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Saturday, April 19, 2014


I need to know what bleach-alternative products are available to clean mold from bathrooms.


Answer # 2:
To effectively treat these areas you need to penetrate surface pores with something that will kill the organism while removing any available nutrient or residues, which might harbor or provide food for the mold. Hot moist steam at temperatures of 220 to 230 degrees F. will penetrate far deeper into all substrates, destroy the mold organism while at the same time remove surface soils that feed the mold. This is a very green process, using only tap water not chemicals. Your results will be visibly superior and will prevent the return of the mold for up to 6 or 8 weeks. This period can be extended indefinitely with a quick periodic cleaning using a steam vapor system.
Superheated steam by definition will provide a fine water mist or vapor, that carries with it energy in the form of heat.
You will not be needing offensive smelling chemicals, or be exposing yourself or any building occupant to what may be a toxic or discomforting chemical residue. Nor will you damage the substrate you are treating. In fact, the surface will be easier to clean in the future because you have not degraded the surface. As an added bonus, the restroom will smell fresher when you are done because the organisms which produce the lingering odors will be gone as well.
Most molds spread by way of spores. These spores are ubiquitous (found most everywhere). Once they land on a surface where the environment is suitable, they begin to grow a colony and send out hyphae (roots) and the colony reproduces by producing more spores. A favorable environment usually will consist of nutrients, oxygen and moisture. Once the colony establishes itself it will deeply penetrate a surface if that surface is at all porous. This happens as the pores are generally packed with nutrients, which are not removed by superficial or topical applications of cleaning agents, acids or even bleach. While application of these products may remove a large amount of the visible portion of a mold colony, it never gets to the root of the problem. Consequently, the mold will reappear rapidly, usually within a few days. This is especially true of a restroom or shower stall as the environment is often ideal for mold growth.
Rick Hoverson, Advanced Vapor Technologies, LLC

Answer # 1:
If it is only surface mold (after determining that it is not a mold that is hazardous to your health), it can be cleaned with a simple solution of soap and water and a brush or some form of a scraper. The most important thing is to not just remove the mold but to find the actual source of the mold.
The mold is just a symptom of an underlying cause (unwanted moisture) and unless you figure out where the mold is coming from it will return again and again. Find out why you have an excess moisture problem and make sure when you have cleaned the area in question that it is dried completely.
Sharon L. Phillips-Dillard, Custodial Manager
Gloucester County Public Schools
Cell: 804-815-1645