Friday, February 5, 2010

How to remove fungus from the crawl space?

It is due to the leakage from my bathroom. I know the first thing is to repair the leak and then brush off the fungus. But how to make sure that it will not grow again? Are there any fungicides available for this purpose?How to remove fungus from the crawl space?
ONe thing you DO NOT want to use in attacking mold (a fungus) is bleach. People keep saying to use bleach but this is NOT what you want to do because it will be ineffective, and may actually help mold to grow.

Mold's root structures actually grow into wood and drywall like roots. These roots are not killed by bleach because bleach's ion structure prevents chlorine from penetrating into porous materials such as dry wall and wood. It stays on the outside surface, whereas mold has protected enzyme roots growing inside the porous construction materials. When you spray porous surface molds with bleach, the water part of the solution soaks into the wood while the bleach chemical sits atop the surface, gasses off, and thus only partially kills the surface layer of mold while the water penetration of the building materials fosters further mold growth.

Chlorine bleach causes long term breakdown of wood products like studs, sheathing, plywood, OSB, and other building materials over time.

What will work more effectively is to use vinegar, which kills about 80% of all mold types. I have used vinegar in a paint sprayer and thorooughly wet a moldy area. Another thing that works is borate; you can get this in bulk as a white, non-toxic and odorless power, mix it with water and spray it or dust on the dry powder. Borate is an effective fungicide and also kills insects like carpenter ants, termites, and cockroaches.

Another possibility is tea tree oil, which can be diluted and sprayed. Tea tree is is effective for all molds.

These three possibilities: vinegar, borate, and tea tree oil, are, in my opinion, a better solution than poisonous chemicals. But whatever you do, do not use bleach, because while this may kill the parts of the mold plant above the surface, it might not kill the spores and will leave the roots with what it wants to grow: water.

Be VERY careful about inhaling mold spores, which can be deadly and even cause death. Before I would even attempt disturbing the mold, I would saturate the area with vinegar and be sure to wear a respirator.How to remove fungus from the crawl space?
1 part bleach 10 parts water in a spray bottle

apply generously and watch it die

then brush it off
If you have plastic on the bottom of the crawl space, remove it! It's a big contributor to mold. Then you can spray a mold remover (use a respirator since you'll be in a small, enclosed space, not a mask, the full deal respirator. The lungs you save may be your own.) Make sure the outside vents for the crawlspace are open. Mold spores are everywhere. You have mold in the crawl space because you have moisture in the crawl space. Remove the moisture and you solve the mold problem. The first thing you have to do is determine why moisture is collecting. Then you have to determine if there is sufficient air exchange. Air exchange is mold or fungus' nemesis. So once the leak is fixed, kill the mold or fungus.

If the cumulative mold coverage is more than 100 square feet (10-feet- by 10-feet), big problem. Call in the professionals.

You can definitely take care of small areas. You might be able to handle medium areas. Clean-up of large areas should be done by professionals in moon suits with full-face respirators.

The government recommends using a detergent and water solution, not a bleach solution. A detergent-based solution for cleaning mold and mildew could be as mild as 1 or 2 ounces of Woolite in a gallon of water. Sponge off the area, then get it desert dry. Once the area is clean and dry, the mold problem will not come back unless moisture returns.

Inside the house, Amazon Products Mildew Stain Away, (800) 832-5645,, cleans mold and mildew without bleach. After cleaning, spray on another coating of the formula and let it air-dry for months of protection.

JOMAX Mold %26amp; Mildew Stain Remover, Chemique KRC-7, (800) 225-4161, and other bleach-based formulas also do a good job on mold and mildew. Being bleach-based formulas, they have the potential to be hard on the lungs. After the surfaces are clean, Scotchgard Mold %26amp; Mildew Block will give three months of protection.

If you have a serious problem, a new Zinsser professional product, PERMA-WASH Disinfectant %26amp; Fungicide Interior Concentrate uses a combination of chlorine dioxide, quaternary ammonia and surfactant to control mold and mildew on hard, nonporous surfaces.

To kill mold, mix one part Perma-Wash to 4 parts water. Spray or mop on and keep wet for 10 minutes. Remove the mold, then repeat. This is very strong stuff, so wear gloves and a respirator. For preventative maintenance, mix 7 parts water to 1 part Perma-Wash.
Wear at least a dust mask, and gloves! It may be Black mold. I may be gettin' carried away, but just had my lower lobe of my left lung removed two months ago, had a 1-3/8th's nodule thought to be cancer. It was caused by fungus, 'Valley Fever' spores. Mold, and fungus is nothin' to fool with, Black mold will kill 'ya! Be careful in an enclosed area with the Clorox, but it is good advice on what to use! I'd stay away from fungicides, Clorox!

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