We just noticed that the back right corner (on an outside wall) of my
daughter's closet has mold or mildew on it. I think there may be one
or two causes for it. We keep her dirty laundry in the closet and
sometimes some of it is wet. We also keep a humidifier on in her room
at night and I think it's probably too humid when we go in in the
morning. How do I get rid of it? Is there a difference between mold
and mildew? Is one more dangerous than the other and do they need to
be treated differently? There are also lots of clothes hanging in the
closet. I'm assuming we need to wash everything but does it also need
to be treated somehow?
Mold can be very dangerous. Take all the cloths to a well ventilated area.
If they still smell after a few days, then wash them. Clean the area of the
closet with a water & bleach solution. Check the EPA Web Site.
If humidity is to high condensation forms on the coldest spot , that
just happens to be the outside wall. Wet clothes make it worse. Mold is
mildew and bleach will kill it. But why have a humidifier in there at
all, you dont need one do you. you can introduce a whole new set of
issues and problems with to humid air. You have not shown that a
humidifier is necessary by any reliable means. Uncalibrated humidistats
are considered unreliable means.
I've had similar issues in my bedroom and the front closet - both areas
are outside walls and my 1950s Michigan house does not have very good
wall insulation. In the bedroom I just make sure I don't let any
clothing, blankets, etc. stay up against the wall. For the closet I
try to keep the door open an inch in the winter to let some warm air
in. I've been meaning to put an opening in the door or wall to let air
circulate with the rest of the house, but have not gotten to it yet.
Wash the clothes, clean the wall with regular household cleaner - maybe
something with bleach to kill the mold.
Well, I keep my closet door closed, plus have a towel folded
up and tight against the space at the bottom of the door --
precicisely to keep the air *from* circulating!
Why? So the moth-ball gas can be at a high enough
concentration to kill off or keep away those
moths, which otherwise eat ugly large holes in suits, etc.
So, it's a catch-22, I guess.
Fix one, the other one gets you.
You might want to look into possible causes by the outside wall. Are there
drainage issues? Is there a planter on the outside wall? Is there wet dirt
up against the outer wall of the house? Are there sprinklers that hit that
wall of the house? In my opinion there are other causes other than wet
clothes if that's the only area with mold. In answering your question about
whether or not mold is dangerous... it can be. People react differently.
In my experience, my kids are very, very sensitive to it. It would be on the
safe side and get rid of it and address the cause of it at the same time.
I don't think there are any causes from the outside wall as the level
of the floor is raised about 5 feet above the ground. There is only a
10' wide cemeted sidewalk gangway between our building and the next one
over. I will try cleaning out the mold with water and bleach and am
considering painting the wall when I'm done with Kilz.
Mold and mildew spores are everywhere - they grow only when conditions
are right. Dry out the room, get the wet laundry out of the closet. If
the corner in question is cooler, which is likely, it probably gets more
moisture collecting from condensation. Wipe the wall in that area with
mild bleach solution. A fancy basket in the room might be a better
laundry hamper...can hang wet stuff over it until it is dry or find a
better place for the wet stuff.
Does anyone have any suggestions as to what primer/paint I should use?
I know Zinsser makes a product called Perma-White which is mildew
resistant so I plan on using that. Apparently it's self-priming, but
should I use a different primer?
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