Pesky, frustrating and not the kind of thing anyone wants to wake up to, bathroom mould is one of the most common problems home owners face. The good news is, assuming it hasn’t gotten out of control, mold is relatively easy to get rid of, and even easier to prevent – if you know what you’re doing.
Mould loves damp, dark, isolated places to thrive, and steamy bathrooms provide a perfect environment for mould growth. This is bad news for bathrooms with poor ventilation, since a bathroom that stays damp is a breeding ground for bacteria and mould growth.
Mould is most commonly caused by:
- Lingering moisture due to a lack of ventilation
- Leaky toilets, sinks, and plumbing pipes
- Damp cellulose materials such as rugs, paper products, wood, wallpaper, grout, drywall and fabric.
How do you know if you have mould? If you see it – black scum clinging to shower curtains, grout, in cracks and corners, etc. – or smell it, you’ve got mould.
Scour your bathroom, focusing on “hidden” areas like under the sink, in the rails of shower doors, on bath fixtures, around exhaust fans, even in crawl spaces and basements that run beneath the bathroom. Often, mould may start out in the bathroom, but can form in another room entirely.
The key to keeping mould at bay is to keep your bathroom dry. First and foremost, run your exhaust fan whenever you shower or bathe, and leave it on for at least 30 minutes at the end of your shower. If you don’t exhaust fan, you should definitely consider installing one. If you can’t, try one of these simple solutions to keep your bathroom dry.
Try to keep your household humidity levels below 50 per cent. If you don’t have control of the thermostat, an air conditioner or dehumidifier in that room can help with this.
Use mildew resistant shower curtains or other fabrics in the bathroom, and wash or replace them frequently.
Try not to keep bottles and other products or loofahs and bath puffs in the shower, since they provide a great place for mould to grow.
Wash your bathroom rugs and hand towels frequently, and make sure they are dried well after use.
Get Rid Of It
There are a few steps to take to get rid of existing mould growth in your bathroom.
Clean the bathroom top to bottom with mould-killing products, like bleach, vinegar and hydrogen peroxide. Next, strip away and replace any caulking or sealant that has mould growth. Open any windows and doors while you’re cleaning to provide fresh air and help dry out the mould.
For hard to reach places and to give the grout a good scrub, try using an old toothbrush dipped in your cleaning solution.
After everything is clean and shining, apply a sealer to the grout to help prevent mould from returning. If you aren’t able to remove all the mould, just replace that section. Use a flat screwdriver to scrape out the old grout and then apply a new grout mixture.