So you had a plumbing problem or some kind of leak and now you have some mold that needs to be cleaned up. You are wise to get it removed as quickly as possible when you consider the health problems mold can cause.
The first thing you need to do is make absolutely sure you have fixed the leak or the source of moisture causing the problem. If you don’t do this, the mold will quickly return and you will have wasted your time removing and cleaning the moldy area.
Next you’ll want to assess the damage and determine if you want to do this yourself or hire a professional. If a large area is affected you should probably call a professional mold remediation service. They have the equipment and supplies to safely contain and remove mold to prevent further contamination and potential health problems.
Before starting any mold remediation work you should wear a good respiratory mask, rubber gloves and eye protection. You can pick these up at any good home improvement store. If you have a compromised respiratory system you should consider hiring a mold removal service.
If a small area is affected you can remove the mold using a scrub brush and simple 10% bleach solution. A bleach solution requires longer exposure, so spray the area and let it sit for about 5 minutes and then spray again before you start scrubbing.
This is important. If the mold on the surfaces you are cleaning is dry you should spray it with water or the bleach solution before you start scrubbing. Remember that dried mold spores are easily made airborne and travel everywhere with the slightest air movements. When you douse the mold with moisture you effectively prevent this from happening.
It is important to clean beyond the area where mold is visible. Mold spores are very, very small and cannot be seen by the naked eye. Cleaning and disinfecting beyond the visibly affected area helps prevent future mold outbreaks.
If you have to remove any materials it is best to place them in a heavy plastic garbage bag. Keep this bag closed at all times and remove it from the home as soon as possible.
Once you have removed the mold you should sponge the area with clean water and ventilate the area until it is completely dry. When you’re all done you should keep your eye on the area to make sure moisture does not return. If it does, mold will start growing again and all your cleaning efforts are wasted. If moisture does return, you’ll need to ventilate the area and keep it as dry as possible to prevent mold from growing until you locate and fix the source of moisture.