Got mold growing in your house? Don't panic, you're not alone. If you do have mold, then it's most likely on your floor, as that is where it tends to gather. The bad news is that apart from it being unsightly and embarrassing, some types of mold can be damaging to your health, and in extreme cases it can be costly to get rid of. The good news is that you can usually get rid of mold permanently, or at least the stuff you can see. When I moved into my new home it had been vacant for several years, and there was mold growing on almost every floor. After a whole month of stripping, cleaning, and repairing my home is now mold free. In this article, we'll look at what is mold, what causes it, and how to get rid of it.
What is Mold
Mold is a natural living organism, in some ways it's what makes the world go round. Mold is a generic name for the many thousands of types of fungus. When we see mold we are actually seeing a whole colony that is networked together as a single organism. But enough about what it is, let's move onto a more important question.
What causes Mold
The one thing that all types of mold have in common is the need for moisture, and without it, they can't survive. It also likes the warmth, so any warm moist areas in your house are going to be like finding the perfect house for them. Although you can find mold anywhere in your house, it's most commonly found on floors. This is because, obviously, the floor is where moisture will gather and pool.
Is it Dangerous
As a general rule, mold isn't life-threatening. However, it can cause allergic reactions, and in some cases bring on an attack of asthma. It can also cause irritation of the skin, eyes, nose, throat and lungs. If you are suffering any of these symptoms, the it's best to seek medical advice just to be on the safe side.
So, How do I get rid of it
Far and above the most important thing to do is to tackle the moisture problem. It doesn't matter how much you clean, if the moisture is still there, then the mold will eventually reappear. In a lot of cases, the cause is a leaking tap or pipe, but in more extreme, read costly cases it can be because your home doesn't have proper damp-proofing. So, dos and don'ts for cleaning up mold:
§ Do fix any leaks, and make sure you dry off the areas after fixing them
§ Do use a strong detergent and scrubbing scourers.
§ Do wear protective clothing such as strong rubber gloves. It's also a good idea to wear a face mask to avoid breathing in any of the spores.
§ Don't be tempted to keep soft furnishings that have had mold on them. It almost certainly will come back. And to get rid of it completely, you'll probably end up destroying any delicate item.
§ Don't just paint over moldy areas such as floorboards, or walls. Strip them down and treat them before apply any paint or varnish.
To make sure you keep mold at bay, then start doing an inspection of your house once a month. Go round and check exposed pipes and taps to make sure they're dry and no water is gathering.
United States Environmental Protection Agency - http://www2.epa.gov/