Keeping your bathroom mold free can seem like an endless battle...But it doesn't have to be! Mold is a form of fungus that actually surrounds us in the natural environment, but when it comes inside our homes there can be problems. Bathrooms offer an environment where mold can grow and thrive because of the wet, damp, and sometimes dark conditions. It can lead to a whole list of health problems if it isn't taken under control, so the best defense is to prevent mold from growing in the first place.
- After a bath or a shower, squeegee water off the shower walls. It can eliminate at least 75% of the moisture that helps mold and mildew grow.
- Turn on your bathroom ventilation fan when you shower or take a bath. Leave it on for at least 20 minutes after you shower. If you don’t have an exhaust fan you should install one.
- If you don't have a ventilation fan in your bathroom you can always open up a window to let the fresh air in and the moist air out... unless of course, it's your typical New York State winter day!
- Improve light in the bathroom! Light is an enemy of mold and mildew! So it's time to remove the shades or curtains and replace with opaque glass. You can turn normal glass into opaque by applying an opaquing film to stick onto the glass. More light equals less mold.
- Keep your house humidity levels below 50%; a dehumidifier can really help.
- Use a mold/mildew resistant shower curtain, and wash or replace every month or so.
- Don’t keep bottles of shampoo, toys, or loofahs in the shower, as they are places for mold to grow and hide.
- If you have tile, seal the grout lines on a yearly basis with a standard grout sealer to waterproof them.
- Wash your bathroom rugs on a regular basis. They are known for trapping moisture.
- If you reuse towels, be sure to hang them up to dry elsewhere.
- Remember that water is mold's friend. So when trying to prevent bathroom mold or remove it avoid water or products that are water based. Clean your bathroom with mold-killing products, such as bleach, vinegar, or hydrogen peroxide. Clorox disinfecting wipes are an easy way eliminate mold too. An old toothbrush and an old towel are the best tools for the job. Scrub all of the caulk and rinse it with very hot water. Then wipe dry with the old towel.
- Make your own cleaner! Combine baking soda with liquid soap and add in some antifungal essential oils to get a great mold-fighting cleaner! It's less toxic for you than a lot of commercial chemical cleaners. All you need to do is mix the commonly found products together until you get a thin paste and then scrub it around your shower/bathtub.
- Commit to a few minutes of mold maintenance each week — you can be mold and mildew free in no time!
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