Does Vinegar Kill Mold? (Or Black Mold?)

Does Vinegar Kill Mold? Realizing that there is mold in your house is a discovery that nobody particularly wants to have happen. Unfortunately, it is a discovery that many people will eventually make. Whether the mold outbreak was caused by a lack of care in the house or it was caused by a leak that nobody noticed until it was too late, you will need to get rid of the mold as soon as you can.

Of course mold is unsightly but it is far worse than just a splotch on an otherwise clean surface. Mold can have a variety of effects on your respiratory health, especially if you are young, old, or have a sensitive respiratory system. Symptoms can range from being a minor cough that doesn’t ever seem to go away to an allergic reaction brought on by the mold spores. Nobody ever wants this to happen to him or her, making it all the more important for you to get rid of the mold in a timely manner.

What Can You Use to Kill Molds?

As you begin your search for chemicals and cleaners that you can use to get rid of the mold in your house, there’s a very good chance that you will come across a variety of chemical cleaners. These cleaners, while effective, can have a whole slew of ingredients that you would never want to have just sitting around. If you have pets or particularly young children, chemical cleaners could be ingested. Depending on what is in the cleaner, this could mean a fretful trip to an emergency room for either your pet or your child. This is one of the many reasons why people turn towards all-natural remedies for removing mold from their houses.

Out of the common natural remedies to remove mold (3% hydrogen peroxide, vinegar, or baking soda), there is only one that is almost completely risk free if a curious child or animal decides to have a taste: vinegar. Vinegar is a completely safe, chemical- and toxin-free cleaner that almost every household is going to have. Even if you do not have the specific type of vinegar that works best on mold, it is very easy to find it in your local store. The question then becomes whether or not vinegar can actually get rid of the mold in your house.

Does Vinegar Kill Black Mold?

Vinegar has been proven to kill off about 82% of all mold species. Typically, black mold is the most worrisome form of mold but thankfully it can be removed with vinegar. In fact, black mold is actually one of the most toxic types of mold and black mold poisoning can cause a larger range of health issues than other types of mold, making it all the more important that you remove it as soon as you see it. As for the type of vinegar you should be looking for, white distilled vinegar is the most effective type of vinegar to use and it is pretty easy to find. Once you have obtained the vinegar, you will want to follow some steps to make sure that you are cleaning the mold as efficiently as possible.

How Do You Get Rid of Mold Using Vinegar?

First, because black mold tends to be the worst for the respiratory system, you will want to make sure that you are wearing full protective gear. This includes a mask, goggles, and gloves to protect yourself from direct exposure to the mold. You can add more protection if that makes you more comfortable but having those three is going to be essential.

Once you have your protection, you will want to pour the white distilled vinegar into a spray bottle. Mold, especially black mold, tends to be resilient so even if the smell is unpleasant, you do not want to dilute it at all. If anything, having the mask on will help you deal with the smell a little bit. After you have poured an adequate amount of vinegar into the spray bottle, you will want to spray it directly and evenly onto the mold. If you do not have a spray bottle, you can also pour the vinegar directly onto a disposable towel and wipe the mold-covered areas. If you choose to go down this route, you will need to make doubly sure that you are wearing protective gloves that will not let any of the mold spores come into contact with your skin. After the vinegar has been applied to the mold, you should let it sit for about an hour. During this hour, do not rinse or scrub the mold at all. Just let it be and let the vinegar be absorbed by the mold.

After that hour has passed, take a clean, damp towel and wipe the area clean. Granted, you should never let mold grow to the point where vinegar will not get rid of it but if this is the case, repeat the previous step until you are able to wipe the vinegar away and see a clean wall beneath it. When you have reached the point where you can look at a mold-free wall, you will want to let the wall dry for about another hour or so. This extra hour also helps to air out the smell of the vinegar.

If you want to be on top of the game and keep your walls extra clean, you could consider spraying the area with vinegar again to kill any stubborn spores that thought that they could stick around. This will take an extra couple hours but it is generally worth it to ensure that your home remains mold-free for longer.

Some Things to Consider

If you are looking to combine your vinegar solution with something else to strengthen it, make sure that you are never combining bleach and vinegar. Mixing bleach and vinegar will produce a compound that is similar to chlorine gas, which is deadly. If you really need to find something to strengthen your solution, consider another all-natural method such as hydrogen peroxide or baking soda. These are safer and will produce better results than trying to combine bleach and vinegar. If you are worried about the mold in your house being too widespread to handle on your own armed with a reasonable amount of vinegar, you might want to look at professional help. You don’t want to be working around mold longer than you have to be, especially when it is black mold. By keeping these things in mind, you can rest assured that you are not putting yourself or others at risk by cleaning your house in an unsafe way.