Black mold is a fungus that often attaches itself to humid areas in houses or moisture prone objects. It attaches itself to clothes, tiles, dry wood, walls and every area which is moisture prone.
This becomes a particular problem during monsoons as not only does the fungus leave a moist odour but it also begins to grow and spread.
Getting rid of it can be a common household problem but letting it remain could cause hygiene problems.
Mold which has seeped into porous materials however cannot be removed, for example the mold which has seeped into dry wood or walls can only be killed on the surface by bleach, vinegar and several other household products which effectively get rid of them.
However, when it comes to porous surfaces, the roots remain and the chances of getting rid of them are probably nil. So the dry wood where the mold has seeped down and made its roots might as well be thrown out because there is no getting rid of it!
There are several ways of getting rid of surface mold. You can use bleach, vinegar, detergent water, baking soda, borax and hydrogen peroxide. We will look at the possible ways in which each of the products can be used and their possible effectiveness in comparison.
Also the dilution for each of the products has to be different to get the best results and one should pay particular notice to that in order to effectively get rid of the mold.
Using bleach to remove mold
Bleach is a common household product and it’s effective against almost every kind of mold. It sanitizes the surface and makes it resistant against future mold attacks. Here are a few tips to keep in mind for best results.
1) Bleach produces harsh fumes which could possibly be toxic if inhaled in avoidably high amounts, so make sure that the area is well ventilated before starting off and make sure that you’re wearing gloves to protect your hands and your skin.
2) Use a ratio of approximately one cup bleach diluted in ten cups water. It’s not too strong but strong enough to kill the mold.
3) You can use the mixture from a spray bottle or you can use a sponge. It is best to avoid direct contact.
4) For safety sake if there are kids or pets in the house you should definitely rinse the surface to remove traces of bleach.
5) One last thing, bleach when used on clothes might make the colour fade. So always be careful about the dilution while using it with clothes. Some clothes have instructions not to use bleach.
Using Borax to get rid of mold
The advantage of killing mold with Borax is that since it is a natural cleansing product, the fumes emitted are not as harmful or toxic as in the case of bleaching. Also, it is often used as a deodorizer in order to remove the moist smell and odour that bleach leaves behind. A few things to remember while using Borax are as follows.
1) As instructed in the bleaching exercise, create a borax-water solution with a concentration of 1 cup of borax to 10 cups of water.
2) Vacuum out the loose mold in order to prevent the spread of too many mold spores in the air.
3) Now remove the excess mold with a scrubbing brush dipped in the solution and wipe the excess moisture or mold spores clean.
4) Leave the solution to dry on its own because borax on account of its inherent quality of being mild needs to be left in order to prevent future mold growth.
Vinegar for black mold
Vinegar is mildly acidic and often used in conjunction with baking soda to kill mold. While it isn’t as strong as borax or bleach, it has the advantages of being natural and safe. Although it only kills 82% of mold species it has the advantages of being non toxic. A few tips to keep in mind while using vinegar are:
1) To kill mold with vinegar, use white distilled vinegar which is available in your nearest supermarket.
2) Pour the concentrated vinegar in a spray bottle, spray it on the moldy surface and leave it for an hour.
3) After an hour, rinse the area clean and wipe it dry. Any odour left by the vinegar should clear off in a while.
These were a few of the many effective ways to get rid of black mold spores, for other methods you could also try a solution of 50% ammonia and 50% water and spray it on the moldy area. Some other useful products are baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.
The most important part of mold removal is to make sure that you let the solution sit for a while in order to prevent re growth in the future.