How Do You Clean Molds On Wood?

How do you clean molds on wood? The techniques are very similar for concrete or wood. Kevin Bristol President of Advance Mold Remediation explains that the, "more you clean the less moisture you will have"...

Kevin Bristol President of Advance Mold Remediation explains that the, "more you clean the less moisture you will have" and moisture leads to mold growth. Mold can deteriorate a wood surface as the mold spores feed and grow on wood pulp. According to Consumer Reports magazine, "Excessive mold typically means that water intrusion or high indoor humidity is causing a potentially serious moisture problem. Mold can damage your home by weakening floors, walls, and ceilings as it feasts on decaying wood and wallboard, ceiling tiles, caulk, cellulose insulation, and other organic materials. Toxic or not, it isn't good for you or your home."

To remove mold from a wood surface you can use the same technique used for a concrete surface. Bristol, who is certified by the National Association of Mold professionals and the Environmental Protection agency states, "concrete needs to be scrubbed down" in a process "called wire brushing, where you apply a chemical biocide to the actual concrete and you scrub it until the mold is gone". Wood can be treated in the same way, scrubbing with a wire brush or sanding the area down. Bristol explains that, "a dry blaster is used if the wood is severely contaminated." If the area that is contaminated is larger than 10 square feet you should call a professional, such as Bristol, to clean up the mold. If you want to clean it yourself make sure you protect yourself. First, ventilate the room by opening windows and doors. Second, wear a respirator face mask so you won't breathe in any of the spores. Third, wear plastic gloves to protect your hands. When mold is growing on wood, try to clean it before it becomes embedded. Use a wire brush and a biocide cleaner or another product sold at your home improvement center. According to Bristol, "Bleach is not bad, but normally that should be used only on hard surfaces, not semi-porous materials like wood. Normally you can buy something at your local home improvement store that will take care of minor areas".

Once you have spent time cleaning the mold, keeping it from growing back is important. Inspect the area to see if there is water intrusion into the area. If you have a pipe that leaks repair it. Keep the humidity level in your home below 50%. Ventilate the area by opening windows, turning on a ceiling fan or air conditioner or installing a de-humidifier. Basements are especially prone to mold growth. You may need to seal your floor and walls if the moisture level is too high. You can paint the wood with and anti-microbial or dry lock paint to keep mold from growing back.

The Minnesota Department of Health states, "Mold should not be permitted to grow and multiply indoors. When this happens, health problems can occur and building materials, goods and furnishings may be damaged." You would be wise to get rid of mold as soon as you detect it.

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