Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Getting Mold Out of the Shower–Before & After

EDIT:  This post, which started out with about 6 comments from my followers when first posted back in 2012, has now gone viral on Pinterest - as of 6/18/13 it has received over 2.5 million views! Insanity.  Clearly I am NOT alone in my quest to get rid of the moldy grout. :)  I simply shared my story of removing my nasty, embarrassing mold from my window-less bathroom.  I am not a contractor, a plumber, or any kind of house expert.  I'm just a stay-at-home-mom with a mold problem in her shower that wanted to get rid of it before her mother-in-law came to visit. :)  I used to respond to comments on this post, but there are simply too many for me to keep up with.  Using bleach is not for everyone, so I encourage you to make your own decision about whether this will work in your house - I simply shared what worked for me.  Thank you for stopping by and I hope you'll poke around This Blessed Life a little while you are here!  Have a great day. :) 

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I’m lowering my pride today and showing you something only because I think it will help others in my predicament. 
Okay, are you with me? :)
When we first moved into our new house last May, the shower was pristine.  The woman who lived here had 5 little boys, was pregnant with the 6th, homeschooled, and the house was always ridiculously clean and uncluttered.  I can’t decide if she was crazy or superwoman – or maybe a touch of both. :)
Anyway, over about 6 months, mold started to creep in on the grout along the shower.  It kept spreading and spreading, and there was really nothing I could do because my husband told me not to scrub too hard or else the grout would disappear and then we’ve have mold inside the walls and then we’d have real problems, not just cosmetic ones. 
Then one day while browsing Pinterest I came across a post that showed how to get rid of shower mold with just two simple items: bleach and cotton beauty coils, used for perms.  (I am SO sorry to the smart person behind this idea but I do not have the original link – I also apologize for how dark these photos are but our bathroom doesn’t have a window.)

So I went to Sally’s Beauty supply and picked up a package. I’m pretty sure it was only $1.99 – and I already had bleach, obviously, so this project only cost $2! Whoo hoo!
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Here is the before shot (barf):
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I cut a piece of the cotton coil, soaked it in bleach, and let it sit overnight on the mold.  (Tip: I put a disposable pie pan in the tub, poured the bleach in the pan, then soaked the cotton in there before transferring it to the mold – helps with the dripping!  Then I just used a q-tip to press it into the mold so I wouldn’t get bleach on my fingers):
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(Oh and don’t get skeeved out; the toothbrush was to help clean the shower, not for my mouth, haha.)

Look at the difference!  Isn’t that incredible?!
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And here’s a picture after I was finished:
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A-mazing.  I did this almost two months ago, and the mold has not returned – but it’s so awesome to know that if it does, I know what to do now! 
Hopefully this helps someone else out there who just can’t get rid of the mold in their own shower.  Don’t judge me too harshly – I promise I really do keep a clean house otherwise! Although seeing these pictures makes me realize that the walls of my shower could really use a good scrubbing.  This is the trouble with a bathroom that doesn’t have a window in it – you don’t see things very clearly.  Okay, I guess I know what my next project is! lol
Linking up to: Homemaker’s Challenge

Homemakers Challenge

411 comments:

  1. I am doing this as soon as I can get out and buy cotton spirals!!

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    1. Haha I thought the same thing when I read this post!
      Awesome idea Jessica, thank you so much!
      I live in an apartment and I was terrified because the mold issue is just so unhealthy looking!

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    2. We have had a problem with mold in shower stall for the longest time and thought we tried everything. We did try the paper towel soaked in bleach (Did not work)
      BUT THE YOU gave proof that using the cotton spirals worked...AND THEY DID!!!

      THANKS= C Bowman

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    3. I have asthma...did you not smell the bleach while it sat there???

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    4. Nise, closet the bathroom door and flip the vent fan on.

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    5. Lysol spray bleach works too. ;) Tad bit easier. :-)

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    6. Yep straight bleach works too, and way easier!

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  2. oh my gosh, I have this same issue in my shower! I am totally trying this and THANK YOU!

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  3. Wow! That's great! I just found a tip on Pinterest for cleaning the hard water deposits off my glass shower. Hope it will work.

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    1. Avon skin so soft works Really good on those showers as well! And it smells nice!

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    2. thats pretty creepy if Avon 'skin' so soft works and people put this on their skin too, and it removes mold. eeek

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    3. I think she was talking about the Avon Skin so soft taking the Hard Water Deposits off the Shower! Not the Mold! lol

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    4. I tried this with cotton balls because that is all I had at the time and it worked great ! its been a month now and there are a couple spots that are looking a bit like its coming back again so I will be doing it soon again but thank you sooooo very much ! Very very happy !

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  4. Awesome! I'm going to have to try this!!

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  5. Skeeved out! I am laughing!
    That tub looks GREAT! I am a fan of the Clorox Pen for that same reason too!
    Cannot have a moldy tub!
    :)

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    1. Genius and thank you. Will definitely be getting a clorox pen on the way home. My problem is higher up and couldn't figure out how i was going to get the coils to stay. Lol.

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    2. Clorox bathroom cleaner spray with bleach. I soak my tub and shower walls regularly and simply rinse off once all the mold is gone.

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  6. We get mold on our shower ceiling, which is really hard to clean. I usually have my husband bring a chair into the shower and get it with bleach. We're not sure of a good solution to this, so if you have suggestions, we'd love to hear! The humidity in our bedroom is also super high, so mold likes to grow there. We just have a tiny house and live in Michigan (cold outside, warm inside...breeds mold).

    Thank you for your post; I'm sure we'll get use out of it!

