- Stacey Tjarks
Mold in My House! Installment 2
Updated: Jan 29, 2019
Who should do the cleanup depends on a number of factors. One is the size of the problem. If the moldy area is less than about 10 square feet (less than roughly a 3 ft. by 3 ft. patch), in most cases, you can handle the job yourself.
SELF CLEANING GUIDELINES: The tips and techniques presented here will help you clean up your mold problem. Professional cleaners or remediators may use methods not covered here. Please note that mold may cause staining and cosmetic damage. It may not be possible to clean an item so that its original appearance is restored.
▪Avoid breathing in mold or mold spores. In order to limit your exposure to airborne mold, you may want to wear an N-95 respirator, available at many hardware stores and from companies that advertise on the Internet.
▪Wear gloves. Long gloves that extend to the middle of the forearm are recommended. When working with water and a mild detergent, ordinary household rubber gloves may be used. If you are using a disinfectant, a biocide such as chlorine bleach, or a strong cleaning solution, you should select gloves made from natural rubber, neoprene, nitrile, polyurethane or PVC. Avoid touching mold or moldy items with your bare hands.
▪Wear goggles. Goggles that do not have ventilation holes are recommended. Avoid getting mold or mold spores in your eyes.
▪Fix plumbing leaks and other water problems as soon as possible. Dry all items completely.
▪Scrub mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, and dry completely.
▪Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or impossible to remove completely.
▪Avoid exposing yourself or others to mold.
▪Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces. Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces before painting. Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.
▪If you are unsure about how to clean an item, or if the item is expensive or of sentimental value, you may wish to consult a specialist. Look for specialists who are affiliated with professional organizations.
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