Mold is a type of fungus that thrives in warm, damp conditions. While some molds may pose certain health risks, there are also some molds hiding around your home that may just be downright stinky. Three places to check for smelly, hidden mold: your bathroom, washing machine and under carpeting.
When you think of warm, damp conditions, the bathroom shower and tub may seem like obvious breeding grounds for mold. And while these surfaces can certainly be host to mold if not properly cleaned and maintained, there are other out-of-sight places in your bathroom that mold may be lurking.
If your bathroom smells musty or like mildew and your shower is sparkling, take a look at your walls. If you have wallpaper in your bathroom, it is very possible mold is hiding behind it. Combined with the warm steam from the shower, mold can feed off the paper and glue from the wallpaper. Mold can also hide under shower mats or rugs if they are not moved and dried regularly.
The best way to combat bathroom mold is to regularly clean the shower and tub, clean and dry mats and rugs, and remove wallpaper and instead opt for a good primer and paint that will inhibit mold growth.
If you notice mildew smell on clothing, the culprit is likely washer mildew. There are a number of reasons mildew may be growing in your washing machine. Overuse of detergent or using the wrong type of detergent, using liquid fabric softener, and using cold water can all cause washer mildew.
A mildew smell on clothing can also be caused if wet clothes are left to linger after a wash cycle is complete, or if residual water is left in the tub. To prevent this type of washer mildew, always promptly remove wet clothes and leave the lid or door ajar to allow the residual water to evaporate.
Washer mildew can be prevented by using a washing machine cleaner such as Smelly Washer in the cleaning cycle. This will eliminate mold and allergens and the embarrassing mildew smell on clothing that is caused by washer mildew.
Mold can grow, unseen, under the carpeting in your home. The carpet fibers and padding provide an excellent food source for mold if given the right conditions. This is why it is never a good idea to install carpeting anywhere in a home where moisture may be an issue, such as the bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, or outdoor area. If having your carpets cleaned with a machine that uses water, it is important to make sure the carpet dries thoroughly and in a timely manner. If you ever have a flood, the water needs to be dried within 24-48 hours to prevent the growth of mold.
If you do find mold under your carpeting, it’s best to call in a carpet cleaning professional that specializes in mold.