor mold growth can and should be prevented or controlled by controlling moisture indoors. If there is mold growth in your home, you must clean up the mold and fix the water problem. If you clean up the mold, but don't fix the water problem, then, most likely, the mold problem will come back.
The Environmental Protection Agency recommends the following general tips:
- Fix plumbing leaks and other water problems as soon as possible. Dry all items completely.
- Scrub mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, and dry completely.
- Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or impossible to remove completely.
- Avoid exposing yourself or others to mold.
- Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces. Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces before painting. Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.
- If you are unsure about how to clean an item, or if the item is expensive or of sentimental value, you may wish to consult a specialist. Specialists in furniture repair, restoration, painting, art restoration and conservation, carpet and rug cleaning, water damage, and fire or water restoration are commonly listed in phone books. Be sure to ask for and check references. Look for specialists who are affiliated with professional organizations.
Read more information, including all of the following subjects, at the EPA website.
- Mold Basics
- Why is mold growing in my home?
- Can mold cause health problems?
- How do I get rid of mold?
- Mold Cleanup
- Who should do the cleanup?
- Mold Cleanup Guidelines
- What to Wear When Cleaning Moldy Areas
- How Do I Know When the Remediation or Cleanup is Finished?
- Moisture and Mold Prevention and Control Tips
- Actions that will help to reduce humidity
- Actions that will help prevent condensation
- Testing or sampling for mold
- Hidden Mold