What Causes Mold in the Attic and How Can I Get Rid of It?

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The trick to getting rid of mold in attic is to figure out what’s causing the conditions which promote its growth. Mold thrives in warm, moist, stagnant environments.

In attics, these conditions are caused by poor ventilation, improperly vented fans in the house or roofing leaks.

We’ll look at each of these causes or mold, getting rid of the mold, and fixing the problem so the mold doesn’t return.

Poor Ventilation and What to Do About It

Improper ventilation is the most common reason for attic mold. When air can’t get in and out of the attic, it stagnates. The lack of air flow creates the perfect conditions for mold. Before you remove the mold, take care of any ventilation issues.

  • Many attics aren’t properly vented. Go into your attic during the day time and extinguish all lights. If you can’t see daylight coming through slits along the edges of the attic, you either lack attic vents or your vents are blocked.
  • The best solution for improper or inadequate venting to install continuous strip vents in the soffit from the outside of your house. Another solution is to install ventilator plugs.

Improperly Vented Fans and What to Do About Them

Many consumers install bathroom ventilation fans in order to reduce moisture in the bathroom. Good move. This helps reduce your chances of mold and mildew in the bathroom.

  • If these fans aren’t vented properly, they can cause mold elsewhere. Mold in walls is sometimes the result of an improperly vented fan pouring moisture into them. This is also a common cause of mold in attic spaces.
  • The only real solution to this problem is to re-install the fans and properly vent them so that the moist exhaust ends up outside. If you can’t do that, shut the fans off. It’s easier to clean your bathroom regularly with bleach than it is to deal with attic mold. Getting rid of attic mold is more time consuming and labor intensive.

Roofing Leaks and What to Do About Them

Often, attic mold is caused by a roofing leak. Using a flashlight, examine the underside of the roof sheeting (the side you can see from the attic). If there are roof leaks, you will see discoloration.

Depending on how severe the leak is, you may need to replace your roof. You may also be able to stop the leak with less drastic measures. Call roofing professional to advise you in this regard.

Roof leaks should be dealt with quickly. Otherwise, you will end up with more mold in attic, mold in walls, and mold anywhere the leaking rainwater eventually ends up.

How to Actually Get Rid of the Mold

Once you’ve dealt with the causes of the mold, get rid of the existing mold. Mold reproduces quickly. One mold spore can reproduce itself into 12,000,000 in just twelve hours. By the time you can see mold, you are dealing with billions of mold spores.

Getting rid of mold in attic is a matter of using solutions which will saturate the surfaces the mold is growing on. Here are a couple of effective ones:

  • Borax. Mix 1 cup Borax into a gallon of water. Remove loose mold. Saturate moldy surfaces, scrub, and allow them to dry. Repeat as needed.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide. Use a 3 percent solution. You can find this on store shelves. Remove loose mold, saturate affected area, scrub and allow to dry.

Take care of the conditions which are causing the mold in attic first. Then, clean and remove the mold. Check periodically to make sure new mold isn’t growing.

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