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Preventing Mould in Your Closet?

Mould loves small damp enclosed spaces and closets are the perfect environment for mould to grow. 

Mould causes clothes to smell musty and irritate some existing health conditions.

In this blog I will discuss simple and more complex steps for reducing mould in your closets and cupboards.

Preventing Mould in Your Closet?

Mould loves small damp enclosed spaces and closets are the perfect environment for mould to grow. 

Mould causes clothes to smell musty and irritate some existing health conditions.

In this blog I will discuss simple and more complex steps for reducing mould in your closets and cupboards.

5 Steps to Reduce Mould in your Closet

1/..  Allow airflow throughout your wardrobe as mould spores will not thrive in a breeze.

elfa shelving for WIR situated behind bed

Airflow can be achieved in several ways, the easiest being to install ventilated shelving.

Elfa and Closetmaid shelving systems both allow air movement inside the wardrobe.  Clearly solid melamime shelves will not allow any air movement whatsoever.

Elfa is double epoxy coated steel

Mirror Doors & Closet Maid Shelving

2/..  Only Store Clean Dry Items

Mould thrives on dirt and can destroy fabrics.

Give your collection of clothing the Marie Quando treatment and rid yourself of seldom and never worn clothes. Clothing items that have not been worn, washed, or aired out for over 6 months are the first to get mildew issues.

Ensure clothes and and any other items are completely dry before storing.

3/.. Light

Ventilated Sliding Wardrobe Doors with Mesh Panels from our Troppo Range

Troppo Sliding Doors

Incorporating doors which will allow air transfer and light is also a good idea.

Our TROPPO series and SUKIYA range are ideal. Sliding doors are easy to keep ajar during the day, or while on vacation.  (Also, Darwin being a tropical location, we NEVER turn off the ceiling fan from September to easter!)

Ventilated White Sliding Doors from our Sukiya Range

Sukiya Sliding Doors

Keep your sliding doors open to let light into your cupboard.  (Light helps to retard the growth of certain moulds and fungi, and cockroaches are not fans of the light either)

4/..  Moisture Absorbing Products

Place bowels of moisture absorbing products such as baking soda or powder chalk to soak up excess moisture in the air.

5/..  Avoid Plastic Bags

The polyethylene composition in plastic bags traps humidity around clothes.  Resulting in mould growth.

Plastic Bag

5 Steps to Reduce Mould in your Closet

1/..  Allow airflow throughout your wardrobe as mould spores will not thrive in a breeze.

Airflow can be achieved in several ways, the easiest being to install ventilated shelving.

Elfa and Closetmaid shelving systems both allow air movement inside the wardrobe.  Clearly solid melamime shelves will not allow any air movement whatsoever.

Elfa is double epoxy coated steel

Mirror Doors & Closet Maid Shelving

2/..  Only Store Clean Dry Items

Mould thrives on dirt and can destroy fabrics.

Give your collection of clothing the Marie Quando treatment and rid yourself of seldom and never worn clothes. Clothing items that have not been worn, washed, or aired out for over 6 months are the first to get mildew issues.

Ensure clothes and and any other items are completely dry before storing.

3/.. Light

Ventilated Sliding Wardrobe Doors with Mesh Panels from our Troppo Range

Troppo Sliding Doors

Keep your sliding doors open to let light into your cupboard.  (Light helps to retard the growth of certain moulds and fungi, and cockroaches are not fans of the light either)

Ventilated White Sliding Doors from our Sukiya Range

Sukiya Sliding Doors

Incorporating doors which will allow air transfer and light is also a good idea.

Our TROPPO series and SUKIYA range are ideal. Sliding doors are easy to keep ajar during the day, or while on vacation.  (Also, Darwin being a tropical location, we NEVER turn off the ceiling fan from September to easter!)

4/..  Moisture Absorbing Products

Place bowels of moisture absorbing products such as baking soda or powder chalk to soak up excess moisture in the air.

5/..  Avoid Plastic Bags

The polyethylene composition in plastic bags traps humidity around clothes.  Resulting in mould growth.

Plastic Bag

How to treat Mould in your closet

When treating mould in your closet we recommend vinegar to avoid damage to your wardrobe.  

Always test the vinegar or product you are going to use on a small area to ensure that you will not damage surfaces.

Read the directions on all products to ensure they are suitable to you, your family, and your home.

What you will need to treat mould in your closet

  • Vinegar
  • Undiluted Vinegar
  • Cloth
  • Towel
  • Water
  • Pedestal fan
  • Bucket
Cleaning Products to reduce mould

Step 1:  Mix 50% Vinegar & 50% water together.  (This will remove the mould that you can see).

