Ah…summertime has arrived! Anyone that has lived in Gainesville through a single summer knows how humid and rainy it gets. Humidity brings new challenges for those of us trying to keep a clean home: Mildew and mold prevention!
Mold and Mildew FAQ
Mold and mildew, as defined by the University of Florida’s IFAS extension office website are fungi and they produce spores in huge numbers. When it’s wet outside during our summer months, these spores can easily invade your home and start to grow on clothing, food, furniture and in many other places.
We clean houses all year long and some of the most common places we spot mold and mildew are:
on rubber seals on dishwashers and refrigerators
on clothing that sat in the washer or was loaded into a hamper while wet
on carpets where spills weren’t cleaned up
Mold and Your Health
Molds can trigger allergic responses and cause breathing problems. Black mold can be extremely toxic and often hides itself inside walls and in ceilings. This is why mold inspection is a key part of the required home inspection when you buy a home. [add shands related info]
Cleaning Tips for Avoiding Mold
Since mold and mildew form spores, you want to stay out in front of it and not wait until you see it grow. By that time, it is already spreading spores all through your house! Disinfect kitchen counters, floors and sinks regularly. We use VINEGAR frequently, it’s great for killing mold and bacteria and it leaves your home smelling fresh and clean.
Clean seals, cracks and crevices that are close to food or water sources by carefully wiping down with a cloth soaked in vinegar. Mildew smells in laundry can also be eliminated by adding a 1/3 of vinegar to the rinse cycle… as a side benefit this also softens your towels!
quick food tip: rinsing berries with a diluted vinegar solution will eliminate molds and bacterias and increase their shelf life in your refrigerator.
Tips for Preventing Mold Growth
Your central A/C unit can really help prevent mold so take good care of it. Not only does it cool and heat your air, but it also removes humidity. Stay on top of dirty laundry, especially during summer months where you might have more wet clothes than usual. We all know that it doesn’t take long for a pile of wet laundry to grow mildew and begin to smell. If you have small children that routinely spill things on the floor, be diligent about cleaning up those spills (or recruit your kids to help). This can greatly extend the life of your carpets and prevent big black spots that detract from your homes beauty.
Mold is a permanent resident here in Florida but that doesn’t mean we have to tolerate it in our homes and on our food. Follow these tips and you will go along way towards keeping your kitchens, bathrooms and laundry fresh and clean!
Got a great tip for preventing mold or cleaning? We would love to hear it!