How To Stop Black Mould

Wednesday 4th October 2023

Joanna Grimbley-Smith

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Black mould in the corner of a room CONTENTS

Some kinds of black mould can cause serious health problems ranging from an allergic reaction and respiratory infections to sick building syndrome. To protect your health, you need to find ways to prevent it growing in your home.

Here at ICE Cleaning, we offer our mould removal services nationwide. Our mould cleaners are fully trained in our nine stage mould remediation process, and can quickly remove black mould from your home. They are available day and night, 365 days a year.

Keep reading to find out how to clean black mould and stop it growing in your home in the future.

What is black mould?

Black mould encompasses many different types of mould that are black or dark in colour. The most common types of black mould that can grow in your home include Cladosporium, Alternaria, and Stachybotrys chartarum.

The latter is known as “toxic black mould” as it produces mycotoxins, toxic compounds which when inhaled, absorbed through the skin, or ingested can cause serious health problems.

What causes black mould?

Mould spores are always floating in the air around us, but when they settle on a surface where excess moisture is present, they start to grow. The most common causes of mould include:

  • Penetrating and rising damp
  • High humidity which causes condensation to form on cold surfaces like windows and walls
  • Leaks and floods which are not cleaned up immediately
  • Moisture on surfaces like those in the bathroom and kitchen
  • Poor ventilation and air circulation which enables humid, stale area to build up

Black mould can often be found growing in the kitchen and bathroom, around windows (where condensation tends to form), and in the corner of bedroom ceilings (where air circulation is poor).

Another essential cause of mould growth is the presence of organic material which it feeds off, like wooden furniture, fabric, and building materials. Stachybotrys chartarum, in particular, thrives on wallpaper, fibreboard, and gypsum.

Is black mould dangerous?

Exposure to any type of mould can trigger health problems. Mould releases allergens and irritants which usually cause an allergic reaction such as sneezing, coughing, and a skin rash. It may also trigger people that suffer with asthma to have asthma attacks.

Certain groups are more vulnerable to mould exposure including people with pre-existing respiratory problems, skin conditions, and a weakened immune system. Young children and elderly people can suffer more serious effects if they inhale, ingest, or touch mould spores, too.

As mentioned previously, some types of black mould occasionally produce toxic substances. Stachybotrys chartarum is associated with sick building syndrome and acute idiopathic pulmonary haemorrhage in infants, and Cladosporium and Alternaria can cause severe asthma attacks.

How to stop black mould growing

When you spot any mould growth in your property, you must bring in professional cleaners to remove it to protect your health. Even if you do manage to slow down its growth and spread, the mould will still be a health hazard.

You can stop the black mould growing by determining what is causing it and fixing the problem, such as wiping down wet windowsills or improving air circulation in your bedroom. You can find out more about how to prevent mould later in this blog.

How to get rid of black mould

Although it is tempting to use a mould remover or try a mould cleaning hack you saw online, it is recommended you leave mould remediation to the professionals. They will have the specialist equipment and training required to remove mould from your home, including mould in the air.

Black mould removal can also be dangerous without personal protective equipment (PPE) as you will be highly likely to inhale, ingest, or touch the mould.

Some products and cleaning hacks, like bleach, are hazardous to use and can harm your health. They may even damage the surface you use them on, like discolouring fabric and painted walls.

You risk not removing all the mould, as well, whether you miss spots while you clean or are not aware that there is growth in difficult-to-reach areas. Any left behind will quickly grow back. A thorough clean of the entire affected area is essential.

Professional cleaners will be qualified to safely reach those high-up areas and identify any hidden pockets of growth. They can give you peace of mind that your property has been restored to a clean, mould-free condition.

The best ways to prevent black mould in your home

  • Dry clothes outdoors: when you dry clothes indoors, the air can get very humid in your home. If you can’t dry them outdoors, use a tumble dryer.
  • Open the window while cooking and washing: get rid of any steam and humid air in the bathroom and kitchen by using an extractor fan or keeping a window open. You should also shut doors to the rest of the property so the humidity does not travel elsewhere.
  • Wipe down wet surfaces: whether it’s the tiles after a shower or a window with condensation on it, removing this excess moisture is critical to preventing mould.
  • Improve air circulation: open windows regularly and create a through-draft to get rid of any pockets or stale air. It is recommended you keep furniture a small distance from the wall and make sure clothes are spaced out in wardrobes.
  • Keep humidity levels low: it should stay below 50% all day – a dehumidifier can help you with this.
  • Clean up after a flood within 24-48 hours: mould can start growing in this short window, so bring in professionals to dry out the property and deep clean it as soon as possible. You should have professionals fix any leaks immediately, too.

Get in touch

Our Dewpoint-accredited technicians can diagnose the specific cause of the mould in your home, remove it, and even advise on prevention. Every mould removal service comes with a lifetime guarantee*, too, so if it returns we will remove it free of charge.

Give our team a call on 0208 066 0360 or send an email to enquiries@icecleaning.co.uk to learn more about mould remediation services.  

*subject to advisories

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