Removing Mold: How to Clean Black Mold Effectively

Photo: © RioPatuca - stock.adobe.com

Never put off cleaning mold from your walls – the most important thing is to remove it as soon as possible. In this guide, we will show you how to clean black mold, and what chemicals to use and when.

Is mold growing on your walls actually that big of a problem? In short, yes, it definitely is. Cleaning black mold is always necessary, no matter where or how much of it there is. The question remains: What is the best way to clean black mold?

Exposure to mold’s spores and gaseous by-products, along with the chemical cleaning agents themselves, can prove harmful to your health. This is why you should carefully consider how to clean and remove any mold in your home. Here are some tips to get you started:

1. Cleaning Recent Mold Growth

You can usually use a mild anti-mold agent if the problem is not too widespread. Cleaning agents containing alcohol (80 percent ethanol – beware of the fumes!), hydrogen peroxide (three to ten percent), or sodium bicarbonate (soda ash, five percent) are often quite effective.

If these mild cleaners aren’t enough to clean the black mold completely, or you can’t prevent the humidity that caused it, it may be time to try a more intensive cleaning agent. Some chloride-based cleaners can destroy the spores in as little as ten seconds. Although these chemical products are very effective, you should only use them if absolutely necessary due to the risks they pose to your health. Be sure to read the directions carefully when removing mold with such heavy-duty products.

2. How to Clean Established Black Mold Growth

If the mold has been present on your walls for a while, black mold removal becomes a bit more complicated. At this stage, the mold has probably already permeated the paint or wallpaper, and sometimes even spread into the plaster or drywall. When this happens, removing the mold will not be possible by just cleaning the surface.

You will need to have a professional assess the situation and likely completely replace the colonized material. If you take on this task yourself, remember to dispose of all contaminated materials correctly. Someone should always check the affected area after you’re done cleaning up any black mold.

3. After Black Mold Removal: Find out What Caused It

It is not an adequate solution, in the long run, to simply clean back mold. More important is to find the root cause and prevent its further spread. If you don’t take the time to do this, don’t be surprised if it pops up again around your home.

The most common reasons for mold in homes are:

  • poorly-insulated walls
  • high humidity (from plants, bathtubs/showers, drying laundry, etc.)
  • improper ventilation
  • insufficient heating

How to Prevent Mold

  • After cleaning or removing black mold, you should treat the affected areas with fresh plaster or paint. Lime plaster and lime mineral paint (often a bit more expensive) offer great advantages in that they allow water to pass through and evaporate. The lime also works as a mild fungicide.
  • Avoid putting wallpaper or textiles on or near the affected areas. These can serve as a breeding ground for new mold colonization. Some types of mold cause allergies and certain forms of lung disease, as the spores are transmitted through the air, come to rest on your face and skin, and make their way into your respiratory tract.
  • For comprehensive information on mold and how to prevent it, have a read through the Facts on Mold and Dampness guide provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Removing Mold: How to Clean Black Mold Effectively
(Photo: © RioPatuca - stock.adobe.com)

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This article was translated from German to English by Evan Binford. You can view the original here: Schimmel entfernen, aber richtig

Important Information regarding Health-related Topics.

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