8 Tips to Clean up Mold

Key points

Take steps to protect yourself while cleaning mold after a disaster.


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Protect yourself: Put on personal protective equipment (gloves, mask, goggles) to protect your eyes, nose, mouth, and skin.

Toss!: Take it out! Anything that was wet with flood water and can't be cleaned and dried completely within 24 to 48 hours should be taken outside. Take photos of discarded items for filing insurance claims.

Air it out: Open all doors and windows when you are working, and leave as many open as you safely can when you leave.

Circulate: When electricity is safe to use, use fans and dehumidifiers to remove moisture.

Don't mix cleaners: If you use cleaning products, do not mix cleaning products together. DO NOT mix bleach and ammonia because it can create toxic vapors.

Scrub surfaces: Clean with water and a detergent. Remove all mold you can see. Dry right away.

Don't cover it, remove it: Painting or caulking over mold will not prevent mold from growing. Fix the water problem completely and clean up all the mold before you paint or caulk.

Dry it up: Dry your home and everything in it as quickly as possible – within 24 to 48 hours if you can.