Tips to Clean Your Bathroom to Prevent Mold
Bathrooms are the Perfect Environment for Mold
The simple answer is moisture. Moisture is everywhere in your bathroom. From your bath tub, shower, sink, to the commode, there are multiple sources of running water to create steam, splashes, and puddles – not to mention dreaded flooding that can occur after storms or a busted pipe.
But moisture isn’t all it takes to create a massive mold crisis.
The perfect set of conditions for mold also includes a warm climate and a food source. The warmth of the bathroom sets up the perfect environment for all species of mold, including aspergillus, cladosporium and stachybotrys atra (better known as black mold). All varieties of mold can be dangerous for humans and pets.
Regular cleaning helps to prevent mold growth or the need for a mold removal service in the bathroom, and the good news is that with frequent cleaning, mold regrowth won’t be harmful for the person cleaning it.
How to Clean the Bathroom to Prevent Mold
The first tip we can offer is the one that we just mentioned: frequency. Cleaning your bathroom weekly will deter mold growth more than harsh chemical cleanings every once in a while. Every area of the bathroom is a potential breeding ground for mold, so you have to be vigilant in order to keep it at bay.
Make sure you are using the right products – ones that kill mold and act as a deterrent.
There are a variety of products that can do this, from organic to chemical, store-bought to homemade. Antifungals and antibacterials are a must. Many household cleaners have these properties, so make sure to read the labels!
Here are a few tips for cleaning the most at-risk areas in your bathroom:
Cleaning the Shower & Tub
Caulking around shower and tub traps water where mold loves to hide. Bathroom fixtures, shower curtains, and basin walls are also common areas for mold.
You can easily wash or replace a cloth or plastic shower curtain, but everything else needs to be disinfected and scrubbed.
Clean the tub and shower weekly by spraying down all surfaces with a disinfectant, letting it sit for a few minutes, then wiping it away.
To discourage mold growth, rinse out the tub or shower after every use. You don’t have to do a major cleaning each time – although some homeowners choose to keep a bathroom cleaner in the bathroom and spray their tub or shower after each use. This is, of course, a personal preference.
Also, drying the bathtub prevents water from pooling for days. The shower should dry out on its own. Just make sure to leave the door or curtain open slightly.
Cleaning Tile & Grout
Sweep and mop your bathroom floors as often as needed to keep dirt and other particles from being ground into the tile and grout. For some people, this is daily due to hair loss, pets, or tracked in dirt. Basic cleaning practices will go a long way in terms of keeping your bathroom floors mold-free.
Tile is somewhat porous, despite its seemingly solid surface, but grout is a whole other story. Keep moisture out of grout as much as possible by drying the floor of puddles and using bath mats.
Deep-down grout cleaning needs to be done with a fungicide. If you don’t use chemicals, baking soda and water, made into a paste, will also prevent mold growth deep down in tile and grout. Just make sure to rinse and dry thoroughly.
Cleaning the Toilet
The toilet is undoubtedly the dirtiest fixture in your bathroom. It can house countless types of bacteria and mold, so cleaning is extra important here!
Clean your toilets inside and out every week. Use a disinfectant and a brush to scrub all parts of the bowl. (Your brush also needs to be cleaned after every use.)
The outside of the toilet can be cleaned with a regular all-purpose cleaner, but spraying it with disinfectant won’t hurt. Don’t forget the flush (trip handle) while you clean the outside of the bowl.
You’ll also need to clean the backside of the commode and behind it. Although you may dread it the first time, cleaning these areas weekly will make them less yucky each time.
Cleaning Walls, Ceilings, Baseboards & Windows
Humidity, caused by condensation, is the main culprit in these areas, but leaks can always be a cause of excess moisture.
Mold is relatively easy to clean off these flat surfaces. You can clean small amounts of mold off these surfaces with household cleaners. Spray with disinfectant first and let it sit to kill the mold before scrubbing for protection against regrowth.
Clean these areas as needed. An extremely humid bathroom may need to have the walls cleaned every week, while others may be fine being cleaned once a month.
You can open windows to reduce humidity during showers, which will discourage mold growth. Running the bathroom fan – and adding an additional fan if necessary – will further reduce the amount of lingering moisture in your bathroom.
Is Mold Removal Needed?
If your mold situation gets out of hand due to flooding or some other unique situation, don’t hesitate to call a pro to remove dangerous mold from your bathroom.
You don’t have to be embarrassed if your bathroom has excessive mold growth. These experts are well versed in major mold removal in rental homes, houses that have been vacant for an extended period, and when mold has been growing in a hidden location, unbeknownst to the homeowner.
Extensive mold growth can be dangerous, since the individual spores can be released into the air where you can breathe them in. Scrubbing away at large areas of mold increases the amount of mold spores in the area, and in a room as small as most residential bathrooms, it’s inevitable that you’ll be exposed to hazardous conditions.
Rely on the experience and training of Pure Air North Carolina to remove large, visible mold growth in your bathroom. Otherwise, follow the tips above for routine cleaning and prevention!