Written by Kirsten Hudson
Cleaning up expired food, smelly trash and even clogged sinks just doesn't compare to the grossness of getting rid of musty, scuzzy mold. This fungus has a serious ick factor. Maybe it's the sliminess that makes it so revolting? Or, perhaps it's the whole "growing" thing? Either way, you need to get it rid of mold and mildew for your health, and to prevent damages to your home.
Mold and mildew can pose serious health risks to you, your family and your pets. Mold has been linked to respiratory problems, allergic reactions and even depression. Mold also aggravates symptoms for those who have allergies and asthma. And, even worse than the mold you can see in the corner of your shower are mold spores, the substances that come off of mold clusters. These are invisible to the naked eye and fill your indoor air with toxins. Find out how to stop mold and mildew from invading your house and how to get rid of these scummy substances if they crop up.
Prevent mold from growing
If you want to thwart these musty house guests from sticking around, keep your home dry. Mold loves warm, humid areas, like bathrooms or a damp basement. To stop mold from forming, try these tips:
- Invest in a dehumidifier for damp areas
- Fix any leaks and address any plumbing issues
- Clean up spills immediately
- Let in fresh air and sunlight to help kill mold
- Open doors and windows to promote air circulation, especially after showering or while cooking
- Keep clothes and other fabrics dry
- Clean out air conditioning drip pans
- Replace mildewy shower curtains
How to kill mold
You don't need to grab the bleach to get rid of mold, and you can also skip those noxious conventional cleaners in store aisles that claim to remove mold. These cleaners often contain harsh acids and chlorine bleach. "Cleaning" with these chemicals will just release toxins into the air, not to mention the unknown health hazards if those products come into contact with your skin. Instead, kill the mold in your home for good with natural methods. For small mold problems, these three natural cleaners will work.
Kill mold for cheap! You can clean your home from top to bottom with plain white vinegar, and that includes killing mold. As a naturally-antimicrobial substance, vinegar will solve your mold problems. Simply fill a spray bottle with vinegar straight up. No diluting! Spritz the vinegar directly on the moldy spots in your home. Let the vinegar sit for a while and then wipe away the vinegar, mold and all. Repeat as needed.
Tea tree oil
As a natural fungicide, tea tree oil can eliminate your nasty mold or mildew problems. Plus, it will fill your home with a lovely medicinal scent. Simply add 10 drops of tea tree oil to a spray bottle and fill it with water. Spray the mixture on moldy problem areas. Let the mixture sit and then wipe away the mold.
Pull out that vodka from your liquor cabinet and pour it into a spray bottle. Don't worry. You don't need to grab the top-shelf stuff. The cheap kind actually works better for cleaning. Spritz the vodka straight on mold to put it into a drunken stupor. Let the vodka work for a while, and then use a rag or sponge to wipe away the mold.
If you're concerned about the air quality in your home, it's always a good idea to get a mold inspection. You can search for a mold inspector in your area on the Indoor Air Quality Association website.
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