What are the basic mold cleanup steps?
- The key to mold control is moisture control.
- Scrub mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, and dry completely.
- Fix plumbing leaks and other water problems as soon as possible. Dry all items completely.
- Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or impossible to remove completely.
- Avoid exposing yourself or others to mold (see discussions: What to Wear When Cleaning Moldy Areas and Hidden Mold).
- Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces. Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces before painting. Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.
- If you are unsure about how to clean an item, or if the item is expensive or of sentimental value, you may wish to consult a specialist. Specialists in furniture repair, restoration, painting, art restoration and conservation, carpet and rug cleaning, water damage, and fire or water restoration are commonly listed in phone books. Be sure to ask for and check references. Look for specialists who are affiliated with professional organizations.
For more information on mold cleanup, see:
- Mold Cleanup in Your Home
- What to Wear WhenCleaning Moldy Areas - www.epa.gov/mold/brief-guide-mold-moisture-and-your-home
- Hidden Mold - www.epa.gov/mold/brief-guide-mold-moisture-and-your-home
- A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home - www.epa.gov/mold/brief-guide-mold-moisture-and-your-home [EPA 402-K-02-003]
- Una Breve Guía para el Moho, la Humedad y su Hogar está disponible en el formato PDF - https://espanol.epa.gov/cai/una-breve-guia-para-el-moho-la-humedad-y-su-hogar. Documento de la agencia EPA número 402-K-03-008.
- Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings - www.epa.gov/mold/mold-remediation-schools-and-commercial-buildings-guide [EPA 402-K-01-001, March 2001]
Visit our website at www.epa.gov/mold.