Mold is a problem for all kinds of floors, but it is a particularly difficult problem for hardwood floors. Because the floors have a subfloor beneath them and the wood itself is porous, it can absorb and trap moisture. When moisture is trapped in dark spaces, it becomes a magnet for mold. Mold spores are always present in microscopic amounts and when they find fertile breeding ground, they begin to multiply rapidly. Mold can occur in old homes as well as new homes. It’s important that you remove it as soon as possible when you spot it. It can lead to breathing problems, illnesses, and just generally ruin the aesthetics of your floor. Here is how to tackle the problem.
Step 1: Get the Right Equipment
Mold spores are very tiny; therefore, you need to wear clothes you are prepared to throw away or to have dry cleaned. A run through a normal washing machine won’t be enough to get all of the mold spores. Also, you need to be wearing rubber gloves and goggles. Finally, you need a respirator. A standard dust mask will not work to trap mold spores.
Seal the room with the mold as well as you can. That means using plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal around cracks and windows. If you have a ventilation fan that points to the outside, that would be a great addition as well.
Step 2: Remove the Mold
The most efficient way to remove mold from your hardwood floors is by physically removing it. You can purchase a scraper at a local hardware store or use a sander. A sander is faster, but you have to be extra careful as that can put mold spores in the air. Double check your seals around doors and windows.
Sand or scrape away the mold and seal it in a trash bag.
Step 3: Discarding the Mold
You do not want to take the discarded mold through your house if at all possible. Even a few spores of mold can spread to the rest of the house. If at all possible, throw the mold out of the nearest door or window. If that’s not possible, be sure to double bag it.
Step 4: Treating the Floor
You need to also get to the root cause of the mold. If you know where the moisture came from, then you simply need to sand the floor and refinish it. If you do not know where the moisture came from, you need to get in touch with specialists before you refinish the floor. Otherwise, you’ll have the same problem again.