What Is Mildew and How Can I Get Rid of It?
Mildew is a parasitic fungus. It requires moisture, warmth and a food source to exist. It reproduces itself by growing microscopic spores in enormous quantities. These spores are always present in the air and spread via normal air currents. A spore lies dormant until favorable moisture and temperature conditions occur for it to germinate. Mildew thrives in warm moist areas that have poor air circulation. In the average household, mildew is typically found in the bathrooms. The corners, cracks and crevices of the tub, shower, sink and toilet are the most common areas affected. It ranges in color from a pinkish-orange to black.
Your Maid Brigade house cleaning service team will be able to impede the growth of mildew by removing the built up food sources that it lives on, such as soap, skin, hair, etc. However, as long as moisture and warmth are present, the spores will immediately germinate and mildew will again be growing on the host area.
To stop the growth of mildew, the area must be kept dry or it must be chemically treated to make it an undesirable environment for the spore to germinate. Although not part of a green cleaning program, chlorine bleach is a very good sanitizer to use on an infected area.
We recommend that the bleach can be diluted up to 50% with water to reduce the pungent odor. The most practical application method would be to lightly spray the area, although it can be wiped or sponged on. It is not necessary to saturate the area or to treat uninfected areas. Leave the bleach in contact with the surface area for at least an hour. Rinse any area that you will touch in later use. Repeat the application on a bi-weekly basis or when mildew reappears.
Insurance restrictions do not permit Maid Brigade maids to use chlorine bleach. Further, bleach is not part of our Green Clean Certified® program because of the toxic nature of this substance. As a Maid Brigade customer, you may choose to use bleach independently to help control mildew growth between our cleaning service visits. If you choose to do so, please do not use bleach for two days preceding a scheduled house cleaning by Maid Brigade because a chlorine residue could combine with the other cleaning solutions our maids use and cause the formation of a toxic gas. Also, please ventilate the treated area well to clear away harmful vapors quickly.
We hope the above discussion explains why mildew is such an on-going maintenance challenge. Working together, however, it can be controlled.