How to Remove Ceiling Mold

Updated February 21, 2017

Mold first enters your home in the form of microscopic spores, which latch onto a surface. When exposed to moisture, the spores begin to digest organic materials and spread. People with allergies or asthma can experience a number of ill health effects when exposed to mould spores, including rash, eye and throat irritation, coughing and difficulty breathing. Mold will grow on any moist surface, including ceilings. Removing this mould can improve your health.

Ventilate your work area, opening windows and doors or using portable fans. The chemical cleaners will produce strong odours that can make you sick if breathed in directly for too long.

Mix equal parts trisodium phosphate cleaner and water into a bucket or bowl. TSP is a strong cleaning product.

Dampen the bristles of a scrub brush in the TSP solution. Gently press the bristles against the edge of the bucket or bowl, to help prevent dripping.

Scrub at the mould stains on your ceiling. Continue until most of the mould has been removed.

Rub undiluted chlorine bleach onto the affected areas with the scrub brush or a rag. Allow two hours for the chlorine to kill the remainder of the mould spores.

Rinse the ceiling with a rag or brush soaked in plain warm water to remove residual bleach and TSP. Allow the area to air-dry, or dry with a clean towel.


Removing mould once will not prevent it from growing again. If you frequently find mould on your ceilings, it is likely that you have a ventilation problem in your room or your home in general. Some paint and primers contain mildew-killing and mildew-resistant chemicals.


Wear protective goggles and gloves when working with chemical cleaners and mould to prevent contamination from spores or chemicals getting into sensitive areas. When working on the ceiling, wear a protective mask as well so that nothing drips into your mouth or nose. Never mix chemical cleaners, such as bleach and TSP, or you risk causing dangerous chemical reactions.

Things You'll Need

  • Trisodium phosphate cleaner
  • Water
  • Bucket or bowl
  • Scrub brush and/or rag
  • Chlorine bleach
  • Towel
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About the Author

Samantha Volz has been involved in journalistic and informative writing for over eight years. She holds a bachelor's degree in English literature from Lycoming College, Williamsport, Pennsylvania, with a minor in European history. In college she was editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and completed a professional internship with the "Williamsport Sun-Gazette," serving as a full-time reporter. She resides in Horsham, Pennsylvania.