How to Get Rid of Black Mold

How to Get Rid of Black Mold

Eliminate Mold and Keep Your Family Safe
How to Get Rid of Black Mold
Black mold can lower your home’s value and cause numerous health problems in people, some severe enough to cause death. This unwelcome guest will appear in any humid, damp areas of your home like basements and bathrooms. Prevent health problems in your home and potential structural damage to the building itself by attacking the problem early on. The best way to ward off mold infestations in your home is to prevent it before it starts.

WHAT IS BLACK MOLD?

Mold on wall

Black mold, also called toxic black mold or stachybotrys chartarum, is a microfungus. It likes to spread through cellulose-rich materials – think the walls of buildings. Buildings that have been water-damaged are especially susceptible to black mold infestations.

What Causes Black Mold?

Mold begins to grow under a certain set of conditions. Mold spores must be present and have a food source, such as drywall. A dark, warm, and damp space will allow the mold to flourish and spread.

Some situations that can produce these conditions include:

  • Damp basement
  • Water in foundation
  • Flooding or other water damage
  • Leaks from pipes or roof
  • Lack of ventilation

What Does Black Mold Look Like?

Black mold is greenish-black in color and has a gelatinous, slimy texture. You’ll also notice black mold has a distinct smell of mildew and must.

But keep in mind, black mold isn’t the only mold with this same appearance. Having an expert identify the mold present in your home can help you decide how to proceed.

How Can I Tell If I Have Black Mold?

Peeling and bulging wall

Pay attention to the walls and ceilings of your home. If you notice any peeling or bulging it could be a sign of black mold growing. The mold may be hidden within your wall, leaving only these signs, or it may be present on the surface of your wall and clearly visible.

If you see only a few small spots don’t pass it off as no big deal. Small spots of mold could be indicators of a much larger colony growing out of sight.

Pay attention to the inhabitants of your home or building – are their allergies flaring up? Allergies and the distinct musty mold smell are both signs you could have a black mold problem.

Keep an eye on these black mold hotspots in your home or building:

  • Showers
  • Laundry rooms
  • Bathrooms
  • Basements

The presence of mold, even if it’s determined that the mold present isn’t black mold, is still something that should be addressed.

How Dangerous is Black Mold?

Ingesting or inhaling the spores from black mold can cause health concerns in people and pets. Once it is in a person’s system they may experience the following symptoms:

  • Irritated eyes, nose and throat
  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Dry Skin
  • Difficulty breathing

Black mold can potentially be fatal, its effects depend on how susceptible you are to illness. For young, old and immunocompromised individuals, black mold is more likely to be fatal than in healthy adults. Individuals who suffer from an acute mold allergy are also more likely to face harsh side effects from ingesting black mold spores.

CAN I REMOVE BLACK MOLD BY MYSELF?

You can try to remove most mold from your home on your own. There are home remedies for black mold, but depending on the severity of the spread it may be wise to turn to an expert instead of patching together a DIY solution. If you’re overwhelmed by the extent of work needed to eliminate all mold spores from your home then it’s best to seek out a professional.

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Preparing to Treat for Black Mold

If you do decide to face the black mold infestation on your own, protect yourself using the following safety measures in addition to a long sleeve shirt and pants:

  • Respirator
  • Facemask
  • Gloves
  • Eye protection

Safety gear for cleaning black mold graphic

HOW TO REMOVE BLACK MOLD WITH 5 NATURAL METHODS

If you want to attempt your own attack against black mold spread in your home, there are go-to natural methods that may eliminate the fast-spreading spores.

Keep in mind, if you notice the black mold returning within the two days after cleaning, contact a professional as soon as possible to keep your family or employees safe. Black mold can completely infest a home within 48 hours – keep monitoring the situation to prevent spread.

1. Ammonia

Create a half ammonia, half water solution in a spray bottle and using the bottle, spritz all affected areas with the mixture. Let this sit on your walls for ten minutes to kill the mold. Then once the solution has sat, scrub the area with a brush until all mold can be wiped away.

2. Bleach

Use bleach on all non-porous materials to kill off any mold spores. Create a solution that is part bleach and part water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution directly on all affected areas and let sit for ten minutes. Once the solution has had time to kill the mold, scrub the area with a hard-bristled brush then wipe away all residue with a paper towel.

3. Vinegar

To kill black mold with vinegar, simply soak a paper towel and apply it to the affected area. After an hour, follow-up with a paper towel soaked with water. Use this to wipe away the vinegar from the affected spot and the black mold with it.

4. Borax

Create a mold-killing solution of one cup of borax per one gallon of water. Use this solution to wipe onto all affected areas. From there scrub the solution into the area, wiping away all mold and material broken up by the process. It’s best to let this solution sit on the affected area after scrubbing for further disinfecting.

5. Tea Tree Oil

Mix one teaspoon of tea tree oil with one cup of water to get started. Then spray or wipe the solution onto all affected areas, letting the mixture permeate the area and kill off the mold. Once complete don’t forget to wipe the area clean.

Bonus: Tea tree oil can be used as a black mold preventative measure. Apply to grout, faucets, and spouts to stop black mold before it starts.

TURNING TO EXPERT BLACK MOLD REMOVAL

Restoration experts are equipped to deal with all levels of a black mold infestation in residential and commercial buildings. Cleaning up mold damage is completed in four parts: analysis, containment, removal, and restoration.

When things get out of hand it’s time to turn to the experts. Keeping your family safe should be a top priority. If your natural remedies aren’t working and the mold is spreading, reach out to restoration experts for help.

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