How to Get Rid of Mold Safely & Effectively

Updated February 16, 2022
Spray bottle and sponge near black mold wall

You walk into your bathroom and notice some speckles on your pristine paint. Oh no! You have mold. Grab a few disinfectants and some protective gear to get mold out of your bathroom, carpet, and fabrics now.

Top Cleaners and Supplies to Get Rid of Mold

Before you delve into cleaning mold from around your home, you need to grab a few must-have cleaners. These are proven to kill and eliminate mold in all areas of your home.

Other Materials for Cleaning Mold

You also need a few other essentials to tackle the mold issue.

  • Old toothbrush
  • Soft bristle brush
  • Baking soda
  • Mild detergent or dish soap
  • Vacuum
  • Spray bottle
  • Protective gear

Mold can irritate your skin and cause respiratory issues. This is even more so for dangerous black mold. Consider grabbing gloves, a mask, and long sleeves when cleaning it around your home.

Best Way to Remove Mold From Fabric

The way you deal with mold on fabric depends on if it is colored or white material. If you are dealing with colored fabric, you want to use white vinegar. For white fabric, reach for the peroxide or bleach. Now, it's time to get rid of the mold.

  1. Check the label on the clothing.
  2. Use a toothbrush to brush off as much mold as you can.
  3. Add the hottest water your clothing allows to a bucket.
  4. Add a cup of ½ cup of bleach or 1 cup of peroxide for white clothes.
  5. For colored clothes, use a cup of white vinegar instead of peroxide or bleach. (Do not mix white vinegar and bleach.)
  6. Add 2 tablespoons of detergent.
  7. Soak the garment for an hour.
  8. Pull from the soak and scrub the area with a toothbrush until all stains are gone.
  9. Put in the washing machine.
  10. Add 1 cup of bleach or peroxide to the wash for white clothes OR 1-2 cups of white vinegar for colored clothes.
  11. Allow the clothing to hang to dry in the sunlight.

Simple Methods to Remove Mold in Bathroom

One common place for mold around the house is the bathroom. It makes sense since the shower creates all that luxurious steam and condensation mold loves.

Tile and Grout

Treatment of mold on shower walls or tiles will vary based on whether the grout is white or colored. White vinegar will be your go-to for colored grout since hydrogen peroxide can bleach it.

  1. Apply straight hydrogen peroxide or white vinegar to the grout.
  2. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes.
  3. Scrub with a toothbrush dipped in a bit of baking soda.
  4. Rinse.

Shower Curtains

When it comes to the shower curtain, you usually deal with plastic. So, hydrogen peroxide can do the job quickly.

  1. Create a 2:1 mixture of hydrogen peroxide to water.
  2. Apply it to the shower curtain.
  3. Allow it to sit for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Scrub with a bit of baking soda on a toothbrush until all mold is gone.
  5. Rinse and dry.

How to Remove Mold From Walls and Wood

Mold Growth on Wall

Mold loves the porous surfaces of drywall and wood. And it can be a bit hard to get rid of. But with a few mold cleaners and some patience, you'll eliminate it in an instant.

Bleach Method

The instructions are a bit different if you use bleach vs. white vinegar.

  1. Create a mixture of ½ cup bleach to 4 cups water. (Alternately, you can use straight hydrogen peroxide.)
  2. Apply the mixture to the moldy areas.
  3. Scrub with a soft bristle brush.
  4. Apply more bleach solution.
  5. Allow it to sit for 10-15 minutes.
  6. Wipe down.

White Vinegar Method

White vinegar does not have bleaching agents, so it can be a more natural cleaning method. But it takes more time to work.

  1. Apply straight white vinegar to the moldy areas.
  2. Allow it to sit for about an hour.
  3. Scrub the moldy surface with a bristle brush.
  4. Repeat until all the mold is gone.

Get Rid of Mold in Carpet

Mold on the carpet is hard to deal with. If the mold has penetrated into the pad beneath the fibers, then you might need to call a professional to replace the carpet. However, if you are just dealing with a bit of surface mold, you might be able to handle the problem yourself.

  1. Open the windows, so the area is ventilated.
  2. Use a bristle brush to loosen as much mold as possible.
  3. Vacuum up the mold.
  4. Add 1 cup of white vinegar, a tablespoon of detergent, and a cup of water to a spray bottle.
  5. Spray the area.
  6. Scrub with the bristle brush.
  7. Allow the mixture to sit for an hour.
  8. Blot up any moisture with a towel.
  9. Allow to completely dry and vacuum again.

If possible, you might also want to steam clean the carpet. The steam's heat can help penetrate any deep mold spores and kill them. However, if you notice it keeps coming back in that area, you have a larger problem that requires a professional.

How to Get Rid of Mold on Outside of House

Mold on the outside of your house can be a bummer. But, it's not too hard to deal with. You can grab hydrogen bleach or a commercial cleaner for your house and siding.

  1. Add 1 cup of bleach to 10 cups of water in a bucket.
  2. Add a few tablespoons of mild detergent.
  3. Scrub the areas with a bristle brush.
  4. Rinse with a hose.

Remove Mold From Car

Cars are a bit of a different beast when they have a mold infestation. You don't want to use bleach since the smell can get overwhelming in the small space. And, you don't want to bleach your black carpet. So, white vinegar is best in this space.

  1. Add a cup of water and fill the rest of the spray bottle with white vinegar.
  2. Spray down the mold seats or rugs.
  3. Allow the mixture to sit for about 15-30 minutes.
  4. Scrub with a bristle brush or toothbrush.
  5. Wipe away the mold.
  6. Allow it to air dry.

Tips for How to Prevent Mold Growth

Mold is going to happen. It's part of nature. Even the EPA acknowledges getting rid of all mold is impossible. However, you can do things in your home to mitigate the growth of mold around your wood and drywall.

  • Control moisture by getting a dehumidifier.
  • Vent areas with excess moisture by opening windows.
  • Use air conditioning systems to remove the moisture and promote the circulation of cool, dry air.
  • Increased air movement through an electric fan is also a great way of reducing the air's moisture.
  • Check for and fix water leaks.
  • Dry water-damaged areas immediately.
  • Do not store cloth, wood, paper, and other porous materials in the foundation or basement area of your home.

When to Call a Professional

Mold is a tricky subject. Depending on the type of mold, it can be dangerous, and it can spread rapidly. So how do you know if you can handle it or you should call a professional? It comes down to the size of your mold problem. You can handle this at home if you have a relatively small mold area, like on a grout line or a small site on the wall. However, if you are looking at a mold area bigger than a foot or two, call a professional to help.

How to Kill Mold for Good

Mold is part of nature. So, there is no actual way to get rid of it for good. However, you can stop those little green spots from popping up with a bit of disinfectant and diligence. It's also essential to ensure your house doesn't have excess moisture.

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