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How to remove mold from bedding

Updated February 21, 2017

Mold inside of a home poses numerous discomforts and health hazards, but if you notice the presence of mould in your bedding, immediately take action to eliminate the spores. If you allow active mould spores to dwell within your sleeping environment, you leave yourself highly vulnerable to allergy attacks, infections, eye irritation, headaches, dizziness, asthma complications (if you suffer from asthma) and other problems.

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  1. Remove any sheets, pillow cases and blankets from the home and examine them outdoors. Look for signs of mould, indicated by moist discolouration and a musty, sour odour.

  2. Sprinkle drops of lemon juice over any visible mould spots, and then sprinkle salt over the lemon juice. The chemical combination of the lemon juice and salt (citric acid and sodium chloride, respectively) creates a powerful mould-killing compound. Allow the items to sit in direct sunlight for about an hour.

  3. Place your sheets, blankets and pillow cases inside a washing machine and add 1/4 cup of distilled white vinegar with your favourite washing powder. Do not use bleach or bleach-based detergents, as you should never under any circumstances mix bleach with vinegar. Place your objects in direct sunlight to dry (if possible) after washing. If you cannot dry in the sun, place the articles in a dryer and use the highest heat setting. Make sure to dry all articles completely to ensure the elimination of all remaining active mould spores.

  4. Inspect your mattress for mould contamination. If you allow mould to remain on the mattress, the spores will continue to spread.

  5. Take your mattress outdoors and remove visible spores using a broom and a vacuum cleaner. Brush the entire surface of the mattress vigorously to remove the most apparent spores, then connect a hose extension to your vacuum cleaner and vacuum between every groove of the mattress.

  6. Mix equal parts distilled water and rubbing alcohol inside of an empty spray bottle. As an alternative, you can use another mould-killing liquid solution like chlorine bleach (1 part bleach to 3 parts water) or the more eco-friendly hydrogen peroxide (undiluted). Spray the surface of a soft cloth or sponge (to avoid over-saturation, which can worsen mould) and scrub the entire surface of your mattress.

  7. Dry your mattress in direct sunlight. If no sunlight is available, use a strong moisture-removal source such as a space heater, blow dryer or wet-dry vacuum.

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Things You'll Need

  • Lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Distilled vinegar
  • Washing machine
  • Broom
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Chlorine bleach
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Sponge
  • Space heater
  • Wet-dry vacuum, optional

About the Author

Chris Anzalone
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