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    1. Hmmmm....do you have an attic fan? Or some kind of way to vent your bathroom air? If there's no way to get air circulating, maybe paint the bathroom shower ceiling with Kilz and then spray it/clean it religiously. I'm so not an expert - but I hope you can find something that works!

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    2. There are paints that have anti microbial properties that are perfect for situations such as yours. I would use the Kilz primer first though or bleach it real good to get rid of the existing mold first.

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    3. I always used a diluted bleach in a spray bottle... just a mist then let it dry... then mist and let it dry...unless you are OK with dripping!! WORKS GREAT!!!

      I am wondering if the original post idea will work on my glass shower door grout. not sure how to make the cottony stuff stay.... hmmmm BUT I SHOULD TRY THE BLEACH PEN!

      THANKS EVERYONE!!

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    4. You need a better vent fan for the bathroom. They are determined by the size of the room. It should be vented out of the house, not just to the attic. Also since the tempature varies from inside the home to the attic space,so the ducting should be insullated. I recently looked into changing mine out. Their are kits in the bathroom area in the big fixit stores, but the best ducting is the straight ones that you find around the kitchen exhaust section. Aside from which fan you pick, the extras are less than $50.00. And a Saturday in your attic. Well worth it to keep mold away from the family.

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    5. The diluted bleach in a spray bottle will keep the mold from coming back if you try to to spray any problem areas at least every other day. That way you're ahead of having the icky stuff show up to start with. Works like a charm for me.

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    6. This is what i do. After every shower I just do a quick light spray. Have not had any mold for months!

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    7. We have same problem, I purchased a cheap o sponge mop and I just mop the bathroom ceiling, a lot easier then climbing on a chair, and it u squeeze out the extra cleaning solution no drips

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    8. Same here. I use an anti-mold product in a spray bottle, spray the mop head (Swiffer type) and mop the ceiling. So much easier than the ladder-sponge-drip down the arm scenario.

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    9. We blow a fan into the bathroom to dry it out as quickly as possible. That has helped slow down the growth of the mold on the ceiling, but it still happens after a while. We then just clean it with bleach. We've tried using the fan to blow the air out of the bathroom, but that didn't seem to work as well as blowing the fan at the moisture. We also keep a dehumidifier nearby. Also, we have painted it with Kilz. It still gets a little mildew that needs to be cleaned off periodically. I would never, never vent wet air into the attic. That seems like it could end in disaster.

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    10. when i lived in an apt, i had mold on the ceiling. we painted it with Killz. Mold was GONE and didn't come back after that....

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    11. love the kilz idea. gonna try. Also put in ceiling fan, bleach spray, and hopefully will not come back.

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    12. You can also look for a product called Damp Rid. It has little "crystals" that will absorb the water in the air. The water will collect in the container and you dump it out. I used it years ago an apartment bathroom that had no circulation.

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    13. I also have a small house that had that problem, and that was with a fan in the bathroom. I washed the ceiling with bleach and then cleaned it well and went to the paint store and asked for paint that would block mold from growing. i think they gave me kiltz ( It was about 4 year ago) I have had no more problems with the ceiling, but still get it in the tub.

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    14. I have the same issue in a new house we just moved into. I have found that after showering, if I leave the door open and the light ON for a little while, it helps. I also use bleach mixed with vinegar to spray on the ceiling about once a week. I'll have to try the Kilz though!

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    15. Mirabelle GalianJuly 23, 2012 at 8:24 AM

      I recommend cleaning the visible mold (I prefer straight hydrogen peroxide, especially the higher concentration found in janitorial supply stores). After cleaning run a dehumidifier to remove moisture trapped in the sheetrock.3-4 days of constant dehumidification can prepare your ceiling for the paint. I use humidity reader (find a quality reliable one) to make sure my bathrooms are always below 40% humidity. I run the dumidifier as needed, especially during & after showers. For more serious mold problems, I have had the best results with a line products called MDF 500.

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    16. We had the same issue when we bought our house! I think the previous owners just didn't use the fan. Anyways we got rid of it with a good ole mr clean magic eraser.

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    17. Be sure you use bathroom paint or high gloss paint in your bathroom. It prevents most molds from starting.

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    18. I live in the Northern Territory in Australia and so it's always hot and humid and between September and May it's hotter, more humid and raining. I started to get a little mold in the bathroom so my landlord came over and used an Enyo glove with no chemicals at all to wipe the ceiling down. He was here for something else and cleaned the mold for me. It's never come back!

      I live on my own so I leave the door open when I shower and I have louvers so the air flow is pretty good. The room is also painted with mold resistant paint (which helps, but doesn't stop).

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    19. We would get mold on the window seals, in the shower , on the walls and ceiling. I have an air vent and window but the mold still continued to come back even after wiping it down with bleach.
      I went to Walmart and bought tile x with bleach. Sprayed it on all areas where the mold was at and wiped with a sponge also spraying tile x on the sponge wiping in a circular motion. You do smell the tile x bleach. It has been about 5 months and the mold is still gone.

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    20. Try soaking toilet paper in a bleach solution and sticking it on the mold on the ceiling- like spit balls. Cleaned the inside of my toilet using this method.

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    21. Ive tackled this problem of mould on my bathroom ceiling MANY times due to no extraction in the bathroom of my 1906 built terrace house.
      Dettol ! I have one of those window cleaner thingies on a long pole and I rub straight dettol onto the ceiling with it now. (I our the dettol straight onto the foam part of the window cleaner thingy)

      2 years and some spots are just starting to come back now...

      Hope this helps someone else.

      Ive also used dettol to treat leather shoes that have been invaded by mould..

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    22. oil of cloves kills the mould spores, so it won't come back.

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    23. The bad news is that there is no paint that will stop mold from growing forever. The problem is the conditions in your bathroom that are causing mold to grow.

      I would suggest first installing a good quality, high volume vent fan on a timer and run it for 10-15 minutes after every shower.

      Then track down a good mold killing treatment. Bleach only kills the surface spores. After you treat it, prime and paint with a good quality semi-gloss paint. This will prevent the moisture from penetrating as easily into your walls.

      Once the black stuff is in there, it is in there forever. All you can do is knock it back, and deny it the requirements it needs to grow.

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    24. I am also from Michigan, and I have the exact same problem. Some of these tips I will try. Our biggest problem is that our bathroom is in the interior of the house, so there is no way to vent it out. We do have a 50L humidifier that we use during and after showers. That does seem to help a bit.

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    25. Don't know if this is a smart idea or not, but if you can use another bathroom for a day...
      Use a garden sprayer with bleach and let it sit overnight for the roof.
      Of course you'll need to figure out how to vent the bleach out and not through the house.
      We use this on the outside of our home during the summer clean up time.

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    26. Try to pick up a plant that loves moisture and put it in your bathroom (if you dont have a window for light replace one bulb with the type of blub you use for growing plants indoors)I have used this before with pretty good results

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    27. Someone mentioned the mold resistant paint, I have this and it only worked for maybe a year. You said you have a humidifier, I assume you meant DEhumidifier? I was going to mention that using this would def. help, but to really get it to work well on a larger area (such as a bedroom someone mentioned), you should also use a fan to circulate the air...a regular box fan works fine. If you have issues with enclosed spaces like closets, you can also get moisture-absorbing crystals at your local hardware store. they sell large bags of refills too, dont be fooled into getting the single use ones, they cost a lot more. Also after a shower, use a squeegee to wipe down your shower walls and mirrors, and towel up any wet areas on your floor.

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  7. I have the same problem in a shower in a bath without a window and I do have to use bleach to keep the mold in check but the bleach will eventually erode away the grout. So it's wise to regrout and seal after a while.

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    1. I really recommend that after u remove the grout, you thoroughly dehumidify the room to try & remove moisture trapped in wall area around the grout.once it dries then regrout. Use a dehumidifier along with a separate humidity reader.

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  8. Ok, now I have just added a stop at the beauty supply store to my errands to try this! My boys shower always seem to do this no matter how hard I clean!

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  9. i'm so going to the beauty supply asap!!

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  10. I use a bleach shower spray and/or magic eraser, but there's always a few spots stll with mold. I'm going to have to try your method!

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  11. This is such a great idea. I have had the same problem with my basement shower. We used to rent out our basement to someone who clearly did not know how to clean a shower. We had mold on the walls floors and even the toilet. I have been spraying every surface with bleach and it worked great but I couldn't get the caulking to go white. I'm trying this tomorrow and hopefully my basement bathroom will be saved.

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  12. Trying to figure out how I can use this method on the vertical caulking in our shower? How long are the cotton coils? Any suggestions would be much appreciated! We also get mold on our ceiling above shower.

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    1. Try a Clorox bleach pen and let it sit for 10 minutes and then wash it off with a sponge and warm water.

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    2. I bought Tilex with bleach and it did wonders for the mold in between the tiles.

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    3. Tilex works great but the fumes are really bad. You need to wear mask

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    4. Are you talking about caulk, or grout? If it is the grout (cement like stuff between tiles on the walls), once you get the stains off it, rinse and dry overnight, then SEAL it with grout sealer. This will save you countless headaches for a long time, you will not get mildew stains for a few years if not longer :) The caulk (rubbery stuff at the joints) can be removed with a plastic scraper or utility knife (be careful about scratching tub and tile though) and re-caulked pretty easily. Be sure to aim the caulking gun TOWARD the direction you are caulking (natural inclination is to aim it away) and force it into the void, then smooth the excess with a finger or caulk tool (make a cheap one with a piece of plastic with a rounded edge). Someone above mentioned, this should be done every couple/few years, it is not meant to be permanent.

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  13. Why does it need to be the coils? Can you use regular cotton balls?

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    1. It doesn't have to be the coils, but like the commenter below noted, I would have had to use probably close to 100 cotton balls soaked in bleach to get rid of the problem! This makes it SO much easier. If you just had a spot or two of mold, cotton balls would work great. :)

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    2. I wonder if tearing an old t-shirt or towel into strips would do the same job?

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    3. i used toilet paper and it works the same way.

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  14. I'm pretty sure she used the coils out of convenience. After all, it would be easier than a hundred cotton balls. Either way, we have the same problem and it's embarassing. Thanks for the tip!

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  15. ok you have me sold!! Going to try this tomorrow!!!

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  16. I would think you could use a strip of old towel as well, and then reuse it, might take longer.

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  17. I have done this before using the cotton balls, but he strip of cotton would make it so much easier, thanks for sharing.

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  18. Oh my, I thought I'd have to rip the caulking out & re-caulk! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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    1. We've done that - such a pain! And the mold just came back anyway.

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    2. I have actually ripped out the old caulking three times and each time the same problem. Going to try this tomorrow, can't wait to see how it works! Thank you.

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  19. This is my problem. I have no problem with my grout, but that cauaking is terribly black. Like you, my husband tells me not to scrub too much and I can't wait to try this! Looks amazing!

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  20. Wetting paper towels with bleach and laying them a on there also does the trick

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    1. I do the same!

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    2. I am an apartment makeready for government housing...I also use the papertowel/bleach mix. The longer you let it set the better it works.

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  21. Is the mold in the pic in the caulking? I get mold in the caulking, not the grout. Usually I have to scrape all of the caulk out and then recaulk. I hope your great tip helps remove the mold from the caulking.......I have my fingers crossed!

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  22. There's not a problem with scrubbing caulk. If it starts to peel up, you need to rip it all out & reapply it.

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  23. It is not your fault. If that much mold came in only 6 months, then she was not superwoman, she scrubbed super hard to "get rid of it". I am embarrassed to say I do not clean the bathrooms as often as I should and I do not have that much mold. She was good about pretending to be that clean. Lol ;)

    Thanks for the tip! I will be using it in the future! :)

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    1. Depends what part of the country your in Washington and Oregon tes middle states no way lol

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  24. I've used this trick before and it works wonders - but just a word of caution, you definitely want to ventilate your bathroom and the adjoining room if you can!

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    1. Definitely - I do it at night right before bed and leave both doors open!

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  25. You don't even need the cotton... you can throw some bleach in a spray bottle & spray the area that you want cleaned. Let it sit for a while and then rinse. Voila!

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    1. I use to do that until I got a "bathfitter" tub. Can't use bleach on it as it harms the finish, boy I'm glad I came across this, I missed my bleach spray... :)

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  26. Love this! We rent an old house and need to clean the mold out of the tub. YUCK!

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  27. I just did this on my tub but I didnt have cotton so I just used some toilet paper and kind of lined it and put the bleach on it and I only left it on a couple hours and it's white white white!!! No mold! I'm so excited thank you ;)

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  28. thanks for not being ashamed to share this tip :)

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  29. THANK YOU!! this is happening to my tub right now as i type - and i was wondering HOW IN THE WORLD AM I GOING TO CLEAN THAT GROSS MESS!! and then i cam and there you had it -- a answer to my prayer :-D THANKS!!!

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  30. I use Clorox toilet bowl cleaner with bleach. Squirt it on and rinse off in 15 minutes.

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  31. Try using Soft Scrub (brand name) with bleach cleaner for Kitchen and Bath. It's a thicker consistency and you don't have to use cotton at all. Let it stay on over-night for a really bad mold problem, then use a toothbrush to scrub the caulking. It should come out bright white when finished!!! Worked for me! :)

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  32. my remedy has always been pouring some bleach (no diluting)in a spray bottle, then spraying it directly on the mold, and watch them disappear immediatly, I do this once every six months in my bathrooms

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  35. I so need to do this,thanks for sharing all your good ideas everyone !

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  36. I do this, but with strips of paper towells. Works great and is way cheaper. Glad I'm not the only one with the problem ;)

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    1. I am so excited to try this it is sad! My aunt is coming to babysit in a few days and want the bathtub clean for bath. Thank you!!!!!

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  37. I use a product called Mildew Stain Remover by Starbrite- it's usually sold for boats (I get it at West Marine). Spray it on and leave it alone- mildew disappears and didn't come back for close to a year

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    1. That is a great idea, thank you. It probably actually kills mold instead of just bleaching it white.

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    2. I don't know this for a fact or anything, but I do think the bleach actually kills the mold. Reason I say this is, I have some mugs with the bigger plastic straws (you know, the ones that make sounds if you blow in them... I should not know that, but I do lol). Well, after a while, the straws get little mold spots in them and I cold not get it to come out. I mean I would put in DW or spray in sink, but no dice. I decided to soak them in bleach one day, and that is the only thing that has gotten rid of it.

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  38. What in the world would we do without bleach???? Well, I've had to learn because I have deathly allergies to inhaling the stuff because I have overused it cleaning and swimming in chlorinated pools all my life. Now in my golden years it took a ride in an ambulance to teach me that I CANNOT use bleach or encounter bleach at all. So......here is how I solved the mold problem in my triple wide. I switched out the exhaust fan for a larger than required one. It's actually much quieter too. Climbed up in the rafters to make sure the attached metal exhaust pipe was not leaking. (Used some duct tape for good measure), and I added a plug in fan that swivels and sits on the count. I turn that on before using the shower/tub. Since the secret is eliminating moisture, I use a window squeegy to wipe away all the water drops in the shower/tub too. I resent having to do that, but hey.......I resent mold a lot more. Hope this helps someone out there with allergies such as mine. Oh, and by the way, Dr. Bronner liquid soap and Shaklee cleaners do not have bleach and are much kinder to Mother Earth as well as humans and pets.

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  39. What in the world would we do without bleach???? Well, I've had to learn because I have deathly allergies to inhaling the stuff because I have overused it cleaning and swimming in chlorinated pools all my life. Now in my golden years it took a ride in an ambulance to teach me that I CANNOT use bleach or encounter bleach at all. So......here is how I solved the mold problem in my triple wide. I switched out the exhaust fan for a larger than required one. It's actually much quieter too. Climbed up in the rafters to make sure the attached metal exhaust pipe was not leaking. (Used some duct tape for good measure), and I added a plug in fan that swivels and sits on the count. I turn that on before using the shower/tub. Since the secret is eliminating moisture, I use a window squeegy to wipe away all the water drops in the shower/tub too. I resent having to do that, but hey.......I resent mold a lot more. Hope this helps someone out there with allergies such as mine. Oh, and by the way, Dr. Bronner liquid soap and Shaklee cleaners do not have bleach and are much kinder to Mother Earth as well as humans and pets.

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    1. You can use hydrogen peroxide in place of bleach; especially the kind sold at the janitor's stores. It will work the same way, but does not contain bleach and no harmful fumes.

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  40. We had this problem after we re-caulked the shower. After 2 years of fighting this problem we finally removed the old caulk and bought a better mold/mildew resistant one. After 6 months no mold or mildew in the shower.

    As for the ceiling we had some mildew problems, we would spray mist bleach water and let it sit. We used TSP to wipe down the ceiling and it seems the mildew has stopped. Next on the list is to repaint the bathroom.

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    1. I have been doing this since I was a navywife many moons ago.Where House Inspection's was grueling. To make your shower tiles gleem,spray with any bleach based concoction, the night before at the top of tiles, let it drip down to bath and shower floors. Spray and you wont be DISAPPOINTED!

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  41. WOW. I have to get a unit in my apartment building ready to re-rent, and the bathtub looks just like that. I have on my to-do list "remove and re- caulk". I came across your site (via a properly linked Pinterest pin, thank you!) just in time!
    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU :)

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  42. This is great... My son's college apt. has definite problems... to say the least as you can imagine!!! I'm going visiting and toting along the cotton and bleach.. They won't know what hit them!! Thanks tons!!

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  43. Is this safe for colored tile and grout?

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    1. I'm not sure; sorry! My gut reaction would be "no" because it is bleach - but maybe you could test a small corner to see?

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  44. Another option would be to us clorox clean up the spray, it only takes a few minutes to complete the job, and when it dries, just spray again, no toothbrush no mess..

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  45. I've always used the Clorox bleach gel pen. I apply it, let it sit, then scrub with the brush that's on the pen. Works well, but this seams a little cheaper. I'll have to give it a try

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  46. We had the same problem also. We started leaving the doors open to the bathroom after we would shower. After a month or so....no more mold!!! I guess it just needed some ventilation....we have the same problem with no windows in our bathroom. Thanks for the great idea!

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  47. For mold on the ceiling, you can put some hydrogen peroxide & water in a spray bottle & mist the ceiling with it. It gets rid of & keeps away the mold/mildew without the bleach fumes.

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  49. Just doublecheck. I have read that the bleach actually 'fades/lightens' the mold and does not get rid of it! I use Tilex Mold & Mildew and it works great too.

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  50. To cut back on mold- add an indoor plant to the bathroom. I swear it makes a HUGE difference! Just a small one sitting on your toilet tank works great.

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  51. Wow! Thanks so much for posting this!! Not judging at all, just so grateful for a solution to a very frustrating problem!

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  52. WOW! That worked great. I will have to try it. Our bathroom vent goes straight into the attic instead of outside! I fill a spray bottle with straight white vinegar and spray the walls and the shower curtain liner every morning after I get out of the shower. It works GREAT at keeping the mold from growing but I do still have some areas where the tile meets the tub where the mold has managed to get in the grout. Wonder if the vinegar will keep it from happening again after I get it cleaned?

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  53. O M G , This sure will save us money for sure and time from my husband regrouting the showers and tubs over. Thank you so much for the tip. I will be doing this tomorrow as soon as I get to Sally's . Thanks again.. Bye Bye Mold : )

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  54. Hi, There is a great website for Shannon Lush in Australia, she says that bleach just whitens the mould without killing the spores. She recommends using a dilution of oil of cloves (about 40 drops) in a spay bottle with water, spray the mould, the next day spray with bleach mix, let it rest for 30 mins and then wash. Should Kill the spores and clean the surface.
    Does anyone have a helpful hint for getting rid of mould in silicon sealant?
    Thans

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  55. After reading the original post I was at AWESOME but then I read down all the comments and now I am SUPER AWESOME. Thanks so much for all this wonderful information. I am going to use the oil of cloves application to kill the spores, the bleach on cotton strips to clean the grout and I am going to add a plant to my bathroom. I love Pinterest!

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    1. I agree. I have boys. That should explain all of my searches for tips! It's hard to get them to remember the fan but either way mold still grows. I will be trying all of the tips above. Anyone know where to get oil of cloves and cost?

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  56. I use the Clorox toilet bowl cleaner gel. It lays a nice line in the creases of the grout and leave it there, turn the bathroom vent fan on, then finally return and clean up after doing other household chores.Cheaper than a small stick and works wonders. No mess with the cotton that goes around your head. What's all that about?

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  57. We have had issues like this living in apt and I have always used bleach. But I also get this professional spray that our pastor sells that kills mold and HIV virus and all kinds of stuff. So I clean first with bleach the spray that stuff on and it works wonders. :)

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  58. best tip ever! our bathtub and sinks were really gross and thanks to this their finally white! we just bought a big bottle of clorox bleach ($1.98 at walmart) and put it in a spray bottle and sprayed it and put rolled toilet paper on the area. just need help with the ceiling

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  59. Thanks so much! I'm going to try this because I've tried everything! There's mold aroung the bottom of my tub. And I like you do not have a window in my bathroom and therefore I think it makes mold grow more and faster since there isn't any ventilation. Thanks again!

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    1. We have a window in our bathroom but we don't use it. EEK, why? We have a one story house and the window is behind the toilet next to the shower. If we open the window anyone walking by, mowing their yard, etc will have an awesome view of everything below the waist! So I will be trying this tip!

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  60. Great job! thanks for sharing!

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  61. We were just told by our tile guy not to use bleach on the grout because it degrades it. Not sure how to remedy grout mold then, but now I know why my bleach-cleaned grout developed holes in the first place. Will be trying food grade hydrogen peroxide to see if that works. Just be careful if anyone tried the food grade hydrogen peroxide, it can cause chemical burns if not diluted. Not judging your house, life happens.

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  62. Bleach does only whiten the mold. A mix of hydrogen peroxide and water will actually get into the pores of what you are trying to clean and kill the mold. I do not remember the dilution but i'm sure it can be googled. I am kinda surprised not more people have brought that up.

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  63. Thank you!! I've tried so many Bathroom cleaners and none of them has removed the mildew.

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  64. yourbathroom got mold in it so easilybecause the lack of a window kept it moist wich helped the mold grow

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  65. THANK YOU!!! I bought my grandmother's home and the tub looked terrible. I have scrubbed and sprayed all kinds of different cleaners. I'm so glad you shared this cleaning tip! This was amazing and EASY!

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  66. After researching the idea behind bleach not killing mold only making it white (or clear), I found some research that reinforced that this method should indeed work to kill the mold. Because bleach is considered a disinfectant, it must remain in contact with the mold a minimum of 30 minutes for the mold to be killed. Any less than that and you are just making it white and not actually killing the underlying microbial flora (fancy for mold) that is causing the mold you see to grow and it will come back. SOOO, make sure you leave it on long enough!!! Thanks for the tip too! :)

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  67. Great tip! Thanks for posting. For anyone having problems with mold on walls and ceilings - there is a paint brand called "Zinser". It is amazing and better than Kilz for mildew and mold. Also, you can get it tinted to any color! Great paint and stops the problem.

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  68. It's been a neat rick in my family for years that after you deep clean the shower, spray it with lemon pledge. It repels water and if you spray it directly onto the grout lines, it helps keep the water from the shower out. It doesn't work as well for tile on the floor of a shower because it tends to sit there. So after bleaching with this method, spray a little pledge on it and keep it like that for a while longer.

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  69. It's been a neat rick in my family for years that after you deep clean the shower, spray it with lemon pledge. It repels water and if you spray it directly onto the grout lines, it helps keep the water from the shower out. It doesn't work as well for tile on the floor of a shower because it tends to sit there. So after bleaching with this method, spray a little pledge on it and keep it like that for a while longer.

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  70. The poster who mentioned a cheap mop made me think, you could buy one of the cheap mops made of cotton strings, cut the strings and use them in place of the cotton strips. Just an idea in case your dollar store sells those type of mops.

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  71. I have had the same wonderful results with Lysol toilet cleaner with bleach. I like to use that because its easier to squirt into the grout line and most times it doesn't drip. Let it sit overnight and its like magic.

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  72. I use old shoe laces and soak them in bleach then lay them on your problem areas overnight. Works like a charm!!

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  73. Wow! Lots of great comments, but couldn't read them all! We have an enclosed shower with floor to ceiling (including the ceiling) tile. The best thing I can come up with for the mold/mildew on the ceiling is making a paste with baking soda and bleach. I don't measure, just make it firm enough to stay and not drip. Then I apply it with an extension scrubber. I do all this when I start the bathroom and by the time I'm ready to clean the shower, it's done the job!

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  74. Just trying to clarify. I see that you used bleach and cotton strips but now HOW you did it. I'm assuming that you saturated the cotton strips with bleach and then let them sit on the mold. How long did you leave them? Did you have to scrub afterward? Forgive me if I missed the directions somewhere but I honestly can't see them and don't see any link that I need to click.

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  75. Never mind. I see the directions now. I think when I was reading and scrolling my computer scrolled too fast and I missed that important step. Thanks.

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  76. So great! Worked like a charm in my also non ventilated bathroom!!

    Thanks!

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  77. I tried that same thing with old rags. I'm glad to know about the coil things!

    Experiential Mom, I had mold on my ceiling. It was creeping me out. I used a sponge mop and a bucket of super-hot water and bleach to mop the ceiling clean. When it was dry, I repainted it with Kilz ...

    http://www.kilz.com/masterchem/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=c05f90033f9ff110VgnVCM1000008a05d103RCRD

    I check the ceiling all the time. Haven't seen any spots in months.

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  78. AWESOME!!! I can't wait to go to Sally's and get the cotton spirals! Thank you!!!!

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  79. For those of you with ventillation problems - once you get the mold out, try placing a tub of Damp Rid (sold at Walmart, Lowe's, etc.)in your bathroom. I've used this method for years on our boats to keep the dampness at bay. Works like a charm. Buy your refills in the 2 qt. box. Much cheaper.

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  80. To everyone...I remodel homes for a living. The bath fan is the #1 most important thing you can have to get moisture out. It has to be selected according to the size of your bathroom and also the number of showers taken in one day. The more moisture in a short period, the bigger fan you need to move that moisture out. The fan HAS to be vented properly (outside the house, not into the attic and not just to a soffit). It needs a dedicated outlet to vent, just like your dryer vent. Otherwise, it doesn't work properly. The reason mold starts is because of a breakdown in the silicone joint (or the grout joint for tile). When silicone is new, it will not grow mold and there is silicone that inhibits mold growth. Once silicone gets one crack in it (even though it may not be visible) it is trapping moisture and allowing that moisture to get behind the silicone. That's where the breeding starts- when you see the mold, that means the mold is either behind or in the silicone. It doesn't just grow on the outside of the silicone, unless the silicone properties have broken down on the outside, allowing the mold to "cling" or grow on the surface. The way to keep mold out is to make sure the silicone is always maintained. Sometimes this means using a knife to cut the old silicone out, cleaning any area where silicone is (inside and out, as deep as you can get), then resealing with a high quality silicone sealant. It doesn't look like much but this is extremely important in keeping bacteria out and the possibility of water damage behind tile or shower walls. The cost of silicone (and maintanence) is nothing compared to the cost of having to replace a shower due to mold growth at/in the wall. If you look at the label on mold removal products, they specifically state that bleach does NOT kill mold. Bleach will remove the discoloration and make it smell good, but it won't actually get rid of the properties of most molds- allowing it to grow right back, exactly like before. There are many cleaners on the market that you can spray and walk away and then wipe it down- and it will be clean. But bottom line, if the mold is returning- you're not getting rid of it in the first place. For more info on bleach vs. mold, reference this .org website.

    http://www.normi.org/articles/bleach-mold.php

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    1. Yes, directing a fan to blow in the bathroom will help some by dispersing the moisture. The problem is that you're not getting the moisture out. To be truely effective, you need a bathroom vent to get the moisture out completely. The key is getting your bathroom as dry as possible, as quickly as possible. The recommendation is to run a bath fan a minimum of 10 minutes after the shower is shut off to help continue moving moisture out.

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  81. I just use Soft Scrub with bleach on the caulk. Squirt, make sure it's touching all the mold, let it sit for an hour or so, and rinse. Easy peasy.

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  82. Thank you thank you thank you!!! WE have been living in an apartment for almost a year now that has developed this problem in spite of cleaning it. It is so gross! Heading to a beauty supply store today!!!

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  83. Another idea- Clorox bleach gel. Cheap at only $2 a bottle

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  84. Just tried this on my bathroom. I had the same problem area as you! This worked SO AWESOME! You saved me so much time and money. Found out about your blog via Pinterest. Thanks so much!

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  85. Can you use bleach or HP on colored grout?

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  86. This totally works! Amazingly simple. Thank you!

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  87. I just put some bleach in a spray bottle and it works fine without the cotton.

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  88. I am putting the spirals on my shopping list! We have a spot in our grout that the mold seems to come from. I think it has already gone through the grout and is inside the wall. Anyone have an idea how to treat that without having to tear out ceramic tiles?
    Thanks!

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  89. I just did this last night and it TOTALLY worked! I'm so excited!.
    I couldn't find the cotton coils that are recommended in this post, so I just found cotton pads that were specifically for nails. Then rolled them in little "tubes", dunked in bleach, and let it sit overnight. The cotton tubes even stayed put for my vertically lined grout. I was in TOTAL SHOCK this morning when the mildew/mold was gone.

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  90. It also works with vodka!!

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  91. Before you bleach the mould, spray all surfaces with a mixture of one quarter of a teaspoon of Oil of Cloves mixed with one litre of water. The Oil of Cloves will attack the mould spores killing it at its source. Repeat again the following day. Then after another 24 hours you can wash surfaces down with bleach. The bleach wil remove the unsightly look of the mould but it is the the Oil of Cloves that will stop it from returning and spreading. You do still really do need to get some ventilation happening.

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  92. Try the wet Swiffer mop with the disposible flat pads. Just "wash" your ceiling with one of those. OR you can take a white washcloth, wet it and put some bleach on it, wring it out well and poke it into a swiffer dry floor mop. Run this over your ceiling and the bleach will help the mold disappear. I have done this and it works.

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  93. Thank you sooo much for this!!! I've had the same issue plaguing me for months!! No matter what I tried it didn't even budge. No matter how clean my shower it always felt dirty and disgusting with that ugliness in the caulk. My mind was blown when I peeled off that cotton coil this morning!! The caulk was absolutely spotless!!! No scrubbing, wiping, or eve rinsing involved. Forever thankful!!!

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  94. Thank you so much for this post!! I have been very busy and have not had to chance to go out and buy that specific kind of cotton. But, I did have a ton of cotton balls so I used those! WOW! It worked! I wasn't holding my breath because I have tried everything! My husband thought we were going to have to take off the old grout and regrout. (Grout right?) Thank you SO much!!!

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  95. Great post and I love your pictures of before and after. Incredible

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  96. To clean your shower try Easy off oven cleaner fume free in the blue can. Yes it's for ovens but does an amazing job. Spray it on wait a couple of hours and wipe off with a cheap dryer sheet. No scrubbing needed, I could not believe how easy it was. Give it a try!

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  97. I clean my shower basically the same way except I tear paper towels into strips, press them into the caulk lines and spray with bleach. The paper towel strips soak up the bleach and stay right on the caulk lines. I check them after an hour or so and if I still see any black in the caulk through the paper towel strips I just spray again and check later. When everything looks clean and white I remove the strips and throw them away. I usually use Clorox Clean Up spray.

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  98. Awesome tip! Thank you!

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  99. I mentioned your blog on my blog ...

    http://costcuttingcreations.blogspot.com/2012/08/save-your-shower.html

    I tried it out and my shower is amazing now!

    Thanks,
    Kathryn

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  100. I put bleach in a spray bottle and just sprayed it on my caulk. It worked great.

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  101. This is a great tip... thanks. I bet there are other things I will use cotton coil for as well! I saw you responded to a comment with a reference to the drink cups with straws... Here's a tip in return. Denture cleaner tabs, such as polident, efferdent etc.... rinse thermoses, cups, coffee carafes well, fill with water and drop in a denture cleaner tab overnight. Rinse well in the morning.

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  102. I use Tilex for mold. Works great.

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  103. We don't use bleach in our house, but this idea did get me thinking! I think I will try this with our Shaklee Basic G (Germicide). Thanks!

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  104. I had always done this until last year when someone told me that bleach doesn't kill the mold, it only bleaches it..and then leaves a film. I'd like to know if that's true!

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    1. most sources suggest a mold killer (I use vinegar) but if there is a film or discoloration after you've cleaned with vinegar, then use the bleach to whiten the stain.

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  105. I use Softscrub with bleach around the edges of the caulking that is moldy and leave overnight. works magnificently!

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  106. What a great tip! Will be trying it this week. Thanks for posting!

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  107. This is an awesome tip. Now to find out how to get it off the ceiling

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  108. OMG! This worked like a charm. The caulking lining my tub is really wide so I just used regular old t-shirts. The caulking looks brand new now. THANKS a bunch for this!!

