Tips and Tricks

What You Need To Know About Black Mold In Your Bathroom

By August 12th, 2020No Comments
Bathroom

Is Bathroom Mold Dangerous?

Is there a difference in molds?

Unless you are growing mushrooms or truffles in your bathroom you should always be consulting the USDA mold info for edible molds and the CDC mold info for health concerns. Barring mushroom and truffle growers the rest of us do have to worry about mold and mildew growth in the bathroom.

There are two generalized types of mold that can propagate in the bathroom, toxic and non-toxic. It takes a lab test to determine which variety your mold might be. So, the best advice you should remember is to treat all molds as if they are dangerous and treat them accordingly. Toxic molds can be very dangerous causing respiratory issues, nausea, headaches, skin irritation, asthma, memory loss, and allergic reactions.

If you see mold or know mold is growing somewhere you should stay vigilant and treat it as if it were the Black Plague from the 1300s. Kill it! Kill it! Kill it! Keep the bathroom a place of sanctuary and peace, not rot and spores. If you are unsure about how to get rid of the mold or replace the mold ridden items call a professional who can help you with the issues efficiently and effectively.

Why Is Black Mold Growing In My Bathroom?

Facts first: your bathroom has a lot of outlets for water to enter the room: the sinks, the toilets, and the shower (the main culprit).  However, there may be few outlets for all of that moisture buildup. Venting, doors, and windows still may not get all of the moisture out of the room. So, your room is left to air dry. If everything is water tight and caulked with high quality caulk there shouldn’t be any problems. This isn’t always the issue.

Mold grows in dark and damp areas. There are probably many of these places in your bathroom. Hot showers and constant water in the toilet and from the sink make your bathroom constantly humid or at least more saturated in water than any other room in your house. Stagnant water or just moisture is the perfect breeding ground for mold.

  • Mold Can Grow In Porous Rock Tiles
  • Mold Can Grow In Poor Quality Caulk
  • Mold Can Grow In Poor Quality Grout In Between Tiles
  • Mold Can Grow Behind The Walls Due To Moisture Seepage

Most of these you can physically see growing. However, the last issue is the most problematic as you may never know that the mold is growing behind your walls until there is extensive growth and rot in the wood beams.

Can Black Mold In The Shower Make You Sick?

Bathroom

It depends. All types of mold, toxic and non-toxic, can have some effect. The part of the mold that can cause effects are the spores released by the mold to spread and grow.

If you have proper ventilation in your bathroom then the spores should be vented. However, if there is extensive black mold growth in the bathroom then it can get concentrated during the times you aren’t around. Then you walk into a room with air filled with spores.

What Kills Bathroom Mold?

There are many techniques to kill mold. I bet your family has a tradition or secret mold killer recipe. Generations of families have had to deal with the issue of mold growth. You will never bomb proof your bathroom from mold, but you can take preventative measures and mitigate your risks. Here are a few basic tips to follow:

 

  • Physically remove the mold: the best but most expensive and time-consuming method
  • Dry all wet surfaces (sink and shower and surfaces): mold only grows in wet and damp areas
  • Have a vent fan on for extended times after a long shower
  • Use a dehumidifier in the bathroom
  • Use bleach to remove the stains from mold, but it won’t kill the spores
  • Mix vinegar with an essential oil as a post shower spray, which will kill the spores if left to air dry
  • Do a deep clean often, at least once per month of your bathroom
  • Fix ANY AND ALL possible leaks and cracks to minimize moisture collection

" We may not have it all together but together we have it all"

Can I Remove Black Mold Myself?

Many of the above methods are DIY friendly. They involve basic cleaning and surface sanitizing with cleaners and vinegar. However, it is very important to realize when the job requires a professional. This is usually when the mold has infiltrated into an area that you either can’t get to or have to replace.

Replacing the caulk that seals the edges and seems around the tub and shower can be DIY friendly if you are experienced and only use the highest quality caulk you can find.

However, mold can fester and grow inside the tiles, grout, and behind the walls. Tiles that are certain natural stones can be incredibly porous which will allow mold to grow, similar to grout. If there is crack or gab in the caulking then water may seep behind the tub or shower and into the floor or wall.

If mold has gotten into the tiles, grout, or walls, then you should hire a professional that can properly asses the extent of the damage and recommend the best and most protective fix for the current and future health of your bathroom

What is the health of your bathroom?

How Do I Know If There Is Black Mold In My Bathroom?

To know if you have black mold versus another type of mold you will need to send a sample to a lab. As this is expensive and time consuming the best method is to treat all mold and mildew as potential black mold breeding grounds. Use your senses daily to monitor mold and mildew growth. Remember mildew is newly and freshly established mold colonies.

  • Eyes: Watch for any type of discolorations in moisture hot spots
  • Nose: If you have a large mold problem your bathroom will smell musty
  • Touch: Mold is slimy even when you haven’t taken a shower

How Do I Know If There Is Mold In The Bathroom Drywall?

Well, you don’t. That is the huge problem with mold and bathrooms. It can grow with out you knowing. The only sure way to tell is to remove a piece of the wall and look into the hole. However, if you have cracks or gaps in you caulk or stagnant water on floors or surfaces there is a higher chance mold is growing behind the drywall.

How many of your friends can say that they can turn their shower on from the comfort of their bed? 

What To Do About Black Mold In Shower Caulk?

Mold that grows in the shower caulk is literally inside the caulk. This usually happens with lower quality bathroom caulks that are applied in a manner that either leaves gaps or the caulk material is prone to damage by water. Most the newer and higher quality caulks are vigorously tested to withstand moisture penetration and mold growth for years. So, don’t ever skimp on the price of a bathroom caulk. If you do you will regret it soon to come.

Scrubbing it with bleach or vinegar may cleanse the surface but may not get all of the mold in the interior of the caulk. The absolute sure method and relatively cheap and DIY friendly is to scrape away the offending caulk and reapply with a high quality waterproof caulk.

What Are The Health Hazards For Black Mold In Bathroom?

As long as your bathroom is well vented and there is the adequate airflow through the house and air vent there shouldn’t be too many issues. However, when you have large mold problems the spores can concentrate in the bathroom and linger while you are away filling up the air in the bathroom until you return.

This article isn’t a substitute for the proper advice of a medical professional and you should consult a physician if you think you have health issues. Mold, though, has been documented to cause respiratory issues, nausea, headaches, skin irritation, asthma, memory loss, and allergic reactions.

What Should I Do If I Am Exposed To Black Mold?

If for whatever reason you feel that you have been exposed to black mold you should intimately monitor your vitals and how you feel overall. If you feel you are ever at risk you should either contact your doctor or go to urgent care. This article isn’t a substitute for the proper advice of a medical professional and you should consult a physician if you think you have health issues.

Your safety in the bathroom is of paramount importance and you should always be aware of the detrimental effects of mold on the quality of your bathroom and the health of the materials that make up the room.

What Is The Schluter System?

During remodeling of a bathroom or if you are fixing a mold problem there are new and exciting ways to prevent and protect from moisture buildup. One way is the Schluter system that almost fully ensures that moisture can’t get behind the drywall or tiles. Always ask how your contractor is protecting against moisture so you don’t have to deal with it later on.

Bathroom

Do you have more questions about black mold or mold in general?

Feel free to contact us here at Tile With A Smile🙂

Thanks!

Ron

Call us now to schedule a free consult - 503.851.8489

%d bloggers like this: