In previous articles, we discussed what causes mould and fungal growth in your home and office, and the steps that can be taken to prevent the growth in the first place.
In this article, we’re going to discuss what to do if you detect existing mould at home and how to remove and get rid of mold effectively.
How To Remove Mold
If you detect mould in your home, chances are that you detected telltale signs of mould such as a mouldy odour, excess condensation, or respiratory symptoms such as constant coughing or sneezing whenever you enter a room.
A quick tip about the mouldy smell – A mouldy smell is one of the most consistent symptoms of a mould problem. If you can’t seem to smell anything because you’ve gotten too used to the smell of your room, get a friend with a “fresh nose” to come over and sniff your room for you!
All of these signs of mould mean that the mould spores have long settled in and have likely gained a strong foothold on the room.
There are two ways to solve your mould issue.
The first one, of course, is to attempt to DIY and try to personally eradicate the mould scourge. The second one is to call in a professional to come in and destroy the mould spores in your home.
1) Removing mould by yourself
If you want to avoid the cost of hiring a professional and try to remove your mould problem by yourself, this option is for you.
However, if you have a weakened immune system, are an allergy sufferer, or have a mould issue you feel is beyond your control, we highly recommend that you do not try this option and instead consult a professional.
Before you even begin cleaning up your mould issue, it is very important to first take safety precautions, especially if you have a particularly heavy concentration of mould in one area or your mould problem covers a large area. Some variants of mould are highly toxic, and not protecting yourself can result in a nasty fungal infection or allergic reaction.
Safety precautions include:
- Wearing old clothing, gloves and shoes that you can throw out immediately afterwards. Do NOT touch mould with your bare hands, as it can be highly toxic. Always use gloves, if nothing else.
- Using N95 masks (N95 masks are the masks that everyone was using during the really bad Singaporean haze crisis back in 2013.)
- Placing an old/cheap/disposable fan at the corner of your work area for ventilation. Throw it out afterwards – the fungal spores it will catch are almost impossible to remove.
- Turn off air conditioners and humidifiers. Duct tape under your doors to prevent spores from escaping the work area.
Cleaning the mould up:
Now that you’re protected, it’s time to clean the mould up.
First, determine how deep the mould infestation goes.
If it’s just on the surface (press against infected walls to feel for bulges or damage to tell with gloved hands or a screwdriver), prepare a spray bottle of non diluted white distilled vinegar. Spray the vinegar onto affected mouldy areas, leave on for an hour, and rinse off with water.
If you can feel cracks or odd bulges in the wall, that means you have mould actually in the walls. You’ll have to pry the wall open, and mist the mould inside with white distilled vinegar. Remove mouldy bits inside the wall, and dispose of them in heavy duty black trash bags.
Note: If you’re intimidated by the infestation or unsure how to open up your wall, it may be best to call a professional, rather than risk damaging electrical structures or other infected walls.
Minimize mould spread to your house by taking the affected furniture outside. If this isn’t possible, at least make sure your work area is well ventilated.
Again, determine how bad the mould issue is.
If the mould is on the surface and very light, simply air the furniture out in sunlight. Put the furniture out in the early morning, and bring the furniture back in at sunset. If there’s still mould, repeat the process.
Heavier or more stubborn mould may refuse to budge, and require further intervention from you. Scrub the wooden furniture with distilled vinegar (or bleach as a lesser alternative) using a soft bristle brush, in a circular motion. When done, wipe all affected areas with a damp towel, and leave outside to dry.
2) Getting a mould professional to clear up the issue
If you’re scared of the mould or don’t want to get your hands dirty, call a professional. Such professionals can be found with search terms like “Mould removal Singapore” or “Mould professional near me”. Check reviews, and hire a suitable one. Make sure your hired mould professional follows all safety guidelines listed above (in the DIY section), and don’t be shy to ask questions about each stage of the process.
What should I ask my mould professional remover?
- Why did the mould occur in the first place?
- Can you tell when it first started? What’s the root cause?
- How can I reduce my home’s susceptibility to mould?
- What cleaning solutions are best for removing mould before it becomes a problem?
- How do I detect mould in the first place, before it even starts germinating?
- What are my home’s problem spots?
There are of course many other questions you may have to ask your mould remover, and it’s important to ask them to reduce further infections.
The unfortunate fact is that if you’ve had a mould infestation once, you are much more likely to get another one.
If the root cause of the mould can be found and eradicated, it will save you much hassle and money down the road trying to clear up repeated mould infections.
Contact Zenith Lab right now for any mold related issues at home or at the office!