Black mold is one of the most underrated dangers, even though it’s quite menacing and can cause some serious health issues. Cleaning black mold is not a particularly complicated process, but it has to be done properly or else the whole endeavor is in vain. There are a couple of effective methods you can use in order to get rid of this pesky nuisance, most of which include strong chemicals.
Rather than thinking about how to kill black mold, you should focus on prevention. However, it’s not as easy as it sounds, and on the top of that, prevention does not work in an already contaminated environment. If you’re struggling to fight against black mold, take a moment and check out some of the tips and tricks we have covered in this article, you’ll get a much better insight into the do’s and don’ts.
Adverse Effects of Black Mold
Before we dive into removal methods, it’s good to get familiar with the negative effects of black mold.
Here are some of the most severe ones:
It Can Cause Respiratory Issues
When left untreated, mold can cause serious respiratory issues. It usually starts with a benevolent cough, but it can quickly turn into a severe health hazard. If you have allergies or asthma and are exposed to black mold, you can expect a significant outburst of your symptoms. Some recent studies have even indicated a link between exposure to black mold and the development of asthma in young children.
Long-Term Exposure Can Lead to Mental Issues
One of the most overlooked dangers of black mold is its ability to affect one’s mental stability. Since black mold is a neurotoxin, the spores can easily get attached to your brain’s neurons and incapacitate your mental ability. The consequences are usually mood swings, tremors, fatigue, headaches, fever, and sometimes even death.
It Can Harm Anyone
Even though children and elderly are most susceptible to damage caused by black mold, nobody is completely safe. In fact, mold can cause harm to your pets as well, giving you an additional reason to be extra careful and cautious. Since mold has a smell, it doesn’t take long to figure out whether you’re in a contaminated environment.
How To Get Rid of Black Mold
Now that we’ve covered some of the most severe negative effects of black mold, it’s time to dive into the removal methods. As we’ve mentioned, these usually include strong chemicals, so make sure you’re handling these carefully and with caution.
Using Bleach to Kill Black Mold
When mold is in question, most people think about using bleach to get rid of it. While this isn’t a wrong way of thinking by any means, it’s not as easy as it looks. On top of that, bleach is not as effective as one would imagine, especially when it’s used the wrong way.
Bleach is most effective on hard, non-porous surfaces. For example, bathroom tiles are a perfect candidate for a bleach intervention. On the other hand, something like a wooden beam would be quite a nuisance to decontaminate, because mold grows back quickly if it’s not 100% eliminated.
The best thing about bleach is the fact that it’s readily available and relatively affordable. Many restaurants, grocery outlets, and food markets use bleach as their primary weapon of destruction against mold.
Another thing you should remember is – NEVER mix bleach and ammonia as the reaction produces extremely toxic and life-threatening fumes.
Here are the steps you should take when using bleach:
- Wear protective gear (gloves and respirator)
- Mix one gallon of water with one cup of bleach (mix thoroughly)
- Pour the solution into a spray bottle and apply evenly on molded areas
- Using a bristle brush will make the process much easier and quicker
- Do not rinse the area in order to allow the bleach to prevent further growth
Using Vinegar to Kill Black Mold
When it comes to popular home remedies for mold, vinegar is right behind bleach. It’s relatively inexpensive, green, and easy to get the hang of. It might get a bit smelly, but vinegar’s mild acidic properties are an excellent solution for killing mold.
The main advantage of vinegar over bleach is that it’s much safer to handle as it’s significantly less toxic. However, the takeaway is that vinegar is usually less effective in comparison to bleach.
Here are the steps you should take when using vinegar:
- Use white distilled vinegar (no need for mixing)
- Evenly spray the solution across the contaminated area
- Wipe the area with a damp towel
- Allow it to air dry instead of rinsing it
- If staining persists, mix distilled vinegar with baking soda (or hydrogen peroxide) to make a slightly stronger solution
Things You Should Keep in Mind
One of the most important things you should keep in mind is the fact that you’re dealing with relatively dangerous chemicals. Now, both bleach and vinegar aren’t inherently an immediate danger to one’s health, but improper use can lead to serious issues. For example, mixing bleach with other chemicals is extremely dangerous, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing. Therefore, the best practice is to do a bit of research before you start cleaning.
In case you aren’t too sure how to remove black mold from walls, it’s probably a good idea to hire a professional and let them deal with it. It might cost more than the DIY solution, but it’s definitely worth the money because you simply can’t put a price on your well-being.
Don’t take black mold lightly. That black spot on your bathroom tiles can turn into a real hazard one day if left untreated. Mold is everywhere, so it’s borderline impossible to get rid of it completely, but there are countless methods you can use in order to battle against it.
As we’ve mentioned, if you’re not sure how to do it, don’t hesitate to hire a professional who can safely and relatively quickly solve your issues without jeopardizing you or themselves.
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