Step 2:  Wipe this solution over all surfaces and let dry.

Step 3:  Once dry, use the full-strength vinegar and wipe again over all surfaces.  This will assist to kill the mould spores you cannot see.

Step 4: Rinse the surfaces and towel dry.  Direct a fan into the cupboard and leave for an hour to dry.

Regularly cleaning and de cluttering your wardrobe will go a long way to stop mould from being a bigger problem and may also help you to find the cause.

Leave the door of your wardrobe open to enable air flow.  Ceiling fans and open windows will also help to improve air flow into your wardrobe.

Depending on the degree of mould you may need to leave space between your clothes to support air flow.

Safely Removing Mould

How to treat Mould in your closet

When treating mould in your closet we recommend vinegar to avoid damage to your wardrobe.  

Always test the vinegar or product you are going to use on a small area to ensure that you will not damage surfaces.

Read the directions on all products to ensure they are suitable to you, your family, and your home.

What you will need to treat mould in your closet

  • Vinegar
  • Undiluted Vinegar
  • Cloth
  • Towel
  • Water
  • Pedestal fan
  • Bucket
Cleaning Products to reduce mould

Step 1:  Mix 50% Vinegar & 50% water together.  (This will remove the mould that you can see).

Step 2:  Wipe this solution over all surfaces and let dry.

Step 3:  Once dry, use the full-strength vinegar and wipe again over all surfaces.  This will assist to kill the mould spores you cannot see.

Step 4: Rinse the surfaces and towel dry.  Direct a fan into the cupboard and leave for an hour to dry.

Regularly cleaning and de cluttering your wardrobe will go a long way to stop mould from being a bigger problem and may also help you to find the cause.

Leave the door of your wardrobe open to enable air flow.  Ceiling fans and open windows will also help to improve air flow into your wardrobe.

Depending on the degree of mould you may need to leave space between your clothes to support air flow.

Safely Removing Mould

Next Steps in the Fight against Mould in your closet

If you have done the above and the mould is persistent.  Try the following

1/..  Humidifier
You may need to invest in a humidifier to decrease moisture in the air.

2/..  Carpet
Carpets absorb water and take a long time to dry especially in small spaces.  If you have carpet in the bottom of your wardrobe replace it with melamine panels.

I have personally replaced the carpet at the bottom of my wardrobe with melamine.  Immediately, and to this day my wardrobe smells a lot fresher.  It is also easier to clean resulting in less dust build up.

3/..  Lights
There are lots of LED lights on the market today that can fit inside your wardrobe.  Lights burn off moisture.  Do your research and read the directions to ensure they are suitable and safe for purpose.

Next Steps in the Fight against Mould in your closet

If you have done the above and the mould is persistent.  Try the following

1/..  Humidifier
You may need to invest in a humidifier to decrease moisture in the air.

2/..  Carpet
Carpets absorb water and take a long time to dry especially in small spaces.  If you have carpet in the bottom of your wardrobe replace it with melamine panels.

I have personally replaced the carpet at the bottom of my wardrobe with melamine.  Immediately, and to this day my wardrobe smells a lot fresher.  It is also easier to clean resulting in less dust build up.

3/..  Lights
There are lots of LED lights on the market today that can fit inside your wardrobe.  Lights burn off moisture.  Do your research and read the directions to ensure they are suitable and safe for purpose.

Structural Reasons for Mould in your Cupboard

Unfortunately, if you have tried the above and still have mould issues.  You may have structural problems.

1/..  Leaky Plumbing
Plumbing leaks behind walls will contribute to mould.

2/..  Ceiling Mould
Mould growth in the ceiling can migrate down into walls

3/..  Humidity & Condensation
When the climate is hot people tend to use air cons.  If you have an aircon on the wall in one room and your built-in wardrobe shares the same wall, in the room next door.   The cold air from the wall and the warm air in your closet causes condensation which can turn into mould.  If this is a problem, try leaving your wardrobe doors open and lights on when operating your air con.

When Building or Renovating Consider the following to minimise and or avoid Mould Issues in your Closet.

To minimise and or avoid mould issues in wardrobes when renovating or building a new home.

We suggest the following:

1/..  Ensure that your walls, flooring, and ceiling are properly sealed to prevent moisture leaking into your wardrobe

2/..  Include a  window in your Walk In Wardrobe to allow natural light into the room.

3/..  Avoid air cons or heating on shared walls to built-in wardrobes.

Conclusion

I hope this blog helps you to significantly reduce or eliminate mould issues you may have in your closet, cupboards, or wardrobes.

If you would like to know more about our ventilated shelving systems or sliding doors with ventilated panels.  Click the link and Carl will call you back.

All the Best, Sharon