With all the flooding in South Texas in the past week and still happening, the go to for clean up is usually bleach. But is that really the best thing to use? It might not be…
Bleach does kill mold but it’s not as effective as you might think. Bleach consists of 90% water which is the exact liquid that got the mold growing in the first place. Also, bleach is meant to clean non-porous surfaces – not to soak in to wood and wall-board. So the wall may look clean but may not actually be free of mold.
Add to this list the fact that bleach is a harsh chemical and I would have a hard time using it at all!
I did a little research (like I always do) and found some other alternatives to bleach that are all-natural.
White Vinegar: Spray the vinegar straight from the bottle onto the moldy area. Leave it on for a few hours, then scrub. Yes, the smell is strong so you could add a few drops of essential oil to lesson the smell, but otherwise, the scent will dissipate after a while. This is a very effective solution.
Baking soda: Dissolve baking soda into water or water/vinegar solution, and spray onto the moldy area. Let it sit, then scrub and wipe with a damp cloth. Baking soda is naturally a disinfectant and very mild, so this solution will clean mold without leaving behind any kind of smell.
Citrus seed extract and water: If you desire something without an odor, citrus seed extract (such as Grapefruit Seed Extract) may be your solution. Dilute about 20 drops of extract in 2 cups of water, mix in a spray bottle and spray onto the mold. And again, no rinsing.
Hydrogen peroxide: Spray 3% hydrogen peroxide solution from a bottle onto the moldy surface and leave on for about 10 minutes. Scrub clean and wipe anything still there with a damp cloth. You can also mix hydrogen peroxide and vinegar, and then store the bottle in a dark area or in a dark glass bottle (as light will break down the potency of the hydrogen peroxide).
Tea Tree Essential Oil solution: Tea Tree Essential Oil (also known as Melaleuca) is effective as a natural mold remover but is more expensive, but just 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil mixed with one cup of water can last you a while for small jobs. Spray the solution onto the mold but don’t rinse.
I love coming up with ways to remove harsh chemicals from my home and yours! I would love to hear about your successes with these solutions. Natural is the way to go!!
Thanks to Mother Nature Network for getting me started with this great info!