How to Prevent Bathroom Mold in the PNW
Bathrooms are the ideal sanctuary where you can get yourself feeling clean, fresh, and ready to take on the day. But if your bathroom takes on a musty or stale scent, and if you can see mold growing in your tub, you likely won’t be able to feel so sparkling either.
Bathrooms are a magnet for mold, especially in the cold and wet Pacific Northwest. Bathroom mold grows in tubs, showers, sinks, toilets, around the toilet, on the floor, on the wall — it can appear on practically any bathroom surface. But why? Our bathrooms are moist, dark environments that beckon mold and mildew to take up residence. Bathrooms without windows or those with poor or non-existent ventilation are more likely to see this bathroom scourge. Winter is an especially bad time for mold growth, since our homes don’t get the fresh air or natural light that discourage bathroom mold.
Here are some seasonal tips and tricks to keeping your bathroom free of mold, and guidelines about when it’s time to call in the professionals.
- Discover the source.
The first step to getting rid of this unsightly visitor is to determine why you have the bathroom mold. If you aren’t cleaning regularly, mold can appear and multiply faster than you can tackle the problem. If your bathroom lacks a fan or ventilation, that’s an obvious fix. If you or the kids are dropping your wet towels after your showers, and you see mold on the floor, then the solution is to hang the towels up to dry or put them straight in the washer.
- Make bathroom cleaning a daily chore.
Preventing bathroom mold can be easy if you keep on top of it. By making bathroom cleaning a daily chore, we can discourage the growth of bathroom mold and ensure your bathroom remains a haven for feeling clean and fresh.
- Choose an effective cleaner.
A great way to prevent mold in bathroom environments is to use some elbow grease and clean with your preferred cleaner.
▪ Bleach or a 50/50 vinegar water spray will help to disinfect and clean your surfaces.
▪ If you’re faced with tough mold that won’t budge, consider making a homemade tile cleaner that is eco-friendly and non-toxic.
▪ Add tea tree oil to your cleaning solutions for its natural antibacterial properties.
You can also use a small squeegee or scraper to remove standing water from tub walls after showering, or spray the shower surface down daily with an antibacterial cleanser.
- Install and maintain proper ventilation and keep a fan running after your shower.
Hiring a remodeling professional to install appropriate ventilation, or wheeling in portable models will also help you to prevent mold in the bathroom. Running a fan during your shower and for 10-15 minutes afterwards will help dissipate the steam and reduce mold formation as well. It is also a good idea to remove and clean your ventilation fan cover every six months to maximize the effectiveness of your fan.
Getting rid of bathroom mold sometimes requires the help of experts. If you have leaks or cracks in the wall or ceiling that are causing water damage and leading to mold, you should seek the expert advice of a mold remediation professional and a licensed contractor. Covering up the problem with new caulking will often not solve the issue.
Anti-mold technology has advanced rapidly in recent years. Antimicrobial coated surfaces, mold-free grout and humidity sensing fans are just some examples of how easy it can be to prevent and eliminate mold before it becomes an issue. If you’re ready to remodel your bathroom, including installing additional sources of natural light and ventilation, contact Devine Bath for a free in-home consultation.