Can You Paint Over Mould?

Thursday 26th October 2023

Ellen Warren

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Painter preparing a paint roller

CONTENTS

The emergence of unwanted mould patches on your walls can be an unpleasant surprise. Despite being a common problem, mould is often difficult to eradicate. Many people believe that painting over the affected areas will solve the problem, but this approach may not be effective. 

At ICE Cleaning, we provide advanced solutions to deal with mould on walls in your property. We follow Awaab's Law in all of our mould cleaning services and work with your local council to ensure you get the best possible outcome.

Read on to learn more about proactive measures against mould spread and immediate actions you should take upon spotting mould.

Understanding mould

Mould is a fungus that thrives in environments with excess moisture and organic material. It is not a part of our everyday environment, ready to grow when conditions are right.

The problem starts when mould invades our homes due to dampness or poor ventilation. The spores multiply on surfaces like walls, window sills, or furniture.

This is where they find their food source - dead organic matter. Mould can then lead to unsightly patches and potential health issues if left unchecked. 

Mould and its impact on walls

Not only is mould unsightly, but it can also cause substantial damage to your walls. The persistent growth of this fungus eats away at wall surfaces, leading to a weakened structure.

The destruction compromises the structural integrity of buildings over time because it degrades materials like plaster and paint. Besides damaging your property, mould also poses health risks. 

Exposure may lead to allergic reactions or respiratory issues. If left unattended, the difficulty and expense of resolving it will become more pronounced. Do not wait until you are repainting entire rooms - take action as soon as you spot signs of mould.

The myth of painting over mould

There is a widely held belief that you can simply paint over mould to kill it or stop its growth, but this is far from the truth. Painting over mould does not kill it; instead, it hides the problem temporarily.

Mould thrives in damp conditions and feeds on organic materials like wood, drywall, and even some paints. So, if you apply a fresh coat of paint onto an infested wall without treating the issue first, you are only providing more food for it.

To effectively tackle a mould problem, professional mould cleaning services are needed. These experts will use specialist techniques to eliminate existing spores and prevent future outbreaks.

The efficacy of anti-mould paint

Anti-mould paint is a potential solution for mould issues, using a fungicide to prevent the growth and spread of mould. While it may work well in areas with minor moisture problems or low-level infestations, anti-mould paint is not the sole solution.

If your walls are already heavily infected with mould, painting over them will not solve the problem. In fact, without proper cleaning and treatment prior to painting, the underlying issue remains unresolved and might even worsen over time.

While anti-mould paint can be part of an overall strategy to manage damp, relying solely on it would not be advisable.

Proactive measures against mould spread

To reduce mould spread, you need to address the root causes. High humidity levels and poor ventilation are common culprits, so you must invest in a good quality dehumidifier or use fans to improve air circulation.

Maintaining cleanliness is key as well. Regularly clean areas prone to dampness, like bathrooms and kitchens, using anti-mould cleaning products.

You should also remain vigilant for water ingress and fix leaks promptly. Even small leaks can cause significant moisture build-up over time, creating an ideal environment for mould growth.

Immediate actions upon spotting mould

Mould requires prompt action, so if you spot it in your home, keep your distance. Mould spores can be harmful if inhaled, so you should not continue to remain in an infested room. If possible, isolate the area and move to a different room.

You must then contact a professional mould removal service. While waiting for them to arrive, open a few windows in your home and use dehumidifiers where appropriate to promote air circulation and reduce humidity.

Avoid attempting DIY solutions such as scrubbing bleach or painting over it. These actions may disturb the spores and exacerbate health risks or lead to more damage to your walls.

Long-term solutions for mould problems

Keeping a dry atmosphere with good ventilation is essential for preventing mould. Dehumidifiers can help in achieving this, especially in damp areas like basements. Installing a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system can also play a role in mould prevention.

Using dehumidifiers and air purifiers correctly ensures that moisture levels stay low, discouraging mould growth.

HVAC systems provide airflow and circulation, ensuring mould spores cannot settle. Another preventive measure is regular inspection of potential problem areas, such as bathrooms and kitchens.

Finally, when dealing with persistent mould issues, it might be wise to seek professional help from specialist mould remediation services. Their experience and expertise provide sustainable solutions to tackle the root cause of the problem effectively.

Frequently asked questions

Is painting over mould a good idea?

Painting over mould does not kill it or stop its growth; the problem just gets hidden.

What happens if you paint over mould?

If you paint over mould, it continues to grow underneath and can cause health issues and damage your walls.

Can mould grow under paint?

Mould can flourish beneath the surface of painted walls if underlying moisture problems are not fixed.

What kind of paint do you use over mould?

You should only apply anti-mould paints after treating existing infestations as they help prevent future growth but do not eliminate current ones.

Get in touch

At ICE Cleaning, we specialise in mould removal and prevention. Whether you are a homeowner, business owner, or tenant, we can help. Our team of experts will come to your location and eliminate the mould, preventing it from coming back.

If you are dealing with a mould infestation, we provide emergency cleaning services for urgent remediation situations. We are available 24/7, 365 days a year, and you can reach us at 0208 066 0360 or enquiries@icecleaning.co.uk.

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