Mold in the home is caused from three major problems, a water leak of some sort, a flood, or high humidity. Whatever happens to have caused it in your area it isn't a good thing and you want to get rid of it as soon as possible. There are a number of things that you can do to clean your furniture and get rid of the mold.
You should always be concerned with your safety when dealing with mold. You want to make sure that you are protecting your health and the health of your family. You should wear rubber gloves, safety goggles, and a mask. To learn more see the article What To Wear When Removing Mold From Your Home. You should take the furniture outside whenever possible or you can set up a containment area to protect your home from the spores. Consider the article Mold Removal: The Containment Area to learn how to set up this safety space.
Wood furniture can easily get mold, especially if it has a lot of cracks and crevices for water to sit in. You can carefully remove the mold though to leave your furniture looking great.
- Take your furniture outside. This will give you more room to work, will let you send the spores into the outdoors rather than your home, and bright sun will help get the work done.
- Mix up 1 cup of baking soda to 1 gallon of water. Using a soft, clean, light colored sponge apply the solution to the area with the mold. Give it about ten minutes to sit there.
- Using soapy water with a mild detergent wash the mold off with gentle movements.
- Rinse with fresh water and let the furniture dry thoroughly in the sun. You can use a toothbrush to scrub details out.
- If all has gone well then the mold will be gone. However, there are times when the mold is under the finish on the wood furniture. If this is the case you will need to gently sand the finish off. Clean in the same manner and allow to thoroughly dry.
- Whether you have removed the finish or not you should apply a wood finish or wax to protect the wood in the future. It is often a good idea to pick a product that is specifically designed to protect the wood and help prevent mold.
It should be noted that this method can be used for antiques, but it is best to leave that up to a professional because finishing materials were different and the value of the furniture will be higher when it is done right. This method should work, but their is no guarantee.
In many cases metal furniture is easy to clean when it has mold. (At least comparatively). Use hot soapy water with a dab of dish soap in it. The dish soap won't kill mold, but you should be able to remove all of the mold from the metal furniture using a soft sponge. Make sure that you don't let the metal stay wet a long time or you could have a rust issue in addition to the mold issue. After a thorough cleaning your metal furniture should be as good as new or at least as good as it was before the mold!
Fabric can be a horrible thing to remove mold from. The first thing you should do is pull everything apart that can be pulled apart and work on getting it to dry. Then you need to clean it and work on getting the stains out.
- Vacuum. After your furniture is all dried out then you should vacuum the area with a HEPA filter vacuum and a upholstery brush. Remove as much mold as possible.
- Using white vinegar spray the furniture down. Let it sit for at least ten minutes.
- Gently scrub. You will want to make sure that you use a white cloth or light colored sponge so you don't spread color to the fabric. Gently scrub the stain.
- If that didn't work...If that didn't work you should mix 1/2 cup of salt with a tablespoon of clear dish soap (colored could leave stains). Then add enough vinegar to make a paste. Apply the paste to the stain and then let it sit for 15 minutes or so. Then scrub clean.
- Let dry. It is very important that you let the furniture dry all the way.
- It should be noted that this will work when the mold is on the surface of the furniture. However, if the mold goes deeper than that you will have to get rid of it. You should see How to Remove Moldy Items for more information on disposal methods.
It is very important that you take care with moldy leather furniture. Follow these steps carefully so you don't harm it any.
- Take it outside. If possible take it outside.
- Vacuum. Next you should vacuum as much mold off of the leather as possible using a vacuum with a HEPA filter and a upholstery brush.
- Using a leather soap carefully wash the mold off. Many leather soaps are available and they will be safest on your leather. However, if none is available then use 1 part rubbing alcohol to 5 parts water. Test in an inconspicuous spot to make sure that it doesn't ruin the finish on your leather.
- Dry. You should use a soft cloth to dry the leather and then let a fan blow on it to finish the drying.
- Conditioner. It is important to use a leather conditioner after you have cleaned the mold. This will make it easier to avoid mold in the future and will protect your leather.
When To Get Rid of Moldy Furniture.
When mold is growing in your furniture you must get rid of it. As a rule of thumb if a piece of furniture has been wet for 48 hours or more or has taken more than 48 hours to dry then it needs to be gotten rid of. Mold will grow inside the furniture and you won't be able to get it out. It is then no longer safe for your family. If you are wondering if it would be safe anyway check out the article The Health Concerns of Mold. Make sure that you are getting rid of moldy items in an appropriate way with the article How To Dispose of Moldy Items.
If mold is just on the surface of the furniture it is something you can take care of with a little piece of work. Just remember to choose the type of furniture you have and work from there. Basic procedure is to clean the mold off and then make sure that it is dry.