The bathroom is one of the most frequently used rooms in your home, and it's an essential room for maintaining your overall health and hygiene. The bathroom is also the room with the most moisture and humidity, making it prone to mold and mildew — neither of which goes hand in hand with good health and hygiene.
Black mold in bathrooms can wreak havoc on your health — and also with the health of your home. While mold typically begins in the bathroom, it doesn't always stay there. It can spread throughout the house and eat away at paint, wallpaper, drywall, carpet, floorboards, and wooden studs. Removing and preventing mold is the best way to keep your family and home healthy.
What Causes Mold to Grow?
Mold flourishes in damp and dark places, and the humidity in your bathroom builds up due to the water and heat from showering and washing your hands. Ceiling mold above showers is common in smaller bathrooms lacking proper ventilation.
While it's impossible to prevent 100% of mold growth, you can minimize it. The five best things you can do to prevent mold, especially ceiling mold, are:
Dehumidifying bathrooms is the best preventative measure. If you have a bathroom fan, operate it while you're bathing and leave it on for at least 30 minutes after you're done. If you don't have a built-in fan, you can purchase a small fan to leave in your bathroom. Opening windows is another great way to help; fresh air can prevent a moldy bathroom ceiling.
2) Get a Dehumidifier
For improved air flow, get a dehumidifier, especially if your bathroom doesn't already have great ventilation. The EPA suggests that humidity should be below 50% to prevent mold, and a humidifier is a great way to maintain that level.
3) Keep It Clean
You should regularly wash your bathmats, towels, shower curtain, and liner to remove any developing mold spores. Don't be afraid to throw your plastic liner in the washing machine; it can be washed! And plan to wash your towels more frequently than you think you need to. Towels should be washed every couple of days because of how frequently they get wet! You should also regularly spray and wipe down your bathroom surfaces with a bathroom cleaner, a solution of water and bleach, or vinegar.
4) ... And Dry!
After showering, hang up loofahs or rags so they can fully drip dry. Hang towels after every use, and use a shower curtain and liner to keep water off the bathroom floor. If you notice water on the floor or counter, wipe it up! You also should regularly check the pipes for leaks; water leaks left unchecked account for a lot of mold growth. Standing or pooling water is the perfect breeding ground for mold, so keep your bathroom dry!
5) Replace Old Grout and Paint
If the grout in your shower or sink is old and chipping away, replace it. Water can get in behind the openings in old grout, leading to mold growth. Same with old paint; if you notice paint peeling or bubbling, water has already seeped inside. Take a few layers off and repaint it to prevent ceiling mold.
How to Clean Black Mold in the Bathroom
Here are the best ways to clean black mold in bathrooms:
Pour undistilled white vinegar into a spray bottle and thoroughly saturate the mold. Let it sit for at least one hour to allow the mold to absorb the vinegar. Then, use a soft bristle brush to scrub the mold away before rinsing with water.
Mix about one part bleach to ten parts water or one cup of bleach per gallon of water. (Hint: If the solution is strong enough to bleach your clothes, it's too strong, and you can dilute it more.) Spray the area, and let it soak for at least one hour. Then, gently use a soft bristle brush to remove any remaining mold. Rinse with water.
Pour 3% concentrated hydrogen peroxide into a spray bottle, and spray the mold until completely soaked. Let it sit for an hour, and then scrub it away gently with a soft bristle brush before rinsing with water.
Dealing with black mold in the bathroom is never fun. But when you focus on dehumidifying bathrooms, keeping everything clean, dry, and maintained, and knowing how to remove mold, it's a lot easier to manage. To find out more about mold prevention and removal or to schedule a service with the expert team at Stahl Plumbing, Heating, & Air Conditioning, contact us today!