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10 Tips for Mold and Mildew Removal

Water is always the cause of mold and mildew, but finding the source of the problem can seem like an unsolvable mystery. Follow our tips for using some handy gadgets and basic detective work to find and eliminate your mold and mildew problems for good,.

10 Tips for Mold and Mildew Removal

Water is always the cause of mold and mildew, but finding the source of the problem can seem like an unsolvable mystery. Follow our tips for using some handy gadgets and basic detective work to find and eliminate your mold and mildew problems for good,.

Check for plumbing leaks

Don't ignore mold

Mold can be an early warning sign of a moisture problem inside walls or ceilings that could cause an expensive problem like wood rot. Avoid the temptation to just wipe the mold away and forget about it—find and stop the water source.

Look for outside leaks

Inspect the ductwork

Is it mold or dirt?

Stop mold from coming back

Missing insulation feeds mold

Win the war against bathtub mold

Diagnostic tools can help

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May 12, 3:38 PM [GMT -5]

I forgot to mention that our big concern is whether or not this mildew/mold is harmful to our baby. How can we find that out when we can't go buy a mildew testing kit here? A simple way is the only way to go here since we live in a developing country.

May 12, 3:33 PM [GMT -5]

Hi! My husband and I live in Madagascar. We just noticed that we have mold or mildew (not sure of the difference) in our baby's room. The wall has a lot of moisture but we are not sure where it is coming from especially since our walls are made of cement. What is our next step in finding the underlying cause because things that get "fixed" here are only bandaids?

November 21, 11:33 PM [GMT -5]

Hi panvanchan, I've been spraying a mixture of 1 part baking soda and 3 parts vinegar onto my wooden chopping board when it's clean and dry to prevent future molds. And so far, it has been working for me. Thus, it should work for your wooden windows too. However, I agree with this article that you need to find the root of the mold problem and tackle it from there. Perhaps you could replace the rubber seal with a plastic one as water runs off its surface more smoothly, thus disallowing the wooden edge to absorb moisture (either from the shower or outside rain) and hence preventing mold.

August 02, 9:01 AM [GMT -5]

MY HOUSE SMELLS LIKE MOLD We have seen it many times. An owner or family goes away for a period of time, whether a few days or a few weeks. They return to their home to find that their home smells like mold. There is no apparent source of water, but the smell is noticeable, and the owner has just concerns regarding the cause. Mold growth requires an event to have occurred. This event may be major and obvious, or something that requires a thorough exam to determine what exactly happened. If the event is substantial, like a broken pipe, hot water heater, or a/c condensate leak, the inspection is pretty quick, and the answer definitive. There may be noticeable water damage and with a dwelling closed up for a period of time, the smell of the resulting mold growth can become concentrated and very noticeable. There are other times, however, when there is no obvious sign of water damage, but yet there is a definite smell of mold. In this case, a more thorough investigation might be required. A moisture meter is typically used to moisture map the building or infrared photography can be used to locate moist, or cooler areas of building components. All this is done to find hidden moisture and mold. Sometimes a leak under a kitchen cabinet might allow water to remain trapped under the cabinets or tile. Sometimes a leak from the outside results in moisture that is contained behind baseboards. Wood or tile flooring can conceal water, and wet carpet from a slab leak might not be obvious. Leaks in A/C ducts could cause excess condensation in ductwork and leak into attic spaces. The investigator is looking for wet material, and the source of the water that caused it to get wet. In each of these scenarios, you may never see the water, but you smell the mold. A qualified restoration company might well find the cause of the moldy smell, but sometimes they are stumped. In this case, you might call a “Mold Assessor”. If a mold assessor is called in for the investigation, he will be looking for all of the above once again, and then probably take air samples from the suspect room or rooms, as well as an air sample from outside the dwelling for a comparative analysis. He might also take a sample from a part of the dwelling that does not have that moldy smell. The object of this inspection would be to determine if you have an elevated airborne mold condition in your home. If an undetermined water leak is suspected, you could call a “leak detection” specialist. Some plumbing companies have the equipment and expertise to do this, but many plumbers use specialists themselves. A very small leak in a pipe is often difficult to find. Sometimes the pipes need to be charged with compressed nitrogen. When this gas leaks through a break in a pipe, the noise is detectible with the use of sound monitoring equipment. Leaks that are difficult to find are often detected using this method. If there is even a small amount of water intrusion into a property, and if the relative humidity goes up, and exceeds 65%, and if the temperature inside the building becomes elevated, there is the potential that a serious mold condition could develop. In such a situation, mold growth could be observed growing on anything organic in the building. Once these conditions occur, the whole property is usually treated for the mold contamination, and many content and porous items may be deemed unsalvageable. Mold can remain dormant in a building for many years, and remain inactive until it becomes wet again. If it remains dry and dormant, it will not smell. The smell of mold is the result of the off gassing of the mold, or fungi, digesting whatever it attacks. The State of Florida now regulates the mold inspection and remediation industry. It is important to know that if you hire a “Mold Assessor” or a “Mold Remediator” to perform services, you should verify their licensing credentials. 

March 07, 9:05 PM [GMT -5]

Hi, any tips for effective cleaning of mold off wooden windows, such as on a bathroom window along the wood's edge where there's a thin black rubber seal before it meets the glass pane? I've used dish soap & water, but am wondering if there's a better way.

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