Read on to find how to get rid of mold in bathroom surfaces and how to prevent mold growing using products you already have in your home!
Most of us know what mold is- we see it in our bathrooms, in our fridges and anywhere else there is humid air.
But how do we get rid of mold in bathrooms? What can we do to remove the mold and help stop it from growing again?
I’ve got some natural ways and tips for doing this, and I’ve also researched a bit about mold and why it grows and what it needs to grow.
Mold is the term we use to describe the different types of fungi found indoors and outdoors. Not all mold is bad, but the types of mold that are bad lead to problems such as musty smells, damp basements and crawl spaces, moldy carpet and carpet underlay, unstable structures, athletes foot and spoiled food.
But some molds are good for us, such as in penicillin and blue cheese, and yeast is a form of fungi that we find in beer and bread making. Fungi also helps to break down garbage, grass, trees and leaves.
Mold spores can be found anywhere there is moisture, as this is the number one requirement for mold growth. This is why you often find mold easily growing in bathrooms, laundries and in basements where there is moisture and darkness.
One of the biggest issues we have with mold is the impact on our health and well-being. Mold growth in your home leads to allergies and infections and some mold causes symptoms associated with a health issue known as “sick building syndrome”.
Thankfully, there are easy and natural ways to remove mold in bathrooms and prevent it growing again. A bit of elbow grease and extra care in your home will lead to a reduction in moisture, making it harder for mold to thrive in your home.
How to get rid of mold in bathroom
We’ve published other blogs about bathroom mold, such as this one about best dehumidifiers to use in your bathroom.
What causes mold to grow in bathrooms?
The number 1 culprit for mold growth in the home is moisture.
Any room or place with dampness in the air leads to mold growth if it isn’t looked after.
There are many cleaning products on the market to remove mold such as Ajax, bleach and borax but there are natural ways that you can remove mold. This is important as you don’t want to use harsh chemicals as these can impact on your health too.
It’s always best to use natural products in your home whenever possible mainly for health reasons but if your home has children or pets then you want to protect them too.
In this blog, I share some natural products you may already use in your home to remove mold.
How to get rid of mold in bathroom using vinegar
Vinegar is one of the best ways to kill and remove mold and you would already have it in your pantry.
The best way to use it is to fill a spray bottle with vinegar and water then spray it onto the mold. Leave it for a couple of hours so that the vinegar does its work on the mold and then either using a brush or a sponge, clean off the mold. Make sure you use gloves and if the strong smell of vinegar bothers you, wear a face mask.
You will smell the vinegar where you’ve used it so if you’re using it in a room such as a bathroom, I recommend adding a few drops of essential oil in the spray bottle such as eucalyptus or lavender so that your bathroom doesn’t have a strong vinegar smell afterwards.
A study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health in 2015 found that vinegar has an antimicrobial effect on mold and also prevents the growth of mold in fruit such as strawberries, apples, tomatoes and stone fruit.
The Australian Mould Guidelines recommends damp wiping indoor surfaces using vinegar diluted in water.
A great way to do this is by adding vinegar to your mop bucket when you’re cleaning your bathroom floors.
How to get rid of mold in bathroom using tea tree oil
The same study that found vinegar is an effective mold remover also found that the plant-derived tea tree oil is as toxic on mold and fungi as is ethanol and vinegar.
Studies have also found that tea tree oil can effectively treat vaginal and oral candidiasis (fungal infections) and has antiviral properties that make it effective for certain strains of the flu. A study published in the Journal of Aerosol Science and Technology in 2010 found that tea tree oil is effective at stopping the growth of mold in filtration products.
Tea tree oil is great at stopping the growth of mold in bathrooms and is effective in liquid or vapor form. Using an essential oil diffuser with tea tree oil in rooms that are more prone to mold growth could be an effective way to reduce and stop the growth of mold.
How Grapefruit seed extract stops mold growth in bathrooms
Grapefruit seed extract which contains high amounts of citric acid is as effective at killing mold as tea tree oil is. The benefit of using grapefruit seed extract instead of tea tree oil is that it doesn’t have a strong smell. Tea tree oil has an overpowering smell that can make it less appealing at removing mold.
The downside of using grapefruit seed extract is that it is more expensive than using vinegar however due to no odor, many prefer grapefruit seed extract to remove mold than something strong smelling like vinegar.
Fill a spray bottle with a dilution of 20 drops of grapefruit seed extract with 2 cups of water and spray onto the mold. Don’t rinse after applying- let the extract do its work.
How to get rid of mold in bathroom using hydrogen peroxide
A German study into the effectiveness of hydrogen peroxide at killing mold found that a solution containing hydrogen peroxide was effective at removing bathroom mold.
Find a product that contains hydrogen peroxide as the main ingredient and spray it onto the moldy surface in your bathroom or other place in the home. Leave it for about an hour and then wipe clean with a damp cloth.
I recommend testing the surface first with only a small amount to make sure that the hydrogen peroxide does not bleach or damage the surface. Cleaning mold in bathroom sinks and shower bases should be safe but check other surfaces before trying.
How to get rid of mold in bathroom using baking soda
Baking soda has become the queen of natural household cleaning in recent years. It’s fantastic for cleaning grout, your oven and of course bathroom mold.
The most effective way to use baking soda is by making a paste from vinegar added to baking soda. You can use baking soda with water alone but the vinegar makes it more active and better at cleaning. Once you’ve created a paste, use a damp cloth to spread the paste over the mold and let it sit for a while before rinsing.
How to prevent mold growing in your bathroom
Your cleaning life would be so much better if you didn’t have to fight the mold battle!
What are some ways to prevent mold from growing in the first place?
We’ve written a blog about how to remove humidity without using a dehumidifier which gives you some great natural ways to remove bathroom moisture.
Since mold loves water and uses water or dampness to grow, the first step in preventing mold is keeping surfaces dry. Wipe dry bathroom surfaces that are normally wet.
Clean your showers and bathrooms regularly to stop bacteria and mold growing.
Use a hygrometer to check the humidity levels in your home especially if you live in a tropical climate. If the humidity levels are too high then it’s time to use a dehumidifier!
Use a dehumidifier in your bathroom, basement and crawl spaces. This will help remove moisture in the air so that mold doesn’t grow.
Keep doors open to help with air circulation. After a bath or show, open the bathroom window and door or switch on your bathroom exhaust if you have one. This will allow moisture in the room to dry.
If you notice any water leaks in your home, get these fixed. Leaking taps and pipes makes surfaces wet and will lead to mold and other bacteria forming.
Want to read more about humidity and dehumidifying your home? Here are some great blogs we’ve written on the topics: