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Moldman was the best mold company I talked to. They explained everything, and were very honest and informative. I would use them again if I ever had another mold issue. I have also already recommended this company to friends. Everyone I spoke to was very nice.

Kristin

So why should you choose Moldman? What separates us from our competition? It’s our simple, no-nonsense approach to fixing mold problems that we like to call “The Moldman Difference.”

The Moldman Difference:

  • No Overstating Mold Problems
  • No Scare Tactics
  • No Pressure
  • No Hassles
  • 100% Focus on Mold and Water Damage
  • Free Estimates
  • On Time, On Budget
  • Licensed, Insured, and Certified
  • Thousands of Jobs Worth of Experience
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DIY Mold Removal Guide

How to Remove Black Mold, or Any Mold, Yourself and Save $1000+

Did you know that most mold problems less than 10 square feet in area can be handled by a handy homeowner?  It’s true! That is the general guideline put out by the EPA.

All mold situations are different, of course, and much depends on your comfort level.  If your mold issue is large, tricky, or in an unsafe area to move around in, such as an attic, we recommend calling a mold pro.  But as is often said, “a penny saved is a penny earned!”

Below is a basic, step-by-step process that you, the handy homeowner, can use to fix your mold problem.  We’re also highlighting a handy table of recommended products that you can use to complete the job.  

If you want the full support of a mold professional for your DIY project, check out our DIY Mold Removal Help Packages.

Six step Guide to DIY Mold Remediation

Step 1:  Safety

As they say, “Safety First!”  Safety should always be top of mind, and to be safe during a mold remediation you’ll need some basic PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) such as masks, gloves and eye protection.  Kneepads are often necessary to keep your knees in good shape if you’ll be working near the floor. For clothing and shoes, any old work clothes and shoes that you can throw in the wash when you’re done will suffice, but if you need some new work clothes we have some recommendations in our chart of recommended products.

You should clear out as many possessions in the work area as possible.  The ones you can’t move you can cover with plastic sheeting. Wood flooring and carpet should always be well covered with drop cloths, so you don’t ruin them with dirt or chemical overspray.

As they say, “Safety First!”  Safety should always be top of mind, and to be safe during a mold remediation you’ll need some basic PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) such as masks, gloves and eye protection.  Kneepads are often necessary to keep your knees in good shape if you’ll be working near the floor. For clothing and shoes, any old work clothes and shoes that you can throw in the wash when you’re done will suffice, but if you need some new work clothes we have some recommendations in our chart of recommended products.

You should clear out as many possessions in the work area as possible.  The ones you can’t move you can cover with plastic sheeting. Wood flooring and carpet should always be well covered with drop cloths, so you don’t ruin them with dirt or chemical overspray.

Step 2:  Containment

Example of containing a work area using Zip Wall system.

A big part of mold remediation is containing the work area so that any mold that’s stirred up in the remediation process is contained in that work area and, ideally, vented outside to the exterior.  If you’re working in a small room such as a small bedroom or bathroom, you can just keep the door closed to contain the area. But if you’re working in a larger room such as a living room or big basement, you’ll want to section off your work area using plastic sheeting and Zip Poles (Zip Poles make it much easier to set up the plastic sheeting).

Ideally, you’d set up your containment in a room with a window so you can blow the dirty air outside.  This is called “negative air pressure” and can be accomplished using a simple box or window fan. Keep the fan running the whole time that the job is taking place.

Also be sure to cover any HVAC supply & return vents so your heating or A/C system doesn’t blow the dirty air into other parts of the home.  This can be accomplished by thoroughly covering the vents with painter’s tape.

An extra item you could add to this step to really do the job well would be to run a HEPA air purifier (for small jobs) or a HEPA air scrubber (for big jobs).  Both of these items use HEPA filtration to capture the mold spores that will be floating around as you’re doing the job. HEPA air purifiers are pretty affordable, and you can use them for cleaner air in your home after you’re done with your mold job.  HEPA air scrubbers are pretty expensive, are mostly used by pros, and are really only warranted on large jobs (such as an entire basement that was flooded). You could conceivably sell your used HEPA air scrubber afterwards to recoup some of your money.

Safety & Containment should take you some time to do it well, like approximately 1 hour.  Remember the 5 P’s: Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.

Step 3:  Demo: Removing Moldy drywall, carpet, and other materials

Example of taking drywall down to structural framing.

Once you’ve put on your safety gear and set up your containment, you’re ready for demo.  You’re going to need some tools for this (see our handy list below.)

You’re going to carefully cut out and remove all mold and water damaged building materials such as carpet, carpet pad, carpet tack strip, drywall, insulation, baseboard, etc.  Bag it up in thick contractor bags and tie the bags well (taping them shut with goose-neck technique is best – see this how-to video: ) so you can carry them out to the trash after the job is done without contaminating the rest of your home.  You’re going to take the area with mold growth down to the 2×4 structural framing, which you’ll end up cleaning.

Example of mold from shower steam in which demo is NOT required.

 

But please note that demo is not always required!  Some jobs that have “surface mold” from humidity, such as mold on the ceiling of a shower/bathroom caused by the steam of the shower, can just be cleaned off (see Step 4).  Demo is primarily required when the mold is due to some sort of leak or flood in which there was some standing water.

 

 

 

Step 4:  Cleaning & using a mold killing spray

The next step is to clean what’s left with a cleaning agent that is effective against mold (i.e. will “kill” the mold).  A very thorough way to clean is to make it a 2-part process: First treat with mold killer, then treat with a stain remover to make it look pretty.  Some options are listed in our handy supply chart.

With your mold killer, lightly spray the area, allow to sit for a few minutes, wipe off with a scrub-sponge.  Repeat once or twice for good measure.

Do the same thing with your stain remover.  Lightly spray the area, allow to sit for a few minutes, wipe off with a scrub-sponge.  Repeat once or twice for good measure. Bleach-based products such as Clorox Clean Up are very effective in lightening the dark, ugly mold stains that may be there.  There are many products out there that are hydrogen peroxide based, which also reduces staining, although not quite as well or as quickly as bleach-based products.

Example of cleaning mold on structural framework.

**IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP** Household bleach-based products are all strong!  They create strong bleach fumes that can irritate your eyes, lungs and skin.  Be very careful with these products and follow the safety directions on the labels.  Bleach can also ruin clothes, carpet, etc. So be careful with overspray.  Remember: A little bit of bleach goes a long way. Don’t overdo it. Leave the area if the fumes start to bother you – you can come back later.  And NEVER mix bleach with ammonia.  It creates a toxic chemical reaction that can overwhelm you or even kill you with the fumes.

Step 5:  Clean Up Work Area

Congratulations!  The hard part is done!  Once you’re satisfied with your mold work, you can wrap up the job site.  Thoroughly clean the rest of your work area by sweeping up any dirt/debris (put in one of your trash bags).  Then damp-wipe any surfaces that collect dust (windowsills, shelves, counter tops, etc.) with any household cleaner.  Wipe down your tools as well. Then mop the floors with any household cleaner. Simple Green works well for this step.

Then take off your dirty clothes and take down your containment.  But leave that exhaust fan running for a while! Some cross-contamination is inevitable, but you’ve greatly reduced it, and that’s a win.

Step 6:  Dry & Rebuild

The last step for your DIY mold remediation is to thoroughly dry the area and rebuild once you’re confident the water problem has been fixed.  Since mold is always caused by an underlying water issue, the mold will come back soon if the water issue isn’t stopped.  If you didn’t know where the water was coming from, hopefully now that the area is exposed down to the structural framing, you’ll have a better handle on the water situation.

Congratulations!  You just did a basic version of what the mold pros do!  And saved yourself a lot of cash! We hope this article was a big help!

Handy Table of Recommended Products for DIY Mold Removal

**Note:  The links below are for Amazon.com because, let’s face it, they’re the easiest with fast shipping and their prices are reasonable.  The products recommended are not always the cheapest, but they are solid quality and good value for the money. You’ll probably have a lot of these items already, so there’s a good chance you can buy all the remaining stuff you need for less than $500.  If you are able to do the job yourself, you’re likely saving at least $1000 by not hiring a pro.

CHEMICALS AND CLEANING
Mold Killer & Stain Remover Combo
Scrub sponges
SAFETY
Work gloves
Chemical gloves
Kneepads
Work shirts
Work pants
Drop cloths for flooring
Plastic sheeting for furniture
Face Respirator Masks (Use N95s when they become available again)
CONTAINMENT
Plastic sheeting for containment
Zip wall system (for large work areas)
Painters tape
Box fan
Window fan
HEPA air purifier (for small & medium jobs)
HEPA air scrubber (for large jobs)
DEMO
Contractor bags
Carpet scissors
Utility knife
Hammer
Pry bar
Drywall jab saw
Power drywall saw (for large amounts of drywall cutting)
CLEAN UP WORK AREA
Microfiber cloths
Simple Green
Mop

Disclaimer: The links above link to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. Learn More

 

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The Moldman Difference

  • No overstating mold problems
  • No scare tactics
  • No pressure, no hassles
  • 100% focus on mold and water damage
  • Licensed, insured, and certified
  • Thousands of jobs worth of experience
  • 10-year warranty & 100% satisfaction guarantee

Free Estimates • On Time • On Budget

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