Everyone knows that mold can make your home and its environment unhealthy; however, many end up putting off its treatment since getting professional help tends to put a dent in one’s wallet. Furthermore, we often underestimate how dangerous moldy wood is actually for our health; prolonged exposure to it can lead to serious health concerns.
But no worries, stick around as we’ll not only guide you on how to get rid of mold from rough cut wood yourself but also share tips on how to prevent it. In the end, we’ll finish up with some useful FAQs.
So let’s start:
What You Will Need
As previously mentioned briefly, mold exposure may cause some health issues. For some people, it may mean getting a stuffy nose, wheezing, red or itchy eyes, or skin. At the same time, other people who are allergic or have asthma will have even worse reactions or repercussions to face.
Moreover, the chemicals that will be needed to be used for the treatment will also, along with the mold spores, be harmful if inhaled.
So it is essential to wear the appropriate protective gear and have the required cleaning equipment while dealing with this entire process.
So the list of things you’ll need are:
- Protective clothing (e.g., long sleeves, enclosed shoes, etc.)
- Protective equipment, including goggles, glove, and air mask
- Soap and water
- White Vinegar (optional)
- Vacuum Cleaner
Steps To Remove Mold From Rough Cut Wood
Following are five step-by-step instructions on how to get rid of mold from your rough cut lumber:
1. Wear Protective Clothing
Follow the protective gear list given above before starting with the fungus removal process to protect yourself and others in your household.
2. Vacuum the Affected Area
Now start by getting rid of the mold spores and other dust particles by vacuuming the infected area. It is recommended to use HEPA or High-Efficiency Particulate Air-filtered vacuums to achieve the best results; however, if not available, use whichever one you have at home.
If you have the traditional vacuum cleaner with a bag, then once you’re done vacuuming the contaminated wooden surface, seal and get rid of the bag immediately.
3. Clean the Affected Area Using Soap and Water
After the vacuum procedure, you’ll have to clean the wood with a mixture of warm water and soap. Just simply add a few drops of liquid soap to a bowl filled with warm water and mix. Then wipe and rub the spoiled area with a rag soaked in the soapy mixture.
For surface-level infections (such as in cases where the wood was protected with paint, so the infection isn’t severe) this mixture will be able to get rid of most of the mold, however, for deep infections (most likely in cases of bare wood), you’ll have to treat it further thoroughly with something stronger.
4. Deep Clean with Diluted Bleach
Now it’s time to take out the big guns! Take out the bleach you have among your laundry supplies and mix ten parts of it with 20 parts of warm water. Apply that combination to the tainted wood area using a brush.
If you wish to do more, you may also spritz white vinegar on the infected area by pouring it into a spray bottle and using it directly to spray over the wood; this step is optional but still highly recommended.
Do not under any circumstances mix bleach with ammonia, thinking it may get better results; this combination releases a toxic gas that can cause serious health issues; in some rare occasions, it has also led to some deaths.
5. Sand It Down
Once you are finished with the cleaning using liquids and the wood has had enough time to dry, it’s time to sand it. This process is required for the stubborn mold still left on the wood in extreme infection cases. An added bonus is that this will also improve the wood’s condition. It is recommended to use very fine grit (220) sandpaper to get rid of any moldy wood areas you see. Continue to sand until there’s only a nice and clean surface left.
Steps to Help Prevent Mold
Now that you’ve gone through so much effort to clear out all that fungus from your wood, it’s time to learn about prevention measures so that you do not have to deal with all that again.
1. Keep an eye on the humidity level
You’ll have to control the humidity levels. It’s no secret that fungus prospers eagerly in damp and humid environments, so you’ll have to make sure to keep the humidity levels low whenever possible. You can do this by using dehumidifiers and air conditioners. The good thing is that dehumidifiers have recently gotten extremely popular. So you can easily find one you like with a huge variety of designs and variations to choose from.
2. Feel the air
One of the ways you can detect if you have moldy wood is by the air. The air in that environment will feel damp and wet. Similarly, for prevention, you’ll have to make sure that your atmosphere doesn’t feel like that.
Ensure that you let fresh air flow in order to have some ventilation and create a healthy atmosphere. Doing this regularly will help prevent any new or returning infections. Another thing you may possibly do to avoid creating a damp environment is to avoid using carpets in spaces like bathrooms, kitchens, or basements, or instead, just be extra careful about their condition.
3. Check for leaks or any signs of moisture
Fixing leaking roofs, windows, and pipes as soon as possible is essential for preventing mold from growing. If these issues are left unresolved for long, they will definitely create the perfect environment fungus needs in order to prosper. So keep an eye on issues like these with regular checks, and respond with quick actions to any water problems that occur.
4. Use mold-resistant products
Lastly, there are many different mold-resistant cleaning supplies and interior/construction materials that can be used to keep your wood safe. There are numerous options available, ranging from special paints to antibacterial cleaning sprays and so much more to choose from. The list of options is endless.
Now it’s time to check out some informative FAQs related to this topic.
Does vinegar kill mold spores on wood?
Yes, in fact, to be precise, vinegar’s acidic properties help disrupt the growth of fungus; thus, it is a very effective (and inexpensive) solution for killing mold spores. However, be aware that vinegar can kill 82% of the mold species out there, not all of them. To clean the wood with white vinegar, pour it into a spray bottle and spritz it directly over it. Let it stay for 60 minutes or so before you do anything else with the wood.
For the other species, you can try mixing baking soda with the white vinegar and then apply that paste with a brush to scrub off the mold or instead take help from the professionals.
How can you tell if mold is toxic?
You’ll have to look for five things.
- The presence of a weird damp, and a nasty stench
- The appearance of dark rings and colored stains on the walls and, or ceiling
- Stubborn stains regrowth after you’ve cleaned them up before
- The spread of the staining and growth around the infected area
- Health issues (such as rashes, cough, fatigue, sneezes, wheezing, sore throat, nasal congestion, itchy/ runny nose, and sore throat) develop due to close contact with the infected surfaces.
What happens if you clean mold without a mask?
To put it plainly, the fungus will enter your respiratory system, triggering respiratory disorders, asthma attacks, infections like sinusitis and pneumonia, allergic reactions, fatigue, and even inflammation of the joints. So please do wear a proper mask, or else the airborne mold spores will cause you health problems.
Mold is quite a common issue that’s very hard to deal with. We hope this article has helped reduce some of your stress and frustration regarding your wood treatment. Just remember to follow the instructions and suggestions provided in this article carefully.
Lastly, make sure to dispose of the clothes you were wearing during the cleaning process as there must be mold spores and bacteria stuck on them.
Finally, please feel free to drop a comment below sharing your experience or reviews about removing mildew from rough-cut wood. Thank you!