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  109. As to cleaning your tub next: to get that shine back...I tried the trick that I also found on Pintrest: 50/50 blue Dawn dishwash liquid and white vinegar, mix it in a spray bottle and spray on. I used it on the walls of my shower as well as the tub. I was extremely skeptical and there were 2 spots where I had to do a second dose (I was also impatient and wiped a bit earlier than recommended) and tada! Clean tub...it's so clean it was still reflecting light a week later!!

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  110. Thank you so much for posting this! I saw this on Pinterest! We actually had a professional come out and scrub out old moldy grout and replace it with shiny new grout, but we still have a shower stall downstairs that could use a good grout cleaning. Can't wait to try this trick! It's going to be much cheaper than having a pro come out and clean it.

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  111. You are supposed to replace that moldy grout. Pull it out, spray mold killer, they all work, and after it dries, just get out a tube of tub grout and replace. We've always done that, since I was a kid.

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  112. I clean houses for a living and can say from experience that the Mr. Clean bathroom eraser removes the hardwater film from glass and chrome in the shower!Even removed(very stubborn) grime out of the textured shower floor. I was so excited! I know. That is scarey..............

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  113. I just tried this with cotton balls (all I had) and it worked amazingly well! Most spots were gone after 1 hour. I left the cotton on overnight and it took care of some gritty areas, even removed the hard water deposits. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Try using toilet paper- works just as well and lets face it, it's something we all have- plus it's nice and sticky when wet-just think of spit balls- when soaked in bleach you can stick it were ever you need it- I cleaned the inside of my toilet this way

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  114. thanks for posting .. I will have to try this!

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  115. thanks for the ideal....i have the same problem with my sliding shower doors around my tub....GREAT!

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  116. I didn't have the cotton strips, so took a piece of string & a needle and strung it through cotton balls. A little ingenuity goes a long way! It is soaking now; I hope I get the same results!

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  117. Contrary to popular belief bleach doesn't not actually kill mold (or at least not all of it). It whitens the tops and the water in it actually feeds the roots.
    Instead of bleach I would suggests distilled white vinegar and tea tee, lavendar, or thieves oil. Both of these things will actually kills the mold and are a lot less toxic for our bodies and the environment.
    If the vinegar does not whiten the mold after it kills it, you could always use the bleach then.

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  118. You know what ? You made my day, what I say, you made my year :-))))
    I'm having a war against those moldy black goods since long years, the best I get until yesterday was a yellow or a red colour... and the black good came again and again
    this time I get a perfectly white colour !
    I used a product easy to buy in France "cillit Bang bleach + moldy"... it's a sort of gel... easy to place around the bath tub and after I push some "pharmaceutical cotton" (impossible to found this tube of cotton you used) and 24 hours later : clean clean clean bath room :)
    thank you very much

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  119. You need to use Borax. Bleach cleans up the mold, but doesn't kill the spores, that's why it comes back. Borax kills the mold.

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  120. I'm afraid I would dig it all out and wash everything down with an anti-mold chemical. Then dry everything out for a few days and caulk with a top of the line caulk (not silicone) with anti-microbials in it.

    We have started using Sashco caulk on our client's homes because it has a 7 year anti-mold guarantee.

    http://www.sashco.com/hi/mildewfree.html

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  121. I put bleach in a spray bottle an hose down the chaulking. leave it over night run the shower briefly. poof clean an no lingering smell.

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  122. OMG THANK YOU AND THANKS TO EVERYONE ELSE POSTING, I ALSO HAVE MOLD ON MY CEILING PEROXIDE WOW!!!!!! AGAIN THANK YOU ALL!!!!! ~DEBBIE

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  123. I SO appreciate you sharing this! Gonna try it today ;). Now to find out how to bookmark your blog on my little phone!

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  124. I recently read somewhere that applying Rain-X to the shower walls helps to keep them cleaner longer. It is a product that is in the automotive section, as it is meant to help car windshields remain clear (the water beads up and runs off). I haven't tried it yet, but armed with that knowledge, I'm going to attack my showers with cotton and bleach this weekend and then give the rain-x a shot - any added help to prevent me having to do it again anytime soon is a plus!

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  125. When you get around to the walls of the shower, try those Mr. Clean pads. I don't have the brand name, as I used up my last one. Anyway, you can also find a lesser quality at the dollar store. They work great, but don't hold up as long. Just wet down your walls and scrub away! Let me tell you...I spent a FRACTION of the time I used to spend, and no scrub brush, pail, cloths, etc. This works the BEST on fiberglass, but also works well on tile. That soap scumm just disappears. Try it..you'll agree!

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  126. The bleach isnt killing the mold it's only doing just that "bleaching" it. You need a spore specific cleaner to actually kill the mold rather then make it invisible

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  127. Instead of using the perm strips is there anything else that can be used? Like papers towels or something?

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  128. Thanks for the hints. I have been wondering what I could use to get rid of the mold in the bathroom.

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  129. Just a note of caution: leaving bleach on grout will eventually cause the grout to fail. If you are using the bleach on grout, you must wash and rinse it to remove all the bleach. Even then, repeated uses of bleach can cause tiles to literally fall off. Ask me how I know!

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  130. I also use a squeegee in the tub/shower. Squeegee the walls after a shower and even the tub. get as much water out as you can. Helps drying time, moistur in the bathroom and calcuim and lime build up. Then take an old towel and wipe the ledge, and hardware! Simple and quick!

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  131. Thank you, thank you, thank you! This worked beautifully! I saw the post on Pinterest and was skeptical because I had cleaned with bleach in the past, and some ideas from Pinterest just don't work. But this is a winner! You're awesome!

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