Mold is present in the environment and can flourish, indoor or outdoors, where moisture is present. Because of the health problems mold can cause – allergy like symptoms; asthma attacks; and irritation to eyes, skin, nose throat or lungs; according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency – it's important to deal with a mold problem if you see it present in your home:

Clean It

Mold cannot grow without moisture, so when you find the mold, the first step toward correction is identifying and getting rid of the moisture. Then you can clean up the mold, knowing that it shouldn't grow back if the moisture is gone.

For hard surfaces, like floors, walls, stoves, sinks, or countertops, you can scrub off the mold with a stiff brush using water and detergent, vinegar, borax or bleach. In small areas, water with the detergent, vinegar, or borax can be a successful tool.

In larger areas, such as a flooded floor area, the bleach and water might be the best combo for fighting the mold. The Center for Disease Control recommend using a mixture of 1 cup of bleach in 1 gallon of water to clean up mold.

You can apply vinegar using a spray bottle anywhere you see mold growing. Vinegar is especially useful in places where you wouldn't want to use bleach or other strong cleaners, such as areas where you prepare food or areas where children and pets might play.

Mold can hide, so you'll need to clean the flat surfaces where mold appears, but don't forget to check the cracks and crevices. Once you've cleaned up the mold you can reach, then caulking in shower areas or applying concrete sealer on basement or garage floors, can help prevent the return of mold.

When mold gets on absorbent materials, like carpet, dry wall, cardboard, or ceiling tiles, you may need to throw them away since they cannot be easily cleaned of the mold.

Protect Yourself

When you are cleaning the mold, you should protect yourself, wearing rubber boot, rubber gloves, eye goggles, and an N-95 mask. You want to prevent any possible respiratory problems.

Call a pro

There are times when "do-it-yourself" is not the best choice for mold cleanup. Sometimes it's the size of the job that determines whether or not you should handle it or call a specialist. Spots of mold here and there in a bathroom might be manageable, while a whole wall covered in mold requires a specialist. Here are some specific situations where you need to call a specialist:

  • If the item contaminated with mold is very valuable to you,
  • If the mold is caused by sewage or other kinds of contaminated water,
  • If the mold is in a hard-to reach place, like inside air conditioning vents
  • If you have health concerns, where exposure to mold could be dangerous to you.

For more information, contact a company like Colfax Corporation with any questions or concerns you may have.