Family members, especially children, are at high risk of suffering from serious respiratory problems when they are exposed to molds. These unsightly fungi notoriously grow in many parts of the home such as the kitchen, bathroom, basement, and even in bedrooms where moist and dampness are likely to build up. The only way to prevent mold exposure is to kill and remove the culprit. As a household, there are safe cleaning solutions you can use to eradicate molds.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) you can handle the job of removing household molds if the affected surface is no bigger than 10 square feet or approximately the size of a 3 ft. x 3 ft. patch. For large surfaces, it’s highly advisable to hire a mold removal contractor. Past flooding, water leaks, and visible mold growth are just some of the telltale signs that molds had contaminated your home. Black mold and aspergillus are the two kinds of molds that are known for causing illnesses. Once you detect the affected areas, consider using any of these safe cleaning solutions that could be readily available in your home:
White distilled vinegar – This mild acid that you use in tenderizing meats can kill approximately 82 percent of mold species. Simply load vinegar into an atomizer spray bottle and spray it onto the moldy surface. Leave it for an hour then wash it down with water. Don’t worry about the strong odor of vinegar, it will dissipate after a few hours leaving the surface with a clean smell. Vinegar in its pure form is a good cleaning solution to get rid of stains, and soap scum.
Baking soda – This naturally occurring powdery substance is another popular cleaning agent you can use to kill molds. Using tap water, dissolve a few tablespoons of baking soda and load it into an atomizer spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the moldy surface and use a brush to remove the molds. Once clean, rinse the surface with clean water then spray the area again with baking soda solution to prevent molds from coming back. Another option is to mix white distilled vinegar to your baking soda solution to make a more powerful mold-killing solution.
Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) – Aside from preventing infections in minor wounds and relieving minor mouth irritations, you can also use hydrogen peroxide to kill molds. Using a clean cloth or an atomizer spray bottle, apply hydrogen peroxide to the moldy surface and let it sit for 10 to 30 minutes. Because hydrogen peroxide only kills molds, you need to scrub off mold stains from the affected surface. Don’t use hydrogen peroxide if you have allergic reactions in using it.
Always wear a face mask and protective gloves when removing molds even if you’re using non-toxic cleaning solutions.
Prevent and reduce mold growth inside your home
Once you’re done killing and removing molds, it’s important that you prevent it or at least significantly reduce its growth inside your home. Because molds breed on moist and damp areas, you may want to use a dehumidifier and a/c to keep humidity at low levels. Immediately repair leaking roofs, windows, and waterlines. If your home had been previously flooded, you may want to hire an inspector to find out if molds have started to affect your home’s structural stability.
Mold exposure can cause respiratory illnesses
A 2004 research by the Institute of Medicine found sufficient evidence that a healthy person may suffer from coughing, wheezing and other upper tract respiratory symptoms as a result of mold exposure. Healthy children are likely to experience shortness of breath and likely to develop asthma or other respiratory illness when exposed to damp indoor environments where molds usually grow.