Cleaning Tips, Guides & Resources

Here’s What You Need to Do If You Spot Black Mould in Your Bathroom

how to fix black mould in bathroom custom graphic

Mould is one of those insidious household hazards and annoyances that infiltrate our homes and, worst of all, is rather difficult to get rid of. While the fungus is unpleasant to look at, the real problem lies in the fact that mould spores are dangerous to our health. When inhaled, they can cause breathing problems, rashes, headaches, and even trigger asthma, particularly among vulnerable individuals like babies, children, elderly people, allergy sufferers, and those with an immuno-compromised health system.

There are different kinds and colours of mould, the most common of which is black mould (Stachybotrys chartarum). It can be found in the more moist and humid areas of your home such as the bathroom. You will often see the development of mould in the porous grout around tiles, in cracks, under sinks, inside bathroom cabinets, and on wall paint. 

When you spot mould in your home, it is best to tackle it at the earliest to avoid it spreading. If you are dealing with the fungus in your bathroom, take a look at these effective solutions to remove it quickly and safely.

Methods to Rid Your Bathroom of Mould

black mould on bathroom wall tiles in a dirty bathroom

Most commercial mould removers contain toxic chemicals that can be harmful to us. While they may do a good job at getting rid of the mould, leaving chemical traces around your bathroom defeats the purpose of maintaining a safe and non-hazardous environment. So, with that in mind, we have listed several natural ways to remove mould from your bathroom.

WARNING: Prior to cleaning mould, ensure that the area is well ventilated, and use gloves and a mask to avoid inhaling the mould spores. 

#1 Using Baking Soda

Make a thick paste using baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) and water. Apply on the affected area, and leave for 10 minutes; the mould will start fading gradually. Then, using a hard bristle brush, scrub the area until the mould is gone. Rinse with water and wipe clean; allow the area to dry after.

#2 Using Borax

Mix 1 cup borax and 3.5 litres (approximately 1 gallon) of warm water. Spray onto the surface and, after a minute or two, scrub with a brush to remove the stains. Finish off by rinsing with clean water, and then dry with a microfibre cloth. 

#3 Using Distilled White Vinegar

Make a solution of distilled white vinegar and water in the ratio of 1:2. You can also use undiluted vinegar if you are dealing with very fuzzy mould in your bathroom. Spray the solution onto the mouldy area, and leave it on for anywhere between 10 - 30 minutes (check on it every few minutes to observe the mould fading away) and then scrub the area using a hard bristled brush. Use a toothbrush to get into the small nooks and edges. This should help remove any left-over mould. Avoid using vinegar on surfaces made of stone, granite, marble, or slate as the acidic nature of the ingredient can damage the surface. Clean the area with water, and allow it to dry.

#4 Using Vinegar For Painted Walls

Combine 2 cups of warm water, ¼ cup of distilled white vinegar, and 2 tablespoons of borax powder. Mix the ingredients in a bowl and then transfer to a spray bottle. Use this to lightly spray the affected wall area without saturating it. Scrub with a sponge or non-abrasive scrubber, and then wipe the area clean with a damp cloth. For a thorough job, and to ensure that the fungus does not return in a hurry, repeat the process, only this time, allow the solution to sit on the wall for approximately 5 to 10 minutes, and then wipe clean. 

NOTE: To ensure that this solution is suitable for your bathroom’s paint finish, test it on an inconspicuous area of the wall first, allowing it to dry completely, and then checking for any fading or damage to the paint.

#5 Using Hydrogen Peroxide For Shower Curtains

To get rid of black mould on your shower curtain, make a solution using 1 part water and 2 parts hydrogen peroxide. Lay the curtain on the bathroom floor, and spray it liberally with the solution, concentrating on the affected areas. Allow the solution to sit for 5 to 10 minutes, and then rinse it away. To eliminate any further traces of mould, make a paste using baking soda and water, scrub it onto the curtain, and then rinse. Follow the same procedure on the other side of the curtain before allowing it to air dry. If your bathroom has poor ventilation, dry the shower curtain elsewhere before hanging it back up. 

IMPORTANT: If the mould has penetrated the walls, sits under tiles or covers a large area, it is recommended to call a professional to tackle this problem. 

Tips on Preventing Mould in Your Bathroom

person using blue toothbrush to clean mould around bathroom sink faucet

Mould thrives in moist environments which is why bathrooms tend to be ideal for mould growth. Of course, that doesn’t mean it is impossible to prevent the fungus from developing; all it takes is routine cleaning, and a few good habits to keep mould at bay. These are listed below.

  • To prevent mould from growing in your bathroom in the first place, it is best to keep the area as dry as possible, and for long periods of time. 
  • Ensure that your bathroom is well ventilated by opening windows and doors, or using a fan or exhaust fan to dehumidify the area. 
  • Avoid creating breeding grounds for mould to grow by leaving damp bathrooms mats, towels, or clothes lying around. Instead, allow these materials to air dry or sun dry regularly to remove moisture. 
  • Fix any leakages that may occur around taps, sinks, or shower heads and faucets. 
  • Do not allow water to sit in any area of your bathroom for prolonged periods of time. After a shower or using the taps, wipe away water using a dry cloth, or squeegee from the shower area, floor, tubs, around the sink, and walls. 
  • Seal any gaps that you may have in your bathrooms. Water can seep into cracks around tiles and grout, and allow moisture to get in, thus creating a breeding ground for mould. 
  • Reseal damaged grout to avoid trapping of moisture. 
  • Unclog any drains or sink holes that might be getting blocked as this will prevent water from easily draining. To clean your drains, regularly remove any particles that might be causing blockages like hair, bits of tissue paper, or scum. Regularly pouring hot water down the drain helps to break down and flush away any buildup of matter along the inner pipes. 
  • Another great option to regularly clear your drains after pouring hot water down is to follow it up with approximately 1 cup of baking soda, and chase it with 1 cup of distilled white vinegar (or a mix of white vinegar and water). This reaction will cause bubbles which helps to dislodge any particles or dirt that might be causing blocks. After about 10 minutes, pour hot water down the drain to flush away any residue. This process helps to remove odours as well. 
  • In terms of walls, it is ideal to use water resistant paint that does not encourage water to adhere to the wall. Some paints also contain antimicrobial elements that inhibit the growth of black mould in bathrooms. A good tip is to look for mould inhibitors that can be added to the paint prior to its application. 

Equipped with the knowledge on how to remove mould from your bathroom, as well as the above tips on preventing mould growth, MaidForYou is confident that you will have no trouble in making your home a healthier environment for you and your family!

Adriana Aziz is the operations manager at MaidForYou. With over 6 years of experience managing cleaning operations, she knows all the best hacks when it comes to cleaning residential and commercial buildings. With expert experience in managing house cleaning operations, interior design and logistics. She spends her free time with her family and as a freelance food critic.

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